tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg March 14, 2017 10:00pm-11:01pm EDT
♪ announcer: from our studios in new york city, this is "charlie rose." bob: good evening, i'm robert costa filling in for charlie rose. david brooks is here. he has been an op-ed columnist for "the new york times," since 2003. his writings span the world of politics, culture, and social issues. i am pleased that david brooks joining me today. david: good to be with you. wishing charlie the best. bob: where are we in this moment, in president trump's
first 100 days or so? david: we are added bit of a pivot. the one thing i give trump credit to him is for understanding the debate in this country. you and i grew up in a world where it was the government versus small government. that debate is over. now the debate is open versus closed. those who had the headwinds of globalization on their backs, they had better opportunities. and those with the headwinds pushing in the faces, they want closed trade and closed borders. we see that in this country. the dutch are about to have an election and the french, same set of issues in all these places. we are at a moment where we have gotten a new political debate. which creates not necessarily new alignments, but the parties take different positions. we are in the middle of that. bob: where are we in this realignment? when we see the health-care care debate, speaker ryan is taking a lead, he says he is working in coordination with president trump. in many ways, it is a mainstream republican health care plan.
it doesn't have the flashes of populism we imagined. is trump moving towards the gop orthodoxy he has rejected? david: i think he is a transitional figure. my colleagues have written about this, he's more like jimmy carter in that you had a certain democratic party, then a democratic president with democratic house and senate and you would think they would get something done, but they were not quite the george mcgovern democrats or the bill clinton democrats. they were in the middle. as a result, you get incoherence. i think trump is a sign of that incoherence. if you take the two power centers here in washington which are paul ryan and steve bannon, paul ryan grew up through empower america, which is pretty much the reagan republican worldview which is less government and more freedom. steve bannon represents the nationalist worldview, that the working-class people are getting hurt and let's give them security. one wants to reduce government to enhance freedom and embrace
risk, and the populists want to tighten down to increase security. what is odd to me about this health care plan, which is more bannon, it introduces more risk into people's lives and takes away social support. as we sit here, we don't know how many people will be denied insurance. maybe that is the trump base. 15 million. what is odd to me about this health care plan is it is declaring war on the people who voted for the republican president by denying them security of insurance plans, by taking subsidies that would go to them and using it for tax cuts for the rich, and then increasing risk in their lives. i happen to be a guy who likes tax credits so people can buy insurance. but there's no question it increases risk. it puts the onus on family members to shop in the marketplace and bear those deductibles. i don't think the steve bannon
ants risks, wants to be in uncertain world. the health care reveals the party that is neither here nor there. bob: so with steve bannon the soul of the trump presidency, why is speaker ryan driving the process? david: i find him obnoxious, but he has a coherent worldview and he knows who the people are, so he will defend them. the ryan-bannon mixture is an incoherent mixture. that is why this bill is disliked on all wings of the party neither here nor there. , that's why i think the ryan plan is taking over. they have been out this longer, coming up with various plans for years. there's no functioning white house apparatus.
the administration has not even -- they have not even nominated people for the whole host of jobs. the white house is the principles, then all these deputies. the deputies are not there throughout the administration. so then you go to the state department, the treasury, the defense department. the secretaries are probably just making coffee. you can't run a white house with four people. you cannot get anything done. bob: you wrote about how the health care proposal could cost -- could cause disruption. you looked at the medicaid aspect. it phases out medicaid expansion by some of them even want to 2020. move that date up. trump said early on he wants to provide coverage for everybody and doesn't want this disruption. but dealing with the republican congress, it seems to be moving in that direction. what is the political consequence for the new president? david: for the whole party, it is going to be onerous. the basic logic is this. republicans want to cut taxes.
