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Bright and Bright: Samurai Soul

Bright and its sequel, Bright:Samurai Soul, are two of the best things on Netflix (after Arcane).

Bright and its sequel, Bright:Samurai Soul, are two of the best things on Netflix (after Arcane).

When Bright (starring Will Smith) first came out, I, like a lot of others, thought and hoped that it was a pilot for a new series. It was awesome. Set in modern day LA, it posits a world where humans live alongside elves, orcs, pixies, fairies, centaurs, dwarves, and other creatures.

In this world, humans are second-class citizens and orcs are third-class. Elves rule the world. It’s an interesting premise, a twist on urban fantasy, and the best thing about it (at least for me) was that magic was used sparingly.

Better than the world, were the characters. Will Smith has played this cop character before, in I, Robot*, and he does it well. Even better was Joel Edgerton’s portrayal of his orc partner. There was plenty of character conflict between the first-ever-orc policeman and his human partner. The movie grabbed me from the start and held me to the end and I really, really wanted more.

Upon rewatching it recently, I discovered that it had a sequel, an anime of all things, called Bright: Samurai Soul. The same premise but in Meiji Restoration Japan? Yes! I went into it primed to like it and it delivered. The one critical item I have on the anime was the choice in colors for the landscape. (My eyes. Please respect my eyes.) But it was not enough to make me look away or keep me from rewatching it. It’s quickly become one of those “I have nothing to watch” go-to kind of movies.

I highly recommend both, by the way, and I want more. More live action. More anime. And I want it now. Why isn’t Hollywood making more of these kinds of movies?

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  1. J. E. Kennard says:

    So, it sounds like they did a good job on both mangas, good to hear.

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