In the grand tradition of American Pie, Superbad, and countless other coming-of-age comedies featuring teenagers with out-of-control libidos, Project X is the story of three ne’er-do-well high school pals who conspire to boost their reputation by throwing the most epic party in the history of the world. As one of the few characters in the film that come across as semi-decent human beings, Thomas (Thomas Mann) realizes the potential for this idea to go terribly wrong, but is eventually won over by the incessant badgering of his best friend, Costa (Oliver Cooper).
[pullquote_right]”A celebration of irresponsible teenagers doing terrible things to themselves and each other.”[/pullquote_right]What begins as a handful of people having a few drinks in the backyard quickly escalates as more and more people arrive to crash the party, and it’s not long before the entire neighborhood is enveloped in chaos, at which point the film descends into nothing more than a celebration of irresponsible teenagers doing terrible things to themselves and each other with absolutely no regard for the consequences.
With a cast that come across as little more than cookie-cutter high school archetypes, most of which are staggeringly unlikeable, it’s difficult to become invested in anything happening onscreen. Character development is non-existent, and moments that should have packed some emotional weight, like Thomas being forced to confront his feelings about lifelong gal pal Kirby, feel awkward and out of place.
I’ll admit to laughing out loud a few times when a particular scene took me by surprise, but for the most part the Project X experience was far from enjoyable. When it comes to filth and debauchery, the film far exceeds its predecessors, but it lacks the same heart and charm that made those other films so memorable.