Springing from the minds of Jonathan Tropper, T.S. Nowlin, and Jennifer Flackett, The Adam Project feels largely like a film crafted in the vastly simpler times of the 1980’s – a decade wherein Science Fiction and Fantasy largely embraced a feel-good vibe to the delight of audiences. Steven Spielberg was at his storytelling zenith, and features like The Last Starfighter, Back To The Future, and Flight Of The Navigator largely put a young face to some of the genre’s more memorable flights of fancy. Similarly, Adam works best when you don’t think too deeply about the mechanics and sit back to enjoy the ride; all of its players – even the reliable Jennifer Garner (though a bit underused here) – hit their crowd-pleasing marks exactly as plotted out on the drawing board.
Alas, it’s the kind of film not requiring a longer review as there’s not a lot of substance there. The humor – while effective – is all a bit predictable, as are a few of the character relationships (i.e. a death in the family, a strained father/son dynamic, the doting single mother just wanting what’s best for her incessantly precocious son, etc.); that’s no insult to the crew as they’re apparently very comfortable in these waters. If anything, the greatest risk taken here is by Reynolds: this isn’t an acting stretch by any measurable metric for the Thespian (he’s been in this mildly snarky mode since fairly early in his career), and he might want to think about trying on a different suit from time-to-time. It could be good for his future, though audiences are evidently still showing up for this shtick.
Like most features this saccharin, it all goes down easily, so much so that perhaps the creators will put their heads together to see if there isn’t a road to a sequel … even though this one ties up handily (and thankfully) in its closing scenes.
As always, thanks for reading ... and live long and prosper!