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Film Review: ‘The Visit’

M. Night Shyamalan returns to thriller filmmaking in the style of low-budget impresario Jason Blum with mixed results.

By Geoff Berkshire

Geoff Berkshire

Associate Editor, Features

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the-visit

After delivering back-to-back creative and commercial duds in the sci-fi action genre, M. Night Shyamalan retreats to familiar thriller territory with “ The Visit .” As far as happy homecomings go, it beats the one awaiting his characters, though not by much. The story of two teens spending a week with the creepy grandparents they’ve never met unfolds in a mockumentary style that’s new for the filmmaker and old hat for horror auds. Heavier on comic relief (most of it intentional) than genuine scares, this low-budget oddity could score decent opening weekend B.O. and ultimately find a cult following thanks to its freakier twists and turns, but hardly represents a return to form for its one-time Oscar-nominated auteur.

In a way, it’s a relief to see Shyamalan set aside the studio-system excesses of “The Last Airbender” and “After Earth” and get down and dirty with a found-footage-style indie crafted in the spirit of producer Jason Blum’s single location chillers. (Blum actually joined the project after filming wrapped, but it subscribes to his patented “Paranormal Activity” playbook to a T.) Except that the frustrating result winds up on the less haunting end of Shyamalan’s filmography, far south of “The Sixth Sense,” “Signs” and “The Village,” and not even as unsettling as the most effective moments in the hokey “The Happening.”

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That’s not to say “The Visit” is necessarily worse than some of those efforts, just a different kind of animal. The simplicity of the premise initially works in the pic’s favor as 15-year-old aspiring documentarian Becca (Olivia DeJonge) and her 13-year-old aspiring-rap-star sibling Tyler (Ed Oxenbould of “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”) say goodbye to their hard-working single mom (Kathryn Hahn, better than the fleeting role deserves), who ships off on a weeklong cruise with her latest boyfriend. The kids travel by train to rural Pennsylvania to meet Nana (Deanna Dunagan) and Pop Pop (Peter McRobbie), the purportedly kindly parents Mom left behind when she took off with her high-school English teacher and caused a permanent rift in the family.

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Becca plans to turn the whole experience into an Oscar-caliber documentary (proving she sets her sights higher than Shyamalan these days) and also an opportunity to exorcise the personal demons both she and Tyler carry around in the wake of their parents’ separation. Unfortunately for the kids, their grandparents appear to be possessed by demons of another kind — although it takes an awfully long time for them to grow legitimately concerned about Nana’s nasty habit of roaming the house at night, vomiting on the floor and scratching at the walls in the nude, and Pop Pop’s almost-as-bizarre behavior, including stuffing a woodshed full of soiled adult diapers, attacking a stranger on the street and regularly dressing in formal wear for a “costume party” that never materializes.

Ominous warnings to not go into the basement (because of “mold,” you see) and stay in their room after 9:30 (Nana’s “bedtime”) fly right over the heads of our otherwise pop-culture-savvy protagonists. Becca even stubbornly refuses to use her omnipresent camera for nighttime reconnaissance, citing concerns over exploitation and “cinematic standards” — one of the lamest excuses yet to justify dumb decisions in a horror narrative — until the weeklong stay is almost up.

Shyamalan has long been criticized for serving up borderline (or downright) silly premises with a straight face and overtly pretentious atmosphere, but he basically abandons that approach here in favor of a looser, more playful dynamic between his fresh-faced leads. At the same time, there’s a surreal campiness to the grandparents’ seemingly inexplicable behavior, fully embraced by Tony winner Dunagan and Scottish character actor McRobbie, that encourages laughter between ho-hum jump scares. Their antics only reach full-blown menacing in the perverse-by-PG-13-standards third act. (The obligatory reveal of what’s really going on works OK, as long as you don’t question it any more than anyone onscreen ever does.)

Even if there’s less chance the audience will burst out in fits of inappropriate chuckles, as was often the case in, say, “The Happening” or “Lady in the Water,” Shyamalan still can’t quite pull off the delicate tonal balance he’s after. Once events ultimately do turn violent — and Nana does more than just scamper around the floor or pop up directly in front of the camera — the setpieces are never as scary or suspenseful as they should be. Even worse are the film’s attempts at character-driven drama, including a couple of awkward soul-baring monologues from the otherwise poised young stars, and a ludicrous epilogue that presumes auds will have somehow formed an emotional bond with characters who actually remain skin-deep throughout. One longs to see what a nervier filmmaker could have done with the concept (and a R rating).

The technical package is deliberately less slick than the Shyamalan norm, although scripting Becca as a budding filmmaker interested in mise en scene provides d.p. Maryse Alberti (whose numerous doc credits include multiple Alex Gibney features) an excuse to capture images with a bit more craft than the average found footage thriller. Shyamalan purposefully decided to forego an original score, but the soundtrack is rarely silent between the chattering of the children, a selection of source music and the eerie sound editing that emphasizes every creaking door and loud crash substituting for well-earned frights.

Reviewed at Arclight Cinemas, Hollywood, Sept. 8, 2015. MPAA Rating: PG-13. Running time: 94 MIN.

  • Production: A Universal release of a Blinding Edge Pictures and Blumhouse production. Produced by Jason Blum, Marc Bienstock, M. Night Shyamalan. Executive producers, Steven Schneider, Ashwin Rajan.
  • Crew: Directed, written by M. Night Shyamalan. Camera (color, HD), Maryse Alberti; editor, Luke Ciarrocchi; music supervisor, Susan Jacobs; production designer, Naaman Marshall; art director, Scott Anderson; set decorator, Christine Wick; costume designer, Amy Westcott; sound (Dolby Digital), David J. Schwartz; supervising sound editor/re-recording mixer, Skip Lievsay; visual effects supervisor, Ruben Rodas; visual effects, Dive VFX; stunt coordinator, Manny Siverio; casting, Douglas Aibel.
  • With: Olivia DeJonge, Ed Oxenbould, Deanna Dunagan, Peter McRobbie, Kathryn Hahn, Celia Keenan-Bolger.

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An earnest drama, The Visit gains much emotional power through its fine performances.

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The Visit Movie Explained Ending

The Visit Explained (Plot And Ending)

The Visit is a 2015  horror   thriller  directed by M. Night Shyamalan. It follows two siblings who visit their estranged grandparents only to discover something is very wrong with them. As the children try to uncover the truth, they are increasingly terrorized by their grandparents’ bizarre behaviour. Here’s the plot and ending of The Visit explained; spoilers ahead.

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Where To Watch?

To find where to stream any movie or series based on your country, use This Is Barry’s Where To Watch .

Oh, and if this article doesn’t answer all of your questions, drop me a comment or an FB chat message, and I’ll get you the answer .  You can find other film explanations using the search option on top of the site.

Here are links to the key aspects of the movie:

  • – The Story
  • – Plot Explained
  • – Ending Explained
  • – The Sense Of Dread
  • – Separation, Remorse, and Personal Fears
  • – Frequently Asked Questions Answered
  • – Wrap Up

What is the story of The Visit?

The Visit :What is it about?

The Visit is about two kids visiting their grandparents for the first time. They are also going there to hope and rebuild a bridge between their mom and grandparents and help their mom heal after a painful divorce. The movie is in documentary form.

The Visit is one of the most unnerving and realistic horror stories. A good thing about classic horror movies is that, after the movie ends, you can switch it off and go to bed,  knowing that you’re safe . Vampires, ghosts, and demonic powers don’t exist, and even if you are prone to these kinds of esoteric beliefs, there are safeguards. If your home is not built in an Indian burial ground and you haven’t bought any creepy-looking dolls from your local antiquary, you’re perfectly safe.

However, what about the idea of two kids spending five days with two escaped psychiatric ward patients in a remote farmhouse? Now, this is a thought that will send shivers down your spine. It’s a story that sounds not just realistic but real. It’s  something that might have happened in the past  or might happen in the future.

This is  what  The Visit  is all about . This idea, coupled with documentary-form storytelling, is why the movie is so unnerving to watch.

The Visit: Plot Explained

Loretta’s past.

