I have recently seen Journal d'une femme de chambre (Diary of a chambermaid) by Benoit Jacquot based on a book by Octave Mirbeau bearing the same name. Because of not having seen any of the previous film versions dating back to 1946 and 1964 by Renoir and Buñuel, I can't come out with any possible comparison among them.
What I mostly liked about this version was the degree of "intimacy" such a beautifully shot film created between the characters and the viewers. The theme brought back "memories" and questions from my childhood that remained unanswered over quite a period of time - Why were the maids who served at many of the Portuguese high society households often sellected on their physical attributes? Why were their bedroom quarters often located on the same floor of the "bachelors" of the house? just to name a few.
I believe it is fair to say that many of the very good performances, namely Léa Seydoux, Clotilde Mollet et Vincent Lindon's added a special touch to this version.
"Cette nouvelle adaptation du célèbre livre de Mirbeau est sans aucune doute la plus fidèle au texte d'origine et la plus convaincante (...) Léa Seydoux éblouissante en femme de chambre rebelle, insolente et sensuelle (...) le personnage de Vincent Lindon, antisémite, mutique et misogyne, ajoute encore un peu plus de noirceur (...) un excellent film, plus actuelle qu'il n'y paraît, qui à certain momnet fait penser à une toile de Renoir et à d'autres moments à un livre de Zola." - A viewer