October 31, 2020
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Bright lays the foundation for a creative new blockbuster that should have movie theaters worried.

With A-list actors attached like Will Smith and Joel Edgerton, and a swelling social media campaign that included every Will Smith ever named. The orc-cop pair take to the mean streets of Los Angeles where they encounter a magic wand and badass elves seeking world domination in an effort to raise a mysterious entity known only as The Dark Lord. 

The mythology in the movie is what makes it great. It opens with graffiti story-telling much like a comic book, where we learn of Orc injustices and the social problems in the society. Orcs being treated like a different race instead of just brainless macho guys is kinda cool. It’s LOTR in present day society. Elves are the 1% and they apparently are successful in pretty much separating themselves from the other races. It’s unclear why exactly some elves want to resurrect The Dark Lord. But I took this as a parallel to modern day neo-nazis and the Orcs are just trying to survive and make up for a mistake they made 2,000 years ago, when they sided with The Dark Lord.

From there though, the mythology is light on answers. Why are fairies treated like a nuisance? Where are the Dwarves? Are there Wizards in this world? What’s with the smelling and the glowy pool? Who exactly IS the Dark Lord? Why did Nick forget about the bumbling crazy guy who warned us all that Daryl was a super rare human Bright? What is the Great Prophecy? Why does everyone keep seeking the Magic Wand if only Brights can use it?

The question of the Magic Wand can be assumed through clues in the film. Magic in this world seems to be rare and suppressed. Only Bright’s can touch and use the Magic Wand, but you can only find out if you are a Bright by touching the Magic Wand and people with nothing to lose, will try to touch the Magic Wand in order to make their lives better, even though they don’t know how to use it or any magic spells.

Netflix could have cleared up some of these questions by showing us some history and less boring cop fights or needless car chases but overall Bright was an enjoyable tease that’s perfect for expansion, and indeed Netflix already has a sequel ordered, but one does wonder why it cost $90 Million to make.

John J. Falco