As a young girl, Loretta Jamison fell in love with her high school teacher and decided to skip her hometown with him. Before leaving, she had a heated altercation with her parents and hasn’t seen them since. At the movie’s start, she is a single mom of 15-year-old Becca and 14-year-old Tyler, and she  hasn’t spoken to her parents in 15 years .

What really happened on the day Loretta left?

Loretta’s mom tries to stop her from leaving the house, and Loretta hits her mom, and her dad hits her. Soon after, her parents try to reach out to Loretta, but she refuses to take their calls, and years go by.

Meet The Grandparents

Years later, Loretta’s parents reach out to  meet their grandchildren . The grandparents are, seemingly, wholly reformed and now even help at the local psychiatric hospital. Although initially not too fond of the idea, Loretta is persuaded by the insistence of her children. While she had no intention of visiting the parents, she permitted her children to pay their grandparents a five-day visit.

At The Grandparents’

Their first meeting with Nana and Pop Pop starts on the right foot. They start getting to know each other, and other than a simple generational gap, nothing seems too strange. The only thing that seems off is that they are warned  not to leave the room after 9:30 in the evening .

The kids break this rule, and on the first night, they notice  Nana acting erratically , projectile vomiting, scratching wallpaper with her bare hands, and running around the house on all fours. Grandpa appears paranoid and hides his adult diapers in the garden shed, and the situation escalates each day.

The Visit Ending Explained: What happens in the end?

Tyler Becca mother ending explained

The ending of Visit has the kids finally showing the elderly couple to Loretta. She, completely horrified, states that  those are not her parents . The pair posing as Pop Pop and Nana are escaped psychiatric institution patients who murdered their grandparents and took their places.

The kids survive, kill their captors, and are found alive and well by their mom and the police. Becca kills Nana with a shard from the mirror, thus symbolically overcoming her fear of her reflection. Tyler kills Pop Pop by repeatedly slamming him in the head with a refrigerator door after overcoming his germaphobia and anxiety about freezing.

The Sense Of Dread

The elements of horror in this movie are just  perfectly executed . First of all, the film is shot as a documentary. Becca is an aspiring filmmaker who records the entire trip with her camera. From time to time, we see an interview of all the characters, which just serves as the perfect vessel for characterization.

No Ghouls or Cults

Another thing that evokes dread is  realism . There are no supernatural beings or demonic forces. It’s just two kids alone in a remote farmstead with two creepy, deranged people. Even in the end, when Loretta finds out what’s happening, it takes her hours to get there with the police. The scariest part is that it’s not that hard to imagine something along those lines really happening.

The  house itself is dread-inducing . The place is old and rustic. Like in The Black Phone soundproofing a room  could have prevented kids from hearing Nana rummaging around the house without a clear idea of what was happening, but this was not the case, as the old couple weren’t that capable.

The  characters  themselves  are perfectly played . Something is unnerving about Pop Pop and Nana from the very first scene. It’s the Uncanny Valley scenario where you feel that something’s off and shakes you to the core, but you have no idea what it is.

Separation, Remorse, and Personal Fears

Suspecting the grand parents

What this movie does the best is explore the  ugly side of separation, old grudges, and remorse . The main reason why kids are insistent on visiting their grandparents is out of their desire to help their mom.

They see she’s remorseful for never  working things out with her parents . In light of her failed marriage and the affair that caused it to end, she might live with the doubt that her parents were right all along. This makes her decision and altercation with her parents even worse. Reconciling when you know you were wrong is harder than forgiving the person who wronged you.

The Kids’ Perspective

There are personal fears and  traumas of the kids . Tyler, in his childish naivete, is convinced that his father left because he was disappointed in him as a son. Tyler tells Becca that he froze during one game he played, which disappointed his dad so much that he had to leave. While this sounds ridiculous to any adult (and even Becca), it’s a matter of fact to Tyler. As a result of this trauma, Tyler also developed germaphobia. In Becca’s own words, this gives him a greater sense of control.

On the other hand,  Becca refuses to look at herself in the mirror  or stand in front of the camera if she can help it. Both kids  had to overcome their fears to survive , which is a solid and clear metaphor for how these things sometimes turn out in real life.

Frequently Asked Questions Answered

The visit: what’s wrong with the grandparents who are the grandparents.

The people who hosted Becca and Tyler were runaway psychiatric hospital patients who murdered the real grandparents and took their place. Nana’s impostor (Claire) was actually responsible for murdering her children by drowning them in a well. Pop Pop’s impostor (Mitchell) wanted to give Claire a second chance at having kids / being a grandparent.

How did the imposter grandparents know about the kids’ visit?

It appears Claire and Mitchell hear the real Nana and Pop Pop brag about their grandkids’ visit. They also learned that neither the grandparents nor the kids had seen each other. The real grandparents appear to have been consulting in the same hospital Claire and Mitchell were being treated. The two crazies take this opportunity to break out, kill the real grandparents and go to the station to pick up the children.

The Visit: What is Sinmorfitellia?

Claire and Mitchell believe that Sinmorfitellia is an alien planet, and the creatures from there lurk on Earth. They spit into the waters of wells and ponds all day, which can put people into a deep sleep. They take  sleeping with the fishes  quite literally. Long ago, Claire drowned her children believing they would go to Sinmorfitellia.

The Visit: What happened to the real grandparents?

Claire and Mitchel killed Nana and Pop Pop and put them in the basement. This information went unnoticed because Becca’s laptop’s camera was damaged by Nana, so Loretta could not confirm the imposters. Claire and Mitchel were not present every time someone came to visit, so no one suspected foul play except Stacey, who received help from the real grandparents. As a result, she is killed.

What did Claire and Mitchel intend to do?

They plan to go to Sinmorfitellia with Becca and Tyler. They all plan to die on that last night and enter the well, which they believe is their path to the alien planet where they can be happy together. This is perhaps why the grandparents hang Stacey outside the house because they don’t care about being caught.

The Visit: What’s wrong with Nana?

We don’t know what caused Nana’s mental illness, but she was crazy enough to kill her two children by putting them in suitcases and drowning them in a pond. It appears she suffers from schizophrenia as she has delusions.

The Visit: Wrap Up

From the standpoint of horror, The Visit has it all. An unnerving realistic scenario, real-life trauma, and an atmosphere of fear. Combine this with  some of the best acting work in the genre  and a documentary-style movie, and you’ve got yourself a real masterpiece.

On the downside, the movie leaves you with a lot of open questions like:

  • Considering the kids have never seen the grandparents and are going alone, Loretta didn’t ensure her kids knew what her parents looked like?
  • How are Claire and Mitchell out and about so close to the hospital without being caught?
  • Considering they are mentally ill, how did Claire and Mitchell plot such a thorough plan? (e.g. strategically damaging the camera of the laptop)
  • I understand  Suspension Of Disbelief  in horror films, but neither kids drop their cameras despite the terror they go through only so we, the audience, can get the entire narrative?

What were your thoughts on the plot and ending of the movie The Visit? Drop your comments below!

Author Stacey Shannon on This Is Barry

Stacey is a talented freelance writer passionate about all things pop culture. She has a keen eye for detail and a natural talent for storytelling. She’s a super-fan of Game of Thrones, Cats, and Indie Rock Music and can often be found engrossed in complex films and books. Connect with her on her social media handles to learn more about her work and interests.

The Ending Of The Visit Explained

The Visit M. Night Shyamalan Olivia DeJonge Deanna Dunagan

Contains spoilers for  The Visit

M. Night Shyamalan is notorious for using dramatic twists towards the endings of his films, some of which are pulled off perfectly and add an extra layer of depth to a sprawling story (hello, Split ). Some of the director's other offerings simply keep the audience on their toes rather than having any extra subtext or hidden meaning. Shyamalan's 2015 found-footage horror-comedy  The Visit , which he wrote and directed, definitely fits in the latter category, aiming for style over substance.

The Visit follows 15-year-old Becca Jamison (Olivia DeJonge) and her 13-year-old brother Tyler (Ed Oxenbould) when they spend the week with their mother's estranged parents, who live in another town. Loretta (played by WandaVision 's Kathryn Hahn ) never explained to her children why she separated herself away from her parents, but clearly hopes the weekend could help bring the family back together.

