THE ASSISTANT (2019)

dir. Kitty Green. A day in the life drama of Jane (Julia Garner), a personal assistant to a misogynistic and abusive film company executive. Wonderful first feature narrative film from Melbourne born filmmaker and Victorian College of the Arts graduate Kitty Green. Julia Garner as Jane is worlds away from her famous role as the tough-as-nails crime figure in TV series ‘Ozark’, but she’s just as watchable and moving in this minimalist office drama. It’s a pretty devastating portrayal of an office culture that protects powerful men, at the expense of young women, and bullies anyone who dares to speak up, threatening their future prospects and livelihoods. The main theme is the how the Harvey Weinstein stand-in character defines Janes existence in the company, but it also does a great job of demonstrating how dehumanising a workplace can be when people are not looking out for one another. The wonderful Matthew Macfadyen (Tom in HBO’s Succession) has an excellent scene with Jane. There is almost no music, and very little dialogue, but the cumulative effect of the film is very impressive, giving an almost forensic view into a dysfunctional industry, and the human cost.