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Project X
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Reviews & Ratings for
Project X More at IMDbPro »

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21 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

Surprisingly, very good

8/10
Author: Tito-8 from North Bay, Ontario
6 April 2000

Much to my surprise, it was easy to like this film. All of the primates did a great job, and although some scenes were a little hard to believe, the overall story had a good message and many terrific moments, especially towards the end. It was a very funny film at times, but for me, the more dramatic moments worked the best. A very enjoyable experience.

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23 out of 32 people found the following review useful:

It's All About Us As The Self-Styled `Lords Of Creation'

9/10
Author: Dave G (davegodin@cwcom.net) from Sheffield, England
18 March 2000

Yes, I agree with all the other positive comments posted on this film; it is a remarkable triumph that not only redeems our emotional sensibilities but makes us again realise that the unquestioning acceptance of `intellectualism' as the yardstick by which everything must be measured, has made us damn and paralyze one of the best parts of our being. With the rise of contemporary secularism, (and, so no one should misunderstand me, I write as an atheist), we have allowed science to become our replacement religion; seems like mankind just has to have something to `worship', but in doing this, we have, (just as we did before with religion), sanctioned diabolical cruelties against sentient beings, whether human or animal, in its name.

As Bernard Shaw, (and, by default, this movie) reminded us, the arguments used to justify vivisection are those which can be used to justify ANY atrocity, and PROJECT X rekindles that spark of humane compassion that materialism and self-regard have almost eradicated from our consciousness with their constant bombardment of `rational', dictatorial, and authoritarian notions. `We mustn't be emotional about these things' the `intellectual' and the `scientist' will retort, but why not?! Why not give animal beings the benefit of the doubt, if for one second there actually were any?

PROJECT X is a modern parable in both ethics and attitude; a powerful indictment of our misuse of animal beings. Mankind can't have it both ways; if, as the scientist argues, evolution is the means, then it is wrong to deny the opportunities this process bestows, (and which have so benefited us), to other species. If it is not the means, as the religionist argues, then it's simply a question of blasphemy, because these people assume rights which are actually denied them in Genesis.

A most worthy film which is well worth watching more than once, and a reminder that love and compassion can also be powerful agents of subversion!

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15 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Wonderful film--GREAT MUSIC!!! But where is the soundtrack???

Author: James F. Knohl (knohl@uiuc.edu) from USA
13 November 1999

Ever get that feeling to just watch a movie and bawl your eyes out? I'm one of those people who feels that it's healthy to really cry once in a while. This movie will do it to you. Many sad moments during the film--but I must say the ending is one of those happy tear-jerker endings. Truly, the personification of the chimps increased the emotional awareness of the film--you react to the chimps' feelings at least as much as the humans'. What I think really made the emotions fly out of me was the music. James Horner's score takes you through the clouds on wondrous flights of melody and also puts you through torturous periods of mourning and sorrow. His use of a gorgeous flute instrument combines innocence with a bit of an African tone. Being a great James Horner fan, collecting scores such as Legends of the Fall and Titanic, I was very disappointed to find that the score for Project X is only available on the black market! To this day I can't figure out why. If you've seen this film and know anything about the soundtrack, feel free to e-mail me. If you've not seen it, pop it in the VCR and you'll see what I'm talking about. Just make sure you grab a box of Kleenex!

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14 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

This is one great movie starring Matthew Broderick and Helen Hunt.

8/10
Author: Willis-4 from New York
28 September 1998

What are you people thinking with these ratings? This was a super movie filled with emotions, and finally a decent movie concerning man and monkey. Matthew Broderick and Helen Hunt do a wonderful job, and the movie touches a part of your soul. Great film.

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Hidden modern gem

9/10
Author: drystyx from United States
24 April 2008

The eighties have to be considered part of the modern movie era. And already, this is a hidden gem.

The plot is about a government project which uses chimpanzees as guinea pigs in dangerous experiments, and about a man's change from bureaucrat to caring individual.