Although The Visit occasionally toys with themes of abandonment and fear of the unknown, it wasn't particularly well-received by critics on its initial release, as many struggled with its bizarre comedic tone in the found-footage style. So, after Tyler and his camera record a number of disturbing occurrences like Nana (Deanna Dunagan) projectile-vomiting in the middle of the night and discovering "Pop Pop"'s (Peter McRobbie) mountain of used diapers, it soon becomes clear that something isn't right with the grandparents.

Here's the ending of  The Visit  explained.

The Visit's twist plays on expectations

Because Shyamalan sets up the idea of the separation between Loretta and her parents very early on — and doesn't show their faces before Becca and Tyler meet them — the film automatically creates a false sense of security. Even more so since the found-footage style restricts the use of typical exposition methods like flashbacks or other scenes which would indicate that Nana and Pop Pop aren't who they say they are. Audiences have no reason to expect that they're actually two escapees from a local psychiatric facility.

The pieces all come together once Becca discovers her  real grandparents' corpses in the basement, along with some uniforms from the psychiatric hospital. It confirms "Nana" and "Pop-Pop" escaped from the institution and murdered the Jamisons because they were a similar age, making it easy to hide their whereabouts from the authorities. And they would've gotten away with it too, if it weren't for those meddling kids.)

However, after a video call from Loretta reveals that the pair aren't her parents, the children are forced to keep up appearances — but the unhinged duo start to taunt the siblings. Tyler in particular is forced to face his fear of germs as "Pop Pop" wipes dirty diapers in his face. The germophobia is something Shyamalan threads through Tyler's character throughout The Visit,  and the encounter with "Pop Pop" is a basic attempt of showing he's gone through some kind of trial-by-fire to get over his fears.

But the Jamison kids don't take things lying down: They fight back in vicious fashion — a subversion of yet another expectation that young teens might would wait for adults or law enforcement officers to arrive before doing away with their tormentors.

Its real message is about reconciliation

By the time Becca stabs "Nana" to death and Tyler has repeatedly slammed "Pop-Pop"'s head with the refrigerator door, their mother and the police do arrive to pick up the pieces. In a last-ditch attempt at adding an emotional undertone, Shyamalan reveals Loretta left home after a huge argument with her parents. She hit her mother, and her father hit her in return. But Loretta explains that reconciliation was always on the table if she had stopped being so stubborn and just reached out. One could take a domino-effect perspective and even say that Loretta's stubbornness about not reconnecting and her sustained distance from her parents put them in exactly the vulnerable position they needed to be for "Nana" and "Pop-Pop" to murder them. 

Loretta's confession actually mirrors something "Pop-Pop" told Tyler (before his run-in with the refrigerator door): that he and "Nana" wanted to spend one week as a normal family before dying. They should've thought about that before murdering a pair of innocent grandparents, but here we are. 

So, is The Visit  trying to say that if we don't keep our families together, they'll be replaced by imposters and terrify our children? Well, probably not. The Visit tries to deliver a message about breaking away from old habits, working through your fears, and stop being so stubborn over arguments that don't have any consequences in the long-run. Whether it actually sticks the landing on all of those points is still up for debate.

logo

The Visit Explained (Plot And Ending)

The Visit is a 2015  horror   thriller  directed by M. Night Shyamalan. It follows two siblings who visit their estranged grandparents only to discover something is very wrong with them. As the children try to uncover the truth, they are increasingly terrorized by their grandparents’ unconvincing behaviour. Here’s the plot and ending of The Visit explained; spoilers ahead.

Here are links to the key aspects of the movie:

  • – The Story
  • – Plot Explained
  • – Ending Explained
  • – The Sense Of Dread
  • – Separation, Remorse, and Personal Fears
  • – Frequently Asked Questions Answered
  • – Wrap Up

What is the story of The Visit?

The Visit :What is it about?

The Visit is well-nigh two kids visiting their grandparents for the first time. They are moreover going there to hope and rebuild a underpass between their mom and grandparents and help their mom heal without a painful divorce. The movie is in documentary form.

The Visit is one of the most unnerving and realistic horror stories. A good thing well-nigh archetype horror movies is that, without the movie ends, you can switch it off and go to bed,  knowing that you’re safe . Vampires, ghosts, and demonic powers don’t exist, and plane if you are prone to these kinds of esoteric beliefs, there are safeguards. If your home is not built in an Indian solemnities ground and you haven’t bought any creepy-looking dolls from your local antiquary, you’re perfectly safe.

However, what well-nigh the idea of two kids spending five days with two escaped psychiatric ward patients in a remote farmhouse? Now, this is a thought that will send shivers lanugo your spine. It’s a story that sounds not just realistic but real. It’s  something that might have happened in the past  or might happen in the future.

This is  what  The Visit  is all about . This idea, coupled with documentary-form storytelling, is why the movie is so unnerving to watch.

The Visit: Plot Explained

Loretta’s past.

As a young girl, Loretta Jamison fell in love with her upper school teacher and decided to skip her hometown with him. Before leaving, she had a heated wrangling with her parents and hasn’t seen them since. At the movie’s start, she is a single mom of 15-year-old Becca and 14-year-old Tyler, and she  hasn’t spoken to her parents in 15 years .

What really happened on the day Loretta left?

Loretta’s mom tries to stop her from leaving the house, and Loretta hits her mom, and her dad hits her. Soon after, her parents try to reach out to Loretta, but she refuses to take their calls, and years go by.

Meet The Grandparents

Years later, Loretta’s parents reach out to  meet their grandchildren . The grandparents are, seemingly, wholly reformed and now plane help at the local psychiatric hospital. Although initially not too fond of the idea, Loretta is persuaded by the insistence of her children. While she had no intention of visiting the parents, she permitted her children to pay their grandparents a five-day visit.

At The Grandparents’

Their first meeting with Nana and Pop Pop starts on the right foot. They start getting to know each other, and other than a simple generational gap, nothing seems too strange. The only thing that seems off is that they are warned  not to leave the room without 9:30 in the evening .

The kids unravel this rule, and on the first night, they notice  Nana vicarial erratically , projectile vomiting, scratching wallpaper with her yellowish hands, and running virtually the house on all fours. Grandpa appears paranoid and hides his sultana diapers in the garden shed, and the situation escalates each day.

The Visit Ending Explained: What happens in the end?

Tyler Becca mother ending explained

The ending of Visit has the kids finally showing the elderly couple to Loretta. She, completely horrified, states that  those are not her parents . The pair posing as Pop Pop and Nana are escaped psychiatric institution patients who murdered their grandparents and took their places.

The kids survive, skiver their captors, and are found working and well by their mom and the police. Becca kills Nana with a shard from the mirror, thus symbolically overcoming her fear of her reflection. Tyler kills Pop Pop by repeatedly slamming him in the throne with a refrigerator door without overcoming his germaphobia and uneasiness well-nigh freezing.

The Sense Of Dread

The elements of horror in this movie are just  perfectly executed . First of all, the mucosa is shot as a documentary. Becca is an aspiring filmmaker who records the unshortened trip with her camera. From time to time, we see an interview of all the characters, which just serves as the perfect vessel for characterization.

No Ghouls or Cults

Another thing that evokes dread is  realism . There are no supernatural beings or demonic forces. It’s just two kids vacated in a remote farmstead with two creepy, deranged people. Plane in the end, when Loretta finds out what’s happening, it takes her hours to get there with the police. The scariest part is that it’s not that nonflexible to imagine something withal those lines really happening.

The  house itself is dread-inducing . The place is old and rustic. Like in The Black Phone soundproofing a room  could have prevented kids from hearing Nana rummaging virtually the house without a well-spoken idea of what was happening, but this was not the case, as the old couple weren’t that capable.

The  characters  themselves  are perfectly played . Something is unnerving well-nigh Pop Pop and Nana from the very first scene. It’s the Uncanny Valley scenario where you finger that something’s off and shakes you to the core, but you have no idea what it is.