there is a net credit tax cut which would only apply to people making over $250,000. it is a top 1% sort of deal, they want to get rid of that. the more you cut taxes, the more you have to reduce benefits. you have to be budget neutral, at least in theory. so you have this basic tenet. the tax cuts would bring down benefits where there's medicaid or the size of the tax credit for people working on the middle and income voters. to me, the thing is to embrace the market-based approach, but do it at sufficient level so it actually provides increased support for everybody, which is what the trump goals were. key people protected. we understand capitalism is not basically working for people, but we are going to do it from -- through market mechanisms. that seems to be the future of the republican party. a different method of liberty, but to provide security for people. the current republicans, whether
rand paul, ted cruz -- the main problem in their mind is too much government. i would ask them, where have you been for the last 18 months? did you not watch this election? bob: you keep writing about how the republican party has to meet the moment, but it seems like whenever i'm at the capital talking to members of the house and senate, they've been running against the health care law ever since it was enacted and they feel compelled to just repeal and replace and not really think through the full moment politically. david: there is a saying that intellectual progress rides in a hearse, meaning people don't change their minds, they just die off and somebody new has to come along. there is something in that. the republican orthodoxy has been so baked in that people go along with what they've been saying all along. it is hard to change their minds midlife. i do think you have to look back and say, "what just happened in american politics?" my basic rule about trump is he is the wrong answer to the right question.
the question is, is capitalism working for people? our social fabric has decayed to a degree we are unfamiliar with, at least at the bottom income levels of society. we cannot just leave people on their own anymore. there is a guy we both know, grover norquist, who used to be an advocate for the leave us alone coalition. conservatives all believe government should leave us alone. that's not working anymore, because the social fabric is too frayed, too many families are broken up, opiate addiction is to rampant. you can't just leave people alone anymore. republicans have to adjust and say i have my method to help people, and it's not going to be what the democrats want, but it will help people to solidify the social fabric and access to the job market. bob: do you think republicans and president trump may have made a mistake by beginning with health care then looking to tax reform? they did not start with infrastructure.
they didn't start with some of the more populist items. david: right. i would have started with infrastructure. a, you have a chance of bipartisan support, which is so important in an early administration. and also, have you looked around at american history for the last 20 years? clinton, obama pretty much every , administration has ended up bitten on the rear. coverede of us who have administration after administration, the first selection of policy is a product of hubris. george w. bush decided the first thing in his second term was social security privatization reform. that was a big mistake. it muddied the water for bipartisanship. it introduced more risk into people's lives i would say , which they did not want. i would say frankly the same thing of obama. he did the stimulus package first. but if he said, what political moment are we in? what i'm worried about is inequality. every program i'm focused on will go after working class voters in michigan and
pennsylvania and ohio. if he had done that, democrats would not have lost the house, the senate, or the white house. instead, he did health care, which was a legitimate problem, but given the moment was a secondary problem. bob: you wrote recently that the president address to congress was trumpism at its best. what has been trumpism at its worst? in terms of his behavior, his allegations of surveillance a trump tower. what is the worst, if that is the best? david: there are so many worsts. the worst i am disturbed by at the moment -- trump's character is hidden at his worst. the speech with him at his best because his character was to the side. but the thing that i worry about most this week is de-legitimization of our institutions.
beltway, maybehe that is suspect. but i spend a lot of time with people who work in the federal agencies. i went to the congressional budget office and was there and met all the economists. they work really hard. bureau of labor statistics work really hard. our intelligence agencies, they work really hard. most of them are not big political thinkers. they believe in what they are doing and they are trying to serve the country. they just want some clear direction, just let them do their jobs. they are not super ideological partisans. what trump is doing is jobs thatzing the come out. the studies that come out of the cbo, which are excellent, by the way. all the basic institutions of government -- if people lose faith, i don't care what your agenda is, you can't get anything done. you have to have basic faith in institutions. one of the reasons our country is great is that we have a basically functioning government. basically non-corrupt compared
to everywhere else around the world. basically accurate in its good-faith service of what the jobs are. bob: legitimacy is so important. if you look at most republicans who ran in the primary last time, they wanted to take an axe to the federal government and cut agencies. but the way trump and associates talk about them has de-legitimized it. term, thearing this deep state, putting the intelligence community in an almost conspiratorial tone. david: it is paranoia. republicans have always wanted to cut the size of government. but if you ask people in previous administrations, very bushes, what do you think of the career people you worked with, career bureaucrats? they would say that they were surprisingly good. that is always been my experience when i sit in a meeting off the record. i always say that these people are impressive and they are not making a lot of money.
