The Assistant is of one very long day in the life of Jane, a recent college graduate and aspiring film producer. This was her dream job that she had landed amidst stiff competition. A junior assistant to a powerful entertainment mogul, like all assistants, her daily jobs are quite mundane; making coffee, ordering lunch, organising travel, taking messages, sorting out the paper in the copy machine and so on.
As Jane goes about her workday, it becomes increasingly obvious to her that it is filled with more than its fair share of discomfort from subtle abuse and degradation that didn't sit well with her. She decides to take a stand and head for Human Resources, and it's then that she discovers the true depth of the flawed system into which she has entered.
This film is now available to rent via Foxtel on Demand and available to rent on demand from 10 June via multiple platforms; Goggle Play, iTunes, Fetch TV, Telstra Bigpond, Sony (Playstation Network), Microsoft & Quickflix.
Starring Julia Garner (Ozark; The Americans) as Jane and written and directed by Kitty Green, this 87 min feature rated M is Kitty's first narrative film. The narrative being not just the misdeeds of one person but the entrenched system that supports the many. The choice of name - Jane, makes reference to anonymous everywoman Jane Doe.
The whole film is filled with muted conversations in the background, interspersed with prominent dialogue that carries the story, which was cleverly done as it gives a feel of gentle whispers and stray details buzzing in the office just within earshot of Jane. This gives the film a quietness that reflects the personality of the main character who has a quiet, watchful demeanour about her. Julia Garner is phenomenal in her role and is able to fill the screen with her presence and representation of the character she plays.
This is not a film for everyone, as it's filled with subtlety and references that you could miss completely if you're not digging deep to find all of its implications. Jane's expressions speak volumes, but if you're used to everything handed to you upfront on a platter and want something more action-packed, you might even find this a very boring film.
It's understated in the way it highlights patriarchal toxicity in the workplace and it spoon feeds you nothing! Not much happens in the film other than mundane repetitive tasks undertaken in stillness, so you'd have to have a steely resolve to sit through it, or not.