The fabulous K-Stew holds her own opposite the exquisite Binoche as a frumpy and loyal personal assistant to a veteran actor frightened by aging.
As their characters debate art, gossip, career choices and Google, the actors' palpable intimacy is intensified by how much the meta-dialogue reflects their own work. An upcoming stage role casts Binoche's Maria Enders as an older woman, reminding the icon that her career can only go downhill. She's starring opposite a young Hollywood starlet (Chloë Grace Moretz) whose troublesome appearances on TMZ reflect Stewart's struggle with fame and scandal.
Assayas occasionally gets carried away with the layered, self-reflexive insights, but the actors keep every scene anchored, tackling the material with genuine warmth, melancholy and frailty.