Reality is the playground of the unimaginative
Home Of Swords, Sorcery, Superheroes, Sci-fi, Star Stuff, Silliness, Scares, and the Supernatural

Tuesday, 15 October 2019

October Horror Movie Challenge: Brightburn (2019)


Brightburn is a classic monster movie, but the monster is Superman.

Blending horror with superheroes has long been a staple of comic books and roleplaying games, but I'm pretty certain this script from Brian Gunn and Mark Gunn is the first to give us this heady cocktail in Western cinema.

Where Josh Trank's Chronicle - the closest movie I can think of - leaned into science-fiction and subverting more traditional superhero tropes, Brightburn goes full-on horror and terror as quickly as it can.

Two great flavours, one great taste. This mix of two of my favourite genres (superheroes and horror) has produced, probably, the strongest new film of the October Horror Movie Challenge.

Kansas farmers Tori (Elizabeth Banks) and Kyle Breyer (David Denman) have raised their "adopted" 12-year-old son Brandon (Jackson A. Dunn) as their own since finding his crashed spaceship in the woods at the edge of their land.

Around his birthday though, Brandon starts to hear voices (from the ship, which is hidden in the barn) that start to activate his powers (flight, superstrength, laser vision etc) and sends him down a dark party that quickly leads to death and destruction.

A metaphor for puberty and young boys coming to terms with th changes in their bodies, Brightburn's a small and very simple movie, retelling the well-known Superman origin story but with a young superbeing that is driven by a callous disregard for the sanctity of human life.

It's as though Clark Kent broke bad as he entered adolescence.

While he struggles between the humanity his parents have taught him and the voices in his head telling him to "take the world", Brandon feels - as a superpowered alien - he is better than us and isn't constrained by our laws and social mores.

In fact, he's so arrogant that he even signs his work!

Recognising that Superman's origin story will be known to 99 per cent of the audience, director David Yarovesky doesn't hang around, moving along the action with the speed of The Flash.

It takes a lot of established elements of Superman's early years and viciously upends them, presenting us with a fascinating portrait of an uncontrollable, troubled child.

Beyond the straightforward concept of a metahuman serial killer, there's an element of Village Of The Damned in Brightburn, with adults - as they realise what Brandon is capable of - feeling trapped and powerless in the presence of a preternatural youngster.

Brighburn is also, for the superhero crowd, a supervillain origin story with an interesting series of closing scenes - featuring Michael Rooker as an Alex Jones-like online host - that establish an intriguing wider world that I really want to know more about.

But I also want to learn more about Brandon's origins. Where he came from originally? Was he sent here? Is he the vanguard of a slow-invasion?

The movie works perfectly well without answering these questions, but the comic book reader and gamer in me is intrigued enough by Brightburn's resolution to be willing to invest further in this world.

What I'm saying is I need a Brightburn 2, featuring either the rise of a hero to confront Brandon or, possibly more thematically appropriate, Brandon clashing with the other possible monster-villains alluded to at the end of the movie.


FILMS WATCHED: 26
NEW TO ME: 19

2 comments:

  1. I agree this and Chronicle are two great movies that approached this topic and went full retard on a high concept. The only way this could have worked with going hard on the horror side. And that final scene of him eating a cookie is more terrifying than anything I have seen in an recent horror movie. I tell everyone I know to watch this film. Great choice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, this is one I'd definitely recommend to others.

      Delete

Thank you for your interest in HeroPress.

Comment moderation is currently on again because of annoying spammers!

My apologies to genuine commentators for the inconvenience.

As ever I shall endeavour to acknowledge, and respond to, your comments ASAP.

