Olivier Assayas’ CLOUDS OF SILS MARIA has an ineffable quality that makes it an artwork that is more than the sum of its parts. The themes around celebrity, artistic production, and the industry of cinema slowly open out into universal themes of ageing and confronting the person you once were as your youth fades. The central relationship between Maria (Juliette Binoche) and Val (Kristen Stewart) is beautifully observed and acted—prickly but intimate; tense but loving—and reminiscent of the mother-daughter relationship in Bergman’s AUTUMN SONATA. As the blending of fiction and reality muddle their emotions, the two women become intertwined before Val, the representation of the youth that Maria cannot come to terms with losing, the embodiment of her Sigrid, disappears like clouds drifting away.