Three high school seniors hope a monster party will change their social status from zero to hero in Project X, a pleasant waste of time about beer, babes and, ahhh, throwing that monster party. That's really all the movie is about.
Actually, Project X isn't really even a movie, but it may be the best party you ever go to. There's no point to the thing and it has no discernible redeeming social value, but the general party mayhem is exhilarating to watch.
Mild-mannered Thomas (Thomas Mann), mouthy Costa (Oliver Cooper) and nerdy JB (Jonathan Daniel Brown) are the three social outcasts and best buddies hoping a party will fix their lives. Thomas' parents are going away for the weekend, which is convenient, so Costa swings into full party-planner mode to throw a bash at Thomas' house. This entails inviting everyone he's ever met, posting the party online, hiring a DJ and visiting a psycho veteran who sells drugs on the side.
So far, so good.
Thomas is reluctant, in case anything happens to his house or his dad's car, but Costa soon talks him into going along with the melee. And that's just about the whole story. There are no sitcom complications, such as parents coming home unexpectedly, or anything like that. This is just an ever-escalating hedonistic celebration that unfolds with plenty of visual humour and an oddly innocent air about it. The story still has all the usual underage sex and drunkenness plus flamethrowers, tazers and a dog tied to helium balloons, but remains innocent courtesy of the three main characters. Oh, sure, there may be midgets in the oven and people skateboarding off the roof, but it's all viewed from the point of view of our delighted hosts: It's a game-changer! It's working! All the cool kids are here!
Project X feels a tad long at 88 minutes, mostly because it's party party party, and that wears thin eventually. Still, it's a hoot, and particularly so after events get completely out of control.
If you've seen any of the music videos created by director Nima Nourizadeh (or even some of his wildly exuberant, music-based advertisements) then you already know the mix of high energy, great tunes and party-hearty spirit that informs Project X. The movie's title, of course, is Latin for "Don't try this at home, kids."