Separation, Remorse, and Personal Fears

Suspecting the grand parents

What this movie does the weightier is explore the  ugly side of separation, old grudges, and remorse . The main reason why kids are insistent on visiting their grandparents is out of their desire to help their mom.

They see she’s remorseful for never  working things out with her parents . In light of her failed marriage and the topic that caused it to end, she might live with the doubt that her parents were right all along. This makes her visualization and wrangling with her parents plane worse. Reconciling when you know you were wrong is harder than forgiving the person who wronged you.

The Kids’ Perspective

There are personal fears and  traumas of the kids . Tyler, in his unwise naivete, is convinced that his father left considering he was disappointed in him as a son. Tyler tells Becca that he froze during one game he played, which disappointed his dad so much that he had to leave. While this sounds ridiculous to any sultana (and plane Becca), it’s a matter of fact to Tyler. As a result of this trauma, Tyler moreover ripened germaphobia. In Becca’s own words, this gives him a greater sense of control.

On the other hand,  Becca refuses to squint at herself in the mirror  or stand in front of the camera if she can help it. Both kids  had to overcome their fears to survive , which is a solid and well-spoken metaphor for how these things sometimes turn out in real life.

Frequently Asked Questions Answered

The visit: what’s wrong with the grandparents who are the grandparents.

The people who hosted Becca and Tyler were runaway psychiatric hospital patients who murdered the real grandparents and took their place. Nana’s impostor (Claire) was unquestionably responsible for murdering her children by drowning them in a well. Pop Pop’s impostor (Mitchell) wanted to requite Claire a second endangerment at having kids / stuff a grandparent.

How did the imposter grandparents know well-nigh the kids’ visit?

It appears Claire and Mitchell hear the real Nana and Pop Pop brag well-nigh their grandkids’ visit. They moreover learned that neither the grandparents nor the kids had seen each other. The real grandparents towards to have been consulting in the same hospital Claire and Mitchell were stuff treated. The two crazies take this opportunity to unravel out, skiver the real grandparents and go to the station to pick up the children.

The Visit: What is Sinmorfitellia?

Claire and Mitchell believe that Sinmorfitellia is an wayfarer planet, and the creatures from there lurk on Earth. They spit into the waters of wells and ponds all day, which can put people into a deep sleep. They take  sleeping with the fishes  quite literally. Long ago, Claire drowned her children yoyo they would go to Sinmorfitellia.

The Visit: What happened to the real grandparents?

Claire and Mitchel killed Nana and Pop Pop and put them in the basement. This information went unnoticed considering Becca’s laptop’s camera was damaged by Nana, so Loretta could not personize the imposters. Claire and Mitchel were not present every time someone came to visit, so no one suspected foul play except Stacey, who received help from the real grandparents. As a result, she is killed.

What did Claire and Mitchel intend to do?

They plan to go to Sinmorfitellia with Becca and Tyler. They all plan to die on that last night and enter the well, which they believe is their path to the wayfarer planet where they can be happy together. This is perhaps why the grandparents hang Stacey outside the house considering they don’t superintendency well-nigh stuff caught.

The Visit: What’s wrong with Nana?

We don’t know what caused Nana’s mental illness, but she was crazy unbearable to skiver her two children by putting them in suitcases and drowning them in a pond. It appears she suffers from schizophrenia as she has delusions.

The Visit: Wrap Up

From the standpoint of horror, The Visit has it all. An unnerving realistic scenario, real-life trauma, and an undercurrent of fear. Combine this with  some of the weightier vicarial work in the genre  and a documentary-style movie, and you’ve got yourself a real masterpiece.

On the downside, the movie leaves you with a lot of unshut questions like:

  • Considering the kids have never seen the grandparents and are going alone, Loretta didn’t ensure her kids knew what her parents looked like?
  • How are Claire and Mitchell out and well-nigh so tropical to the hospital without stuff caught?
  • Considering they are mentally ill, how did Claire and Mitchell plot such a thorough plan? (e.g. strategically rabble-rousing the camera of the laptop)
  • I understand  Suspension Of Disbelief  in horror films, but neither kids waif their cameras despite the terror they go through only so we, the audience, can get the unshortened narrative?

What were your thoughts on the plot and ending of the movie The Visit? Waif your comments below!

The post The Visit Explained (Plot And Ending) appeared first on This is Barry .

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The Visit (2015) Stream and Watch Online

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Want to behold the glory that is ' The Visit ' in the comfort of your own home? Discovering a streaming service to buy, rent, download, or watch the M. Night Shyamalan-directed movie via subscription can be tricky, so we here at Moviefone want to take the pressure off. Read on for a listing of streaming and cable services - including rental, purchase, and subscription choices - along with the availability of 'The Visit' on each platform when they are available. Now, before we get into the nitty-gritty of how you can watch 'The Visit' right now, here are some particulars about the Blumhouse Productions, Blinding Edge Pictures, Universal Pictures, dentsu mystery flick. Released September 11th, 2015, 'The Visit' stars Olivia DeJonge , Ed Oxenbould , Deanna Dunagan , Peter McRobbie The PG-13 movie has a runtime of about 1 hr 34 min, and received a user score of 63 (out of 100) on TMDb, which assembled reviews from 4,545 respected users. You probably already know what the movie's about, but just in case... Here's the plot: "A brother and sister are sent to their grandparents' remote Pennsylvania farm for a week, where they discover that the elderly couple is involved in something deeply disturbing." 'The Visit' is currently available to rent, purchase, or stream via subscription on Amazon Video, Microsoft Store, Apple iTunes, HBO Max Amazon Channel, Vudu, AMC on Demand, Cinemax Amazon Channel, Max , YouTube, Cinemax Apple TV Channel, Google Play Movies, and Spectrum On Demand .

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Deleted scenes, the making of the visit, becca's photos, rotten tomatoes® score.

The Visit is a return to form for Shyamalan.

While Shyamalan doesn’t reinvent the wheel with “The Visit”, he does show the creative flourishes that made him a respected name and overnight success in the horror-thriller genre.

It’s all a very transparent metaphor for family reconciliation and what happens when your old wounds don’t heal.

This would be a perfect movie to kind of study because it's written really, really well and the scripting and dialogue and just the overall story structure is perfect.

M. Night Shyamalan needed people to be on his side. Thankfully, with The Visit, a found footage horror movie with more than its share of humor, he finally got me back on his side.

Shyamalan's made a lot of terrible films in a career singularly set with The Sixth Sense, but makes a decent rebound here.

The Visit is one freaky found footage frightfest.

The fear of 'The visit' is something very real, it is fear of abandonment, of not being loved. A fear far superior, by its authenticity, to any created fiction. [Full Review in Spanish]

We all know that comedy and horror are close to each other, so much so that screams can quickly transform into laughter. Shyamalan remembers this...

Shyamalan recaptures some of his earlier essence with lots of mystery, subtle creeps and moments where you'll question what exactly it is you're seeing.

Additional Info

  • Genre : Horror, Thriller
  • Release Date : September 11, 2015
  • Languages : English
  • Captions : English
  • Audio Format : 5.1

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Shyamalan's found-footage spooker has teens in peril.

The Visit Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Teens learn to overcome past fears to deal with cu

The main characters are teens (13 and 15) who try

Dead bodies, one hanged. Elderly man killed in a s

Minor innuendo involving 13-year-old boy who imagi

"F--k" is used once. Other words include

Skype is used as part of the plot. Sony laptop sho

Adults occasionally smoke cigarettes. A boy mimes

Parents need to know that The Visit is a found-footage horror movie from director M. Night Shyamalan. There are plenty of spooky images, sounds, and dialogue, as well as jump scares and a small amount of blood and gore. Viewers see dead bodies (including one killed in a rather shocking way), and two teens, 13…

Positive Messages

Teens learn to overcome past fears to deal with current situations. They sometimes work together but at other times are forced to split up.

Positive Role Models

The main characters are teens (13 and 15) who try their best to survive a bad situation; they're brave, but their situation isn't one anyone would emulate. The adults in the story aren't particularly admirable.

