* * C
Bright is a buddy picture with a twist. It is essentially a remake of Alien Nation, but instead of a racist human cop learning to respect an alien partner, Ward (Will “Jay” Smith) is partnered with Jakoby, the first orc policeman (Joel Edgerton). They become involved in a plot to resurrect “The Dark Lord”, a mysterious tyrant from the first millennium who is never explained, by renegade elves known as the “inferni”.
Smith is lackluster, Edgerton better. Lucy Fry, who plays Tikka, an elf who has betrayed the inferni and stole a wand from her sister Leilah (Noomi Rapace), is a terrible actress. As soon as the three come together, all hell breaks loose, with cops, crooks, the inferni, and federal “magic police” led by an elf, Kandomere (Edgar Ramírez), all after the wand.
The initial scenes look promising, with backstory being given in the form of graffiti. Unfortunately, the film quickly descends into mindless action. Bits of it work, but the lack of a compelling story and the weak ending bring it down. Too bad, because this film had promise.