‘A Faithful Man’ is a romantic French comedy about two lovers brought back together under absurdly comical circumstances.
Abel (Louis Garrel) is left heartbroken when he finds out that his girlfriend, Marianne (Laetitia Casta) is pregnant by his best friend Paul. Marianne tells Abel that she and Paul have been secretly seeing each other for over year and are planning on getting married in only 10 days. This news should have been a huge blow but Abel takes everything surprisingly well. He and Marianne respectfully decide to move on and part their separate ways. Though Abel takes everything in stride he still cannot forget Marianne no matter how much he tries.
Eight years later Abel learns that Paul has died of a heart attack in his sleep, leaving Marianne a widow. He goes to Paul’s funeral where he see Marianne and her son, Joseph (Joseph Engel.) It’s been eight years but Abel still has feelings for Marianne and hopes there’s a possibility they will be able to rekindle their romance. While Abel is silently longing for Marianne at Paul’s funeral, Paul’s sister Eve (Lily-Rose Depp) is longing for Abel. It’s revealed that Eve has always had a secret obsession with Abel ever since she was a child. Eve has always been jealous of Marianne and Abel’s relationship and was relieved when Marianne left Abel for Paul. However, with Paul gone Marianne and Abel have rekindled their romance and Eve is determined to have Abel to herself.
Eve confronts Marianne and tells her that if she does not give let her have Abel, they will have a war over him. Marianne genuinely loves Abel but decides to let Eve have Abel for a trial period as way for Eve to get this obsession with Abel out of her system. Sure enough, Eve becomes underwhelmed with her relationship with Abel as the fantasies she’s had of him falls short of the actual reality. Abel himself senses Eve’s disinterest in him and is too left feeling bored in their relationship as he can’t stop longing for Marianne. Meanwhile, Marianne is now under the impression that Abel does not want her anymore but can’t stop thinking about him either. Luckily, Eve finds out that Abel is only with her because Marianne sent him to her. She kicks him out of her apartment and Abel hastily runs back to be with Marianne.
A Faithful Man is an absurdly complicated, bizarre and comical love triangle that showcase the fickleness of love and desire. The film is only 75 minutes long but there’s so many twist, turns and mysteries packed in, you’ll hardly realize the film is so short. In fact, the beginning of the film will lead you on to believe that you’re watching a intriguing murder mystery when Joseph tells Abel that he thinks his mom murdered his father. Of course all of that was just a farce Joseph put on because he did not want Abel dating his mother. But even still, the very ending of the film will still have you wonder if what Joseph said was true. Despite all of the drama in the film, the most absurd parts of A Faithful Man is how nonchalantly all of the characters seem to react to the drama, which I think makes it so comical. A Faithful Man is definitely an unconventional love story for the ages.
‘A Faithful Man’ premieres in New York July 19 at the Quad Cinema & French Institute Alliance Française and in Los Angeles August 2 at the Laemmle Royal.
Directed by Louis Garrel
Starring Lily-Rose Depp, Laetitia Casta, and Louis Garrel
Co-written by legendary screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière