Horror Movies At Redbox: 5 New Releases and 3 TV Series

If you’re looking for a good scare, Redbox has you covered. Several brand new horror movies are now available for rent at their kiosks and VOD service, along with some long-running series for weekend binges. Here are some of the horror titles you can choose from for a scary movie night, along with some recommendations directly from Redbox themselves!

‘Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island’ – A horror movie take on a TV classic

The Fantasy Island TV series was a wish fulfillment drama for each week’s guest star. The movie shows the darker side of getting everything you ever dreamed of. Lucy Hale, Dax Shepard, Jimmy O. Yang, Portia Doubleday, Maggie Q and Michael Pena star.

RELATED: ‘Riverdale’ Spin-off ‘Katy Keene’ Star Lucy Hale Has This Advice For Anyone Struggling

“New to the Box and Redbox On Demand is this gruesome tale of a vacation getaway that’s supposed to deliver its visitors’ wildest dreams,” Redbox says. “But then pretty much the opposite happens.”

‘Gretel & Hansel’ – A horror movie fairy tale

Sophia Lillis stars as Gretel in this edgy take on the classic Grimm fairy tale. Gretel and her brother still find a witch’s house in the woods, but there are more scary thrills in the forest along the way, and they spend a lot more time exploring the witch’s house before the infamous oven scene. 

RELATED: ‘Gretel & Hansel’ Movie Review: Sophia Lillis Overcomes It Again

“Now at the Box and Redbox On Demand, this creeptastic take on the old fairy tale about a brother and sister’s misadventures in the woods had critics raving about its sleek visuals and stunning cinematography,” Redbox says. “Not the kind of praise that is normally heaped onto horror movies!”

‘Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark’ – Guillermo del Toro’s family friendly horror movie

Producer Guillermo del Toro grew up loving monster movies. He wants modern kids to have the same experience, so he produced this movie based on stories from the book. Redbox sees the potential for young horror fans too.

RELATED: A Newbie’s Guide to ‘Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark’ from Director Andre Ovredal

“This adaptation of the bestselling children’s book series is something of a ‘gateway horror movie’ if you’ve got any tweens or teens in the house who are brave enough to watch it with you or are otherwise really into urban legends and folklore,” Redbox said.

‘Doctor Sleep’ – New Stephen King horror

Stephen King wrote a sequel to his seminal masterpiece The Shining, and Mike Flanagan adapted it into a sequel to Stanley Kubrick’s movie. Ewan McGregor plays a grown up Danny Torrance, the kid with the psychic shining. Home video also includes a director’s cut that adds 30 minutes back into the film.

RELATED: ‘Doctor Sleep’ Director’s Cut Adds Scenes from Stephen King’s ‘The Shining’ Sequel

“In this adaptation of Stephen King’s sequel to The Shining, Ewan McGregor stars as the Big-Wheel-riding Danny Torrance, 40 years later,” Redbox said. “Now he must protect a child who has his same powers, or else she’ll be killed by a cult.”

‘Snakes on a Plane’ – A slithering, airborne horror movie

When Samuel L. Jackson agreed to star in Snakes on a Plane, it became an internet phenomenon. Then the movie finally came out and fizzled at the box office. It’s actually quite a wild high concept movie, and Redbox agrees.

“Still the best movie title ever,” Redbox says. “Yes, it’s time to lighten the mood with this absolutely ridiculous film — which I LOVED — featuring one of Samuel L. Jackson’s all-time greatest lines. (Which is of course unprintable.) If you want some laughs mixed in with your blood and guts, this is the one for you.”

Three horror TV series too

Horror has grown on television thanks to cable networks producing horror shows with more explicit content. The Strain is another Guillermo del Toro production, based on the book he cowrote with Chuck Hogan. Ash Vs. Evil Dead is Bruce Campbell’s sequel to his movies. The Walking Dead is the long running AMC zombie series based on Robert Kirkman’s comics.

“My final 3 recommendations are actually all TV series that deal with viruses or plagues that threaten to overrun humankind,” Redbox said. “Totally appropriate for right now! I was a big fan of The Strain when it aired in 2014 because it stars the great Corey Stoll (albeit in an awful wig) and is about vampires. And I love anything about vampires.”

Redbox adds that quarantining doesn’t seem so bad compared to what Ash (Campbell) endures.

RELATED: ‘Ash vs. Evil Dead’: How It Compares to the Horror Movies

“Bruce Campbell reprises his role as the unlikely every-man hero Ash Williams, who must still battle the undead even though it’s 30 years after the events of the first movie,” Redbox says. “Poor guy! And I thought I was tired after homeschooling my kids for a few months.”

Redbox encourages fans to start from the beginning of The Walking Dead.

“The first season of this mega-popular series remains my favorite (and yes, I’m still watching it all these years later) because it shows the start of the (fictional — for now) zombie apocalypse in the US and establishes so many of the characters that millions have come to root for,” Redbox says. “See (or remind yourself of) how it all began!”

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Tenet: New Trailer For Christopher Nolan's Sci-Fi Thriller Plays With Time

Christopher Nolan’s upcoming movie, Tenet, has received a new trailer that debuted first in the battle royale game Fortnite (to a torrent of plungers aimed at the virtual screen, unsurprisingly) and is now available everywhere online. Take a look.

The trailer sets up a currently nameless protagonist, played by John David Washington, who can apparently “invert” time (thus the stylized title “TENET” flipped upside down). We don’t exactly get to see how or to what extent he can do this–or if he’s alone in these powers, but there are some critical clues to be found. Namely, we get to see him fire a gun in reverse (“you’re not shooting the bullets, you’re catching them”) and, later, a car crash happening and then un-happening. Basically, it’s exactly what you might expect from a Nolan movie at this point.

Also in the trailer are regular Nolan collaborator Michael Caine, who probably (emphasis on probably) isn’t going to be a dimension-hopping Alfred Pennyworth, but the jury’s still out on that one. Robert Pattinson, who seems to be playing some sort of James Bond Q archetype (or maybe a dimension-hopping Bruce Wayne just to really mess with your grip on reality), also features. He ends the trailer on a comedic note explaining that he’d really like to crash a plane.

Interestingly, the trailer is not dated–though the “coming to theaters” title card seems to want to assure viewers that this movie will definitely herald some sort of return-to-normalcy for moviegoers. As of right now, no delays have been announced, which means Tenet is still scheduled to arrive on July 17, 2020. Theaters in Hong Kong have seemingly committed to this date by airing Nolan’s Batman trilogy as they begin cautiously reopening, but thus far with reopening plans still completely uncertain in other parts of the world, it’s probably a good idea not to count too many chickens before they hatch. Or un-hatch. Or hatch in reverse. Whatever the case may be.

Starting June 1, GameSpot will be hosting Play For All–a celebration of all things gaming. Join us as we bring you the summer’s hottest news, previews, interviews, features, and videos, as well as raise money for COVID-19 relief efforts with the help of our friends from around the gaming, TV, and movie worlds.

And speaking of things you should be watching, consider listening to GameSpot’s weekly TV series and movies-focused podcast, You Should Be Watching. With new episodes premiering every Wednesday, you can watch a video version of the podcast over on GameSpot Universe or listen to audio versions on Spotify, Stitcher, Google Play, and Apple Podcasts.

Disclosure: ViacomCBS is GameSpot’s parent company

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BTS: Did Jin Spoil the New Album’s Release Date? Some Fans Think It’s Not So Simple

We may be in quarantine, but at least BTS is keeping us well fed. The South Korean band dropped Map of the Soul: 7 back in February 2020. Now the seven members — RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V, and Jungkook — are gearing up for their next self-produced album. Then recently, BTS shared a previously recorded discussion, which focused on the direction of their new music. And in a turn of events, Jin seemingly spoiled the new BTS album’s release date. But even so, some members of ARMY are wondering whether they should take the music artist’s remarks at face value.

Why BTS fans think Jin revealed the new album’s release date

In April, RM revealed BTS started working on their next album. The leader also explained the band planned to show ARMY parts of the process. And for the past few weeks, the group has made due on that promise.

In a YouTube Live, Suga mentioned BTS decided on their individual roles. Later, in a separate live, Jimin opened up about his role as a music production manager for the forthcoming album. Then on May 7, V began discussing his ideas as the visual project manager.

On May 11, BTS reunited as seven to further discuss the new album, from the themes to the track distribution. Then around the 16:15 mark of the video, some hawk-eyed fans noticed Jin seemed to ask about the album’s release date. “By the way, the album release will be October, right?” Jin said, according to a translation by @choi_bts2 on Twitter.

BTS fans react to Jin’s spoiler about the new album

After Jin casually suggested the next BTS comeback album will be released in October, fans swarmed social media with excitement.

“New @bts_twt album in october yall start saving them coins now lmao,” a fan wrote on Twitter. “Mind yall that this is the first self produced album that the boys will release and its going to change the game forever.”

Meanwhile, other members of ARMY wondered why the editors of the video would include Jin’s spoiler when they could have easily left the comment out. 

“Since when do they drop such big spoilers like a release date?” a fan wrote on Reddit. “Maybe it’s just me not being used to it because they are usually so secretive so this seems a bit suspicious.”

In response, a few fans speculated BTS is trying to be transparent about their process, including the album’s release date. One Redditor wrote:

I mean, it seems like they’re just going for complete transparency with process this time around. The fact that we’re getting lives of them discussing every detail of their brainstorming process means they’re not really going for any surprises. So them telling the approx. release date likely just falls in line with that process.

Then some fans theorized Jin just unveiled the October release date to clown ARMY. “Watch jin say its october bcos he knows its being recorded and turns out the comeback is earlier than we thought,” a fan tweeted. “Lmao hes playing with us.”

BTS confirms a Japanese album release in 2020

Of course, there are plenty of possible reasons why Jin’s comments were left in BTS’ YouTube Live. But for now, everyone will just have to wait for the band to confirm the official release date for their new album, especially since it seems they’re still in the early stages. Nevertheless, there’s plenty of content to look forward to in the near future. 

On May 7, BTS announced the release of Map of the Soul 7: The Journey, the band’s next Japanese album following 2018’s Face Yourself. There will be 13 songs featured, including Japenese versions of “Boy With Luv,” “Make It Right,” “Dionysus,” “Idol,” “Airplane pt.2,” “Fake Love,” and “ON.” The album will also include new songs such as “Intro: Calling,” “Outro: The Journey,” “Stay Gold,” and “Your Eyes Tell.”

“Stay Gold” will be the theme song for the drama, Spiral Labyrinth ~ DNA Science Investigation. Meanwhile, Jungkook was involved with composing “Your Eyes Tell.” Fans can expect Map of the Soul 7: The Journey to be released on July 15. 

Clearly, BTS fans have plenty to be excited about. And although we don’t have an official release date for the band’s upcoming self-produced album, the group is still working hard to reach ARMY. So get ready. 

Read more: BTS: Jimin Encourages People to Reach Out to Those ‘Precious’ to Them

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How Kate Middleton and Prince William Are Spending Their 9th Wedding Anniversary While in Lockdown

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This isn't the first royal milestone celebrated differently this year due to COVID-19 precautions. Prince Louis celebrated his recent birthday quietly at home, and Queen Elizabeth turned 94 without the usual fanfare. The monarch requested that there be no special gun salutes to mark her birthday, which is usually celebrated with army cannons being fired in some of the Royal Parks in central London and elsewhere. It is thought that it’s the first time in her reign that the salutes have not taken place. Trooping the Colour, the public celebration of her birthday held in June, has also been canceled.

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Birdman Is Paying Rent for Residents in His Old New Orleans Neighborhood

The rapper/Cash Money Records co-founder is giving back to the community, in which he was born and raised, in this trying time of the coronavirus crisis.

AceShowbizBirdman is giving back to his old neighborhood amid the coronavirus crisis. The rapper, born Bryan Christopher Brooks, has pledged to pay May’s rent for residents in uptown New Orleans, where he was born and raised.

The music producer took to Instagram on Monday, April 20 to announce his generous act. ” I would like 2 offer to pay everybody rent for month of May (for those who in need) in residents area of UPTOWN New Orleans where I was born and raised at from mac melph calio and ST Thomas housing also from 3rd ward to 17th ward,” he wrote.

He called on leaders in his community to join him in the initiative, adding, “I would like HANO to support us on accomplishin this and @q93fm I also spoke with @theuptownangela to help me put this togather I would like our mayor @mayorcantrell help support this cause.”

He went on giving a shout-out healthcare workers who are working frontline during the pandemic, “also wanna thank all hospital on front line Risking they life to save lives.” He concluded his post with a shout-out to those who have been supporting his non-profit foundation, “I wanna thanks everybody that wrk with tha Gladys and Johnny foundation my company cashmoney records @cashmoneyofficial @republicrecords for always supporting our foundation for 20plus years.”

