At the peak of her international career, veteran stage actress Maria Enders played by the luminous Binoche, is asked to perform in a revival of the play that made her famous twenty years ago. But back then she played the role of Sigrid, an alluring young girl who disarms and eventually drives her boss Helena to suicide. Now she is being asked to step into the other role, that of the older Helena. She departs with her assistant to rehearse in Sils Maria; a remote region of the Alps. A young Hollywood starlet with a penchant for scandal is to take on the role of Sigrid, and Maria finds herself on the other side of the mirror, face to face with an ambiguously charming woman who is, in essence, an unsettling reflection of herself.
The latest work from French auteur Olivier Assayas (Summer Hours, Something in the Air) is amongst his finest and continues his ability to fashion complex tales about women. Written at the behest of Binoche, this is an urgent and magisterial film that delves into the female psyche through not just one but three women.