Months before the award ceremonies that honoured 2002 began, there seemed to be an unspoken decision among the powers that be that the actress of the year would be Nicole Kidman for delivering what was essentially a supporting role in Stephen Daldry's brilliant film THE HOURS. A shame really. While Meryl Streep delivered what was arguably her finest work to date in the same film, the Actress of the year was undoubtedly Diane Lane for her honest, naked work in this perfectly realised melodrama. Adrian Lyne's best work always seems to spring forth when he examines women & their emotions. Sharing similarities with FATAL ATTRACTION in it's study of urban angst, the power of the film springs from a screenplay that doesn't justify Connie's(Diane Lane)behaviour. When we first meet her, it appears she has everything. A stable homelife, a handsome, loving husband & son. Literally crashing into a handsome bookdealer during a violent windstorm(aided by a very clever credit sequence..watch closely), Connie slowly but surely begins a hot, torrid affair. Unable to resist the temptation, watch her closely as she wrestles with herself(& with him). Her train trip home following her first sexual encounter is a wonder to behold. In flashback we are shown the encounter while Connie alternately laughs, cries, squirms & exalts as she rejoices in her own(almost new)sexuality. To watch her behaviour as she(& we)realizes how much her handsome new lover has set her free, the feeling is infectious. Ably supported by Richard Gere( a big year for this guy) & Olivier Martinez, Lyne delivers a film filled with honesty & warmth. More than just a fantastic central performance, for my money, this is one of the best films of 2002.