Monday, July 13, 2020

Two-Paragraph Review: The Assistant (2019)

Oddly enough, The Assistant reminded me of a film which is, on the surface, completely different. The movie in question is Das Weiße Band (The White Ribbon). Both movies in a way try to examine and explain what took place in the hearts and the minds of those who either witnessed or will witness (and participate) in numerous horrors. In this case, the focus is not the children who will grow up to invent and propagate Nazism, but a simple assistant, working for a Harvey Weinstein-like figure.

Played brilliantly by Julia Garner, the movie dives deep into the modern work environment which in this case only happens to fully facilitate a sexual predator. Through a range of mundane situations, we witness the pressures and the terrors this setup brings, along with a sad fact that even with these, the main character is just one more of the enablers. So, like the question for WW2 and "how could they do it", The Assistant also takes a long, uncomfortable look at how these people could do it as well. They could and very much did precisely that, just like you and I could.