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Movie Review: Bright


Netflix has gone from a site that allows you to watch older movies and television series by streaming on demand to being on of the places to watch original content.  Netflix television series like Stranger Things, Marvel’s Daredevil, House of Cards, and Orange is the New Black are extremely popular and some of the best shows on television.  Netflix has started putting out new original movie content but hasn’t had the same level of buzz.

With Will Smith in a leading role for their new original movie, Bright, will this be the movie that receives the buzz similar to Stranger Things?

(There will be major spoilers– be warned)

Bright is a cop buddy movie like Lethal Weapon or Alien Nation.  It has a lot of similar feeling to Alien Nation with the introduction of a different race as a fellow police officer.

This world is different than our world.  It is modern day 2018 but humans are not the only races on Earth.  It is a land that has been touched by magic and magic still exists but isn’t common for most people to experience.  Magic users are call Brights.

We are introduced to Elves, Orcs, and Fairies.  There are also Centaurs.  Thousands of years ago, the Elves, Centaurs, and Humans stood up against the Dark Lord. The Orcs sided with the Dark Lord.  The Humans, Centaurs, and Elves eventually conquered the Dark Lord. The Orcs live with disdain from the Elves and Humans because of what their ancestors did.  Fairies are more like mischievous pests.

The Las Angeles Police Department has hired the first Orc policeman,Nick Jakoby.  He is partnered with Daryl Ward (Will Smith).  Prior to the movie happening, Ward was shot by an Orc, Jakoby chased the Orc assailant but the attacker got away.

Jacoby and Ward are called to the scene of a disturbance. They find themselves in a magic disturbance crime scene.  They find a young Elf,  Tikka.  She possesses a rare and powerful item, a magic wand.  Only a Bright can handle the wand without being destroyed and there is no way to know if you are a Bright until you touch one.

Ward and Jacoby call in back up. The back up officers decide they are going to take the wand for their own and use it to get what they want.  They try to convince Ward to join them and kill Jacoby and Tikka.  Ward agrees but only to protect Jacoby, Tikka, and the wand and ends up having the kill the 4 cops that were going to kill them for the wand.  This not causes Ward and Jacoby to be wanted by the police for killing officers and having the wand, but also gets the attention of a local powerful gang, a group of Orcs, FBI’s magic division, and the Inferni member  and owner of the wand, Leilah.

The wand is protected with a binding spell.  It cannot be taken too far away from the owner of the wand.  When our heroes try to drive away from the gang and others after the wand. It destroys their police vehicle.

Leilah is the leader of the Inferni. The Inferni are a group of rouge elves that want to bring back the Dark Lord. They are Brights.  This wand will be the third wand for the Inferni and then they can bring back the evil Dark Lord to rule the world with magic.

The plot continues with Ward and Jacoby having to learn to work together and trust each other as they are being chased by everyone.  Check out the movie if you want to find out what happens to our heroes.


What I liked: (More Spoilers)

This is a fun twist on the cop buddy movie. Will Smith has experience with these type of movies with the Bad Boys movies.  Yet he continues to make it fun even if we have seen it before.

I enjoyed the weaving in of the fantasy world into the modern world. It is explained simply but where you can accept it and pick it up.  We have Fairies flying around, Orc gangs, swords being wielded in the middle of the street, prophecies, and magic users and wands.

We have a different take on the various fantasy races. Elves are the rich and run most things because they have a special knack for making money.  Orcs are the hard laborers, football players, and strong guys but most live in the inner cities. Humans are typically the middle class.  Fairies are mischievous and more animal or insect than of higher intelligence.

What I Did Not Like: (Spoilers)

The general storyline/ plot has been done many times before.  Unlikely partners end up saving the day while destroying a lot of property and being shot all the way.  The fantasy setting in modern times is a unique twist on it but I felt like I have seen the plot of this movie a dozen times.

As is true of a lot of cop dramas and cop buddy films, there is a lot of cursing and language in this film. It is very violent and lots of blood. This movie is TV-MA and earns it fully for violence and language.


I enjoyed this movie much more than I probably should have.  It is not greatly original in plot but does a great job of bringing in the fantasy world to the modern day with the cop buddy movie.  It does a good job of growing the relationship of two people that don’t like each other.  It did leave me wanting to see more from this universe.

It wasn’t a great movie but it isn’t as bad as many of the critics are stating.  It is a fun popcorn movie to watch after the kids go to bed.

My Grade: C+

Other Reviews
IMDB: 6.6
Rotten Tomatoes: Audience: 88%
Rotten Tomatoes: Critics: 30%
Richard Roeper: 1.5 out of 4 Stars
David Ehrlich-IndieWire: F

Stay Geeky my Friends!

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