Project Power – Review

Thank you to Netflix for allowing me to watch and review this movie!

Director: Henry Joost, Ariel Schulman

Writer(s): Mattson Tomlin

Cast: Jamie Foxx, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Dominique Fishback

Synopsis: When a pill that gives its users unpredictable superpowers for five minutes hits the streets of New Orleans, a teenage dealer and a local cop must team with an ex-soldier to take down the group responsible for its creation.

What would you do if you were given the ability to be a superhero for 5 minutes? Of course, most of the time a question similar to this is brought up in movies, it leads directly to committing crimes. The biggest one that comes to the top of my head is the Purge franchise, where within their universe all crime is legal for 12 hours, they automatically resort to murder and not say, stealing an Xbox or pirating a movie.

Project Power | Netflix Official Site

I guess this makes for a better movie; I mean who would want to see a movie, that isn’t an established comic book movie, where everyone is happily using these incredible abilities in a free-flowing world? So, Project Power decides to go with the flow and figure out the underground crime ring of why criminals are gaining these abilities, and bring down the source of the problem.

While it is a simple plot we have seen before, Project Power manages to work because of the slight turns it takes along the way. I am not going to act like this is one of the most influential movies the superhero genre has seen, but it is an original one that works really well thanks to some pretty good performances, inspired filmmaking, and a few subplots that don’t manage to get in the way of the action the movie is trying to show.

One of those subplots involves Jamie Foxx and his daughter. These moments could have killed the pace of the movie, but Project Power does something incredible that you don’t normally see. They manage to tell the subplot within the actual plot. They don’t lose momentum to get the message across but manages to tie it into the story as a whole, and that is one of the things that this movie has been able to do better than most action movies I have seen this year.

There was also an interesting turn this movie takes when it comes to the villain. I don’t want to spoil it too much, but the villain of the movie is who you would expect, but at the same time is not who you would expect. The villain is almost faceless, but it allows for a thought-provoking theme of the movie.

The acting across the board was done fairly well. Jamie Foxx and Joseph Gordon-Levitt did a wonderful job, but it was really Dominique Fishback who held this film on her shoulders. She constantly throughout the movie proved herself among the rest of her cast and her ability to act and then rap and bring the emotions alive was incredible to see. You can tell how talented she is, and I know she has a wonderful career ahead of her.

The real highlight of this movie, however, is the filmmaking. Joost and Schulman definitely had a vision and were able to almost hit on every single beat they put in the film. They brought in true emotions that made you really feel for the characters, Jamie Foxx’s in particular, and they managed to create some of the absolutely coolest action scenes I have seen this year. They managed to do more with less, which is one thing I personally love, and in a moment in a basement when we are separated from the action, is one of the, quite literally, coolest fight scenes of the entire year.

Final: Project Power does more with less as it doesn’t suffocate itself in its action, and it doesn’t manage to ruin pacing with underwhelming subplots. It is able to bring in some highly impressive filmmaking, a unique story, and some good performances to make this a great combination of mindless enjoyment and thought-provoking themes. One of the best action movies I have seen all year.

Project Power (2020) - IMDb

My Score:

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Awards Prospects: None

2020 Rankings

Jacob is a film critic and co-founder of the Music City Drive-In. He is a member of the Music City Film Critics’ Association and specializes in the awards season. You can find him on Twitter @Tberry57.

Jacob is a film critic and co-founder of the Music City Drive-In. He is a member of the Music City Film Critics’ Association and specializes in the awards season. You can find him on Twitter @Tberry57.

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