However, if you're just looking to post spam, please don't bother. It's neither big nor clever. And will just be deleted.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Tags

10th Doctor (220) 11th Doctor (237) 12 monkeys (3) 12th Doctor (118) 13th doctor (57) 1st Doctor (107) 2000AD (85) 2nd Doctor (81) 3rd Doctor (83) 4e (46) 4th Doctor (130) 50th birthday (14) 5e (89) 5th Doctor (81) 6th Doctor (72) 7th Doctor (80) 7th Voyage (5) 7TV (24) 8th Doctor (57) 9th Doctor (66) A41 (17) Aaron Allston (11) abney park (26) academy of heroes (10) Acrobatic Flea (58) action figure archive (10) action figures (155) Adam Buxton (10) adam eterno (3) Adam West (30) addams family (39) adventure time (20) agent 47 (4) Agent Carter (68) AHS (19) airship 27 (1) aladdin (10) alcatraz (4) alec (58) alice (160) alien rpg (5) alita (2) all out war (16) almost human (5) alphas (20) altered carbon (6) amazon streaming (91) American Gods (6) Amy Dallen (22) anchor (6) Ancient Aliens (40) anime (77) annabelle (7) anniversary hop (35) ant (1) ant-man (77) Anya Taylor-Joy (19) Apama (4) aquaman (105) arabian knights (1) arduin (48) arrival (2) arrow (213) arrowstorm (48) artist appreciation (133) ask heropress (1) assassin's creed (2) asterix (4) AT-43 (21) atlanta (5) atlantis (41) atticus institute (1) audio (304) auton (12) Avengers (355) Aviator (12) Axanar (8) Babylon 5 (23) babymetal (23) bailey (1) baking (8) banana splits (2) band maid (5) banshee (15) Barack Obama (17) bards of greyhawk (2) barney (60) Baskin (5) bates motel (19) batgirl (30) bathroom watch (13) batman (736) Battlefield Evolution (8) battlepug (4) Battlestar Galactica (88) batwoman (28) Beacon Point (5) bedlam (7) beowulf (6) bettany (17) big hero 6 (7) biggles (1) bill and ted (5) Bill Willingham (11) birthday (93) black guardian (3) black hood (3) black lightning (26) black mirror (1) black panther (75) black pudding (5) black sails (35) blackest night (28) Blackmoor (25) blade (4) blade runner (33) Blair Witch (34) Blake's 7 (21) Bloat Games (26) blood drive (10) Bloodshot (21) blumhouse (24) BMB (63) BMG (9) boardgame (91) BoL (5) bollywood (5) book (1096) book of the month (67) borgias (7) boston legal (5) bottom of the pile (30) bournemouth (35) brave (10) breaking bad (16) brexit (21) brighburn (5) bright (5) britannia (3) britbox (1) broken swords (2) brothers barbarian (1) BtM (25) BTTF (5) BtW (19) Buck Rogers (19) buddy (8) buffy (239) buffy campaign notes (4) Bukowski (9) Bushido RPG (4) c (1) C and C (83) c and t (131) Caity Lotz (54) Call Of Cthulhu (123) calvin and hobbes (18) Camp Blood (5) Caper (11) Captain America (376) captain britain (24) captain marvel (51) Captain Scarlet (9) cara (2) Cara Delevingne (18) carcosa (9) card game (30) carnacki (1) carnage (2) carnevale (3) carnival row (9) Carnivàle (1) Caroline Munro (16) Carrie Fisher (12) castle (21) cataracts (5) cathryn (4) cats (5) charity (54) Charlie's Angels (25) charmed (37) chimney watch (1) chin scratcher (30) China (117) chitty (1) Chris Hadfield (9) Chris Notarile (10) christmas (406) christmas village (2) chucky (13) Cidri (140) clangers (6) clare (279) Class (2) cloak and dagger (24) clone wars (50) clovenstone (16) cloverfield (10) clown (41) Cobra Kai (3) cody deal (3) CoE (12) Coggershall (15) colin (3) colliders (3) colour out of space (12) comic-con (36) comics (2846) comics