Exploring Perception and the Root of Weirdness: Olivier Assayas on Personal Shopper

Olivier Assayas’ ghost story intertwined with the day to day of personal shopper Maureen Cartwright (Kristen Stewart) intrigues through the contradiction of the enthralling nature of the mundane. Behind the projected images cinema is a process and it is one French filmmaker Olivier Assayas affords his fullest attention.

Even before entering filmmaking, writing for the distinguished Cahiers du Cinéma, Olivier Assayas began an enquiry that he has since continued to pursue as a practitioner of the filmmaking craft. He explains, “I began to understand exactly what cinema was about or at least what cinema was about for me – how you had to question the nature of the medium to be able to understand what it is you want to do, and if it’s right for you.”

Process was very much the topic of conversation when Flux sat down to speak with Assayas in October of 2016 when Personal Shopper  screened at the BFI London Film Festival. The filmmaker reflected on a journey perhaps defined by the pursuit of answers to questions that has culminated in his attempt to answer a question cinema itself is asking of him. He also spoke to the way in which cinema intersects with our life experiences, and how its perspective on art defines cinema as a unique medium.

Read the full interview at Flux.


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