they do it maybe because they like job security, but they also believe in the mission of their agency and also believe in their country. you can have more of them or less of them, but to say they are rigged, to say that president obama meant obamacare to fall apart in to say that the 2017, cia and intelligence agencies are malevolently out to get somebody, it is inaccurate. it is a form of corrosive cynicism that tears at the social fabric. bob: you have written about how the president has gone after the core tenets of the republican party including the hawkish consensus on foreign policy. how has the president revealed himself so far on foreign policy? david: i would say he's threatening the liberal world order. this has been an article of faith in the party, and both parties. the main threat is either communism or fascism, or authoritarianism. people who don't play by the rules.
what we have to do is create a world order based on nato, the e.u., our asian alliances in the wto. they found technocratic, but it is a world playing by the rules. we will not pick and choose what rules we play by. we will cooperate and all play by the rules. some of the rules are that you don't invade your neighbors. that order has held us together. i think that order has been one of the great historical achievements, and was led by the u.s. what trump embodies is a different mentality. the people who created the world order, the big institutions, george marshall, dwight eisenhower, they thought it was not us versus the world, it was us amplifying our powered by cooperating with the world. those things like nato were an expansion of american power. trump has a much more zero-sum worldview. if they are doing well, we are doing badly.
therefore, we have to do well and make them do badly. speech, i am president of the world, president of the united states. that would never have occurred to dwight eisenhower because that distinction did not exist. what i think he's ending up doing is weakening american power because he's getting us out of these institutions that enhance it. bob: how deeply invested as president trump in his worldview? is this from steve bannon or do you think the president himself is committed to this? david: i don't know for sure, but i have heard people in his real estate business say that every deal is zero-sum. if you're buying a property or something if one side of the , deal does well, the other side does badly. it's not like a lot of other businesses were we can both do well. that zero-sum worldview pervades his thinking. bob: what is the relationship with russia and vladimir putin stand in your view?
david: to me the crucial fact is what does russia have on him? why are we talking about russia so much? russia is a significant country, but it has not dominated american foreign-policy for the last 15 years. suddenly, everything is russia, russia. ties --e has a russian paul manafort was a guy, a formidable figure in the republican party with strong russia ties. suddenly he becomes chief staff of the trump campaign. how did that happen? bob: and they changed the platform to make it more pro-russia. david: why is russia so dominant in trumbull world? i want to know why that happened. it could be at a time when he was post bankruptcy, he couldn't find anyone to invest, and there were a lot of russian investors and buyers to read we just don't know because we don't know the tax returns. they are not public. it's hard to know what the foreign policy toward russia is
tax cuts as long as they go along with the rest of the trump plan. david: they go along because they see opportunities for their agenda. which is fine. they go along because trump has 85% approval among republican voters. that's fine. the problem is there's baggage. so much in terms of character and foreign policy. what i am beginning to see on capital hill and the senate, there are a bunch of republicans who i think are behaving well. if they were like me they would be anti-trump, but they are not like me. i'm probably to their left on a lot of issues. i don't have republican voters vote for me to keep my job. but i would say they are trying to improve trump, they are trying to respect him, trying to move him. they are being brave enough to criticize him. some are the expected ones like lindsey graham john mccain, , susan collins, some that are
outstanding human beings do it out of conscience because they are good senators and citizens, rob portman of ohio. but even some i tend to disagree with, ted cruz is behaving responsibly. he's not just a showman, he's trying to move things substantively. marco rubio has been doing a good job. he's tough on russia but he's trying to be helpful and cooperative. trying to be helpful. this is something we see all the time in american politics. this goes back to the iraq war. there were some people critical in order to get on the sunday shows, some people are critical in order to be helpful. that spirit of helpfulness is something i'm seeing a lot of republican senators. it is a nicer thing to see these people emerge from the shadows. bob: what about speaker ryan and leader mcconnell? david: they are in a tougher position. i guess i wish paul ryan had said, we have a party that has a lot of different factions. like it or not, i have to pick
one. they did with tax credits in the health care bill. it seems to me he has not settled upon a top to bottom philosophy of where we are as a country and what we need in the way that steve bannon does have a top to bottom philosophy. i would like paul ryan to say "there's a new situation facing , my people." the government has to be a little different than it was when i was working in washington in the 1980's. i am not sure he is gotten there yet. he is respectable, a good guy. but intellectually, there is not a coherence. bob: you have been traveling a lot more. when you are out there in different states and towns giving talks or teaching, how are working-class americans of
both parties reacting to the first two or three months of the trump presidency? is there something they want to succeed, or are they alarmed? david i'm a little hesitant to : speak on behalf of them. bob: anecdotal evidence. david: but i would say i see a lot of people who want him to succeed. even a lot of people didn't vote for him. they don't want to give up on this presidency. they would like to see some success. i feel that i see a lot of realism. how many times have we heard someone in a coffee shop or a bar say, "i wish that i would he would put away his twitter." people are very good at disaggregating the nonsense, the circus part of trump from what they hope from him. i see not many people who were pro-trump that have given up on him. not a lot of hostility.