without context (78) community table (14) competition (49) computer (99) Conan (209) constantine (69) cool website (4468) copper (4) Cortex (10) cosplay (760) cosplay goddess (54) CPP (3) creepypasta (11) Crime Nation (1) crimson peak (7) critical role (27) crone (1) crossbones (1) Cyberman (74) D and D (1040) da vinci (26) dad's army (8) dalek (189) damage control (1) damien (4) Dan Abnett (14) dan dare (8) daredevil (155) dark agnes (4) dark crystal (13) dark fable (11) dark matter (2) dark places (18) dark tower (12) Darkseid (25) darna (1) David Bowie (35) DC Fancast (4) DCC (6) de strange (1) deadlands (16) deadpool (82) Deathstalker (17) Deathstalker Week (6) decorating (110) defenders (32) defiance (20) dejah thoris (10) demons (15) desolation (2) devil's rejects (12) devo (3) Dexter (19) Dick Garrison (7) Dickensian (19) dilbert (3) dining room watch (5) dinosaur (123) discworld (10) disney (243) Ditko (10) doc savage (28) doctor omega (3) doctor steel (1) Doctor Who Skirmish (27) dollhouse (18) dolls house (41) dominion (3) donald glover (4) Donald Trump (5) doom patrol (38) Dorian Gray (14) Dork Tower (9) Dr Horrible (22) dr mirage (1) Dr Strange (130) Dr Who (1362) DR WHO RPG (164) draconians (8) Dracula (75) dragon prince (5) dragon age (8) dragon warriors (5) dragonlance (14) Dresden Files (58) duckquest (2) dumbo (2) dune (8) dungeness (1) dungeon bastard (67) dvd (1322) dvd of the week (431) e-space (4) EAP (5) eBay (153) Egypt (71) Elementals (6) eli roth (16) elm street (62) Elric (42) elseworlds (14) elvira (4) Elvis (13) enormous (2) episode IX (6) episode VII (67) episode VIII (21) equipment (2) ercia (7) erica (84) Erik Menard (13) eternals (1) eureka (8) eurovision (14) Evil Dead (76) EWDG (2) exorcist (44) Facebook (431) faction paradox (14) Fahrenheit 451 (1) faith (25) FAL (1) falling skies (1) Fantastic Four (299) Fantazia (7) farscape (6) FCBD (40) FDTD (11) feedly (12) felicia day (23) FEMM (15) FFL (1) fiction (4) film (4597) film night (33) Firefly (78) firestorm (41) flash (423) Flash Gordon (62) flashback (1305) fleamarket friday (782) fleapit (86) Flintloque (6) fmj (10) FoG (14) for all mankind (1) Formula De (26) foxy friday (5) France (42) Frankenstein (50) freelancers (15) fringe (49) fu manchu (1) funky dice (29) funny (1593) GAFDOZ (37) GAH (1) gal gadot (36) galavant (1) game of thrones (383) gamesroom (149) garage project (1) garden room (7) garden watch (36) geek god (5) geek pin-up (173) Gen Con (51) generator (23) Gerry Anderson (15) GFT (16) ghost (279) ghost in the shell (8) Ghost Rider (10) ghostbusters (94) Gillian Hills (3) glee (36) godzilla (36) good omens (2) good place (2) googleplus (60) Gor (8) Gotham (83) Grant Morrison (64) graphic audio (4) green hornet (6) Green Inferno (17) green lantern (197) greywulf (9) grimm (20) grindhouse (18) growler (1) Guardians (190) Guardians RPG (10) gublin (21) guest post (13) gunther (2) hack slash (27) Hackmaster (35) halloween (245) hammer glamour week (8) handbooker helper (17) hangman (1) Hannah Spearritt (9) hannibal (46) harbinger (17) Harley Quinn (111) Harry Potter (72) harryhausen (70) Hattie Watson (8) Haunted Mansion (2) Hawk The Slayer (93) Hawkeye (54) Hawkgirl (26) hawkman (38) HCC (5) HDM (8) he-man (6) health (295) helix (8) hellboy (13) Hercules (34) hero kids (21) HeroClix (22) Heroes (63) HeroPress (798) Herstmonceux