The Curator of Schlock #257: Brightburn Trailer

The Curator of Schlock #257 by Jeff Shuster

Brightburn Trailer

Leave Superman alone. Just leave him alone. 

I don’t typically review trailers. What’s in a trailer, honestly? False advertising? Sure. Remember how excited you got after watching the trailer for Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace? Did that movie live up to the trailer? No. One of the worst trailers of all time is for a little film titled Dirty Harry, but nobody cares because that movie is a classic. So reviewing a trailer is kind of a waste of time because the finished product may not even resemble what is advertised. And I will now rant about Brightburn‘s trailer.

Hollywood has a Superman problem. They didn’t used to. Back in 1978, we had Christopher Reeve with his perfect smile and perfect curl throwing out cornball platitudes with abandon and it was inspired.


Good was good. Evil was evil. Miss Tessmacher was hot.


All was right in the world. And then we had that Batman Killing Superman movie where Batman hogties Superman, ready to slit Superman’s throat until he realizes both of their moms have the same name. Don’t worry. Superman dies anyway.


And now we have Brightburn from Sony Pictures. In the beginning of the trailer, we see a quaint farm being attended to by a couple resembling the Kents (Elizabeth Banks and David Denman). A spaceship falls from the sky carrying an infant boy that looks human, but is not human. As the boy grows into a pre-teen, strange powers manifest such as super strength, the ability to fly, and even heat vision. The boy’s adoptive mother hopes he’ll be a force for good, but this foreboding trailer tells us otherwise.


What if kid Superman was a serial killer? What if he wanted to use his powers for evil and go around killing people? That’s the impression I get. He corners some waitress in a diner and we here a crunch after he flies toward her. Dani Di Placido of Forbes wrote about the Brightburn trailer in a recent column. He states that someone so powerful and so flawless as Superman would have to be some sort of sociopath.


I don’t know. I’d like to think that if I got super powers, I wouldn’t use those powers to become some sort of violent murderer. And is it that far of a stretch to imagine that someone with super powers might actually want to use those powers to help people? Maybe the people who can’t imagine that possibility are the real sociopaths. I’m just saying.

This looks to be another gem from Sony Pictures and I know I shouldn’t judge it until I watch the whole movie. Maybe they intend Brightburn to be a part of their Spider-manless cinematic universe. Perhaps Venom, the Green Goblin, and Doctor Octopus will all join forces to take down evil child Superman. That might be something to see. I wish Sony well in their quest to not only destroy the super hero genre, but the very art form of cinema itself.


Jeffrey Shuster 4
Photo by Leslie Salas.

Jeffrey Shuster (episode 47episode 102episode 124episode 131, and episode 284) is an MFA graduate from the University of Central Florida.

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