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.
~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide