On Wednesday night, the review embargo for Netflix’s Bright lifted and the general consensus was clear: critics largely did not care for director David Ayer’s latest endeavor. In fact, one critic called it “the single worst movie of 2017” — and that’s accounting for The Emoji Movie. But Ayer seems to consider that distinction a point of pride.
The filmmaker, who also directed the polarizing Suicide Squad, responded to IndieWire critic David Ehrlich on social media after Ehrlich’s review of the film went live.
“This is going on my fridge,” Ayer tweeted to Ehrlich. “Highest compliment is a strong reaction either way. This is a f–king epic review. It’s a big fun movie. You can sure string words together Mr. [Ehrlich]. I’d love to read any script you’ve written.”
While this response caught the scent of some digital trolls who attacked Ehrlich, the exchange between the film critic and the filmmaker remained cordial.
“You’re a good man, Mr. Ayer. I’ll be waiting with fresh eyes for whatever comes next,” Ehrlich wrote.
Ayer responded, “I really appreciate that. Every movie is a labor of love for me. I’ve never chased the audience, and I know my work can be polarizing. I’ve lived a crazy love [sic] and I guess my movies reflect that.”
Bright, starring Will Smith and Joel Edgerton, centers on an alternate reality where Los Angeles is filled with humans, elves, orcs, and faeries. An LAPD officer (Smith) and his orc partner (Edgerton) respond to a seemingly standard call when they’re plunged into a battle over a magic wand, one that’s been described as a nuclear weapon.
Critics called the film “astoundingly bad,” “plenty embarrassing,” “a chore,” and “a simple bit of fun buried beneath a heavy dose of explanation.” Though, there were some who deemed it “the best original Netflix movie to date.”
“I know it’s a controversial film, I really tried to make something different, with a look and feel of its own,” he wrote to a user on Twitter. “I took inspiration from the insanity of the original comics. Making a movie is a journey, not a straight line. I learned so much.”
Bright will hit theaters and Netflix on Dec. 22. According to Bloomberg, a sequel has already been ordered.