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Denys Arcand's Cheating Hearts in An Eye for Beauty

Denys Arcand's Cheating Hearts in An Eye for Beauty

An Eye for Beauty
Courtesy of Jan Thijs. Melanie Merkosky and Eric Bruneau.

The author's latest film explores polyamorous relationships.

A Wandering Eye for Beauty might have been a better title for the new film from Denys Arcand, the 74-year-old auteur whose 2003 tearjerker, The Barbarian Invasions, made him the first French-Canadian director to nab an Oscar for Best Foreign Film. His latest explores the sinful joys and subsequent drawbacks of infidelity, particularly on the part of Luc, a dreamy architect played by Eric Bruneau--an actor who might be the hottest Quebecois import since Xavier Dolan. Though married to bombshell Stephanie (Melanie Thierry) and living the high life (he drives a T-bird and seems to have his days curated by the Barefoot Contessa), Luc wants more, and finds it in Lindsay (Melanie Merkosky), a colleague whose own marriage is in ruins. Considering An Eye for Beauty's soap opera-level convolutions (there's also a subplot in which Luc catches Stephanie making out with her lesbian friend's girlfriend), you'd think Arcand would have thrown in even more winking melodrama. No matter. By setting his philandering quadrangle against the backdrop of an architectural world, his theme remains solid: Bonds can be simultaneously torn down and erected.

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