Lightning Bug - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Lightning Bug Reviews

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½ November 7, 2015
Solid coming-of-age drama. Really feels authentic. I suspect this is how growing up was like for many an FX artist...
Super Reviewer
½ May 22, 2015
Originally thought this was a horror, but it's a drama. Original storyline and great cast.
I liked that it was set in a small town in the 80's. I loved that they still had an actual video store and the main character was a horror nut who made figures. Laura Prepon was excellent and the actress who played her mother - wow, whacked out, but so convincing!
The ending was a bit of a letdown, but overall I really enjoyed this.
½ May 28, 2013
Not all monsters hide under your bed or in your closet--A real-time, mellowed-out, honest movie!!
½ January 31, 2013
Green Graves only dreams of becoming a special make-up effects artist for the movies, but his dreams are shattered by an abusive stepfather and the disenchanting denizens of his small Southern town. Renown special effects artist Robert Hall delivers this powerful fictionalization of his own childhood experiences in the 2004 drama, LIGHTNING BUG. Hall speaks with raw emotion through his heartfelt characters, painting a tragic true-to-life tale that is equally inspiring. This could not be achieved without the help of his incredible cast, led by Bret Harrison and Kevin Gage. Harrison loses himself in his character, bringing his full range to the role of Green. He could only be overshadowed by Kevin Gage as the monstrous Earl Knight, who presses his terrifying strength and oppressive control over Green and his family. Gage is more frightening in all of his drunken rage than any man or monster in the genre. Laura Prepon, Ashley Laurence, Hal Sparks, and Lucas Till provide stunning support as well, and help to sell the realism of the desperate small town condition. A great debt is also owed to Brandon Trost, Joshua Charson, Rob Prior, and the rest of the talented crew, who make Green's reality our own. LIGHTNING BUG has a reach that expands well beyond the genre, but Horror fans in particular will empathize intimately with Green's personal struggle in an unaccepting society. This is Robert Hall's love letter to movie making, and his own personal masterpiece beyond the realm of make-up and special effects.
November 13, 2012
Forgettable. Seriously I know I saw this film, but have no recollection of actually watching it.
July 2, 2012
Great film that not alot of ppl saw. i can really relate to it
½ February 25, 2012
great movie LAURA was a total blast to watch in something dramatic out of her element
½ February 15, 2012
Surprise hit. Definitely hits home for some people whether it's their love of horror or family life. Solid film overall.
November 13, 2011
Robert Hall directs this [loosely based] autobiographical tale about a boy in the bowels of Alabama who has a real talent for special effects and masks, trying to get out and go to Hollywood. The film was full of homages to Fangoria, 80s Video rental stores, horror movies and Halloween, while that sounds like it would be awesome it was poorly executed, the main problem being the acting. After watching a few movies with Laura Prepon, it's apparent now that she has absolutely no reason to be getting paid to act, "Hot Donna" should just bask in the glory of her That 70s Show fame because she doesn't have much hope. Robert Hall has gone on to direct the awful Chromeskull: Laid to Rest 2, the writing and directing for Lightning Bug is a notch above, but only a notch.
½ October 3, 2011
Grene is an 18 year old boy in a small hick town in Alabama and wants nothing more then to escape to Hollywood to become a special effects artist. He convinces the guy who runs the town's haunted house to let him update it so he can use his creations as a profolio when he moves to L.A. Grene falls in love with Laura's character, she works at the video store where Grene gets all of his horror movies. There's just one little problem, her mom is a super religious woman that thinks that what Grene does is of the devil and tries whatever she can to keep Grene away from her daughter. Add in that the jerk Grene's mom married is an mean alcholic that tend to hit when he is wasted and you have the reason for Grene's best work. To get rid of the drunken jerk her makes a mask that looks exactly like his face and goes to town on the drunk's cousin's prized car with a sledge hammer. This pisses off the cousin played by Josh Todd and he goes and kills the drunk.
August 17, 2011
Yes, a couple of slow places. The pig/barn scene had me on the floor. Fairly good plot twists- would watch this again.
June 30, 2011
Liked the Soundtrack & as long as it's the same as I heard in the movie I want it.. nice Classic rock & the likes of those I also grew up with (geez according to VH! Classic MY Rock like G-n-R counts as 'Classic' rock now too! ?) I still say the good guy is one part Elvis & 3 parts jay Leno Look at the face & hair! The movie was ok with a slight twist in a way I guess C
½ February 20, 2011
I love the music though..
½ February 14, 2011
great movie LAURA was a total blast to watch in something dramatic out of her element
January 1, 2011
One of the best movies I've seen.
July 9, 2010
Not a horror film, nor a thriller, but coming of age drama that never lets up. Well written and directed. A movie that again shows that most critics are out of touch with what people like. This movie is funny and depressing full slice of southern pie. Full of hateful, redneck idiots who think making 6 bucks a hour is a great deal! Highly recommended. The two leads are great as is the supporting cast. Don't miss this!
½ June 8, 2010
Gave this a re-watch as part of the To-Watch Pile and while it holds up pretty well, I had to dial that rating down a notch, as there are some of the problems from the director's next feature (Laid To Rest) that are hinted at here, though not as glaring as the later film.

This is still a nice little drama for all the horror fans out there that tells the story of an aspiring special effects artist and his struggle to leave behind the rural South he's grown up in. Obstacles to this include both an abusive stepfather and the local religious zealots.

Worth a rental for sure.
½ January 27, 2010
Pretty good movie. Solid storyline, good acting. Wanted to see more of Prepon's character.
Super Reviewer
September 22, 2009
This is a slow movie but still it will hold your interest. This movie is all Alabama. A young boy is dislikes his childhood, his town, and his mother's abusive boyfriend. He is a horror makeup Artist and lands a job at a local farmers attempt to set up a horror house for Halloween. The barn and pig scene is Hilarious. Worth the watch for that moment alone. After getting near complete someone destroys his work. There isn't much real horror in this movie but a number of laughable moments. 3 stars a good rental, pass the buy.
½ August 14, 2008
Harrison Was Good And The Script Is Great By Hall Except The Conclusion.
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