Review: Personal Shopper (2016)
Personal Shopper (2016, dir. Olivier Assayas)
This ended up being more compelling than I expected. It was simple and genuine, and just scary enough. Considering how Kristen Stewart spends much of her time in transit, tired of living in Paris, and consuming media on her phone, this had momentum and felt natural.
The film centers around “outsider” characters who believe in spiritualism, and it doesn’t give their fringe beliefs a second thought. Many movies don’t approach these kinds of people with respect. And then they, without subtlety, use spiritual-esque or occult-esque ideas to move their story along (cheaply). I was relieved that this film depicted horror in a slightly more articulate way.
At a few points, it takes small detours into the history of famous, real-life theosophists and spiritualists, with no gaudy spectacle attached. These histories are used to report exposition that makes sense of our characters’s worldviews. But even this is handled intelligently. I like it when exposition treats me like I’m intelligent.