Olivier Assayas‘ Personal Shopper, HE’s favorite 2017 film hands down, has opened to largely favorable reviews — currently at 77% on both Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic. A 67% or 71% rating means a modest degree of difficulty, but 77% basically means that a film has been judged as very, very good except for the complaints of naysayers who don’t or can’t get it.
I was blown away in particular by Tony Scott’s beyond-brilliant N.Y. Times review. It’s so on-target and revelatory that I felt spellbound as I read it. Scott doesn’t just understand and accept this immaculate and mesmerizing film; it’s almost as if he wrote or directed it himself and has taken to reviewing to explain it to the pissheads and tomato-throwers.
Kristen Stewart in Olivier Assayas’ Personal Shopper.
The “perpetually displaced nomad set” amid “the drift and mystery of modern life”…yes!
Read it on the Times site or here in its entirety, but this is about as bull’s-eye as it gets:
“Like many other characters in the films of Olivier Assayas, Maureen, a young American woman living in France, belongs to a relatively privileged slice of the international nomad class. The old-fashioned term ‘jet set,’ with its connotations of glamorous indolence, doesn’t quite fit. Mr. Assayas’s world is populated by figures in perpetual transit: actors, corporate executives, terrorists. Their identities have been dissolved by perpetual displacement. We remember their faces (which are often the faces of movie stars), even if we’re not quite sure who they are.
“Maureen, who works as a personal shopper for a spoiled celebrity named Kyra, certainly brushes up against glamour, and occasionally tries on a piece of Kyra’s borrowed couture. But she dwells mostly in a benumbed, stressed-out limbo, in frenzied motion from one nowhere to the next. Her human connections are often mediated by screens. She video-chats with her boyfriend, a tech consultant on assignment in Oman. She exchanges feverish texts with a stranger on a train from Paris to London and back. When asked what she’s doing in Paris, Maureen answers, ‘I’m waiting.’