"Brightburn" Is A Superman Letdown Served On A Super Gory Platter

"Brightburn" Is A Superman Letdown Served On A Super Gory Platter

5 out of 12

Over the years, there have been many version of Superman brought to the big screen. But when I learned about a movie putting a “Bizarro” spin on his overdone origin story, I was intrigued. What we ended up with in Brightburn, however, is a disappointingly undeveloped version of a brilliant concept.

Though the “Superman” name is never mentioned, the movie hits all the familiar plot points. A couple struggling to get pregnant encounters a fallen spacecraft near their home. Inside it, they find a child and take it in as their own, eventually realizing he has powers and abilities that make him special.

In this production though, the gifted child internalizes the idea that he’s superior to the human race, and little by little begins using his powers to wreak unstoppable havoc.

It’s a film that reminds me a lot of the 2012 film Chronicle, where three teenagers attain superhuman powers. But one of them becomes an out of control anti-hero because of his sick single mother, an unhelpful healthcare system, and unchecked bullying. Brandon Beyers, preteen superhuman in Brightburn, however is never given an understandable reason for turning evil like the character in Chronicle. For me, that missing component rendered the proceeding gorefest meaningless.

Elizabeth Banks and David Denman as Brandon’s parents are good casting choices, but they can’t overcome how much Brightburn ignores logical storytelling to hyperfocus on gory violence and the cheesiest of horror clichés. It’s a Superman story that’s ultimately not all that super.

Acting and Casting - 2 | Visual Effects and Editing - 2 | Story and Message - 0 | Entertainment Value - 1 | Music Score and Soundtrack - 0 | Reviewer's Preference - 0 | What does this mean?

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