NYC Psychotherapist Blog

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Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Movies: Infidelity, Triangulation and Betrayal in "Lover For a Day"

The last film of the Philippe Garrel's French trilogy, Lover For a Day, deals with many of the same themes of his prior films, including emotional intimacy, infidelity, triangulation, jealousy and betrayal (see my articles about these topics, including: The Connection Between Infidelity and the Need to Feel DesirableRelationships: Coping With InfidelityCoping With Secrets and Lies in Your Relationship and Getting Involved in a Love Triangle).

Movies: Infidelity, Triangulation and Betrayal in "Lover For a Day"

After a breakup, Jeanne, portrayed by the filmmaker's daughter, Ester Garrel, who also appears in Call Me By Your Name, leaves the apartment that she shared with her boyfriend.  Distraught, she heads to her father's nearby apartment because she needs a place to stay.

When she arrives at her father's apartment, Jeanne assumes that her father, Gilles, is alone. She tells Gilles, portrayed by Eric Caravaca, about the breakup.

Then, she is surprised to see a woman's makeup case on her father's kitchen table.  A little thrown by this discovery, she asks her father if she has come at an inconvenient time.  Gilles, a loving father who is a philosophy professor, responds by with reassurance that she is not disturbing him, he makes up the couch for her and tells her to try to get some sleep.

The next morning after Gilles leaves for work, Jeanne meets Gilles' girlfriend, Adriane, portrayed by Louise Chevillote, who is a student at Gilles' college.

Both Jeanne and Adriane are the same age, 23, and Adriane asks Jeanne if she minds that her father is with a woman who is the same age as she is.  Although Jeanne says she doesn't mind, this questionable based on her actions later on in the film.

Adriane tells Jeanne how she seduced Gilles, even though he resisted at first.  She also reveals that she has been living with Gilles for a few months, and they are keeping their relationship a secret at the college where Gilles is a professor.

Thus begins a triangle between Jean, Gilles and Adriane that raises questions about gender issues, infidelity, family loyalty, betrayal, secrets, and infidelity.

Both Jeanne and Adriane keep each other's secrets from Gilles in what appears to be a friendly alliance between the two women.  But appearances are deceiving.

Are the betrayals in the film conscious or unconscious on the characters' parts?

It's difficult to say, and the characters in the film might not know themselves.  Such is the power of the unconscious mind that motivates behavior that might only be clear after the fact, and maybe not even then.

I won't give away the rest of the plot because I think this movie is worth seeing.

About Me
I am a licensed NYC psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, EMDR and Somatic Experiencing therapist (see my article: The Therapeutic Benefits of Integrative Psychotherapy).

I work with individual adults and couples.  

To find out more about me, visit my website: Josephine Ferraro, LCSW - NYC Psychotherapist.

To set up a consultation, call me at (917) 742-2624 during business hours or email me.