i see a lot of realism that we knew what we were getting in this package. i'm looking to see how it shakes out. the people who were pro-trump are still pro-trump. bob: the president later this week will go to nashville, and he will be paying some kind of tribute to andrew jackson. this comes back to the bannon influence. what do you make of the continued association the white house is making with andrew jackson? david: i guess donald is no jackson to me. jackson wasn't the greatest thing, either. but what trump's nationalism strikes me as is much closer to the nationalism we are seeing in the rest of the world, in the netherlands, austria, the u.k. that is not a typical american nationalism. the trump nationalism is the good simple folk of the company , have the purity, virtue, and wisdom. it is very backward looking and historicist.
it existed in the past, it was in the peasants, as they said in russia being corrupted by immigrants,rces -- terrorists, etc.. that's not how americans have defined their nationalism. bob: you have written for years about how you would like to see the politics move toward national greatness and the idea of american greatness, but you are saying there's a difference between john mccain style, the republican of a few years ago, and what trump is doing? david: the first thing to say is i really defend nationalism. a lot of people are against nationalism. but it is like religion. it can be used in good ways or bad ways. if we don't have nationalism, we turn into a bunch of brussels people, we get disenchanted, amoral style politics. you have to have a unifying national idea. but the american ideal is not based on looking to the past. it was based on a forward view -- forward and united dream of
the future. it was eschatology, the belief of the end of times. whether it was alexander hamilton or the founders, abraham lincoln, theodore roosevelt, or john f. kennedy, or ronald reagan, the definition of america is what we were shooting toward in the future. we saw the president as a vantage point of the future. people were crossing tennessee, one of the things foreigners noticed, they would come to a valley with great farmland, but they would keep going west because they would assume there is something even better on the other side. that was the american spirit, that it was future looking, not backwards. we were not tied to the past. that created a culture in which we moved more. we started companies more. we created industries more, because it was always dynamic moving forward. what has been interesting to me at the same time you have this backward-looking nationalism of steve bannon and maybe trump, and we have also begun a culture where we move less.
entrepreneurial rates are down. we become less dynamic and i think we become less american. i supported nationalism that rekindled that sense that we have to be on the move. bob: how are the democrats responding to all these swirling forces? david: they are a little off to the side right now. the fight is within the republican party. i think they have not yet found their voice either. the people furthest along are the progressives that have a coherent worldview. what you don't have on the left, which i think i'm waiting for, is a group of people who are going to say, "ok, this guy donald trump is for closed trade, closed borders, no ethnic diversity." so we are going to be for open borders, ethnic diversity, social mores, globalization. we will embrace global capitalism because we believe in
dynamism. we will make it work. we will make it work for everybody. we haven't seen that. we haven't seen a modernization of the clinton paradigm, which would be pro-open, pro-globalization, but in a functioning way. i'm waiting for that person to emerge. hillary clinton could have been that person if she had said she was for tpp and for trade. i believe we need the dynamism. but she couldn't quite get herself there because it would have caused a fracture. bob: no one on either party seems to want to make that kind of pitch. i was reading for -- three or book and wondering to myself what happened to this country , that david wrote about not too long ago? it was so about the ascendant america, embracing technology and globalization. now if you even talk about those terms politically, democrat or republican, you're seen as the past. david: the spirit is totally different. the post world war spirit, i
wrote that book in the 1990's are around 2000, silicon valley was booming. we had just won the cold war. capitalism looked like it was on the the american model looked march, like it was on the march. i guess what i would say is the 21st century happened. it started on 9/11. it has been marked by 16 or 17 straight years where the number of democracies in the world has gone down. the number of authoritarian governance has gone up. the level of ethnic separatism and nationalism has risen. you have people trying to build walls. around the country, build walls in europe, religious fanaticism in the middle east, terrorism throughout the world. it has been an ugly start to this century. as a result, the spirit of hope and optimism and the spirit that history marches toward progress has been lost. everybody things we are going in the bad direction.
