Movie Review: Project X

Every once in a while, a movie comes along that I hate so much, I actually become annoyed that I wasted my time on it. Project X is this movie. While simultaneously causing one of the people I was with to leave because he grew sick, the other left because of how awful this movie is. And this is a FREE movie. I, on the other hand, was left alone to endure a film that, as far as I can tell, has no other purpose other than to…than to……Hm. Oh, right- there was no point.

Thomas is turning 17 and his friends, Costa and JB, are throwing him a party. But not just any party. The most epic party. Things are looking good when people actually start showing up but as the night goes on, things begin to spiral out of sanity and Thomas wonders if he’ll be able to control his guests.

All three characters are the exact mirrors of the three main characters from Superbad (2007). You’ve got the neurotic skinny one, Thomas. You’ve got the overweight, loudmouth mastermind behind it all, Costa. And you’ve got the odd man out who actually has a trick up his sleeve, JB. And by saying that this movie has ripped off Superbad (not “Superbad on crack” as the trailers have stated) is the nicest thing I can say about it. From the time the movie starts to the time it ends, the character of Costa (played by Oliver Cooper) is quite possibly one of the most irritating characters in cinema history. His appearance, his language, and his overall presence in the film serve the purpose of….of…. oh, yeah. That’s right- no point. Sorry, I’m used to my movies having those.

Do you remember the party scene in Superbad when Jonah Hill and Michael Cera attempt to steal as much beer as they can from a party they’re not supposed to be in? A fight is started from a misunderstanding, Cera has to sing his way out of a roomful of cokeheads, and Jonah Hill’s pants get a stain on them that’s not coming out anytime soon. Imagine the humor they put into that 15-minute long scene.

Now imagine the filmmakers trying as hard as they can to stretch that out into an entire movie. Even knowing what the movie was about, after about 15 minutes, I started wondering when it was going to move forward when it eventually dawned on me that this is the movie. After a certain point when the party begins to “spiral out of control,” we’re shown multiple montages of how great it is. Or how degrading it is. I’m not really sure.

There are a few occasions where Thomas will worry about what’s going to happen to him when his parents get back after realizing how crazy everything has gotten, followed by a fast beat electronic soundtrack and several shots of girls making out, people giving each other handjobs, people doing drugs, and dry humping….cut back to Thomas and his friends who have rejoined the party and are having the greatest night of their pathetic lives.

So am I supposed to have realized this party has turned into an uncontrollable mess of an orgy or that Thomas is finally cool and can live out his last year in high school as….being cool? Then I stopped caring because after the second or third time that happened, I remembered that this movie wasn’t going anywhere. Oh yeah, and there’s a midget. Gotta have a midget for a ka-razy party.

I felt like one of those chimpanzees in 28 Days Later (2003) who are shown nonstop footage of people killing each other, riots, violence, etc., etc, and once released, kills the nearest living thing. I might have killed something after watching this but the Janitors were the only people around and I wasn’t going to make them pay for my mistake.

Producer Todd Phillips (director of Old School, 2003, Hangover/Hangover 2, 2009/2011) is evidently a kid that grew up never having friends. That, or he used to have a lot of friends and now lives out the glory days onscreen, pining for younger days when he had no responsiblity and obsessed over having sex with anything and drinking until you violently puke. Every single one of his movies at some point involves a party or parties, and usually centers around someone who isn’t on the in-crowd taking part in them. I’m not impressed with this. I have a hard time relating to losers who are willing to say and do anything to be a part of the crowd that mistreats them on a regular basis. Todd Phillips apparently doesn’t. Apparently, Todd Phillips believes the only way to truly come into your own is to do what other people want you do to and to do it EPICALLY!

There’s a scene at the very end where a reporter interviews Costa on a split screen in an attempt to get the kids to apologize. This was the only somewhat interesting portion to the film as it is a reference to the real-life interview of the kid this film was loosely based on. Australian then-teen Corey Worthington put out a Myspace invite and around 500 people showed up.

But even the one interesting thing this film put out is still ruined by Oliver Cooper’s (the actor who plays Costa) constant filthy mouth who cusses like a kid who just learned the damn words. Slang for genitals, S-words and (gasp!) F-words are one thing but when they’re literally every other word that comes out of your mouth, the writer deserves to be slapped for undermining the English language like he does. They even throw in a half hearted, sadly predictable sub-plot involving Thomas wanting the hot girl at school, her finally noticing him, and the girl who’s “been there all along.” I wasn’t really surprised it would happen from the very first scene the “girl next door” is introduced. I started yelling out what was going to occur and was right every time. But I guess that’s about as brag-worthy as knowing a wasted teenager will puke before the night is up; The example being much more entertaining than the movie itself.

Top it off with the trailer to another American Pie that plays the same song in it that they’ve used in the trailer since like the second movie, and you have a desperate, pandering hour and a fifty minutes of drinking, drugs, and other things kids and people who want to be kids will like. I feel the need to watch Torque to get the taste of this film out of my mouth.

Can you tell I hate this movie?

Stars: Thomas Mann, Oliver Cooper, Jonathan Daniel Brown

Rated R for crude and sexual content throughout, nudity, drugs, drinking, pervasive language, reckless behavior and mayhem – all involving teens, runtime 88 minutes,

Plays like: Superbad (2007), Hangover (2009)

Grade: F


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