The found footage genre has enjoyed a massive surge over the years mostly in horror, but every so often it jumps into another genre with mixed results. The latest, Project Almanac brings the always hard subject of time travel into the mix in hopes to bring something new to the genre, but can it change the future or should it have stayed in the past?
Project Almanac follows a group of friends who discover plans for a time machine, they build it and use it to fix their problems and personal gain. But as the future falls apart with disasters, and each of them disappear little by little, they must travel back to the past to make sure they never invent the machine or face the destruction of humanity. The trailers for this film were interesting, but never all that awe inspiring, but thankfully the film delivers a lot more than it lets on. Any time there is time travel thrust into the mix there is a small room for error to make it work. The first half of the film is a lot of fun letting the story build as we meet these characters and seeing how these teenagers choose to use the time traveling. This takes the majority of the film in some interesting directions and they do a pretty good job at trying to keep things cohesive, but just like any time travel film it has its issues. There are some questionable moments in regards to the effects that their jumps in time cause that do not always make sense, but you can almost ignore it just thanks to the fun of it all. The young cast including Jonny Weston, Sofia Black-D’Elia, Virginia Gardner, Allen Evangelista, and Sam Lerner are relative newcomers, but all do a great job here. To make this work the effects had to be well done as well and thankfully they not only delivered, they took some simplistic creative approaches to pulling it off.
Sure the story is a bit farfetched at times, but they make it make sense and keep it compelling up until the very end. If there was any big complaint it will likely come with the ending as it will likely get a mixed reaction from viewers. It makes some sense, but at the same time worked too hard to be clever and ended up being a bit corny and not make as much sense in the bigger scheme of things. This film has its faults but overall ended up being a pleasant surprise delivering some fun time traveling antics to near perfection. In addition to the film this release includes numerous special features including an alternate opening, alternate ending, and deleted scenes.
Take a trip through time and grab your copy of Project Almanac when it hits Blu-ray on June 9th.