Violence & Scariness

Dead bodies, one hanged. Elderly man killed in a shocking way. Some blood. Spooky images, spooky dialogue, and jump scares. Stabbing with a mirror shard. Teens in jeopardy. Vomiting and poop. A man briefly assaults another man. Rifle briefly shown.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.

Sex, Romance & Nudity

Minor innuendo involving 13-year-old boy who imagines himself a ladykiller. Nana's naked bottom is shown twice.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.

"F--k" is used once. Other words include "s--t," "ass," "ho," "bitch," "goddamn," "hell," "douche," and possibly "a--hole." Middle finger gesture.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.

Products & Purchases

Skype is used as part of the plot. Sony laptop shown. A Yahtzee! game, with references to toy companies Hasbro and Milton Bradley.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Adults occasionally smoke cigarettes. A boy mimes "pot smoking" with his fingers.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Visit is a found-footage horror movie from director M. Night Shyamalan . There are plenty of spooky images, sounds, and dialogue, as well as jump scares and a small amount of blood and gore. Viewers see dead bodies (including one killed in a rather shocking way), and two teens, 13 and 15, are frequently in peril. The 13-year-old boy fancies himself a ladykiller, which leads to some minor innuendo, and the "Nana" character's naked bottom is shown a couple of times. Language includes a use of "f--k," plus "s--t," "bitch," and more, most frequently spoken by the 13-year-old. Adult characters infrequently smoke cigarettes, and there's a very brief, mimed reference to smoking pot. Shyamalan is a filmmaker whom horror hounds love to hate, but this movie could be a comeback that fans will want to see. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails .

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  • Parents say (19)
  • Kids say (82)

Based on 19 parent reviews

What's the Story?

Thirteen-year-old Tyler ( Ed Oxenbould ) and 15-year-old Becca (Olivia DeJonge) agree to spend a week with their grandparents while encouraging their mom ( Kathryn Hahn ) to take a vacation with her boyfriend. The kids have never met their grandparents, "Nana" (Deanna Dunagan) and "Pop Pop" (Peter McRobbie), at least partly because when their mother left home 15 years earlier, something terrible apparently happened. At first things seem fine, but then Nana and Pop Pop start behaving strangely. Even if it can all be explained -- Nana gets "sundown" syndrome, and Pop Pop requires adult diapers -- it doesn't quite ease the feeling that something's wrong. Meanwhile, Becca documents their visit on video, hoping to capture something that explains it all.

Is It Any Good?

After several perplexing misfires, writer/director M. Night Shyamalan has scaled back, gone for a lower budget and a lighter tone, and emerged with his most effective movie in over a decade. THE VISIT begins interestingly; the potentially creepy moments can be easily explained away and even laughed off, but the director still manages to create a subtle, creeping dread that steadily builds toward the climax.

Shyamalan uses the found-footage concept with more creativity than most other filmmakers, displaying his usual intriguing grasp of three-dimensional space, as well as empty space. The characters themselves are even aware of certain cinematic theories that could make their "documentary" more interesting. They're refreshingly intelligent and self-aware, and they never blunder stupidly into any situation. If the movie has a drawback, it's that fans will be looking hard for clues to one of Shyamalan's big "twists." As to what it is, or whether there is one, we're not saying.

Talk to Your Kids About ...

Families can talk about The Visit 's violence . How much is shown, and how much is suggested? How did it affect you? What's the impact of media violence on kids?

Tyler considers himself a "ladykiller." Is his dialogue inappropriate for someone his age?

Tyler likes to rap and posts videos of himself. Is he expressing himself, or is he merely seeking fame? What's appealing about fame? Is it OK for kids to start their own online channels?

Movie Details

  • In theaters : September 11, 2015
  • On DVD or streaming : January 5, 2016
  • Cast : Kathryn Hahn , Ed Oxenbould , Olivia DeJonge
  • Director : M. Night Shyamalan
  • Inclusion Information : Female actors
  • Studio : Universal Pictures
  • Genre : Horror
  • Run time : 94 minutes
  • MPAA rating : PG-13
  • MPAA explanation : disturbing thematic material including terror, violence and some nudity, and for brief language
  • Last updated : April 7, 2024

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

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The Boys Season 4: Does Homelander Die?

The Boys Season 4: Does Homelander Die?

By Tamal Kundu

The Boys Season 4 dropped on Thursday, June 13, and the fans want to know if Homelander dies . Homelander is not only one of the main characters in the series but also its overarching villain. He is the most powerful (active) supe in the world and appears to be nigh invulnerable. However, in The Boys Universe, everyone is in constant danger, even the man who has god-like powers. Here is what we have discovered about the prospects of Homelander’s death in The Boys Season 4.

boy from the visit movie

Does Homelander die in The Boys Season 4?

Homelander is alive as of season 4 episode 3, but he has begun showing signs of aging. In the season 4 premiere, he finds a grey hair on his body and becomes frustrated. The presence of grey hair indicates that unlike his biological father Soldier Boy (Jensen Ackles), Homelander doesn’t have the power of longevity.

With Soldier Boy gone and Ryan being too young, Homelander doesn’t have an enemy who can physically take him on. Further, The Boys aren’t that big of a threat in season 4. Homelander takes a morbid pleasure when he learns that Butcher has a tumor in his brain. So, this season, Homelander’s biggest enemy is himself. He struggles with the responsibility of being a father to Ryan, as he remains petty, attention-hungry, and needlessly cruel.

In front of the public and Ryan, Homelander pretends to be a relatable and kind heroic figure, but his psychopathic tendencies have started to emerge. We speculate that as the season progresses, Homelander will become more unstable. However, that doesn’t mean that he will die by suicide. If anything, he will deal with his issues like he always has: by inflicting violence and cruelty upon others. Given his stature in the series, he will likely make it to the fifth and final season of The Boys.

Tamal Kundu

A student of cinema, Tamal has written on a wide range of topics over the years — from entertainment to literature to pop culture. At ComingSoon, he is an SEO Contributing Writer developing content on films, TV, and anime.

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‘Tell Them You Love Me’: Where is Anna Stubblefield now?

Anna Stubblefield

Was it love, or was it abuse? This controversial question is at the core of a new documentary streaming on Netflix.

“ Tell Them You Love Me ” chronicles the story of Anna Stubblefield, a former tenured professor at Rutgers University who had a sexual affair with Derrick Johnson, a nonverbal man with cerebral palsy.

Insisting she and Johnson were in love, Stubblefield faced criticism from Johnson’s family. The conflict led to a criminal trial in 2015, a felony conviction and Stubblefield serving 22 months behind bars, The New York Times reported.

Years later, Stubblefield continues to insist that her relationship with Johnson was formed out of love. Read on to learn more about Stubblefield and the trial that challenged the nature of consent.

Who is Anna Stubblefield?

Stubblefield was a professor of philosophy at Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey. When she was engaging in a physical relationship with Johnson, she was married with two children, NBC Philadelphia reported in 2016.

According to a 2015 article in the Times, both of Stubblefield’s parents h e ld Ph.D . s in special education and worked extensively with people with disabilities. Her mother, Sandra McClennen, worked with blind, cognitively impaired children and was one of the earliest practitioners of facilitated communication, or F.C., an assisted-typing technique that claims to give people with disabilities the power to communicate.

McClennen practiced F.C. for more than 20 years and was still acting as a facilitator with clients in 2015, during Stubblefield’s trial. Stubblefield practiced F.C. with clients of her own, including Johnson, who Stubblefield called “a fast learner.”

How did Stubblefield and Johnson meet?

In 2009, Stubblefield, then 41, met Johnson, aged 30 at the time, through his brother, who was enrolled in one of Stubblefield’s courses at Rutgers. According to the Times , Stubblefield showed a film in class about a nonverbal girl with disabilities who learned to type through F.C. Johnson’s brother then sought Stubblefield’s advice on whether it would be possible for Johnson to learn to communicate through F.C. also.

Over the next two years, Stubblefield worked closely with Johnson, practicing F.C. and using her hand to physically support his as he pointed to and typed letters on a keyboard. During that time, Stubblefield and Johnson got closer, with the two engaging in sexual activity at Stubblefield’s office on the Rutgers campus, The Telegraph reported in January 2024.

