Burning Bright (2010)

Burning Bright

Genre: Thriller

Cast: Briana Evigan, Garret Dillahunt, Meat Loaf

Synopsis: A brother and sister are locked in a house by their wicked stepfather during a hurricane. Ordinarily that would be fine, but he’s only gone and locked them in with a man-eating pony-raping tiger.

If you’ve never heard of this film, there’s probably a good reason for it. Burning Bright is bat-shit crazy. In a way, it’s The Tiger Who Came to Tea on steroids…or The Life of Pi on crystal meth. The basic premise is this: a man with financial problems locks his step-children in a house with a tiger during a hurricane so he can get the insurance pay-out. OK, I hate to be a kill-joy but there’s a huge fucking plot hole already. How the fuck is the stepfather going to explain this to the insurance investigator? I mean, I know he was planning to build a circus but that’s not going to cut it because he’s going to have to explain how the tiger got into the house….a house which was boarded up from the outside. Insurance people aren’t that stupid.

The last paragraph should make one thing clear: it’s hard to take anything in this movie seriously once you begin to critically assess the plausibility of it all. Then again, if you cast Meat Loaf in your movie then I guess plausibility isn’t your main concern (Fight Club and the Spice Girls movie excluded, of course). I suppose this movie can be quite enjoyable if you allow yourself to get fully immersed in it but it’s a challenge because it’s all so predictable. Take the scene in which the main character is stuck up a laundry chute and the tiger is coming up right behind her (yes, it’s a scene). It’s supposed to be the most exciting moment of the whole film but it falls flat because you know she’s going to get out of it alive. Also, who the fuck throws their phone down a laundry chute? My life is on my phone and the thought of throwing it down a laundry chute fills me with dread.

In short, I was quite disappointed with this film. Burning Bright sounded exactly like the sort of movie I would have loved. I mean, a tiger and a hurricane in the same movie!? Unfortunately, the movie never manages to make good use of its (theoretical) potential. For starters, I was disappointed to discover that this movie contains very few tiger maulings. If you’re going to put a tiger in a movie, there better be some Fatal Attractions style shenanigans. For those of you who don’t know, Fatal Attractions is an amazing Animal Planet show about people who become crazy obsessed with dangerous animals, bring one into their home and then get surprised when the animal attacks them. Apparently there’s an episode with a hippo. Another problem with the film is that there are no likeable characters. They’re all so flat and boring. The writers try to evoke a sense of pity in the audience but it doesn’t work because we just want to see tiger maulings. Snakes on a Plane had the right idea because the writers knew people just wanted to see snakes on the plane and didn’t care about the plot or characters. If the writers had done the same thing here Burning Bright could have been a better movie.

High-lights:

  • When the guys selling the tiger explains how it’s some sort of twisted pervert because it attacked the prettiest pony at the circus purely because the pony was pretty. TIGERS ARE NOT RAPISTS!
  • It’s a really beautiful house. I know I’m getting old because I could only think about how I would decorate the house.

Downers:

  • Completely unbelievable and lacking in scares.
  • If I remember correctly, the opening was full of smoke and jerk-ass camera shots.
  • Where are the tiger maulings?

Summary:

I think this movie could have been hysterical if I was watching it with the right people. Unfortunately, I was watching Burning Bright on my own so the whole way through I was just criticising it. If you’re looking for genuine scares this Halloween season then you can do much better. However, if you want to watch something really silly then this could definitely be an option. Just make sure that you are crazy-stoned with a group of friends because otherwise you’ll be staring at a woman running away from a tiger for 90 minutes which can get pretty stale…which is surprising because I thought I would have loved that.

4/10

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6 Comments

Filed under Meh, Thriller

6 responses to “Burning Bright (2010)

  1. Abbi

    Good lord that sounds ridiculous…

  2. How do you mess up a tiger/hurricane scenario?? That’s pure gold! So disappointing.

  3. I liked this one for what it was. Sounds like you were expecting a full-blown horror movie from something rated PG-13. I’ve made that mistake before.

  4. This DOES sound like the perfect movie to get watch with friends while sharing (a healthy amount of) beer.

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