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Popcorn Frights Film Festival 23' "Brightwood" - movie review

Dropping back into the coverage from Popcorn Frights we have a review for the new film from Dane Elcar BRIGHTWOOD. Upon viewing the trailer this one wasn't too high on my list but my expectations were very near sided. BRIGHTWOOD was great! It had way more intriguing dynamics to the film than what the storyline provides. For sci fi and head scratching film fans that makes BRIGHTWOOD eye candy. Even though the setting of the film could have used some love the cast of Dana Berger and Max Woertendyle give BRIGHTWOOD all the attention it needs. This will be one of the better sci fi films to finish up 2023.

BRIGHTWOOD follows Jen and Dan. Like so many couples in these pandemic laced films they are on the brink. Jen is fed up with Dan and on a morning jog does whatever she can to get away from him. Things turn upside down when the two of them get turned around in circles at the nearby lake. What should have been a quick jog around the park becomes and endless nightmare with something or someone coming after them.

BRIGHTWOOD wouldn't work without the stellar performances of Dana and Max. They are so funny together that it's hard not to imagine this couple at a local Starbucks. Still their performances also mask the despair that is coming for them which is great for the viewer going along for the ride. There are so many moments when BRIGHTWOOD could have fell off the kilter but every twist and turn keeps you engaged. There is really not more to say about the film because it would be too easy to spoil. Pacing and execution really charge up towards the latter half of the film. Sci fi films with humans can be boring if the written material becomes too far fetched. Luckily for us that is not the case in BRIGHTWOOD. Look we all know couples have problems. We just have to remember that those problems are sometimes what keeps us bound to each other. Make sure you see BRIGHTWOOD.


BRIGHTWOOD is directed by Dane Elcar and stars Dana Berger and Max Woertendyle.

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