If you speak Spanish, you already know why the two-color scheme exists
in that title. If you don't, the yellow portion gives the film another title
within the main one. "YOU are unfaithful" inside "Unfaithful
Big fuckin' deal.
Pretty decent movie, though.
A lot of us, including me, enjoy several of the Italian sex
comedies from the 1960s and 1970s. The best ones provided an
interesting mixture of legitimate narrative, nudity, philosophy,
and buffoonery that made them relaxing and pleasant to watch.
Perhaps you wonder why people don't make movies like that any
more. Well, they do. In Chile. This 2004 film is basically an
Edwige Fenech movie for the new millennium.
It begins with a bang. In more ways than one. A Santiago
couple pulls into one of those ornate love motels, and engages in
some really spirited stripping and sex. Bang number one. Then they
light an after-sex cigarette. Unfortunately, the hotel has a
gas leak. Bang number two.
The story then backtracks a few hours. The woman we've been
watching in the motel is a famous news anchor. She is seen hosting
a TV program about the astronomical rate of infidelity among
Chilean wives (62% of them cheat - highest percentage in the world
by far, according to the story.) Oh, isn't that ironic, based upon
what we know about her! During the course of the program, she has
a big fight with her male co-anchor. She corners the producer and
says, "I'm the star. Get rid of that guy." The producer says, "He
has an iron-clad contract." She responds, "Then give him shit jobs
out in the field that will keep him away from me, and maybe even
cause him to quit." Fair enough. The producer assigns the poor
schmuck to a midnight report from the fire station, where nothing
ever happens in Santiago.
As we already know, tonight there will be an explosion in a
posh motel, and when the male anchor accompanies the firefighters
there and delivers a live report, who does he find in a hotel
room, close to death, but his much-despised and very naked female
Not a bad yarn so far. It got me hooked.
Unfortunately, the film doesn't stay with that story. This is
one of those movies with several parallel stories about one theme,
in this case female infidelity, and the other stories were nowhere
near as clever as that one. Some of them were outright bummers,
like the one about the woman who falls in love with her stepson,
and the pain they cause her husband (his dad).
There was one very funny scene in one of the other stories. A
prissy young woman has never had an orgasm. She gets some tips
from a horny friend, and starts using her new vibrator while
locked in the bathroom. When the vibrator runs out of battery
life, she swipes the batteries from the TV remote. That might have
worked fine except that her cold fish of a husband wanted to watch
the big soccer game, and didn't know where to find the spare
batteries ... so he had to find his wife to ask her ...
That scene was played out purely for farce, but the film
follows the general format of the Italian sex comedies and
therefore doesn't stick entirely to wacky bedroom hijinks. I
mentioned the pain caused by the father-son thing. Well, I didn't
mention that the news anchor was a married woman who had lied to
her husband about where she was on the night of the explosion. So
he was home babysitting their daughter and ... watching TV. Get
the picture? That provided some somber moments, but not quite as
somber as later on when the husband threatened to kill her and
himself with a pistol.
Frankly, the tone shifts in this film can be very
disconcerting, and they seem very close to unnecessary in a film
with such lightweight ideas. Yes, granted, cheating is a bad thing
which leaves a trail of pain behind, but maybe the painstakingly
accurate documentation of that pain should be left to Atom Egoyan
and Inniaritu and the other arthouse hot-shots, and should be
downplayed in a fuzzy sex comedy which uses lots of artificial
pastel lighting schemes to relate the trials of trying to hide
giant dildos from your refined mother and uptight husband.
Still, one cannot deny that life includes both comedy and
tragedy, and I did very much like the main story about the
anchorwoman. I think Mujeres Infieles would have done well to
stick to that one and develop it still further, but the film's
creators felt that they needed several simultaneous stories to
make whatever points they were trying to make about infidelity,
gender inequality, and the general cluelessness of men. One story,
after all, is just an anecdote, but six stories is a trend, don't
Since the film is a sex comedy, you're probably wondering about
the nudity and sex. Well, like the movie itself, it started out
like gangbusters. The sex scene with the news anchor and her lover
is hot - great dialogue, great full-frontal nudity from both of
them, passion, fun, and great photography. It's two animals in
heat. Then the scene between the woman and her stepson is tender
and loving, also beautifully photographed, showing two people
sharing love and sex with the true loves of their lives. Both of
those scenes took place in the first nineteen minutes of the film,
after which I thought this movie was going to be a record-setter
in both the quantity and quality of sex scenes. But that was the
end of it. The rest of the film offers just the necessary
resolution in those two stories and never moves beyond tease in
the other stories.
Oh well. My take is that it's a film that was terrific in many
ways, and had the potential to be great. After the dynamic opening
scene in the motel, with the hot sex and the explosion, I was
ready for a great film experience. The sets and lighting schemes
were colorful, and it was clever plotting to have her hated
co-anchor showing up to humiliate her, because that never would
have happened if she hadn't bitched to the producer. I was really
into it for about fifteen minutes. The film didn't live up to that
early promise. It ended up being just a pleasant, lightweight
time-waster with a few outstanding moments.