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Film Review | Shine On Bright

Seldom do we get movies with more or less an attempt to have an original concept in a film.  Imagine an alternate world that sometime 2,000 years ago the elves, orcs and mythical beings were locked in a battle for supremacy that resulted to them living in middle earth until now.  This is a very bold move and I commend the writers and director for giving us such a great attempt in telling us this kind of a story line.

What made us watch the movie was the fact that this film had a 90 Million Dollar budget, had a director who megged Suicide Squad (we loved it even with its quirks), with a cast headed by Will Smith and Joel Edgerton, and with the film being advertised in Youtube a lot, who wouldn't?  Oh well, these things were the only ones good about the film.  

The concept was great, the previous paragraph told us how it was great, but what it lacks is the delivery.  There was so much lacking in some parts and too much of the film making techniques that muddle the good concept story.

First up what lacked was the set up of the story.  It tried to do this all through out the film, explaining how the world was made up to be.  Why can't they do this in the first 3 minutes of the film?  Because they did not follow this proven story telling rule, it left us wanting more as the story progresses, confusing us further.  Instead of us focusing on what a "bright" really is, we are left also with wanting what the world now is truly is in the movie.

Second, the lack of strong introduction of the secondary characters.  When all hell broke loose, then characters come in like a dam broke.  Bad cops, Internal Affairs and Feds show up suddenly and it takes a while for them to tell us (not show us) how bad cops they are.  Internal Affairs should be those cops who are upright yet they play bad cop bad cop (should be good cop bad cop?) routine, and the Feds, are they really the Feds?  I waited for some more scenes to really know they were Feds.  

Third,  what too much in the movie was the F and S words that were strewn all over the film to show how bad or rad or cool the characters are.   Another too much was the way it was always telling and now showing.  You can close your eyes and simply listen to their dialogues and will know who the character felt and how the story progress.  Why do you drop the F and S worlds lightly and a lot of them in a movie?  Some movies do this sparingly just to prove a point, but doing so in excess will leave you hanging.  Only Samuel L. Jackson can pull this one off.  

Fourth, this movie although had a great concept, was political altogether.  It was racism in the end.  Happily I got to see a movie that showed the African American minority has been accepted in society as equals.  Sadly they were replaced by orcs which bear the brunt of the prejudice and ridicule yet the Elves were the ones rich and in power.  Where do humans fare in middle earth you may ask.  Orcs are proud and loyal people as shown here.  They are strong and powerful and mighty yet they were relegated to lowest ebb in society, wait I stand corrected.  The fairies are the lowest here as we see them as pest that need eradicating.  No sexy Tinkerbell here in this modern world.

Overall, the movie is like a buddy cop movie that meet Lord of the Rings that gone awry and is full of stereotyping and racism.   Can't help it if you will be confused with the film.  It's like a pilot movie for an upcoming TV series wherein I hope they can salvage the story altogether in the future episodes.

Even with such a review we have here, its a watchable film, its not great, its not bad either.  Action scenes are nicely done and its entertaining none the less.  There are some witty one liners within the film that might tickle your fancy and finish the film.  As we said, its a great attempt to show us a great original concept but don't look for technical excellence nor story line here.  It's an entertaining film and this maybe the reason why it ended up in Netflix and not in the theatres  

We don't know how this one fared with the viewers but definitely we won't want to see any sequels to this.  We however want this to be a TV series of sorts.  With that great original concept, there is a lot of content therein that can be pursued in upcoming episodes.  We hope it to be True Blood meets Lethal Weapon in a Bad Boy type of action genre.