Castle (10) Hever (15) HEX (126) HEX campaign notes (6) hey kids (4) HHGTTG (40) HIMYM (25) HMP (5) hobomancer (1) holiday (30) Hollyoaks (17) hollywood me (3) hook (3) hornets' nest (5) horror (1859) hotel artemis (2) houdini & doyle (1) houserules (60) HOW (184) HOW spell (6) HOW treasure (4) howard the duck (24) hrumph (2) hulk (195) human alice (1) hump day dreams (55) hunger games (18) Hunter S Thompson (7) ice warriors (15) ICONS (77) ID4 (15) IHMN (2) illuminati (8) ilyat (2) Immortal Iron Fist (55) immortals (1) impulse (3) incredibles (14) indiana jones (73) infographic (25) ingrid pitt week (7) inhumans (77) InspiroBot (5) instagram (27) interview (41) into the odd (5) IRBKM (77) iron man (276) Ironclad (7) irrepressible (1) iTunes (49) izombie (12) Jack Herman (61) james bond (93) James Purefoy (12) Jane Seymour (12) Japan (242) jason (1) Jason Statham (9) Jason Voorhees (63) jason xmas (12) Jeff Dee (88) jekyll and hyde (15) jeni (12) Jeremiah Bourne (1) jericho (1) Jessica Alba (4) jessica jones (71) JLC (31) Joanie Brosas (2) jody mills (11) joe 90 (2) joe gilgun (5) John Carrigan (8) john carter (68) john carter RPG (7) John Wick (14) Josh Trank (12) Josie and The Pussycats (4) Joss Whedon (69) JSA (16) Judge Dredd (76) Judges Guild (11) judoon (24) jumanji (7) jungle book (4) jungle cruise (1) Jupiter Ascending (6) jupiter's moon (2) Jurassic Park (17) justice league (170) Justin Isaac (52) K9 (78) Kai (9) Karen Gillan (61) Keanu Reeves (9) keira knightley (26) Ken Hulsey (9) kevin (151) Kevin Bacon (16) kevin smith (19) key to time (7) KFC (9) Kickstarter (486) killjoys (2) king kong (26) kirby krackle (6) kitchen watch (17) Klingon (19) Knight City (150) knight fight (4) knightfall (6) Knightmare (7) knights of badassdom (6) kom (12) Korea (15) KOTDT (64) Krampus (13) Kree (14) krod mandoon (6) krypton (16) labyrinth lord (58) lady christina (8) Lady GaGa (8) larp (39) laser disc (1) Lauren Cohan (4) Legends of Tomorrow (76) legion (15) LEGO (27) lena (5) leopard from lime street (3) leverage (19) Life on Mars (14) light city (19) limitless (6) livewire (10) LoA (44) lodoss (9) loft conversion (27) Lois Lane (51) Lost (107) LotFP (38) LOTR (212) LoTS (25) lou (5) lounge watch (13) love and rockets (3) Lovecraft (380) LSH (88) lucy (7) luke cage (78) Lulu (44) mack bolan (8) mad max (32) Maelstrom (3) magazine (338) Maleficent (18) man in the high castle (1) mandalorian (2) mapamonday (151) Marama Corlett (11) Mars (141) Mars Attacks (19) Mars McCoy (1) marvel rpg (6) mary poppins (16) Matrix (25) matt (22) max neptune (12) maya hawke (1) meerkat (8) megan fox (24) meredith (97) merlin (201) Merlins Miscellany (18) mermaid (11) MG (4) midale (12) midsommar (3) mike the knight (1) Military Odyssey (9) mindprobe (9) miracleman (3) Misfits (29) miss peregrine (2) misty (5) MLP (18) mob city (1) Moby Dick (6) MoC (11) model train (29) model village (1) modiphius (15) mojo (6) monkey (157) monster (1079) monster mash (66) monsters (1) monty python (50) moon knight (5) moorcock (45) mor (1) morgan (1) mortal engines movie (27) Most Wanted (2) mr robot (4) mr rogers (2) ms marvel (19) MSP (18) MtG (2) mummy (53) muppets (58) murdoch (9) murmurs (1) music (807) musical monday (463) musketeers (4) mutant future (6) Mutants and Masterminds (45) MV (7) My Chemical Romance (9) my first (8) my life and