Based on a great what if? premise, Brightburn presents the scenario of an alien baby being found on earth in a crashed spaceship and being raised by a human couple. He then grows up and develops super powers. Sounds familiar? Well, here is where the difference really kicks in. These powers are used for evil, murderous evil.
Brandon Breyer (Jackson A. Dunn) is a somewhat typical eleven year-old, hyper intelligent but just that little bit different and kind of an outcast. His parents, Tori Breyer (Elizabeth Banks) and Kyle Breyer (David Denman) have raised him on the farm as their own and have provided him with a loving and normal home. When Brandon celebrates his twelfth birthday, things start to change.
The film sets an ominous feel from the opening credits with some very creepy intro music and as things run astray, you can sense the violent undertones coming to the fore. People that cross Brandon, even in the slightest way, are dealt with savagely but he has yet to become the killing machine you know he will be. He’s a child learning about his powers and using them intermittently.
Effective in establishing the transition from an awkward adolescent to a savage psychopath, Brandon never learns any adult boundaries. This makes him substantially more frightening as he learns the extent of his powers. It will be interesting to see if the movie is successful enough to open the door for the character to become an antihero in the context of the larger Superhero world.