I saw “The Girlfriend Experience” when it sneak peeked at Sundance this year and quite enjoyed it…. with the immediacy of the story (October 2008) and the obsession with the economy, Soderbergh has crafted a unique, incredibly topical, somewhat experimental take on the woes of America and a pre-election anxiety that hinted at trouble yet to come.
On casting porn star Sasha Grey, Soderbergh noted at the Sundance screening:
“I read about Sasha in an article in Los Angeles Magazine a couple of years ago, and I’d never really heard anybody in the porn industry talk about the industry the way she did and why she wanted to go into it. So when the idea of this movie came about, I contacted her and we sat down and talked. I sort of described the way that we work on these things and I said, ‘would this be interesting for you?’ Even though the film is not very explicit, there’s a comfort level she obviously has from making all those films that I think is difficult to fake.”
indieWIRE’s Eric Kohn called the film:
A period piece set in late 2008, Steven Soderbergh’s “The Girlfriend Experience” sets a clever relationship drama amid recession-era woes. Starring porn actress Sasha Grey as Christine, a self-described “sophisticated escort” in New York City, the movie broadens the minimalist approach that the director first applied in “Bubble.” Soderberg creates an eerie atmosphere by esoterically cutting between Christine’s various clients and her unique relationship with her fast-talking metropolitan boyfriend.
Read indieWIRE’s coverage and review from the Sundance screening here.