‘Project X’ Movie: Not Going Down with the Classics

There he stands on the roof of his house, overlooking the monster of a party he and his friends have created. A couple thousand strong; girls topless in the pool, drugs aplenty, music blaring, drinks flowing and a dog named Milo running around. Suddenly a news helicopter shines its spotlight on Thomas. He looks up, flips them the middle finger and jumps from the roof to a moon bounce below. Nima Nourizadeh’s directorial debut “Project X” is the all too familiar tale of three high school friends, Thomas (Thomas Mann), Costa (Oliver Cooper), and JB (Jonathan Daniel Brown), trying to pull off the mother of all parties; the one to end them all.

The DJ is hired, the girls are invited, security is in place and all that’s left is for people to show up.. Almost simultaneously, as if carefully planned out, herds of people flock to Thomas’ tiny neighborhood street in Pasadena, and the party begins.

It does not take long to realize that the hundred or so invited guests have multiplied ten-fold, taking the party to a destructive level. The film’s boiling point is a Mexican standoff between police and a lunatic drug dealer. Neither of the two parties had been invited to the party—but then again, most of the partygoers weren’t either.

There is no doubt we’ve seen a movie like this before. Back in the ‘80’s we had a young Tom Cruise pulling off one heck of a party in “Risky Business. Most recently we’ve had “Superbad” and “The Hangover,” both movies that deal with similar subject matter. In all honesty it’s extremely difficult to not draw parallels to movies like “Superbad.” This serves as proof that there is no originality in “Project X”; the little originality found in the film tries too hard to convince you of its freshness.

While “The Hangover,” “Superbad,” and “Risky Business,” had characters you sympathized with and developed a relationship with, “Project X” has none. You don’t find yourself rooting for the boys because there is not enough back-story for a personal connection to be established.

The lack of character development is disturbing; these boys show complete disregard for everything without a trace of guilt or regret.

Perhaps the most troubling thing about “Project X” is that it severely lacks comedic relief. Sure there are moments where you find yourself laughing out loud, but given that the film is considered a comedy there is not enough humor.

On a positive note, one thing that really stands out is the film’s soundtrack. The music played throughout the film is on cue, upbeat, and gets you in the mood to party. Songs from Pusha T, J-Kwon, Kid Cudi, and Wale transport you to the crazy, out of control rager.

To put “Project X” in the same category as its predecessors is an insult. While other movies succeed in giving us a storyline and dynamic characters to root for, Project X leaves us with flat characters, a flat plot, and very loud bass line.