When I heard the words “New Movie” & “Michael Bay” I cringed and thought oh dear God won’t someone stop him??? But was then reminded by a friend (thanks Ryanie!) about how great Pain & Gain was, and after some further research discovering that he was only a producer (along with 4 others!) my faith in this movie was semi-restored. However a hodge podge of a script, combined with less than stellar performances, served up a less than average film that is definitely not worth your cinema going dollars.
David (Johnny Weston) is mourning the loss of his inventor father and when re-watching an old video see’s his futre self in the reflection of a mirror. After a thinly veiled story about needing an extra invention to get a scholarship, he rifles through his father’s super secret basement lab full of half invented inventions and discovers something called Project Almanac, from a light activated trapdoor. When the group of friends connect the machine to the hot girl at school’s car battery (yes, seriously!) the machine works and they travel back through time (no mention of why they didn’t go forward?) to do what any teenagers would do, win the lotto, attend music festivals instead of studying, getting completely out of their league girls to fall in love with them, you know the usual.
Like every other time travel film in history, changing things in the past, affects the present and then they have to travel back to undo everything, it really is as simple and droll as it sounds.
Now keep in mind this is a found footage film, so alot of the cameras are shaky, with high budget visual effects morphed in, it gives it an odd look. It doesn’t work altogether, although there are some fleeting moments where you think it is going to pick up, but it doesn’t. If there was an academy award for name dropping, then this film would take first prize! Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Back to The Future, Groundhog Day and Looper are all shamelessly name dropped throughout as if to try and compare the films to is, but unlike the others this film needs a ginger ale! (5 points if you get that reference!)
This film is not worth your cinema dollars, is definitely a sunday afternoon movie of the week affair, or perhaps something for channel Ten to flog every Friday night when the repeat of MasterChef 2011 is over. There is not much joy in this film here, so much so it had me wishing that the creators would invent their own time machine, travel back and not make this terrible, god-awful movie.
Review by Alaisdair Dewar
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