roleplaying (34) Mythica (40) narnia (17) nashville (14) natalie dormer (16) natalie portman (19) Necronomicon (28) Neil deGrasse Tyson (5) Neil Gaiman (43) nemesis (2) nemo (5) nerf (1) netflix (335) new spell (17) nick g (25) nick l (270) Night Blogger (7) night shift (2) nightflyers (1) nightwing (9) Ninjak (18) NOF (7) noggin the nog (12) nosferatu (3) NPH (10) NSFW (28) Oats Studio (6) OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE CHALLENGE (47) Oculus (6) odd thomas (2) officer downe (1) Olivia Cooke (16) Olympics (24) olympus (4) on the bubble (5) Once Upon A Time (26) one ring rpg (10) operation declutter (3) opinion poll (56) orange is the new black (11) Orin Rakatha (4) orphans (1) orville (22) ouija (9) outcast (2) outcasts (16) OVC (20) oz (26) ozombie (8) pacific rim (24) paradise hills (2) paradox comics (34) paranoia rpg (4) parks and recreation (16) Pathfinder (29) Patreon (30) patsy kensit (1) paul (122) pembury (20) Pendragon RPG (11) penny dreadful (29) pennyworth (2) peplum (6) peri (23) period slang (8) pete (356) Philip Reeve (144) philosophy (50) picard (2) pick of the pods (30) picture parade (288) pig-faced orc (12) Pink Floyd (27) pirates (118) Playboy (36) playmobil (2) PMF (4) podcast (227) Pointless (7) poldark (6) polly (5) Poltergeist (8) poppy (11) portals (1) PotA (98) power pack (1) power rangers (12) powerless (4) preacher (15) Pride and Prejudice (24) primal (3) Primeval (45) primeval RPG (21) Prince Valiant (15) Prisoner (9) professor howe (2) Project New Home (46) project z (23) prometheus (10) psi-lords (1) Pulp (273) punch puppy (1) Punisher (80) purge (10) pushing daisies (3) PVF (10) QB (10) quantum and woody (4) quatermass (25) Quentin Tarantino (38) rachel (877) railhead (15) rambo (3) Raven (48) Ravenloft (28) reading list (16) real life (3154) reaver (3) rebellion verse (2) rebels (56) Red Dwarf (17) Red Knight (1) red sonja (42) REH (67) rendel (10) Resident Evil (12) resistance (4) retro comic (218) rev (1) reverie (1) Richard Sharpe (12) rick and morty (19) riddick (4) riese (4) rip hunter (13) Ripper Street (13) riverdale (173) roan (1) Robin Hood (38) robocop (15) robotech (5) rochester (4) rocket age (12) rocket raccoon (78) roger corman (16) rogue one (16) roleplaying review (42) rom (6) round-up (57) roy of the rovers (3) RPG (3157) rpgaday (33) Ruby Rose (15) runaways (16) Runequest (13) Russia (107) Ryan Devoto (2) Ryan Reynolds (10) s and s (1) s w (114) sabrina (40) salem (2) Salute To The 40s (8) sara jean underwood (8) satine phoenix (9) saturday morning matinee (498) savage worlds (111) SB (6) scarfolk (3) scooby-doo (63) scorpion king (6) Season 10 (5) Season 16 (6) Season 18 (6) Season 19 (6) Season 22 (5) Season 26 (4) serial thrillers (32) sevenoaks (15) seventh son (2) shadowman (8) shadowrun (9) shakespeare (47) shang chi (5) Shannara (3) shark (82) sharknado (46) shazam (60) Shedward (18) sheep (5) sherlock (48) shield (252) shitlist (3) show me the mummy (9) Shyamalan (20) sick (12) sick week (9) sidcup (1) silurians (20) simon (177) sinbad (70) sinbad week (7) siren (2) SixoftheBest (86) SJA (108) skrull (22) slaine (28) sleepy hollow (10) sls (11) smallville (84) smurf (7) snake plissken (2) snoopy (18) snow (58) snow white (20) sns (2) soap box (97) society of virtue (1) solo (10) solomon kane (14) sontaran (38) space 1889 (112) space 1889 