Birdman is the latest celebrity who offers to pay rent for those in need in this time of crisis. Previously, Michael Che has announced that he will be paying a one-month rent for 160 apartments in the New York City Housing Authority building (NYCHA) in honor of his grandmother, who recently died of COVID-19.

“Its (sic) crazy to me that residents of public housing are still expected to pay their rent when so many new Yorkers cant (sic) even work,” so the comedian stated on Instagram. “Obviously I cant offer much help by myself. But in the spirit and memory of my late grandmother, im paying one months rent for all 160 apartments in the NYCHA building she lived in.”

“i know that’s just a drop in the bucket,” the “Saturday Night Live” star humbly added, before imploring, “So I really hope the city has a better plan for debt forgiveness for all the people in public housing, AT THE VERY LEAST.” He then called on New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo as well as hip-hop mogul Sean “P. Diddy” Combs to work together with him and do more to handle the crisis.

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Spoilers: New Corrie trailer reveals the moment Yasmeen 'kills' Geoff

Geoff Metcalfe’s (Ian Bartholomew) has been controlling every aspect of Yasmeen Nazir’s (Shelley King) life in Coronation Street, but things take something of a sinister turn next week, as the married couple come to blows, and Yasmeen takes shocking action — leaving Geoff in a bad way.

It was recently revealed that — in the coming episodes — Geoff proceeds to make Yasmeen feel ‘like a wounded animal’, and she lashes out as a result — grabbing a wine bottle and hitting the abuser over the head with it.

This brand new trailer previews the horror that’s to come, as Yasmeen — watching as Geoff collapse to the floor, clutching his neck wound — realises what she’s done and therefore dials 999 in a panic.

As the trailer reaches its end, Yasmeen — in incredibly haunting scenes — reveals to the person on the other end of the line that she’s just killed her husband.

Is Geoff really dead?

Or will he survive?

What’s more, what does this mean for Yasmeen?

One thing’s for sure: next week is set to be an unforgettable one on the cobbles!

Coronation Street continues Monday 20 April at 7:30pm on ITV.

If you’ve got a soap or TV story, video or pictures get in touch by emailing us – we’d love to hear from you.

Join the community by leaving a comment below and stay updated on all things soaps at our homepage.

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Attention Netflix Nerds: New Tiger King Episode Is Streaming Right Now

Netflix’s The Tiger King is a wild, wild ride, covering people who love big cats. However, it is so much more than that as the seven-episode limited series takes viewers down a rabbit hole of illegal activities from exotic animal trafficking to murder-for-hire. If you have already binged the show, you probably want more, and believe it or not, the wait is over as comedian Joel McHale hosts The Tiger King And I, now available on the streaming service.

The Tiger King And I is a one-off interview show where McHale talks to some of the stars of the docuseries. And while some of the biggest stars don’t appear on it, the eighth episode of the series is still a lot of fun.

The Tiger King special was seemingly rushed into production after the show became one of Netflix’s most successful series’ ever. The special was announced on April 9 for an April 12 release. The new episode features interviews with Jeff and Lauren Lowe, fan-favorite Saff, Erik Cowie, John Finlay, John Reinke, and Rick Kirkham, all speaking over webcam from their own homes.

Notably, Carole Baskin and Doc Antle don’t appeared in the new episode, though that fact isn’t so surprising since both have since put out their own statements refuting what was depicted in the documentary. You can read Carole’s Refuting Tiger King post here, while Doc told his side of the story on radio.

The show has become hugely popular, and may have even lured in more viewers than Netflix cornerstones like Stranger Things and Ozark, according to Tiger King has caused the resurrection of a missing persons case in Florida, as well as a whole lot of memes.

Netflix News

  • New To Netflix This Week (April 12-18): Anime, Movie, TV Shows, And Originals
  • New On Netflix In April 2020: The Big Show Show, The Matrix, New Movies, TV Shows, And Originals
  • Netflix Party Lets You Watch With Friends Online, Like An AOL Chatroom With Movies

Disclosure: ViacomCBS is GameSpot’s parent company

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My mum already has a new man in her life but my dad hasn’t even been dead a year – The Sun

DEAR DEIDRE: MY father hasn’t been dead a year and my mother already has a new man in her life.

