The House Party From Hell

MOVIE REVIEW
Project X (2012)

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Beth Dubber/Warner Brothers Pictures

The new teen comedy “Project X” is definitely not to be confused with the 1980s Matthew Broderick thriller of the same name. This “Project X” can be more aptly described as project mayhem, the “Fight Club”-style manifesto that wreaks havoc on property supposedly in the name of fun but which quickly turns serious. What begins as an epic but manageable 17th birthday party for high-school student Thomas (Thomas Mann) — organized by his friend Costa (Oliver Cooper) with another friend named JB (Jonathan Daniel Brown) in tow — quickly turns into a riotous night of partying, with sex, drugs and chaos in plentiful supply. The day is presented as a found-footage film shot by the mysterious cameraman Dax (Dax Flame), but as the party progresses and turmoil takes over, shots are taken from other cameras, including phones and TV crews, which chronicle the disintegration of the festivities, the destruction of the house and the devastation of the neighborhood.

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Around the World in Motion Capture

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DW Studios

Steven Spielberg is back! After the disappointing “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” (which, while containing fragments of Spielbergian magic, often felt flat and labored), “The Adventures of Tintin” sees the master director back on form. Mr. Spielberg’s new collaboration with fellow fantasy filmmaker Peter Jackson is more fruitful than the last one with his old friend George Lucas. Mr. Spielberg seemed to have participated in “Crystal Skull” out of sense of (understandable) loyalty to his old filmmaking friend, with the director appearing to go through the through the motions rather than being inspired to create a new Indy movie for the 21st century. The motion-capture in this new film seems to have liberated Mr. Spielberg though, freeing him up to try new things while recapturing his old magic.

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