Les Affaires: Benoît Jacquot’s Diary of a Chambermaid

How to adapt a French epistolary novel relayed by a luscious servant from her point of view — itself a subversive proposition when it came out in 1900 — about the relationships she develops in assorted stately homes with both arrogant employers and beaten-down peers? To further complicate the project, how to insert into the mix a substantially larger contemporaneous issue: the shameful blemish on the national psyche that was the rabidly anti-Semitic Dreyfus affair? In the fourth movie version of libertarian author Octave Mirbeau’s groundbreaking Diary of a Chambermaid, director/co-screenwriter Benoît Jacquot has come up with some close-to-flawless strategies. The […]
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