Cert: 18 Runtime: 88 mins Director: Nima Nourizadeh Starring: Thomas Mann, Oliver Cooper and Jonathan Daniel Brown
Is this the same party that dick in the sweater vest was telling us about?
What do you get when you mix Superbad with The Hangover? Not Project X! This will be a quick review I promise.It’s Thomas’ (Thomas Mann) 18th birthday and his friend Costa (Oliver Cooper) has plans to throw him the biggest party ever. With his parents going out of town for their anniversary, Thomas has the house to himself. Thomas just wants a small get-together or “enough to be cool” as he puts it. However Costa wants this to be a party everyone remembers, one that everyone will be talking about long after it’s over, and one that will change the lives of Thomas, Costa, and their friend JB (Jonathan Daniel Brown) forever. Not to mention the three of them finally getting laid. Chronicling the entire spectacle with his camera is a weird kid from school named Dax (Dax Flame). With his sights set on nothing but a sea of women and the most epic night he and his friends could possibly ever have, Project X is what Costa labels this little filming event.
A documentary-style party movie isn’t exactly something that anyone should be excited about. A found-footage The Hangover is all this feels like going into it and Todd Phillips producing doesn’t really help change that opinion. The end result is mostly exactly what trailers let on with a conclusion that is extremely predictable with few surprises in between.Stupid high school humor and crude and raunchy jokes are what bridge the gap between first being introduced the characters and the party actually happening. Its immaturity practically becomes overbearing as the comedy will mostly just make people outside the high school demographic feel older than they really are. The biggest surprise comes in the form of a drug dealer named T-Rick (Rick Shapiro). This is where the mascot for the movie comes in and T-Rick’s pursuit of retrieving that mascot is perhaps the only original aspect of the movie. The line about him being like The Terminator is the funniest line to come out of Project X. Nick Nervies and Alexis Knapp play Tyler and Everett who are hired as security for the party. Tyler has this big bouncer like attitude and is this teeny tiny little kid while Everett takes his job a little too seriously. These two, T-Rick, along with the quick montage of Milo the dog being in a bouncy castle and getting into crazy antics during the party are the closest things to highlights the movie has to offer.
With that said, nearly everything else plays out exactly as you expect it to. Losers try to throw a party to change their reputation, that party finally taking place and being even bigger than they imagined, and eventually said party getting out of control. There are so many instances in the movie where an entire song will play while we’re shown various shots of this crazy party and Thomas and his friends enjoying themselves. If anything ever felt like an extended music video before it was outdone by Project X. There’s barely a story here. Filming an out of control party doesn’t make it a movie. Calling it a movie feels disrespectful to anything that came before it.There is one small shred of depth Project X offers and it lies within that one party changing everything mindset. It’s as if it offers this sense of accomplishment while doing something nobody thought you were capable of. Changing your life with the events that transpire in one night is something that probably seems strangely liberating, but this could also be viewed as the movie encouraging this type of behavior which is just as idiotic as the premise of the movie itself.Project X feels like the combination of Superbad and The Hangover shot in the same style you saw in Chronicle, but doesn’t come anywhere close to being as good or even as decent as any of those movies. Many people claimed to be surprised by Project X afterwards and that it was more or better than they thought it would be. The studio rep told me he found the movie somewhat inspiring. Unfortunately Project X inspired me to do nothing more than see something that’s actually worthwhile.