Actress Léa Seydoux elaborates on her preferred “chilly and malevolent” screen persona with an update of the twice-before-filmed story of a housemaid’s complicated relationships in a French country home, circa 1900. Under the direction of Benoît Jacquot (Farewell My Queen), Seydoux’s bitter domestic Célestine has to put up with a host of disagreeable folks. It only makes her meaner, in Jacquot’s adaptation (with writer Hèléne Zimmer) of Octave Mirbeau’s satirical novel of manners, previously filmed by Jean Renoir (1946) and Luis Buñuel (1964). Jacquot and Seydoux’s version dwells on class resentment, keyed by the actress’ showboat nastiness and fine supporting performances by Vincent Lindon, Clotilde Mollet, Hervé Pierre, and Patrick d’Assumçao (98 min.).
Director: Luis Buñuel
Cast: Jeanne Moreau, Michel Piccoli and Georges Geret