Looking for a second chance

At what cost will one endure, for an attempt to go back in time

By Kelly Respondek
Staff Writer

Rating: 6.5 out of 10
Duration: 106 minutes
Rating: PG-­13

Sci-fi thriller starring Jonny Weston as David Raskin and Sofia Black D’Elia as Jessie, “Project Almanac,” was released Jan. 30. The movie was directed by Dean Israelite, known for shorts such as “Acholiland” and “The Department of Nothing.”

1416333885985The plot follows David, a high school senior, who is trying to get a scholarship to MIT. In order to receive the scholarship, David must develop an experiment. He enlists the help of his friends, and while digging through his late father’s belongings, they find an old camera with a video from David’s birthday 10 years in the past.

Upon watching the video, the friends discover the impossible: a reflection of 17 year old David in a mirror. After seeing this, the group begins to explore the late Mr. Raskin’s workshop and finds the schematics for what appears to be a time machine.

The teens build the machine and eventually are able to transport themselves into the past. They are given the ultimate gift of a second chance. While they start with small changes, complications arise when the group’s actions cause ripple effects on the future.

The cast of “Project Almanac” did not include A-listers, but they still managed to give an entertaining and funny performance. Weston played the shy, smart guy cliché perfectly, while D’Elia was equally as excellent as his opposite.

The plot of the movie was reminiscent to the 2004 film “The Butterfly Effect,” so while the acting and script was believable, the storyline of time travel and its possibly adverse effects are not exactly new territory.

Another fault in the movie was the leap in time, which was sometimes hard to follow, and the movie took quite a while to reach its climax.

Throughout the film viewers are given unconventional camera angles due to the movie being shot in “found footage.” This means the viewer sees the movie through the second person point of view rather than the usual third person. The effect leads to some confusion at the beginning and a period of time to adjust to the unfamiliar angles.

Overall, “Project Almanac” was humorous but lacking in some plot points. The acting was spot on, and the soundtrack was mentionable. Although not an instant classic, “Project Almanac” is a satisfactory way to spend two hours.