My father was only 49 when he had a heart attack so his death was a terrible shock to all our family.

I am a guy aged 23 but I have a little brother who is ten.

Mum says this man was a friend of my father’s when they were younger.

My mother and I have had words about her new relationship as I think it is too soon for my brother who doesn’t really understand death.

I want to save him from any stress as he is the most important person in my life.

I don’t care what my mother does, I just want my brother to be OK.

Get in touch with Deidre today

Got a problem?

My team and I are working safely from home but we are here to help you as always.

Send an email to

Every problem gets a personal reply, usually within 24 hours weekdays.

You can also send a private message on the DearDeidreOfficial Facebook page.

Follow me on Twitter @deardeidre.

DEIDRE SAYS: I can understand why you might feel your mother is rushing into a new relationship, but often it is those who are most happily married who are quick to find another partner after being bereaved.

Anger is part of grieving but it will only hurt all of you in the long run – including your little brother – if you focus your anger on your mum now.

Your brother may benefit from a caring father-figure but maybe remind your mum how important it is he doesn’t feel pushed to one side.

You can find solid, understanding help for him through the childhood bereavement charity

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Cumberbatch’s new film is far more electric than it’s given credit for

Talking points

  • The Current War ★★★★
  • Happy New Year, Colin Burstead ★★½
  • Farewell To The Night ★★★½

In this round-up our reviewers critique movies released this week; from a 'big name' feature to independent and foreign films that deserve the spotlight. Which ones are worth the cost of a ticket?

The Current War ★★★★

This is not about the battle against the coronavirus or the struggle to get Donald Trump out of the White House. It’s about the coming of electricity, writes reviewer Sandra Hall. Long before AC and DC were co-opted by a pop group, they were the flashpoints in a feud between the 19th century American tycoon George Westinghouse and the inventor Thomas Edison.

According to this account of how it played out, the two men were polar opposites in every way. Edison was lightning in a beaker, while Westinghouse was a slow-burning strategist open to reason and the possibilities of negotiation. They’re played here by Benedict Cumberbatch (Edison) and Michael Shannon (Westinghouse).

Benedict Cumberbatch as inventor Thomas Edison.Credit:Dean Rogers

There’s another battle front involving the film itself. Five years ago, Eddie Redmayne was set to star in an adaptation of the best-selling novel The Last Days of Night, by Graham Moore, who wrote the screenplay for The Imitation Game. Redmayne was to play the young lawyer who acted for Westinghouse in the court case that punctuated the two men’s long and complicated tussle over patents. But playwright Michael Mitnick had been mulling over the idea since 2008 and his script for The Current War got there first, despite delays caused by its Weinstein company origins.

It’s a much quieter take on the story than Moore’s, which paints Edison as an unrepentant bully with a relentless talent for self-aggrandisement. Maybe that’s why the film, directed by the Mexican-born Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, has had such a tepid response from international critics who have been unfairly making it sound like the creakiest of museum pieces.

It picks up the narrative shortly before hostilities begin. Edison has just staked his claim as the inventor of electricity by lighting up the night-time sky for the benefit of the press in a field near his New Jersey laboratory, Menlo Park.

Westinghouse, who already has his own theories about this revolutionary form of power, is intrigued and invites him and his wife to dinner, but war is implicitly declared after Edison stands him up. When J.P. Morgan (Matthew Macfadyen, with a red nose gleaming like a light bulb) delights Edison by agreeing to become his financial backer, it looks as if he is on his way to victory. But Westinghouse takes the next round by proving that his system of alternating current is more efficient, able to power a much larger area than Edison’s DC system. And when the brilliant but unstable Nikola Tesla (Nicholas Hoult) enters the picture, the plot takes another twist.

Moore’s account fully explores the story’s most shameful episode, a Machiavellian manoeuvre involving AC current’s use in an horrific demonstration of the first electric chair, while the film flinches at the more ghastly details. Even so, there’s enough here to point up the bitter paradox at the story’s core – that almost all scientific inventions come with ethical strings attached.

Cumberbatch’s Edison is not the portrait of evil given us by Moore. He’s a fascinating bundle of conflicting impulses – an intellectual powerhouse whose curiosity won’t let him rest, and a fame-seeker whose ego is constrained by his conscience only when he’s at his best. Shannon’s Westinghouse, on the other hand, is phlegmatic, avuncular and willing to bide his time. It’s a classic fable – the tortoise and the hare.

