Pinter's semi-autobiographical play examining the surprise attraction, shy first steps, gradual flowering, and treasonous deception of a woman's extramarital affair with her husband's best ... See full summary »



Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »


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Complete credited cast:
Avril Elgar ...
Mrs. Banks
Ray Marioni ...
Caspar Norman ...
Chloe Billington ...
Charlotte Age 5
Hannah Davies ...
Charlotte Age 9
Michael König ...
Ned Age 2
Alexander McIntosh ...
Ned Age 5


Pinter's semi-autobiographical play examining the surprise attraction, shy first steps, gradual flowering, and treasonous deception of a woman's extramarital affair with her husband's best friend; the entire story is told from the husband's point of view, with the scenes in precise reverse chronological order. Written by Dan Hartung <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In every life...for every love...with every trust...there is a risk of Betrayal.


Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

19 February 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Anatomia de uma Traição  »

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Did You Know?


Final cinema movie produced by veteran Hollywood producer Sam Spiegel. See more »


Robert: [after his wife tells him that she's been having an affair with his best friend] Where does it take place? Must be a bit awkward. I mean we've got two kids, he's got two kids not to mention a wife.
See more »


Referenced in Seinfeld: The Betrayal (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

"Unfaithful from the first night of marriage..."
2 December 2000 | by (san diego, ca) – See all my reviews

Ben Kingsley, in his finest film, plays "Jerry", a sweet likable guy married to "Emma", played by the famous British actress Patricia Hodge. Jeremy Irons plays "Robert" who is Jerry's best friend, and who is also sleeping with Emma.

This innovative movie plays backwards in time, starting at a cafe meeting of old friends, Jerry and Robert, long after the divorce is final. This is such a clever film, you know it must be based on a play, and it could only be a British play because Hollywood just cannot write with anywhere near the wittiness of this film.

Even though the movie is about adultery, we all know that adulterous affairs usually end sadly, and so the movie starts out very sad and moves to much more happy times. Kingsley is outstanding when he throws a fit about "Why you'd never want to have a woman come to watch you play tennis!" Irons and Hodge do a thorough job of betraying Kingsley, and Kingsley with his acting talent drives the knife into the viewer, by being just as sweet and innocent as a new-born babe.

The movie plays backwards in time; every scene occurs months or years before the next, sort of like "Same Time Next Year", a famous Alan Alda movie, but much, much better. The writers show their strength by deriving witty and ironic connections between each of the scenes. The movie unfolds like a piece of fine origami paper.

This is a movie for single people to see. It does not have a sad ending, but I sure cannot forget the movie, 17 years after I saw it. Now that I'm married, it would probably tear my heart out to see it again. See this movie while you're young, before someone BETRAYS you!

11 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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