everybody is in a bad mood. bob: let's talk about the ethnic nationalism. a lot of republicans i speak to don't ever want to broach that topic, but then you see congressmen like steve king of iowa had a tweet over the weekend when he alluded in a sense to ethnic nationalism, even white nationalism. it is there. it is out in the open on the republican side. maybe even the democratic side. thisdo we make of this, flurry of ethnic nationalism within the trump movement? david calling i would differentiate between racism and nationalism. you can be probably pro-american and not be racist. but there is a lot of racism and is clearly a lot of fear which drives fear of the other, and a sense of contamination. the dutch will have these elections. there you have a party and candidate who is more explicitly than american saying, we got to have more people like us and
fewer like them. we've got to preserve our ethnic purity, our cultural purity. america has never really believed in that because we've always been a pretty ethnically and culturally diverse nation. you're beginning to see this european-style of ethnic nationalism exist here as people want to preserve a country the -- that looks like themselves. it is revolutionary that we have gone from a country where a large swaths of it were white. and especially among the young, majority minority. i get the fact that this is a radical social experiment. intenseo not get is the sense of pessimism about this experiment. as we become a more diverse country, i think we became a safer country. crime rates have plummeted.
we become a more interesting culture. we have become a more tolerant culture. what interests me about trump's worldview is how fear driven it is, how the assumption of the crime rates soaring when crime rates are falling. the assumption that opportunity is plummeting and everyone is getting screwed. when the fact is a lot of good , things are happening in this country. it's fear and enforcement. what strikes me about the trump worldview is it is fear-based, and the remedy is always intimidation. it's never compassion. it is this dark angry view of , the world which manifests itself in an ethnic nationalist form. bob as we all navigate this new : environment, you wrote recently that thinking about politics in the age of trump means relying less on the knowledge of political science, and more on the probings of dh lawrence, david foster wallace, and carl john. explain what that means. >> i'm about to get extremely
charlie rose on us. i do think things have deteriorated in some ways. mostly the social fabric has deteriorated. there is a phrase, a crisis of solidarity. to me that is what we are suffering from. we are just less close to one another across class, within our communities, our social capital is down. we are more isolated in fundamental ways. and to me, that happened for philosophical reasons. we made mistakes. here's where the charlie rose moment comes. that's because we chose the wrong philosophers. -- sees us as individualists. but the other sees us as a bunch of relationships. we became too individualistic when we should have been communitarian. jeremy benson when we
should have chosen victor frankel. jeremy benson, we are motivated by pleasure and pain. victor frankel felt we were motivated by a search for meaning, to want to live good lives. in my view, society has become too economic, too social sciencey and utilitarian and not enough moralistic. rene descartesse when we should have chosen saint augustin. rene thought that we should think with our heads. we have become too cognitive when we should be more emotional. we have turned into shells of ourselves, and that has cut down on intimacy. it has devastating social effects. is to behavior -- its idea is to drive behavior. host: david brooks. guest: thank you. ♪ host: good evening.
i am stephanie filling in for , charlie rose. "personal shopper," is a new film. the film marks the second collaboration between him and kristen stewart. following their 2014 movie. stewart became the first american actress to win the award, france's equivalent for the oscar, for her work in that film. in "personal shopper," she plays a woman determined to connect with her recently deceased twin brother from the afterlife. here is a look at the trailer.
i had a sign. >> are you sure? [inaudible] i don't know. >> i'm just going to drop these bags for you, ok? >> he was murdered. >> what are you doing at her place? >> why are you asking? i'm lost. i can't tell whether or not i'm going crazy. is it you, or is it just me? host: i'm pleased to have our guests at this table for the first time. welcome. >> thank you.
this is the second film you have made together. can you tell us what made you want to work with kristen stewart in the first place, and what made you want to work with her again? >> i hardly knew her when we made the movie, but i always loved her work. how much we would connect and us was arked between question for both of us. her and iking with hope to keep working after personal shopper because the way we connected on the set. what i saw her do, the nuances, i realized she was one of the great actresses that i have had a privilege to work with. i think we complement each other.
