The End of the Affair Reviews

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October 28, 2006
Deborah Kerr, Van Johnson, John Mills and Peter Cushing save what could have been a routine love story.
½ August 16, 2009
Maurice Bendrix (Van Johnson) is discharged from the U.S. army after being wounded in combat. He resumes his pre-war "job" as a writer and decides to stay on in London to write about the unsung heroes of the British homefront - the civil servants. While doing research for his book, Bendrix meets british beaureaucrat Henry Miles (Peter Cushing) at a party. Miles goes on to encourage Bendrix to interview his wife, Sarah (Deborah Kerr) as a source of information. What starts off as a professional relationship soon turns into something a bit more personal as Bendrix and Sarah find themselves very much attracted to each other. "Research" soon becomes a cover for their romantic trysts...

What is interesting about this film is that it goes beyond what could have been the usual love-triangle kind of drama only to delve into something a bit more philosophical...touching on issues of love, jealousy, commitment, faith and religion.

I think Deborah Kerr's character is the most interesting here. When a german V-1 "buzz bomb" explodes near Bendrix's apartment, she believes Bendrix to be dead. The "faithless" Sarah finds herself begging God for a miracle. She promises to end her "sinful" affair with Bendrix if only God would bring him back to life. Well, guess what..."God works in mysterious ways" - or so they say...and so begins Sarah's psychological dilemma with faith and God. Bendrix, meanwhile is perplexed with Sarah's change of character...and so does her husband Henry - who suspects, but does not want to believe that Sarah is having an affair.

I liked John Mills here too. He plays a private investigator hired by the very jealous Bendrix to follow and report on Sarah - who is seemingly "seeing" somebody else...

Although I still prefer David Lean's A BRIEF ENCOUNTER...THE END OF THE AFFAIR at the least touches upon some unexpected, yet very interesting themes...

7.5 / 10
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