Reviewed by: Alexander Malsan
Our actions always have consequences.
It is very important to make the right decisions in life.
The is no such thing as time travel—no way to change our past.
But life does offer second chances to repent and make a new start.
stealing from a school
What is sin?
How do I know what is right from wrong? Answer
How can I decide whether a particular activity is wrong? Answer
Are we living in a moral Stone Age? Answer
losing a parent when one is young
ramificaitons of extremely high expenses of Ivy League education
school bullies, and how to deal with them
How far is too far? What are the guidelines for dating relationships? Answer
|Featuring:||Jonny Weston … David Raskin
Amy Landecker … Kathy
Sofia Black-D'Elia … Jessie
Virginia Gardner (Ginny Gardner) … Christina
Agnes Mayasari … Bikini Girl
Allen Evangelista … Adam
Katie Garfield … Liv
Sam Lerner … Quinn Goldberg
Gary Grubbs … Dr. Lu
Michelle DeFraites … Sarah Nathan
Hillary Harley (Hillary Anne Harley) … Blonde
Patrick Johnson … Todd
Gary Weeks … Ben
David Raskin is a 17 year old, high-school genius. I mean a real genius. He just found out that he got accepted into the M.I.T. Fellowship Program. Well, there’s a problem with that, as M.I.T. is considered an “ivy-league” school, the scholarship money he received is not enough to cover the tuition. Since his father’s death (about a decade ago), he, his sister Christina, and his mother have been struggling financially, so it looks like M.I.T. won’t happen.
As David, Christina, and his friends Quinn and Adam are messing around in David’s basement, David hears a giant clicking noise. They find the source of the noise in a hidden compartment—a box containing blueprints, written by David’s father, concerning “temporal relocation,” a.k.a. time travel.
The friends have hit the jackpot! They, along with their new friend Jessie, decide to use this invention to return to the past and fix their own personal mistakes (e.g., Quinn failing his Chemistry pop quiz). Harmless, right?
Well, when David tries to fix one of his mistakes, by himself, he returns to the present and the friends discover that his “fix” created a ripple effect of horrific events. So it’s up to David and his friends to fix the past, to protect the future.
Time travel-themed movies are hardly a revolutionary concept in Hollywood. It’s been the subject of countless films and television shows. The concept is interesting to think about. What IF we could change the past? What if we could rewrite history? What if we could prevent tragic events (like World War I and II) from happening? Would society change?
“Project Almanac” is not unique in its approach to this question, although it does raise the issue of how having power to manipulate time could turn good intentions into something ugly.
If you are looking for anything deeper than that, you will not find it in “Project Almanac.” I don’t usually agree with most critics, because I believe in giving movies the benefit of the doubt walking in. With “Project Almanac,” I don’t entirely agree with most critics, but I can’t say I totally disagree with them either. Here are the facts:
The special effects are well done. Without giving too much away, I suggest paying close attention to the beginning of the film. This is where my mouth dropped.
The acting is about average. The person I am most impressed with is the actor who played David (Jonny Weston, whom I remember from the movie “Chasing Mavericks”). I wasn’t excited about the other performances.
The camerawork at times is annoying. I’ve never been one for the “first person footage” kind of filmwork. In some films it works, like the “Paranormal…” films, but in a movie like “Project Almanac,” it is slightly redundant and, at times, nauseating.
The story, while it may not have been deep, is reasonably well written. The plot is easy to follow (well, except for some of the advanced scientific concepts). The character development needed some work. Relationships felt rushed, and I didn’t have enough time or information to know (or feel for) the characters… except maybe David.
Violence: David cuts his hand, and we see blood. David and his friends are seen breaking into a high school. A student is hit by a car. David mentions that as they time travel, there is a possibility of them exploding. There are a couple instances where we see characters begin to disappear as a result of fixing the past.
Profanity: The profanity count is heavy, and there are times I couldn’t catch everything. My clipboard shows sh*t (50+), OMG (20+), G*d (9), h*ll (15+), scr*wed (2), f*ck (1), d*mn (2), b**ch (4), “freakin” and “frickin’” are both used, Jesus’ name is used in vain 3 times, as well. Other language includes sexual dialog regarding sex dolls, strippers, having sex with girls, and someone mentioning having “sex with your hand.”
Sex/Nudity: Heavy. There is a sex scene between two characters. One character is seen in a towel (apparently naked underneath), and she reveals her naked body to another character (shown from an angle so the towel shields everything from the audience). The camera also shows shots of women’s thighs and legs, teenage girls are seen in short shorts and bikinis.
fornication in the BibleANSWERS FOR TEENAGERS—Have questions? Find answers in our popular TeenQs section. Get answers to your questions about life, dating and much more.
At one point, as Adam is telling David about the ripple effect, one of the characters mentions the fact that all the time traveling they have done has looked as if they were playing God (changing past events, affecting people’s lives, etc.).
Perhaps there’s the reason time travel does not exist. Perhaps God allows things to happen for a reason, good or bad. Who are we to try and interfere with God’s intentions? And more so, who are we to interfere with His plan for us?
“Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” –Proverbs 19:21
Following the movie, I found myself walking out of the theater in silence. Even as I write this review, I’m still not entirely sure what I think of “Project Almanac.” While I can certainly see why many critics have given it a “thumbs down,” I don’t think the critics were completely fair. “Project Almanac” has definite flaws, and perhaps one might argue that even with all the editing Paramount Pictures did, the film still needed more fine tuning. Still, there are many moments in “Project Almanac” that I enjoyed. As it stands, though, content-wise and cinematically, I don’t recommend “Project Almanac.” This movie is definitely not for kids, only older teens and adults. In short, “Project Almanac” isn’t terrible, but it isn’t good and, overall, it sends a bad message to teens. Save your money.
Violence: Moderate / Profanity: Heavy / Sex/Nudity: Moderate to heavy—too much lewd behavior and too many references to illicit sex
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.