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THE BEAST Trailer: Léa Seydoux & George MacKay Are Lovers Across Time in Bertrand Bonello’s Sci-Fi Parable

Léa Seydoux and George MacKay in Bertrand Bonello's THE BEAST

“What is stronger, your fear or your love for me?”

One of the most exciting, versatile filmmakers of today is without a doubt, Bertrand Bonello. The French writer-director (Saint Laurent, Nocturama) returns with his futuristic tenth feature that is sure to make moviegoers swoon, and possibly feel disturbed and perplexed. The Beast (La bête in French) stars Léa Seydoux and George MacKay as two people whose fates are intertwined throughout history. The film takes place in the near future where AI has taken over, leading humanity to perceive human emotions as a threat. When Gabrielle (Seydoux) begins the process, she meets Louis (MacKay) whom she feels she has known forever. A look at their past lives, ranging from 1910 to 2044, shows how much their fates have been connected over time. Guslagie Malanda (Saint Omer) and Dasha Nekrosova (The Scary of Sixty-First) also star.

The drama made a splash on the fall festival circuit as it wowed cinephiles at Venice, TIFF, and NYFF, many of whom considered it the best film of 2023. Sideshow and Janus Films have just released the official U.S. trailer ahead of its release this spring.

In his review from TIFF, Editor-at-Large Matt Delman said, “An audacious piece of filmmaking, the world of The Beast (or la Bête in French) is torn asunder by fire, flood, earthquake, and even artificial intelligence. There is a lot going on in Bonello’s dense script, and it’s a wonder that it coheres together at all. But one gets the feeling watching it that Gabrielle (Léa Seydoux) and Louis (George MacKay) are something like dynamite, waiting to explode into a fiery blaze of passion… Bonello fashions himself a sort of fortuneteller with The Beast. He reckons in 2044 we will have 67% unemployment. Paris will be underwater. Artificial Intelligence will be in control of our lives and see emotions as a threat. None of these concerns are new, but The Beast is such a well-crafted and daring film. If enough people see Bonello’s nightmare of our dystopian future, it will be etched into our collective unconscious, and perhaps we could avoid it.”

As the official synopsis reads:

The year is 2044: artificial intelligence controls all facets of a stoic society as humans routinely “erase” their feelings. Hoping to eliminate pain caused by their past-life romances, Gabrielle (Léa Seydoux) continually falls in love with different incarnations of Louis (George MacKay). Set first in Belle Époque-era Paris Louis is a British man who woos her away from a cold husband, then in early 21st Century Los Angeles, he is a disturbed American bent on delivering violent “retribution.” Will the process allow Gabrielle to fully connect with Louis in the present, or are the two doomed to repeat their previous fates?

The Beast opens in select theaters on April 5 before expanding nationwide. See the trailer below.


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M.J. O'Toole began writing for HtN in early 2021 during the Sundance Film Festival. An NYC native and lifelong cinephile, his favorite films include Chungking Express, The Three Colors Trilogy, Hiroshima Mon Amour, Lovers on the Bridge, and Midnight Cowboy. He is the Digital Marketing Manager for the agency 3rd Impression - working alongside Editor-at-large Matt Delman - that specializes in digital marketing for independent film. He holds a BA from Adelphi University and a Masters in Digital Photography from the School of Visual Arts. You can check out his portrait and street photography on Instagram.

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