Rupert Graves Online: Film & Television.
Damage Spacer

1992 - Film Four, Le Studio Canal+.

Director - Louis Malle.

Rupert Graves - Martyn Fleming.
Review / Synopsis.

Also known as "Fatale", from the novel by Josephine Hart.

Jeremy Irons plays the part of a somewhat pompous Tory MP, Dr Fleming, coming from a well to do family living in the stockbroker belt. His wife, played by Miranda Richardson, is portrayed as a kindly woman, who, although being intellectual herself, spends her real time looking after her family.

They have a son, Martyn, played by Rupert Graves, who is portrayed seemingly as a young man who spends him time using woman (according to his father) though he certainly doesn't come across this way in the film, more of an likeable, ordinary son trying to get on in life, living with the problems of being in his his father' shadow, and is close to his mother rather more so.

At a political meeting, Anna Barton, (Juliette Binoche) the new girlfriend of Martyn, introduces herself to his father, and we see straight away that there is an element of sexual chemistry afoot between the pair.

Barton calls him up from a telephone box, and things start straight away, after the terribly small call, the pair arrange to meet in an hour.

Inside her house, after two minutes, the pair make love. One minute later it's finished, but the affair is not. Amazingly, at the beginning of the film, Mrs Fleming ( Miranda Richardson) makes the statement about Barton, "I don't trust her". If only she knew. Fleming continues to deceive both his wife and son, meeting up with Barton on numerous occasions, sometimes riddled with guilt, otherwise consumed by passion for his new love.
Barton continues to encourage the affair, even after accepting a proposal of marriage from Martyn.

After briefly ending the affair, the couple arrange to meet at her new flat.
They are busy making love, unaware that Martyn is climbing the stairs......

As Martyn approaches the room, he notices that a set of keys are already in the door (given to Fleming by Barton). As Martyn looks on at the naked couple, the pain in his face is unbelievable. He steps back away from the couple, edging to the banister, backwards, not seeing the tragic fate that awaits him, he that has done no wrong. As the tragedy unfolds, Fleming is left to rue the consequences of his actions. He loses his lover, his wife, his career, and must bury his dead son.

Barton calmly, but sorrowful, walks away from the scene, aware of the damage she has caused. A sad and somewhat poignant film. The music used for the production is both haunting and dramatic.
Jermaine Trellan.

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