we are very different but me a lot andrings i try to give her as much as i can in return. plays a womanter who is grieving and she is trying to accept the loss of her brother. in portraying the character, did you draw on any personal experiences, or did you just use imagination, which is a great actress tool? how personal was it for you? kristen: i've had tastes of, relatively speaking, crippling anxiety that wasn't really rooted in anything other than grand questions that are a mieing.dining -- sty i think in retrospect, all of those times in my life were kick
started by some sort of loss. definitely insignificant compared to the loss of a twin brother, but i knew that feeling. even feeling sick sometimes, if you have a really bad flu, anything that reminds you of mortality and what there is in life to actually hold and grasp and know for certain, and that is very little. when you are reminded of that, it's difficult to function in a normal kind of like, flippant default setting, which is how we exist typically. and the only way to get through life that is productive. i knew that feeling, but that -- the depth to that debilitating feeling affects her, i have not -- i have never come close. but i can sympathize. host: it seems this performance, this role, it must have been written as a circle that wasn't
quite closed. i think your performance really closes the circle. can you talk about writing the role? olivier: it's pretty much the way i always right. -- write. i write open screenplays as opposed to locked screenplays. there is something so boring to making movies if everything is finalized at the screenwriting level. of course it is scary, it is dangerous, and you have to do extra convincing when you try to sell that to your finances. -- financers. but, i'm convinced that filmmaking happens on the set. the screenplays, just like a trampoline. tois something you use project yourself into something that is much more complex and
lively. and i think that in that sense, a magnet. is like film should constantly be open, like windows open, doors open, so you can channel everything into the same energy that we create the film, which ultimately -- it's pretty much about the screenplay. the screenplay being more like a background. you gradually give flesh and blood to it. host: you have been working a long time, even though you are very young, you started working as a child, basically. you have worked in a lot of different types of movies. the "twilight" movies made you famous. this is a different way from working great how do you compare it to other types of movies you have made? at any point were you scared about the things that olivier
was asking you to do or looking? kristen: even on a larger film that requires more finality in terms of what the result will be, more predetermination, i always try to forget those things and allow other people to worry about them because it is funny about what he said about keeping doors and windows open. it is really the only way to do anything that does not feel like an impression or imitation of life. i do not want to imitate life. i want to interpret it and allow someone to capture it. so, also about the windows and doors thing, it is totally what "personal shopper" is about. if you think you know everything in terms of the larger questions, you are closing yourself off to so much that life can offer you.
and then you really just live in the immediacy of everyday practicality, which is to a certain extent boring and empty. even on a big movie. -- movie, there is a certain job that is that an actor has to tell a story and hit certain emotional marks. to be honest with you, i don't do very well in that position. i don't thrive. i feel like even on a larger -- on a movie like "twilight," the moments that were written in the book or screenplay that everyone were deeply attached to, i always felt that i messed them up. and the moments that just happened to bubble up on said hugemaybe were not such a moment in the script or the book were those that surprised me. the things that were like i
, think we just got to it. i think that is actually servicing the story in a better way than if i had cried at the right moment when he said the thing to me about the thing. that's how i like to work as well. host: olivier, many of your movies -- you are very open to the fact that we rely on technology, we need technology, but youwith technology, are also wary of it and its limitations. can you talk a little bit how that plays out? olivier: when i was making a movie like "demon lover," i think that technology, modern means of communication, were not as much inscribed inside our culture. at that point maybe i had ideas of it. now i have zero ideas and i accepted as a fact. there is no other way to do it.
i am pre-digital and digital at the same time i have a perspective of time and i am aware in that sense how ultimately the way we communicate, the way we explore the internet, or the way our smartphones are hardwired in our brains, have changed the human experience. they have changed the human identity. it's not so much that i'm interested in gadgets. the thing is that i'm interested in how they are transforming human beings. it's really something that i realized when i was writing "personal shopper," i think if you want to describe a modern character, you also have to deal with the way that human being does communicate or use social media or not social media, whatever, because those end up
being defining elements in psychology, maybe we should use another word now. it's like some kind of external psychology to individuals today, through means of communication. i don't think it has acknowledged how deep it goes. host: how would you approach the more mysterious elements of the character you are playing in this role, where you have the phone in your hand, you are texting all the time, you are very comfortable with it. but then at a certain point you start receiving these messages on the phone that appeared to be perhaps from your deceased brother, or from a person playing a prank or a malevolent spirit. how did you approach that? kristen: i think there is a concrete answer on who that person actually is that i'm
texting. i'm only aware of that as an actor approaching the story is a screenplay i have read. i know how everything plays out. if i were to wipe that from my memory, the person or spirit or entity on whatever that she is speaking to is this ever evolving thing. i think that speaks to the definition of one's own reality. if you believe it, then it's true. there are times when she's absolutely talking to herself. i think it is an internal dialogue. and then there are times when she assumes that it's another character within the movie, which it's hard to describe because i don't know if people have seen this while watching this interview.
