Tori (Elizabeth Banks) and Kyle Breyer (David Denman) live in Brightburn, Kansas and are struggling to conceive. When one night a meteor shower delivers them a gift, a baby boy who they take in as their own.
Brightburn takes its core idea from the question “what if Superman was inherently evil”? Anyone who has read the DC comics alternative Superman story Red Son by Mark Millar will definitely see inspiration drawn from it. In the comic Superman crash lands in Soviet Russia and is raised with their beliefs. Here, Brandon Breyer (Jackson A. Dunn) appears to have been sent by a less peaceful race and when puberty kicks in, so do his more innate desires.
I thought Brightburn was an absolute gem of a film. The simple premise of the film and its ending are foreshadowed early on with an effective sequence in a school lesson. The imagery and allusions to Man of Steel allow for a lot of storytelling in a short space of time. The family relationship between Tori, Kyle and Brandon is effectively fleshed out and allows for great pay offs at the end. And the horror is slowly ratcheted up until it delivers some really gory and disgusting scenes.
Produced by James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy), written by his two brothers (Brian and Mark best known for Journey 2) and directed by David Yarovesky this film fits in with Gunn’s taste of small scale horror films such as Slither and The Belko Experiment.
Really worth a watch as an antidote to the constant stream of superhero films available right now.