Separate Lies

Critics Consensus

Though the characters in this tasteful adult drama keep a stiff upper lip, the moral dilemmas are nuanced and the emotional pain feels real.



Total Count: 87


Audience Score

User Ratings: 2,929
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Separate Lies Photos

Movie Info

A damaged relationship is stretched to its desperate limits in this drama. Anne (Emily Watson) and James (Tom Wilkinson) are a seemingly happy and prosperous British couple who divide their time between a flat in London and a house in the country. However, their marriage is not as contented as one might imagine, and for years James has turned a blind eye to just how deeply unhappy Anne has become with him. Their lives together reach a crossroads when Anne meets the handsome and charming Bill Bule (Rupert Everett); Anne becomes deeply infatuated with him, which only reinforces her dissatisfaction with James, but when the two become involved in an accident that kills another man, Bill drops out of the picture and James decides he must step forward to protect the woman he wed. Separate Lies was the directorial debut from screenwriter Julian Fellowes.

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Tom Wilkinson
as James Manning
Emily Watson
as Anne Manning
Rupert Everett
as William Bule
Hermione Norris
as Priscilla
Richenda Carey
as Sarah Tufnell
John Neville
as Lord Rawston
David Harewood
as Insp. Marshall
Alice O'Connell
as Maggie's Daughter
Sabine Tourtellier
as Receptionist
Jeremy Child
as Angus Burrell
Philip Rham
as French Lawyer
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Critic Reviews for Separate Lies

All Critics (87) | Top Critics (32) | Fresh (62) | Rotten (25)

Audience Reviews for Separate Lies

  • Sep 25, 2012
    Nice! A great British thriller executed by great actors. Classic themes but nicely presented in an original storyline.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 18, 2009
    Separate lies, starring Emily Watson, Tom Wilkinson, and Rupert Everett is a good drama. A film that centers on a love triangle of a married couple and a death of a neighbor intersects these people...very good film.
    Mason W Super Reviewer
  • Jun 07, 2008
    It's alright but it's been done many times before and I can't remember anything unique about it.
    Sunil J Super Reviewer
  • Dec 07, 2006
    [font=Century Gothic]In "Separate Lies", James Manning(Tom Wilkinson) is a high powered solicitor who commutes to London from his home in Buckinghamshire, where he lives with his wife, Anne(Emily Watson). Despite his reluctance, Anne throws a cocktail party but James ducks out by staying late at the office. In the meantime, their housekeeper's husband was killed by a hit and run driver. After noticing a scratch on the car belonging to their neighbor, William Bule(Rupert Everett), James confronts him and gets an admission of guilt and a promise to turn himself in to the police. When presented with this news, Anne is taken aback because not only was she in the car with William when it happened, but she was actually behind the wheel. To make matters even worse, William and Anne have been having an affair.[/font] [font=Century Gothic][/font] [font=Century Gothic]"Separate Lies" is an understated drama with some very powerful scenes. Themes of success, guilt and morality are handled in a very intriguing manner. [/font][font=Century Gothic]The movie is buoyed by an excellent performance by Tom Wilkinson. And nobody does leonine decadence like Rupert Everett.[/font]
    Walter M Super Reviewer

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