The Chambermaid Lynn

the chambermaid lynn cover 1

The tale of an isolated, voyeuristic and mentally unstable chambermaid is initially a promising and quirky yarn. However, as soon as she ascends from hiding below beds to participating on top of them, the narrative partially sheds originality.

Lynn is lonely. She has recently been discharged from a psychiatric institution, and her only social interactions are with her mother, her therapist, and her doughy boss/ex-partner, whom she silently ‘services’ once a week. Lynn seeks solace in her job as a chambermaid, as it facilitates both her obsessive compulsive cleaning habit and her vicarious curiosity in people. She tries on their clothes, rifles through their bed-side tables and eventually begins to observe them from under their beds. It is through the theatre of feet that we perceive the various guests, and on one crucial occasion, she encounters the prostitute Chiara, who specialises in sadomasochism.

Vicky Krieps and Lena Lauzemis bring a muted eccentricity to their roles…

Writer/director Ingo Haeb presents a fresh spin on the familiar lovable loner formula. However, once Lynn starts getting intimate with Chiara herself and stops intruding on the intimacies of strangers, the narrative loses its most interesting component. The story manages to be adequately propelled along by the relationship between Lynn and Chiara, which is undeniably tender, intimate and believable.

Vicky Krieps and Lena Lauzemis bring a muted eccentricity to their roles, and there are moments of sharp insight and bittersweet pathos. At one point, Lynn looks under her own bed, hoping to find someone hiding there. Unsurprisingly, no one is there, and, it’s sad to say, no one would want to be.

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