Review: Brightburn (Preview)
The anti-Superman idea played perfectly into the Horror genre albeit not taking itself seriously.
The world of horror is something I typically avoid with current horror focusing on gore and unpleasantness over actual terror. Films such as Hostel typically attribute horror to how many people in the audience it can make feel ill rather than concentrating on good story telling which, when done well can provide a much more terrifying experience. I’ve ended up viewing Brightburn not because it’s a horror but more the fact it was my first chance to see a preview screening, something that seemed a little more exciting that it actually was.
The idea of a family adopting a child from the stars has been done before and I’m pretty sure it’s common knowledge that the child was Superman. Sent to save his life and resulting in him becoming the protector of the world, it’s a wholesome story that can be enjoyed by the family. Brightburn takes this formula but throws it on its head, it shows us what would happen if our star child was actually evil.
Branden (Jackson A. Dunn) is an adopted child which we see from the very beginning, was found in the woods following what appears to be a meteorite strike. His parents (Elizabeth Banks and David Denman) raise him as their own but at reaching puberty, evil is unleashed.
I am not a fan of children in films, they tend to either over act or appear so cripplingly bad that it leaves a sour taste in your mouth. Brightburn leaves me somewhere in the middle. For the majority of the film we’re shown that he is somewhat emotionless when it comes to love, understanding or sadness but when it comes to anger? He nails it and you can’t help but feel dread in the pit of your stomach when you realise he’s about to do something unimaginably grim.
Elizabeth Banks and David Denman do a fantastic job at portraying loving parents who slowly realise they’ve released a terrible foe on the world.
As per my opening comment, Brightburn has its share of gore including ripped off jaw bones, evisceration and my worst nightmare.. glass shards sticking out of someones eyes. The gore has been done well and unlike most films, is only on screen for a minimal periods, yes it’ll turn your stomach but at the same time, it’s not enough to make you close your eyes or look away. I found myself looking at my watch and time did drag, it’s a fast paced film that seems to move slowly.
This film would have benefited being a Halloween release, I’m not entirely sure why they’ve released it for the summer. Will I go back to it? Most likely. It’ll be a rewatch on Netflix or the like but won’t be a DVD purchase.