Why is facilitated communication widely disavowed?

Despite its popularity in the 1990s as a tool for communicating with those who cannot speak, F.C. is now widely avoided.

In a 2018 statement , the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association called F.C. a “discredited technique,” adding that “there is extensive scientific evidence — produced over several decades and across several countries — that messages are authored by the ‘facilitator’ rather than the person with a disability.”

The American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities shared a similar sentiment. In 2019, the organization’s board of directors released a statement that said, “Based on the current scientific evidence, the Board does not support the use of Facilitated Communication.”

The statement added, “Rather than helping people express their thoughts, desires, and choices, FC and RPM have the potential to effectively take away people’s voices.”

How did Stubblefield and Johnson’s relationship become public knowledge?

In 2011, Stubblefield and Johnson revealed to Johnson’s family that they were in love. In a teaser for the documentary, Johnson’s brother, John Johnson, set the scene.

“We all sit down and there just seemed to be this awkwardness,” he said. “She grabs Derrick’s hand and on the keyboard comes up, ‘We are in love.’”

“She said, ‘Yes, we have made love,’” Johnson’s mother, Daisy Johnson, added. She also said that Stubblefield said that Derrick Johnson is “a man in every sense of the word.”

During his court testimony in January 2016, NBC 10 Philadelphia reported that Johnson’s brother denounced Stubblefield, saying, “She is not Sandra Bullock and this is not ‘The Blind Side.’” He added, “She raped my brother.”

In another report by NBC 10 Philadelphia , Stubblefield said she did not rape Johnson, insisting that he could have banged on the floor as a way to express refusal to have sex with her.

Where is Stubblefield now?

Stubblefield was convicted of aggravated sexual assault and in 2016 was sentenced to 12 years in prison, per the NBC affiliate. She had to serve approximately 10 years of the sentence before becoming eligible for parole. Stubblefield was also required to register as a sex offender and submit to lifetime parole supervision.

In 2017, NBC New York reported that a New Jersey state appellate court overturned Stubblefield’s conviction and granted her a new trial with a new judge.

Stubblefield's lawyer argued that an expert in F.C. should have been allowed to testify, as this could have convinced the jury that Johnson could consent to sex. The expert was prohibited from testifying on account of F.C. being considered a “junk pseudoscience.”

In 2017, the Daily Orange reported that Stubblefield pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal sexual contact, stating that she should have known that Johnson was determined unable to legally consent. Her guilty plea, however, did not concede that she believes Johnson lacks adult mental capabilities or that she had subconsciously intended to write out his messages, the Times reported in 2018.

The same year, Stubblefield accepted a plea deal and was sentenced to time served.

“I’m not guilty of a crime,” Stubblefield said in the trailer for the documentary, despite her guilty plea.

Today, Stubblefield is divorced from her husband and lives out of the public eye, per Belmont Filmhouse .

Esther Sun is an intern for TODAY.com. She loves café-hopping and watching cooking TikToks she knows she will never try.

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There’s something so appropriately disheartening about a movie about The Beach Boys being too superficial. For generations, people accused the band behind hits like “God Only Knows” and “California Girls” of being too disposable, a pop candy confection compared to the denser work of bands like The Beatles or the many artists that followed them in the counter-culture wave of the ‘70s. It took time for their legacy to be cemented as a band who was always doing more than it seemed, whether it was their dense harmonies that sounded almost impossible or the way they distilled California culture into melodies. As Don Was says in the new Disney+ documentary about the band, they were “the most articulate spokespeople for the California dream.”

The problem is that “The Beach Boys” too often seems content to tell the story of the band that its music has already told. A documentary should produce more than what would result from just listening to a band's collected discography. But you’d get nearly as much from a marathon of Beach Boys recordings as you would from watching this two-hour film. 

To be fair, there’s a mid-section of the movie by Frank Marshall & Thom Zimny that works because it gets a bit more granular on the recordings of Pet Sounds and Smile , but then the film depressingly races through the last forty years of the band. They were struggling; Capitol Records released a greatest hits compilation called Endless Summer (this ‘80s child’s introduction to what would become one of his favorite bands), and it made them famous again, the end. There’s nowhere near enough about the band’s legacy or why they are still so popular—there are so  many alternative pop-rock bands that sound like them now who could have contributed beyond the lead singer of OneRepublic offering a few soundbites. I LOVE The Beach Boys and consider them still underrated. I just wish this documentary could have done more to fix that second part.

As with all by-the-numbers bio-docs, “The Beach Boys” starts as an origin story. The band went through a few iterations in the early years, but the film captures how they melded harmony groups like The Four Freshmen with surfer rock like Dick Dale to create something that felt refreshingly new. They also define some conflicts that would shape the band as musical genius Brian Wilson often found himself in creative conflict with cousin and band frontman Mike Love . Brian wanted to stay home and write; Mike wanted to perform. At one point, there were really two different Beach Boyses, the one in the studio and the one on the road. The suggestion that The Beach Boys became famous partly because they could recreate their sound live in ways that other bands, even The Beatles, couldn’t at the time is one of the film's more fascinating insights.

Of course, anyone who knows anything about The Beach Boys knows about the complicated legacy of the Wilson family. “The Beach Boys” dips into the abusive, controlling behavior of patriarch Murry Wilson, who was not just violent but eventually sold the catalog out of little more than jealousy. Still, it seems a bit reticent to spend too much time in those muddy waters. It’s a bad habit of the film in that it’s constantly walking up to the conflicts that are an undeniable part of the Beach Boys' legacy, including the creative (and eventually legal) differences between Brian and Mike, before bouncing back to something that feels easier to digest—and then racing to the end in a way that feels like the film was intended to be a series but ran out of money.

It makes it hard to figure out who “The Beach Boys” is for. Fans who want to watch some interviews and hear some tunes they know by heart may be satisfied, but I hold films about artists I love to a higher standard. They need to attempt to match the creative integrity and complexity of their subject. Maybe I love the band too much for “The Beach Boys.”

On Disney+ now.

Brian Tallerico

Brian Tallerico

Brian Tallerico is the Managing Editor of RogerEbert.com, and also covers television, film, Blu-ray, and video games. He is also a writer for Vulture, The Playlist, The New York Times, and GQ, and the President of the Chicago Film Critics Association.

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Will Smith sneaks into Bad Boys: Ride or Die screening, surprises fans

The fourth installment in the franchise opened at No. 1 this weekend with $104.6M worldwide.

Lester Fabian Brathwaite is a staff writer at Entertainment Weekly , where he covers breaking news, all things Real Housewives , and a rich cornucopia of popular culture. Formerly a senior editor at Out magazine, his work has appeared on NewNowNext , Queerty , Rolling Stone , and The New Yorker . He was also the first author signed to Phoebe Robinson's Tiny Reparations imprint. He met Oprah once.

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Will Smith caused quite the commotion when he snuck into a screening of his latest film, Bad Boys: Ride or Die .

The Oscar-winner, who's been notably absent from the box office since his controversy at the 2022 Academy Awards , surprised fans, who gathered around him, snapping pics and taking videos.

Alexander Tamargo/Getty

Want more movie news? Sign up for  Entertainment Weekly's  free newsletter  to get the latest trailers, celebrity interviews, film reviews, and more.

Smith posted his visit to the theater on Instagram , noting that this is a "ritual" he does for all of his movies.

“We’re in Baldwin Hills. We’re about to go in the theater,” Smith says in a video. “It’s a ritual I have, when I have a movie come out. On Friday, Saturday, usually a matinee on Sunday, I like going to the theaters.”

Smith, wearing a mask, sits unassumingly in the theater, enjoying the film with the audience, Then as everyone is exiting, he makes his appearance, saying, "Hey, I'm glad y'all enjoyed that. That was a good movie." Cue the excitement.

As soon as people realize the star of the movie is in the building, they start crowding around Smith, who shakes hands and takes selfies with fans. "I was in there the whole time with y'all!" Smith tells the joyous audience.

