I’m “biast” (pro): nothing
I’m “biast” (con): nothing
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
The boss-from-hell story gets whipped up, Parisian-style, into a wicked bonbon of oh-so-delicious nastiness. Prim, reserved Isabella (Ludivine Sagnier: The Devil’s Double) is besotted — in a professional way — with her boss, slick, flirty Christine (Kristin Scott Thomas: Bel Ami). The sleek, minimalist office of their multinational corporation can barely disguise, however, all the messy backstabbing that runs the interpersonal politics, and Isabella’s white-collar crush get crushed when Christine’s claws come out and mentor turns mean. What happens then is so outrageous and so sublimely hilarious — in the blackest, driest way possible — that you may not believe your eyes? Do you really just see that? This last film of French director Alain Corneau, who died in 2010, is pure nefarious fun, as a satire of office politics and corporate sociopathy, for one of the most cleverly executed crimes I’ve ever seen on film, for its base feminism… for all the definitions of base. It’s for films like this one that English actress Kristin Scott Thomas has fled to France to work: for all the juicy roles available to women that have nothing to do with being a wife, mother, or other adjunct to a man. Yeah, this is a feminist film: it gleefully presents women as ruthless, as scheming, as gloriously villainous as men can be.