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True Lies 2


The promises of love affairs

In one scene, the hero’s wife is talking in a mirror about her erotic disappointments. He questions her, his voice distorted, using the authority of a secret government agency to invade her privacy. Love moves him: He feels he has a right to know her heart, having married & husbanded her. We all love action movies, so we notice that at the end of the action, the woman angrily breaks the mirror.

We are startled to notice how much the wife resembles him & how little he is aware of the fact. She says she wants to do dangerous, outrageous things, which is more or less his stock in trade. His plan afterward includes her seducing a stranger, which is also something we see him do. His actions move the plot, so we must wonder why he thinks he must lie to his wife.

The national security part of the problem suggests that he needs a home to which to return. What bores his wife reassures him that not all the world is insane. He feels good to know some people are not enemies. One wonders how naïve a spy could possibly be… But there is something else. They have children & children cannot possibly be a part of a life of danger & daring.

In another scene, his wife is teasing a silent man, hidden in the dark, by stripping. Our hero sees his wife dance for a stranger. Happily, he has a chance to learn that a woman moved by love always is making love to a stranger. The woman is not trying to seduce the man; she wants to be seduced. Something that mocks necessity is necessary to move her to it.

This is an education on the resourcefulness of love: His heroic attempt to love her creates a national disaster. It is not at all clear why his attempt to win back his wife should involve this deception. What’s wrong with his plan is obvious: There is too much real danger in order to play at living dangerously. His wife, not recognizing him, attacks him. Then his enemies capture them. Then he has to reveal himself: Ugly, dangerous, heroic.

His wife strips for him but does not recognize him. Is he a stranger to her? Or is she new to eroticism? When she meets the woman he had seduced as part of his mission, she laughs at the thought that her husband could be a hero, much less a seducer, certainly not a spy. She only later becomes jealous. Now they are properly acquainted. They learn the truth: Their love puts them in danger; they belong to one another & they therefore need to defend themselves.