Bright – VOD Review

Bright is a 2017 American urban fantasy action crime film that was directed and produced by David Ayer and written by Max Landis. The film features Will Smith as a Los Angeles Police Department police officer who teams up with an Orc rookie police officer (played by Joel Edgerton) in a world of both human and mythical creatures. It also stars Noomi Rapace, Lucy Fry, Edgar Ramirez, and Ike Barinholtz.

As the humans live in a state of uneasy peace with orcs, elves, centaurs, dwarves and various other races, Ward and Jakoby are called out to respond to a disturbance at what turns out to be a Shield of Light warehouse. Inside are a number of corpses, and also the still-living torso of an elf woman that’s embedded into a wall. They apprehend the lone unhurt survivor, a young elf who’s named Tikka and is also in possession of a wand. As Jakoby puts it, a wand is like “a nuclear weapon that grants wishes”, and can only be commanded by a ‘Bright’ – a rare person. Should someone that’s not a ‘Bright’ touches it, the wand will explode.

Principal photography began in November 2016 in Los Angeles and was released worldwide on Netflix on December 22, 2017 and became one of the sites most streamed programs ever, although it received negative reviews from critics. Having received criticism for its screenplay, cinematography and heavy-minded social commentary, the film bears an overall approval rating of 27% on Rotten Tomatoes based on the 84 reviews submitted. The general consensus reads that “”Bright” tries to blend fantasy, hard-hitting cop drama, and social commentary — and ends up falling painfully short of the mark on all three fronts.” In December 2017, Netflix has ordered a sequel. The following month, Netflix confirmed that they are moving ahead with the sequel, with Smith and Edgerton reprising their roles and Ayer directing and writing the script.

The Film Itself (2/5):

Overall, Bright wasn’t completely horrible.  I mean, it has a decent enough storyline that it captures those who are fans of Will Smith or even fans of science fiction; but, the story has a lot of shortcomings as they really tried to pack a lot of stuff into this movie.  This movie is all over the place in terms of content and it made for some slight discomfort with the flow of events.  Had it been made available in the same fashion as your typical television series and more spaced out, it would have allowed for the production crew to not really jam everything together like this.

Picture Quality (5/5):

Overall, the visual presentation that Bright offered was really clean and offered a bright and vast color palette that did a really great job at representing the crossing of both the earth world and the fantasy world.  The action sequences were really well executed and offered no visual distortion whatsoever.  The special effects of the film were integrated in a way that they allowed for them to feel extremely real and fit really well into the move as a whole.

Audio Quality (5/5):

Available with an English Dolby Atmos audio track, Bright offers an all out immersive experience for its viewers.  Making appropriate use of all available channels within the technology, audiences are placed right in the middle of the story following Officers Ward and Jakoby.  One of the more notable sequences of this movie that really hit hard through the speakers was those that included the special features of the magic wand.  Conveying the absolute power that was at hand with this thing, the emphasis was notorious throughout.

Technical Specs:


Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1

Original Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1


English: Dolby Atmos


English SDH


Original Film: 117 minutes

Final Thoughts:

Generally speaking, I didn’t mind Bright at all.  However, I had a few problems with this film.  Mostly because the team over at Netflix has packed large amount of stuff into this movie, it felt as if it really was all over the place.  With it being the launch of their streaming-only franchise, Netflix invested $90 million into this movie, so you can tell that they put a lot of faith in it doing well.  Unfortunately, that $90 million should have been invested in making this into a television season of the story at hand.  The story, while jam packed and feels like it’s too much, it wasn’t horrible.  The film is a buddy cop venture that crosses both worlds as the two titular characters work together in serving their community and is packed with a good amount of believable action.  Film critic David Ehrlich is quoted as saying that Bright is the “single worst movie of 2017”.  Should we remind him that The Emoji Movie came out last year too?  With a sequel in the works, I am definitely curious to see where they take things and hope that Netflix learned from the mistakes they made with this.