Booing? What booing? Nothing was more outrageous then when news hit earlier this week that there were Boos at the press screening of Olivier Assayas’ Personal Shopper. Outrageous, because out of the slew of films that many have savored here at the Cannes Film Festival, it’s Personal Shopper. Since reports of those Boos, Personal Shopper received a five-minute standing ovation at its Cannes premiere with critics such as The Guardian‘s Peter Bradshaw exclaiming, “It is actually Assayas’ best film for a long time, and Kristen Stewart’s best performance to date.” (In fact Pete Hammond tells me he found the group of Boo-ers who are starting all this riffraff at every press screening).
Director Olivier Assayas teams with his Clouds of Sils Maria star for a second time here where she plays an American in France. In Sils Maria, Stewart played a personal assistant to a star, and in Personal Shopper she works for a famous model (Stewart’s character buys her clothes as she has the same figure). On top of that, she’s also a psychic. Her twin brother has died from a congenital heart condition (which may actually kill Stewart’s protag), and she’s trying to detect his presence in the old Parisian house they grew up in; which is on the market.
Critics have been floored by how Assayas has created a sublime ghost story, tossing out all the tropes. Some have even gone so far as to compare Personal Shopper to Roman Polanski’s Repulsion. In this video, Assayas talks about his use of the genre, meeting Stewart for the first time, and her finesse when it comes to embracing scenes. IFC will be releasing Personal Shopper stateside.