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Immediately you know what has happened and still you keep watching it until the end
Once in a while you come across a movie about which you know from the first moment on what has happened and still you aren't able to turn it off or to switch to another channel. You keep watching, because you want to know everything about it. Why that is, I don't know, but I find it very intriguing and I guess it only proves the quality of these movies.
"L'Adversaire" or "The Adversary" is such a movie. From the first moment on you know that Daniel Auteuil's character Jean-Marc Faure has done something terrible to his family. You know he has murdered his wife and children, but you don't know why. Only when you keep watching until the end you'll see that the man has been living a lie for the past twenty years and that he wasn't able anymore to continue like that. He had made everybody believe that he was a successful doctor, working for a prestigious medical institution. Next to his 'dayjob' he also invested money for his friends and relatives, which in reality he used to live on, buying his family more expensive homes and cars, and sustaining a young mistress for himself. But eventually people wanted to see some returns on their investments or wanted to withdraw large sums that he couldn't possibly give them. So he kept stalling and putting them off until he ran totally out of options and his whole world came crashing down ... resulting in his final, chilling act of desperation.
What perhaps is even the most chilling thing about this movie is that it has been based on true events. Yes, if you turn on the news, you regularly get to hear news about a father who has murdered his entire family because they were in big financial problems, but it is never shown in so much detail as it is in this movie. In this movie you get to see, thanks to a complex series of flashbacks, the investigation after the murder, showing how he starts getting into trouble until he has only one option left. I'm pretty sure that a lot of people had to swallow a couple of times when seeing it all and I admit that I was one of them.
Next to the chilling story, the acting is something else that deserves noticing. I'm not very familiar with these actors, but they all did a nice job. Especially Daniel Auteuil (the only actor that I have heard of before), who is absolutely terrific. He has managed to help you understand why the man did it, without saying that what the man did was right or wrong. I'm not saying that you'll like the man, but you'll understand him and that's something very special for a movie like this one. All in all this is some very powerful cinema like you don't get to see it very often. Even if you aren't too familiar with the director or with the actors, even when you aren't used to watch foreign movies, you still should give this one a try. It certainly deserves it. I reward this movie with an 8/10.
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