it's weird because your phone gives you the ability to live quite presently all the time but at the same time, depending on how you use it, it does the opposite of that. playing with a phone as a costar was kind of cool because at any moment, it's a shape shifting costar. it's almost like there were multiple people i was interacting with. it's really self reflective, and like a little maddening, just as texting people can be. you can speak to someone and think you are having one conversation, and the other person can be having an entirely different experience. that can be happening between us right now verbally. it's more so when you are not in front of somebody. it allows you to tailspin. that's it. it was strange, but the one
thing i was worried about is that it would not be very engaging cinematically, that it might be boring or something. those scenes for me had the most tension. host: those scenes really worked. it's interesting to me to hear that you know who was texting. i've seen the movie, i love the movie, and i'm still talking to other people who have seen it who say, we don't think it's a person that is texting. we think it is a spirit. you have the answer, olivier. you came up with the idea. olivier: you witness a car crash, and you ask 10 people who were there what happened, you will have 10 versions. actually reality is only one version because it's obvious, it's very easy to connect the dots. i think that human perception
and the way you process film based on your own preconceptions in a certain way is very interesting. i think it has to do with the fact that i never feel like i'm making movies for an audience. i'm making movies for individuals, for a lot of individuals hopefully. i know every single person is going to observe the film in a different way. and i'm not trying to resist that. a lot of filmmaking is about resisting that, establishing things clearly and just controlling your audience. i hate the notion of controlling my audience. i'm trying to make a movie that is certainly narrative, but also has some kind of poetic or green light dimension.
i want the film to be open to interpretation. i want the audience to daydream about this. so whatever they are imagining is valid. it totally valid. that's how your relationship with any given work of art functions. when you are looking at a painting, you can stay 30 seconds, five minutes, an hour in front of the same painting. in strange,n travel different ways inside the canvas. ultimately everybody will have a completely different analysis of what's going on in that canvas. it has to be at knowledge movies , are very much like that. again i have easy answers for , everything in the film. i'm not sure they are that interesting. it is really like in "clouds," the character kristen plays, she
disappears at some point. got the question, why is she disappearing? she disappears because it's much more interesting if she disappears. she could also get on the bus and go away. it's a quick shot, it's done, it's finished. she has her suitcase. and the bus just drives off, and why not? she just disappears, she remains a question mark and she echoes throughout the ending of the film. that's how i function. host: there is one moment in the film i want to ask you about. it happens late in the film. your character has stayed overnight at a friend's house. maureen comes downstairs and goes to the kitchen and there is an electric teakettle on the counter. i notice that maureen caps on -- taps on the side of her hand to see if it is hot. as a viewer, when i am watching
a performer and i noticed something like that my first thought is, does she know she's doing it? did you know -- or was it automatic? how much is instinct and how much is craft? kristen: it's pretty much all instinct. at that point i knew -- i want -- walked downstairs thinking , i'm alone in the house. and i see that there's a kettle before i see there is somebody sitting outside. the whole thing is like yes, i would like some tea. my thing is, she's always wondering who's around and who's watching. yeah, so i think that was -- how long has he been there, has he been inside? that's all. host: thank you so much for being here, olivier, and kristen. "personal shopper" opens in theaters friday, march 10. thank you for joining us. ♪ >> i am shery ahn.
about the president denying theft of personal information. worth --ed to pose its worst results in years. rising cost blamed as the reason for that. shery: so much to look forward to. we have to break down the speech. pre--fomcve the speech. >> we are in final position. there was another market to watch at the close of the day, not tied to this fed positioning. it is the markets in india, and absolute frenzy. let me get started. i will join you later. have a look at this. for our bloomberg clients, this is live , pictures coming out of that press conference. very rare, out of beijing.