The Bad Boys franchise kicked off nearly 30 years ago with the 1995 film directed by Michael Bay , which helped make Smith a bona fide movie star. So it's fateful that the fourquel would help re-establish his stardom after it took a hit, pun intended, when he slapped Chris Rock at the 94th Oscars.

Exceeding expectations, Ride or Die grossed $56 million domestically and another $48.6 million internationally, for a global debut of $104.6 million and giving the summer box office a much-needed jolt . That brings the franchise to just short of $1 billion.

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‘the boys’ refresher: what to remember before season 4.

Like Homelander’s anger, the penultimate season of the hit Amazon series isn’t expected to hold anything back.

By Demetrius Patterson

Demetrius Patterson

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The Boys Season 4

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Every season 4 episode of 'the boys' has "at least one totally f***ing bananas moment", amazon, nhl partner on hockey highlights series 'coast to coast'.

In the latest trailer for season four , a group of American citizens in the streets are seemingly divided into two social and political factions, and on the verge of violence — with the tune of the funky classic from Curtis Mayfield, “(Don’t Worry) If There’s a Hell Below, We’re All Going to Go,” egging them on. Meanwhile, the most powerful superhero, Homelander, played by Antony Starr (who is no doubt a poster child for MAGA and the far right, channeling what GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump might look like with superpowers ), stands to the side and smiles with glee as chaos ensues.

The former leader of the Boys, Billy Butcher (Karl Urban) is seen begging his team for forgiveness for taking an illegal drug in season three that temporarily gave him as much strength as the supes (the name for those with superpowers) so that he could kill Homelander. But in becoming addicted to the drug, Butcher also allowed one of the Boys’ most vulnerable group members to become addicted, Hughie Campbell (Jack Quaid).

Also in the trailer, Homelander is seen telling his team of celebrity supes known as the Seven (who usually do Marvel-like films, TV series and media blitzes for a living, working for a mega-corporation conglomerate named Vought International), “This country is corrupt beyond repair, so we got to save it. It’s not going to be easy; we’ll have to do some terrible things for the greater good. You will no longer be beloved celebrities. You will be wrathful gods. Show me a little wrath.”

The fourth season will begin to usher in the end of The Boys , as creator Eric Kripke has announced that season five will be the final season . “I don’t totally know how we’re going to get there, but I know the destination,” he told The Hollywood Reporter after the announcement . Before season four starts streaming (launching with the first three episodes), here is THR’s look back at season three so viewers will be caught up when the new debauchery begins.

The Boys Encountered Deadly Intercourse With the Tiniest of Supes

Season three exploded all over audiences’ screens as Butcher and the Boys team members, Kimiko (Karen Fukuhara) and Frenchie (Tomer Capone), were in hot pursuit of a deadly supe known as Termite. Termite (Brad Geddes), because although a full-sized man, could shrink his body down to the size of said insect, crawl into victims and then will himself back into a full-sized adult, leaving his victims a mush of body parts and human waste. (Add onto that: Termite had a bad cocaine habit and sexual kink of crawling into his lovers’ penis to give the ultimate orgasm. But, what if he sneezes and that sets him into re-metabolizing to full size? You get the rest.)

Meanwhile, Hughie has become a suit with the organization he used to fear, the FBSA (Federal Bureau of Superhuman Affairs), as an assistant for U.S. Congresswoman Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit) and is living with his supe girlfriend, Starlight (Erin Moriarty), who is a reluctant part of the Seven. Hughie is being used as the middleman between the Boys and FBSA, or one could say they are trying to use Hughie to control his former team on which supes they go after and why.

Also, Ryan (Cameron Crovetti), the son of Homelander and Butcher’s late wife (a government agent who was killed in season two), is still being hidden from the most powerful supe. Butcher goes to visit him and Ryan tells him he still has dreams of being killed by his father.

Butcher also receives a visit from an ally and one of the Seven, Queen Maeve (Dominique McElligott),  after it comes to light that Termite was set free by Vought after being captured by the Boys’ teams. Butcher is furious, but Queen Maeve brings a weapon that will help Butcher in his quest to fight Vought and perhaps stop Homelander’s tyranny. It’s a drug, Temp V, that if taken, will give Butcher (or any human) the strength of a supe for a day. Butcher’s use of the drug (and eventually, Hughie’s) becomes an addiction throughout the season. 

Supes for a Day, Soldier Boy

We also see the fifth member of the Boys’ team, Mother’s Milk, aka M.M. (played by Laz Alonso), trying to assimilate back into a normal life after he left the team at the end of season two. He’s trying to make his daughter happy at her birthday party while trying not to appear jealous of his ex-wife and her new boyfriend (M.M. secretly desires for his family unit to be together again). But also brewing in the back of Mother’s Milk’s mind is unfinished business with the Boys. Eventually, the call is too strong, and M.M.’s ex tells him he needs to go back to his team after a heart-wrenching scene where he has a violent episode in front of his daughter over a beeping smoke detector. Episode two, “The Only Man in the Sky,” also kicks off much of the search to discover details about a weapon that supposedly killed the strongest supe ever, Solider Boy. The hope is, of course, that this weapon can used in some way to eventually take down Homelander.

Homelander Shows the World Who He Really Is

Homelander announces to the world that they should be grateful to him for his superpowers and how they need him more than he needs them. He refuses to apologize anymore for any of his questionable behaviors. He sees himself as Christ-like. Yet, when Homelander hears about a woman who is about to jump off a building to commit suicide, instead of saving her, he encourages her to kill herself. She obliges him.

Soldier Boy Lives

In episode four, The Boys’ adventures finally end up with them encountering a gangster known as Little Nina (Katia Winter), who has intel on an alleged Russian super weapon that kills supes. She will only share this information if the Boys complete an assassination for her. Once again, Butcher orders Kimiko as lead killer for the team, but she pushes back. She is tired of this life and wants to be seen as a human being, not just some killing machine with special powers. Frenchie agrees with her and says that after their current assignment, they will leave for France together and go far away from the Boys.

Kimiko infiltrates a Russian Oligarch mansion who is having a supes-themed sex party. She uses the sex toys to obliterate the Little Nina’s enemy along with his army of henchmen, but she is shot by one of the sex workers and severely wounded. Her body regenerates itself.

Back in the U.S., Homelander threatens Starlight by saying he’ll kill Hughie if she doesn’t do whatever he tells her to do. Secretly, Starlight was building a coalition of supes to join her in fighting against an off-the-hinges Homelander. The group included Maeve, longtime Seven member A-Train (Jessie T. Usher) and newcomer Supersonic (Miles Gaston Villanueva). To make his point, Homelander delivers Supersonic’s dead body to Starlight.

No Love Lost

Nauman turns against Edgar in exchange for Homelander bringing her Compound V to permanently change her daughter Zoe (Olivia Morandin) into a supe. Nauman publicly accuses Edgar of corruption.

Soldier Boy is hell bent on killing his former team who sold him to the Russians. Butcher and Hughie make a deal with him that they will help him track down his former team members if he agrees to help them take out Homelander. This agreement leads the team of three, in episode six, to the annual Herogasm pilgrimage in Montpelier, Vermont. What is it, you ask? It’s a supe orgy hosted by the TNT Twins (who are on Soldier Boy’s hitlist). Homelander arrives at Herogasm and big battle ensues between him and Soldier Boy, with the help of suped-up Hughie and Butcher. Homelander is getting his ass kicked, but manages to escape because of the sonic blasts coming from Soldier Boy, who is unable to control them from time to time.

I Am Your Father, Homelander

But the shocker of this episode comes at the end, when Soldier Boy calls Homelander and reveals that he is biological father.

This all culminates in episode eight when Homelander kills a member of the Seven, Noir (Nathan Mitchell), for failing to tell him that Soldier Boy is his father. Meanwhile, Butcher and Soldier Boy meet with the Boys team and Annie to lock them in a safehouse as they go to try to kill Homelander once again. Maeve joins them. And they are winning, but Homelander’s son attempts to defend his father and Soldier Boy attacks the child. Maeve protects the boy and Homelander escapes with his son.

