Red Lights (2004) - Rotten Tomatoes

Red Lights (2004)



Critic Consensus: Red Lights is a taut, character-driven thriller, set against the debris-strewn battleground of a failing marriage.

Red Lights Photos

Movie Info

It's a summer holiday weekend in Paris and Antoine and Hélène are on their way to pick up their children at summer camp, thus joining thousands of other vacationers on the highways to the south of France. At first in high spirits, the couple starts sniping at each other during the drive as tensions in their relationship bubble to the surface. Frustrated by the freeway, Antoine takes a byway detour, much to Helene's displeasure, and then leaves her in the car as he stops for a drink. Once they're back on the road, their bickering escalates, with Antoine blaming Hélène for his drinking. Antoine then stops again to continue drinking at another tavern, although this time, Helene warns that she won't be there when he gets back. Still he defies her and goes into the bar, taking the car keys with him. He panics when he leaves the bar and discovers she has left. Believing that she has taken the train, he drives like a madman to the next station, but upon his arrival, the last train is mid-pulling out of the station. Driving away in a state of dread, he picks up a strange hitchhiker--not knowing he might have already crossed the path of his soon-to-be-missing wife.
Drama , Mystery & Suspense
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Vincent Deniard
as Man on the Run
Charline Paul
as Waitress
Jean-Pierre Gos
as Inspector
Jean-Pierre Gros
as Inspector Levet
Igor Skreblin
as Man Yelling into Phone
Sava Lolov
as Young Doctor
Eric Moreau
as Fighting Nightclub Customer
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Red Lights

All Critics (86) | Top Critics (34)

Barely makes it into the passing lane. It's stop-and-go all the way.

January 7, 2005
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

Puts a tense, deteriorating marriage on a highway-bound collision course with a killer.

Full Review… | December 24, 2004
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Before it turns into a thriller, and goes badly awry, Red Lights paints a devastating little portrait of a marriage on the rocks.

Full Review… | December 23, 2004
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Thriller/mystery buffs might find the narrative slow; the thriller elements aren't introduced until the movie is nearly half over, and the mystery starts even later. But a dandy payoff will reward those who are patient.

Full Review… | December 2, 2004
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

[The plot] is filled with ingenious deceptions and sleight-of-hand trickery.

October 29, 2004
Miami Herald
Top Critic

The most ambiguously compelling romance around.

October 19, 2004
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Red Lights

If you like to explore theories, you might wanna take this detour. I can only wish I'd avoided it. An utter disappointment, this friggin' (brilliant, for some; to each, their own) movie completely ruined my mood.

familiar stranger
familiar stranger

Super Reviewer


Here' what you need to know: there's a wussy husband, played wonderfully by Jean-Pierre Darroussin. He's a boozy insurance salesman, with a domineering wife, played with icy brilliance by Carole Bouqet, a lawyer whose success he resents bitterly. They both drive out to Paris to retrieve their children from camp, during which they learn that a criminal has escaped from prison. She leaves the car, and he tries to find her. That's about all you need to know as far as premise, other than Darroussin is amazing and director Cedric Kahn crafts a spellbinding thriller out of Georges Simenon's novel. It's a knockout.

Manny Casillas
Manny Casillas

At 1st I wanted to turn the movie off because it seemed to go into an intellectual yet undesirable direction, that the end would be disastrous, as so often European movies are. However, the film does well in using the uneasy music of several sources, mostly Debussy (if I remember the piece correctly) and it does well in executing the story through "showing" rather than "telling", which something instructors tell you in fiction writing classes.

Jonathan Kirk
Jonathan Kirk

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