General analysis: L'Équipier

L’Équipier is a classic love triangle: Yvon, the husband, Mabé, the wife, and Antoine, the lover.

The reference to Othello is in fact to Verdi’s opera Otello. It is introduced rather subtly by a minor “character”, Mabé’s father’s cat Banquo. At first, Antoine misunderstands the name because of the homophony of Banco and Banquo in French. It is when he finds an old vinyl of Otello that the penny drops. The record belonged to Mabé’s father who was an opera lover, like Antoine. Yvon, on the other hand, does not seem to be the kind of man who appreciates opera, bent as he is on manual work (he makes chairs himself). This common taste between Mabé’s father and Antoine indicates that Mabé herself and Antoine are likely to have similar sensitivities.

Banquo the cat becomes a surprisingly significant character. He lives with Yvon and Antoine in the Mare and he is talked about inside and outside of the lighthouse. He is an omen of what will happen later: adultery.

Antoine, like Othello, is a stranger. If Othello is different because he is foreign and black, Antoine is just not from the island of Ouessant.

However, L’Équipier is not a film about overpowering jealousy. Yvon, the more-than-decent family man, never guesses what is happening between his wife and his friend, or if he does, he keeps quiet.

Contributed by Gaëlle GINESTET

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