Read Sandra Hall’s full review here.

Happy New Year, Colin Burstead ★★½

Tolstoy be damned: every unhappy family may be unhappy in its own way, but that doesn't make them interesting, writes reviewer Paul Byrnes. Take the Bursteads, a working-class English family. The name rhymes with bastards. They mostly hate each other. Colin Burstead (Neil Maskell) hates some more than others, but he does his duty and organises a New Year's Eve reunion in a posh country house. The host is a bumbling aristocrat (Richard Glover) who's well out of his depth in hospitality.

Neil Maskell is the not-so-happy Colin Burstead in Happy New Year, Colin Burstead.

The Bursteads are a diverse mob, to be sure. Colin's mother, Sandy (Doon Makichan), falls at the doorstep and acts like her leg is broken. Colin looks on with derision as everyone makes her the centre of attention – again. His dad, Gordon (Bill Paterson), bites him for a loan even before everyone has arrived, then starts drinking when Colin says no. Colin's sister Gini (Hayley Squires) has secretly invited the black sheep to return after five years in exile. The movie is half over before we find out why her brother David (Sam Riley) is a pariah. The Burstead women run in all directions, cursing and weeping in the servants' quarters. That gives a hint of David's priors.

Ben Wheatley has made a brilliant career out of bending genres, while taking the piss out of the British family. Sightseers was a blacker-than-black comedy about a loving couple who kill people on their caravan tour of Britain. Down Terrace, his debut in 2009, was about the hunt for a grass within an East End crime family: the members tried to work out domestic tensions as they offed each other. High-Rise was a startling departure, a dystopian nightmare based on a story by J.G. Ballard: the residents of a tower block, cut off from all services, start to kill each other.

It would be fair to say Wheatley's films do not throb with his love of his fellow man (or woman). That instinct makes his comedy sharp, but it has to be tempered. Bile by itself is not that funny. Wheatley's comedies aren't crafted to be thigh-slappers, anyway. He's in the long British television tradition of humour based on close observation of character, with a strong instinct for class. He puts violence where the heart is, quite literally.

The writing credit confirmed my suspicions: Wheatley wrote most of the script, but other cast members improvised dialogue during shooting. That explains why some scenes are slack and seemingly pointless. Wheatley appears to have hired a big house, filled it with friends and booze, giving each person a thin description of their character, then waited for the magic to happen. What results is a disjointed mess with little trajectory or precision, and very little added width in the characters. That's partly because there are too many to develop.

There are exceptions: Maskell gives a withering performance as Colin, who's an explosion waiting to happen. Maskell has appeared in two of Wheatley's earlier films. I can't say if Wheatley uses him as his alter-ego, but their physical resemblance is striking, and presumably, meant to be noticed. Charles Dance, as Uncle Bertie, gives his character some soul, partly because he's the only one who exhibits any love for the rest of them. That's really the nub of the problem: why should we care about this unhappy family when their unhappiness is neither distinctive nor memorable? If we have to rely simply on the quality of the insults, all is lost.

Read Paul Byrnes’ full review here.

Farewell To The Night ★★★½

In the films Catherine Deneuve made when she was young, most famously Belle de Jour, she personified the “cool blonde”: poised and reserved, yet stirred by strange desires, leaving us to guess what she might be thinking at any point, writes critic Jake Wilson. Half a century on, Deneuve is still a star, but in Andre Techine’s Farewell to the Night, the boot is on the other foot.

Muriel (Catherine Deneuve) becomes suspicious of her grandson in Farewell to the Night.

Deneuve plays Muriel, who runs a horse farm in the mountains of Catalonia, offering riding lessons to tourists. Though not lacking in assurance, Muriel is a relatively straightforward, down-to-earth character, who has her hair dyed chestnut rather than blonde. Her feelings tend to be written all over her face, especially the anxiety and impatience that spring from a desire to protect those she loves.

It’s the younger generation who are opaque, specifically Muriel's orphaned grandson Alex (Kacey Mottet Klein, who starred in Techine’s previous Being 17) and his fiancee Lila (Oulaya Amamra), a Muslim who grew up alongside him and has converted him to her faith. Secretly, the pair are radicals who plan to leave the country and fight in Syria, an expedition to be financed by any means necessary.

