A true heartwarming film seems to be rare these days in Hollywood.  If we do get one then it usually involves a dog as one of the main characters. But to have a film that will make you laugh, cry, and make you remember that childlike innocence is a good thing…yes, those films are rare. However,  this week, audiences will be treated the best heartwarming film of the year and that Brigsby Bear, written by and staring SNL writer Kyle Mooney.

I had a chance to see this film about many months before the it’s release at a screening only for the press to gage reactions about the film as the studio was trying to decide what to do with the film.  Would it just be a Netflix Release or get released in Theaters.  The reaction was very positive as it should be.  Brigsby Bear is a wonderful film and anybody who can’t find any heart in the film doesn’t like movies…just my opinion

The story is simple, it’s about a young man who lived a sheltered life in an underground bunker where his only source of entertainment was a children’s show where a bear has magical powers and goes on adventures while teaching valuable life lessons.  When the young man is sprung from the bunker and finds it hard to adjust to the real world and a family he never knew.  The only thing he is concerned with is the Brigby Bear Show and will there be any new episodes.  When he finds out that no one has heard of the show,  he sets out to film and continue the adventures from his favorite show. Yes, it’s a simple story, but then it’s so much more.

I won’t say that the film is perfect. There are some things in it that did bother me such as the main character never seems to question that he has access to one TV show living in the bunker,  but yet somehow new episodes keep coming every week on VHS. As a grown man living in a bunker wouldn’t you be a little suspicious.  It’s times like this that his innocence isn’t really believable and the film loses its connection with the audience.  But on the other hand the main character’s simple innocence is what drives the film and makes it very heartwarming

The main character, James, and his innocence of trying to rediscover the world is contagious, especially with a sister that he’s never known. Through him we forget how cynical teenagers can be or how parents can forget to have fun.  All of this is seen more clearly when he sets off on his adventure to continue filming the Brigsby Bear show and get’s others involved.  It’s in that adventure that we find the comedy, the sadness, and inspiration that can make a great film.  And, for me,  I felt all of that, which instantly made this one  my favorite films of the year.

I don’t know if this is the best indie film of the year,  but it’s truly the most heartwarming.  It’s even a great family film.  This is a must see movie…even a good date movie.  Plus, it has one other great thing going for it. When you have Mark Hamill in your movie and doing voice work, then your film is well on it’s way to being a winner.  One of my favorite films of the year and even though it’s not perfect, it’s a fantastic film.  A film that you should see in the Theater!

~ Marcus Blake (Editor)


Brigsby Bear is a strange little film with loads of heart, and a unique look at family. It’s like an odd combination of films like Room and Gentlemen Broncos.  Truly a must see for fans of Mark Hamill and his voice work Kyle Mooney happily provides a portrayal of his SNL characters with  a unique vision.

This film will take you back to your youth with a perspective wonderingthat has you about the creation of Barney and Syd and Marty Crofts Banana. One of my favorite films of the year.  Brigsby Bear is a little movie with a big heat. Definitely a movie for the whole famly and woth the price of a ticket to the Theater.


~ Daniel Robert Durrett (Contributing Editor)

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