When handsome geek David (Weston) needs a scientific idea that will impress university admissions professors, he rummages through the family loft and finds plans his late father had that seem to be for a time machine. He and his pals steal a few batteries and – hey presto! – quickly knock up their own version in the basement so they can win the lottery, get backstage passes to Lollapalooza and, in the case of David, end up in bed with Jessie (Black-D’Elia), the prettiest girl in town.
This teen sci-fi adventure is pretty fun to begin with as the kids pop a few minutes and then a few hours back in time (although you do question their common sense when, following one failed experiment with a toy car, they move straight to human trials without testing it on a rat or something first). It unravels, however, when all thoughts of changing history for the better are quickly discarded in favour of scoring high test results and getting laid, and things start going really wrong when they accidentally change recent events for the worst.
Filmed using the now rather tired ‘found footage’ technique where the kids capture everything on video and that’s what we see, this doesn’t have the brains of a Back To The Future, Groundhog Day or Looper and also tests the limits of believability with the shy nerd being played by the too-pretty Weston (whose cheekbones are so chiselled they could be seen from outer space). However, the first hour is entertaining enough, the teens very watchable and there are some amusing moments to be had before it runs off the rails in the final third.
Is Project Almanac suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
This does have some adult situations, so is only suitable for older children.