library (3) space 1999 (10) space force (1) spam tasting (7) spartacus (85) Spawn (9) spectaculars (5) spellfury (34) spelljammer (6) Spider-Man (472) sponsored post (2) sport (109) Squadron UK (4) st trinians (2) stacks (1) stacktastic (6) staghind (5) staircase watch (1) Stan Lee (122) Star Trek (452) star wars (871) Stargate (58) stargirl (6) statistics (124) steampunk (130) steed and mrs peel (8) steve (147) Steve Costigan (3) STO (1) STP (3) stranger things (49) stroke survivor (34) strontium dog (5) subbuteo (1) sucker punch (7) suicide squad (63) Sunday Funny (491) sunday specials (88) sunflower (5) Supergirl (258) Supergirl Sunday (42) superhero 2044 (3) superman (713) Supernatural (391) superteam (159) survivors (14) Sutekh (4) swamp thing (26) swing (11) sword master (2) sybil danning (7) syr edvard (10) t and t (11) t-shirts (43) tales from the loop (9) tales from the vault (4) tales of the gold monkey (9) tarzan (33) TBBT (65) TCM (38) Teen Titans (112) tekralh (211) tekralh reborn (17) tekumel (31) teletubbies (4) Terminator (49) terra nova (3) terrifics (1) TFT (46) Thanos (44) the 100 (4) The 4400 (14) the alienist (1) The Asylum (77) The Atom (52) the boys (7) the cape (8) the conjuring (17) the following (34) the gifted (34) The Guild (11) the hobbit (84) the hoff (8) the last god (3) the librarians (9) the lighthouse (2) The Lurking Fear (3) The Mist (7) The Outpost (10) The Princess Bride (8) the quest (3) the ray (5) the river (2) The Shadow (13) the turning (1) The Watch (1) this defiant earth (1) this is england (3) Thomas Jane (5) Thor (296) thrilling locations (11) throwback thursday (79) Thunderbirds (10) thundercats (4) Tick (15) Tim Peake (2) timeless (3) tina guo (12) tintin (14) TMNT (27) Tom Hardy (15) tomorrow people (4) tomorrowland (2) Tonbridge (166) Toni Darling (6) top of the pile (218) Top Secret RPG (128) top shelf (12) Torchwood (145) torn from the headlines (275) trailer (3217) transformers (19) Traveller (50) treasure trove (56) Trial Of A Time Lord (5) trigan empire (2) trope tuesday (2) True Blood (45) True Detective (15) Truth and Justice (4) tuesday knights (564) tumblr (78) Tunbridge Wells (158) tv (3790) Twin Peaks (64) ubiquity (81) umbrella academy (5) unisystem (52) Urban Exploring (8) urban knights (3) V (30) V and V (377) vaesen (1) Valerian (16) valhalla (2) valiant (89) Valorie Curry (5) vampire (339) vampirella (53) van allen plexico (6) vandal savage (10) vault (1) venom (25) venture bros (9) Venus (31) Victor Crowley (9) video (37) vigilante city (13) vikings (56) vixen (24) voltron (3) wales (8) warcraft (42) warehouse 13 (50) wargame (523) Watchmen (100) wayward pines (3) wayward sisters (1) wedding (77) week in geek (111) week in TV (47) Weekly World News (93) weird wednesday (148) wentworth (6) werewolf (112) western (237) westworld (13) WGA (12) whispering road (5) white canary (36) wii (6) wil wheaton (40) wild cards (17) wild dog (13) Wildthyme (14) william shatner (25) Winnie The Pooh (20) witcher (16) WoH (6) Wolverine (111) wonder girl (20) wonder woman (765) wonderland (43) World of Darkness (9) WRC (18) wrinkle in time (3) wuxia (60) www (475) wynonna earp (1) X-Files (66) x-men (305) x-o manowar (24) xena (54) yggdrasill (3) yora (1) zatoichi (1) ZD (9) zelda (5) zenescope (19) zine quest (10) zombie (536) zorcerer of zo (4) zorro (2) zot (1) zygon (19)