Set over a few days in early spring, the film is structured like a thriller: what Alex and Lila have in mind emerges only gradually, but we’re shown enough of their private conversations to keep us a few steps ahead of Muriel, who doesn’t catch on until halfway that anything serious is afoot.

Balancing points of view is of central importance to Techine, who has been making films for almost as long as Deneuve (this is their eighth together) and is master of a unobtrusive cinematic language that feels classical and modern.

Indeed, much of the drama of Farewell to the Night is visual and spatial, arising from the specifics of the setting. Muriel’s horses, for instance, are more than local colour and, towards the climax, an unexpected physical move made by one of the characters shifts the whole course of the plot.

The film can be viewed as a topical “social problem” drama: we hear of an election taking place, with a soaring vote for the National Front. On this level, there’s a clumsiness to some of the efforts to ensure “balance”, such as the token inclusion of a "moderate" Muslim character, Muriel’s business partner Youssef (Mohamed Djouhri).

But Techine is too much of an artist to settle for a simple message along the lines of “cosmopolitan France good, radical Islam bad”. The complexity of his approach is especially evident in his handling of Lila, who like most of us has several different personalities depending on the needs of the moment.

As an aged care worker, she’s demure and mostly obliging; alone with her lover, she’s physically affectionate and spontaneous, at one point leaping into a lake fully dressed. But her body language can tighten up in an instant as she assumes the posture of the true believer, or her nerves can get the better of her, leading to tics such as tapping a foot uncontrollably.

It could be said Muriel and Lila have a good deal in common, especially in light of the death of Alex’s mother, whom both women in their different ways try to replace. But part of Techine’s strength is that he lets us ponder such questions for ourselves: whatever his characters reveal or hide, he respects the larger mystery of personality, whereby contrasting threads are somehow braided together into the whole.

Read Jake Wilson’s full review here.

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The New Evil Big Brother System ‘Rehoboam’ on ‘Westworld,’ Explained

Westworld premiered last night on HBO to just the sort of confusion and technological nefariousness we’ve come to expect. (At least things seem somewhat chronological at this point .. so far.) As for shifty Big Brother tech corporations, Delos seems to be the data collector of the past; in Delores’ crosshairs now is a company called “Incite,” with a system titled “Rehoboam.”

Liam Dempsey, Jr. (the son of the company’s founder and system creator, now dead) shows Delores Rehoboam, referring to it as “the system” throughout the episode.

Dempsey says that it took his father 15 years to build the system. The system itself looks as if Bjarke Ingles designed an apartment building to resemble a marble, or a robocop helmet: It’s big and round and features circulating red lights. So basically a rotund Hal 9000.

Why is it called Rehoboam?

Like many features of the series (“the valley beyond,” the resurrections of the hosts, the hellish forge, etc) the system alludes to the Bible. Rehoboam was the first king of Judah and the son of Solomon, the archetypal wise king.

Rehoboam’s reign, however, was a bit less wise and godly. According to the book of Kings, “Judah did what was evil in the sight of the Lord” (1 Kings 14:22). Because: male prostitutes. Rehoboam also went to war with the Kingdom of Israel.

Rehoboam’s significance in the context of Incite’s system of Westworld is likely tied primarily to its being the successor (and apparent step down) from Solomon. The system in Westworld is also a successor to an earlier model. Dempsey mentions how Incite has “lost track” of how many “thoughts” the system now has. So if the biblical allusions persist, chances are Rehoboam won’t be doing a whole lot of God-approved activities. Male prostitutes not yet confirmed.

What does Rehoboam do?

The system’s basic function is assign order to the world by tracking and then planning paths for every individual. It essentially keep humans on their pre-designed loops. Westworld creators Lisa Joy and Jonathan Nolan wanted this season to foil Season 1—in that they wanted to show humans waking up, gong to work, playing out their own scripts the same way that the park hosts did in the first season. Rehoboam, then, is something of the Robert Ford of the real world. Dempsey explains: “My dad thought the biggest problem in the world was unrealized potential. He thought that if you could chart a course for every single person, you could make the world a better place.”

To this, Delores responds: “A path for everyone.” Or so was the premise of the “Westworld” park: to each his own loop.

It makes sense, then, that Delores would be very interested in Rehoboam. Whether that’s to co-opt the system and control the human loops or to destroy it and set everyone free Khaleesi-style—that’s yet to be determined.

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