The Maid

Rated 4.0

A weary, socially stunted Santiago housekeeper (Catalina Saavedra) gets territorial when the family she’s attended for 20-plus years hires extra help to assist her. If you’re an entitled brat, you might soon lose patience with her passive-aggressive treachery; if you’re a bleeding heart, you might want to enable it. For his part, Chilean writer-director Sebastián Silva, who grew up with housemaids himself and even shot some of this film in his boyhood home, neither condescends by psychologizing the live-in’s inner life nor lets the bourgeois-bashing satire get destructively vicious. Co-writing with Pedro Peirano, Silva leaves room among the thorny questions about class for a bloom of real dignity. Saavedra’s performance is a marvel for its lack of vanity, and Mariana Loyola is just as good as her spirited fellow caretaker.