The season ends with Butcher being terminally ill from his Temp V, Annie rejoining the Boys, and the government taking Soldier Boy and locking him away after battle with Maeve. Neuman is a presidential candidate and Homelander has started making public appearances with his son. And, in true Boys fashion, the season ended with a stranger attacking Ryan and Homelander, wasting no time obliterating the mere mortal within the middle of the crowd. Just like Homelander’s anger, The Boys ‘ fourth season isn’t expected to hold anything back.

The Boys  season four launches on Prime Video June 13 .

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Will Smith revives career with strong ‘Bad Boys’ box office opening

Will Smith leans in to listen as Martin Lawrence speaks and gestures with a hand in a scene from "Bad Boys: Ride or Die."

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Two years after his infamous Oscars meltdown, Will Smith has slapped away lingering doubts about his career comeback.

A rare bright spot in the sluggish summer box office , the action-comedy “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” — co-starring Martin Lawrence — opened at the top of the box office charts this weekend with $56 million in domestic ticket sales and $104.6 million globally.

The stronger-than-expected debut for the fourth installment in the long-running buddy-cop franchise marks Smith’s 15th time leading a film to the No. 1 spot at the box office. The achievement is particularly notable as Smith returns to one of his best-known roles in his first major theatrical release since he stormed onto the stage and struck Chris Rock during the 2022 Oscars over a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. (The actor, who went on to win the lead actor prize for his turn in “King Richard,” subsequently resigned from the film academy and apologized for his conduct.)

Given Smith’s track record — with more than $9 billion in lifetime box office earnings globally — industry expectations for “Ride or Die” heading into the weekend were cautiously optimistic.

The star’s last major outing, director Antoine Fuqua’s 2022 period action thriller “Emancipation,” in which Smith played an escaped slave, was largely ignored in its limited theatrical release and failed to earn any awards love, leaving the actor’s future an open question. But with the latest “Bad Boys” film, Smith found himself once again on solid ground, reuniting with Lawrence in a franchise dating back to his mid-1990s box office heyday.

Two cops stand, stupefied.

While “Ride or Die” fell short of the $62.5 million opening of its predecessor, 2020’s “Bad Boys for Life” — which ended up as the biggest box office hit of that pandemic-dampened year — it still delivered a much-needed boost to Hollywood’s summer box office, which has seen a string of releases like “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga” and “The Fall Guy” underperform.

Even with the relative success of “Ride or Die,” total domestic box office year-to-date is still running a staggering 26% below last year. As Hollywood continues to struggle to recover from the double-whammy of the pandemic and the strikes, the industry will take the good news anywhere it can find it.

“Ordinarily the gold standard [for a summer blockbuster] is a $100 million opening but in the context of this marketplace, this is a total win both for Will Smith and for the industry writ large,” says Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for the data firm ComScore. “I think it also shows that, despite the fact that many moviegoers decry the lack of originality, this R-rated buddy-cop formula was exactly what audiences were looking for. If you look at the top summer movies, generally speaking they’re those tried-and-true brands and genres and stars.”

Indeed, while “Ride or Die” earned mixed reviews from critics , audiences were more favorable. Moviegoers, more than half of whom were under 35 and roughly 44% of whom were Black, gave the film an A-minus in CinemaScore in exit polls and a 97% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Past controversy notwithstanding, Sony, which released “Ride or Die,” did not shy away from Smith in its marketing, with the star conducting an extensive publicity tour and showing up at the film’s Los Angeles premiere performing his 1997 hit “Miami” atop a double-decker bus.

For audiences, there is a certain Pavlovian response to showing up for a summer movie starring Smith, who has had a disproportionate impact on Hollywood’s most critical season with past blockbusters like “Independence Day,” “Men in Black,” “Hancock” and “I, Robot.” But at age 55, with his popularity dinged by the fallout from his Oscars outburst, it remains to be seen how he might fare outside of that familiar comfort zone.

“They used to call Will Smith ‘Mr. Fourth of July’ — there was a time when you’d look up ‘summer movie season’ in the dictionary and his picture would be there,” says Dergarabedian. “If you plug in Will Smith, Martin Lawrence and ‘Bad Boys,’ you’re going to have a hit — it’s just a fait accompli. The bigger question is, what’s his next movie going to do?”

Sony also claimed the No. 2 spot this weekend, with “The Garfield Movie” pulling in $10 million in its third week of release. To date, the animated film about the lasagna-loving feline has grossed $68.6 million in North America and $192 million globally.

Paramount’s family film “If” claimed the third slot with $8 million in its fourth weekend of release. After a slow start, the film has earned $93.5 million domestically and $160.7 million worldwide.

This weekend’s other major new release, the supernatural horror film “The Watchers,” landed in fourth place with a disappointing $7 million from 3,351 venues. Directed by Ishana Night Shyamalan, the daughter of filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan, and starring Dakota Fanning, the film was panned by critics and audiences alike, earning a C- CinemaScore.

Rounding out the top five, Disney and 20th Century’s “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes,” with $5.4 million in its fourth weekend, has earned $149 million in North America and $359.8 globally but is still lagging behind the three previous installments in the rebooted franchise.

While “Ride or Die” provided a moment of hope for the beleaguered box office — or at least a brief respite from the doom — the next few weeks will determine whether this is the beginning of a sustained recovery or merely a temporary blip in an otherwise dismal summer season. The Pixar sequel “Inside Out 2” hits theaters next week, followed at the end of June by the prequel “A Quiet Place: Day One” and the Kevin Costner-directed western epic “Horizon: An American Saga — Chapter 1.”

“If this movie had underperformed, we’d be really pulling our hair out trying to figure out what’s going on,” says Dergarabedian. “This was a great result but it didn’t move the needle. It took us a while to get here and it’s not going to change overnight. But at least we’re stepping in the right direction.”

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June 10, 2024

Actor Martin Lawrence strikes a pose during a photo shoot to promote his latest film, "Bad Boys: Ride or Die", in Mexico City, Friday, May 31, 2024. (AP Photo/Matias Delacroix)

Martin Lawrence is ‘healthy as hell’: ‘Bad Boys’ star quells fans’ press tour concerns

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Will Smith, left, and Martin Lawrence in the movie "Bad Boys: Ride or Die."

Review: In ‘Bad Boys: Ride or Die,’ the action party rolls on, vigorously and untroubled

June 4, 2024

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Josh Rottenberg covers the film business for the Los Angeles Times. He was part of the team that was named a 2022 Pulitzer Prize finalist in breaking news for covering the tragic shooting on the set of the film “Rust.” He co-wrote the 2021 Times investigation into the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. that led NBC to pull the Golden Globe Awards off the air while the organization underwent major reforms. A graduate of Harvard University, he has also written about the entertainment industry for the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Fast Company and other publications.

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    With all its terror, "The Visit" is an extremely funny film. There are too many horror cliches to even list ("gotcha" scares, dark basements, frightened children, mysterious sounds at night, no cellphone reception), but the main cliche is that it is a "found footage" film, a style already wrung dry. But Shyamalan injects adrenaline into it, as ...

  8. The Visit (2015)

    Becca (Olivia DeJonge) and younger brother Tyler (Ed Oxenbould) say goodbye to their mother as they board a train and head deep into Pennsylvania farm country to meet their maternal grandparents ...

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  11. 'The Visit' Review: M. Night Shyamalan's Found-Footage Thriller

    With: Olivia DeJonge, Ed Oxenbould, Deanna Dunagan, Peter McRobbie, Kathryn Hahn, Celia Keenan-Bolger. After delivering back-to-back creative and commercial duds in the sci-fi action genre, M ...

  12. The Visit Official Trailer #1 (2015)

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  14. The Visit Explained (Plot And Ending)

    The Visit is a 2015 horror thriller directed by M. Night Shyamalan. It follows two siblings who visit their estranged grandparents only to discover something is very wrong with them. As the children try to uncover the truth, they are increasingly terrorized by their grandparents' bizarre behaviour. Here's the plot and ending of The Visit ...

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  17. The Visit (2015) Stream and Watch Online

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  18. The Visit

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