Francois the carpenter is an extremely hard character to like. Subconcious elements throughout the film, queue the viewer to suspect Francois. Although he is a carpenter, it seems that he never finishes what he starts. He marries a wonderful girl and has a child, yet he does not stay committed to them. In the same way, he starts projects and is never shown finishing, he only gives promises that he will in the future.
The display of the country areas in the film are beautiful, and starkly contrast what actually occurs there. Francois' revealment of his extramarital affair causes his wife to commit suicide, while he is napping. The absolute devotion of Therese seems to be made quite apparent in her cool acceptance of Francois love for another woman. She is still devoted to Francois, but his total abasement of her love is irreparable, and she must die. At times, it seems like Francois is only physically attracted to women, and perhaps good at convincing them, and himself, that he is true love. This appearance of love is emphasized well by the beauty of the country landscape.
While it is believable that Francois did not want to kill his wife, his reaction to her death seems deplorable. He has no problem making the cause of Therese's death, Emily, the new mother to his children. There doesn't seem to be any kind of punishment for Francois' selfish actions, leaving a taste of injustice in the mouths of the audience. There is no fairy tale ending, even if Emily and Francois seem happy at the end of the movie. The hint of unhappiness is shown in the scenes where Emily takes the children alone, almost forced by Francois.