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Adultery in the movies--love with the bland stranger?


skimpole
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To begin with, I've never really liked the movies of Alexander Payne. They are full of a disingenuous, privileged smugness which looks at those poorer and less attractive with a nasty, if subtle condescension. One problem that I had with The Descendants is that the most sympathetic character is also the richest and most handsome man in the movie, and the only time he is challenged, it is by his even more attractive daughter who spends much of the movie in a sexy bikini. One problem with the movie I should point in all fairness was made by John Podhoretz an otherwise bigoted and ignorant critic. As a crucial plot point, George Clooney's wife is revealed to be having an affair with Matt Lilliard, who begs the question what earthly woman would do that?

 

Having asked this rhetorical question, I'd like an answer. Are there movies in which the woman chooses a man who is clearly less attactive than her husband. I remember there was a french film in the early 1990s, called Too Beautiful for You, which may have starred Gerard Depardieu about a husband who found himself attracted to a woman clearly fatter and less attractive than his wife. But are there are any movies about wives with such odd taste?

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< I remember there was a french film in the early 1990s, called Too Beautiful for You, which may have starred Gerard Depardieu about a husband who found himself attracted to a woman clearly fatter and less attractive than his wife.>

 

 

His astonishingly beautiful wife is acted by Carole Bouquet in "Too Beautiful for You" (1989).

 

 

You may want to watch the film again to gain insight into his choices rather than falling back on negative stereotypes and one-dimensional characterization of "odd taste."

 

 

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> {quote:title=dpompper wrote:}{quote}

> < I remember there was a french film in the early 1990s, called Too Beautiful for You, which may have starred Gerard Depardieu about a husband who found himself attracted to a woman clearly fatter and less attractive than his wife.>"

If they ever made a remake of that movie today, the irony of that scenario would be too rich for words.

 

cn_image.size.gerard-depardieu-france-be

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But are there are any movies about wives with such odd taste?

 

Well, I don't know if she did or she didn't, but if she did, she's nuts. She being Irene Dunne in My Favorite Wife. You'd have to be nuts to take up with Randolph Scott, deserted island or no.

 

begs the question what earthly woman would do that?

 

Don't forget - pretty (and hoo boy is George pretty!) don't guarantee he isn't a louse.

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> {quote:title=dpompper wrote:}{quote}Correction, please, Andy. I didn't write the part you copied. I merely was responding to skimpole's original post.

>

> Edited by: dpompper on Apr 8, 2013 9:55 AM

Noted, though I was only making a point about the irony of an overstuffed dumpster diver like Gerard Depardieu being in a position to be able to pick and choose among women, at least if they weren't going to get a joint bank account in the bargain. I should have clipped your name from the comment, but I hadn't even noticed who'd made it.

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Well one would hope that a primary reason for the adultery was because of a breakdown in the relationship. i.e. good looking people can be jerks. But I do see somewhat of a trend here that I have seen in other threads; people asking 'why' associated only with looks and thus giving the impression that relationships should be only about looks. I assume most would agree that this is a shallow POV.

 

e.g. Halle Berry has been cheated on multiple times. I'm not defending the men that cheater on her but that consensus was that she lacked inner qualities as it relates to dealing with the men in her life.

 

As for movies; love with the bland stranger can be a great plot device; it implies that the person requires more than just waking up next to a pretty face and thus adds depth to the plot.

 

 

 

 

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In able to answer that question about how it's portrayed in movies, you'd have to ask why it happens in real life. You must be aware that what attracts a woman as far as men are concerned is based on a far different criteria than what attracts men to certain women. To most men, beauty IS only skin deep. But often, there's more to it. I've known buddies to cheat on their wives with far less attractive women, and those women also not being very likeable persons. For most men who cheat, it's a sexual matter. Anything more substantive is a bonus. With women, it's the SEX that's the bonus. Their reasons for cheating are of a deeper nature.

 

Of course, I'm hugely generalizing here. The reason's why women OR men cheat are as varied as the people who do the cheating.

 

As stated here by someone, being attractive isn't a gaurantee that the man isn't a louse. Add that the same thing goes for the woman not being a harpy. Remember when the question was posed to JESSICA RABBIT about why she married a goofball personage like ROGER, she answered, "HE makes me LAUGH". Well then, for the woman who cheats with a less attractive man, the answer might be the same. However, in the movies, one must not assume the "less attractive" man the woman is cheating with is found to be less attractive by the rest of the audience.

 

Sepiatone

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The woman in this little anecdote wasn't straying; she was happily married. She was startlingly beautiful and was married to an unprepossessing man, who didn't have outstanding looks or obvious attractions in other ways. One day a curious friend asked her to tell her, confidentially, what it was that had made her marry him, of all the men who had courted her. She said, "He never hurts my feelings." I knew just what she meant. I married a man who never hurt my feelings, even when I was a teenager and he was a young adult, five years older. We met again in later years and he hadn't changed. He was still kind and gentle, and smart, and good to people. Nobody ever had a better husband, even when he had Alzheimer's and I took care of him. He's been gone ten years now, and there isn't a day I don't miss him. I had a happy, peaceful nine years with him, and he healed all my wounds. A love like that gives you strength that can carry you for the rest of your life.

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> But are there are any movies about wives with such odd taste?

 

Bette Davis' love interest in a lot of her films was George Brent, who was there mostly because he was so bland he'd make her shine by comparison.

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Skimpole, to get back to your original question: there's the film where Thelma Todd is married to Cary Grant but wants to carry on with Roland Young. This is before Cary became a star, of course, and it became a basic principle of the movies that any gal who can should trade up to Cary Grant.

 

 

In a similar vein:

 

 

In COME AND GET IT the beautiful young Frances Farmer is part of a triangle with Edward Arnold and Walter Brennan. You can't imagine, say, Joel McCrea as part of a triangle with Marie Dressler and Marjorie Main, which would be the equivalent.

 

 

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I'm sorry if I appeared ungentlemanly. But in The Descendants Lilliard's character is no more impressive than Clooney than the actors are in real life. It is still not clear why Clooney's wife acts the way she does, except to make the suggestion that she is simply not a very good person. It's typical of Payne that she literally does not get to say a word in her defense in the entire movie. But being a bad person still doesn't explain why she goes with Lilliard's character.

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