The plot could have been mundane and mushy, but instead was well crafted.

The film is expertly directed and written. We feel the pains and struggles. It is very moving, and sure to create a tear among the hardest hearts in places.

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12 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

Project X

Author: linda7 from ENGLAND
15 March 2004

Well I have just been reading some of the comments, I think the people who said this film is rubish as no taste, I have watched this film, a couple of times and I think it is really good infact I am trying to get the film on DVD for my grandson, I know he will love it, I think it is really clever how they do it with monkey, well enjoyed, and it that good I will for sure buy a couple of the films to give to my other grandchildren who will also enjoy the film, it brings tears to your eyes, and it shows rhat people can be cruel to animals, it does happen for real not just acting , maybe this film will show how people can be so unkind to animals,

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Wonderful movie, an 80's classic.

10/10
Author: Nikki (RedTrinity) from Australia
5 June 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The first time I watched this movie was in year 5 at school, and it left a permanent mark on me as one of my all-time favourite flicks. I enjoy it today just as much as I did when I was a child.

The storyline is very touching, and delivers a powerful message about how humans have continued to exploit animals in the name of 'scientific research'. Viewers are taken on a moving journey from start to end, as the film visits scenes which are heartfelt, humorous and horrific. You can't help but get that fuzzy feeling inside as you are introduced to the chimps on a more personal basis (and each one has its own unique little personality - from the aggressive attitude of Goliath, to the raw cheekiness of Goofy) and then shed a tear or two when both you, and Jimmy Garrett - Matthew Broderick's leading character - realise what the true intent of all the flying training actually is.

All the actors do a great job in this movie, including Matthew Broderick who is just as entertaining to watch in a serious role as he is in a comedic one. A young Helen Hunt also does a fantastic job as Virgil's loving trainer. Even William Sadler, who plays the sturdy-faced Dr. Carroll, undoubtedly depicts himself as the "bad guy" of the story, and does it well - even if in the movie's reality, he is a man who simply holds a difficult job... one which he intends to do well at all costs.

Of course the chimpanzees steal the spotlight of this movie, they are just amazing to watch, and their acting skills and behaviours are very believable all the way through. You almost forget that they are only acting in the same sense as their human co-stars.

The orchestral soundtrack by James Horner, to sum up in a single word, is beautiful. Viewers are taken on an emotional roller-coaster which effectively tugs at the heartstrings. I challenge anybody who cares about animals to sit through this entire movie without shedding a single tear! In fact it's one of the best movie soundtracks I have ever sat through, everything from harmonica to African wind pipes are utilised to put the finishing touches on all the scenes.

Some of these scenes in this movie can be disturbing, especially for a younger audience. Initially seeing this for the first time a a child, I found the two flight chamber 'radiation' scenes so powerful, I dare admit that they actually have haunted me in nightmares occasionally over the years. Today, I STILL find it difficult to sit through them, and prefer to reach for the fast forward button whenever they are fast approaching. The method in which these scenes are filmed - slow motion effect, eery sound effects over background silence, in-depth depictions of sadness/shock on the chimps faces, the look of horror on Broderick's face as he witnesses the fate of the chimps first hand - can come as a pure disturbance for any animal lover to watch... especially knowing that the movie is/was based on real life experiments.

Alas, that is the true nature of animal experimentation, and the movie does such a good job depicting it from an in-depth point of view - how the subjects of the fatal tests come to grasp with their impending doom, their 'fight to survive', and how that in turn effects their human trainers, who can't help but bond with them. And of course it has a climax happy ending that we're left hanging for.... the irony of the humans unknowingly training the chimps toward their freedom, as well as for the fateful project.

I love this movie and think its an absolute 80's classic, one of the best. Definitely a gem that has, in my opinion, been horribly underrated. They certainly don't make movies like these anymore, which is a shame.

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Simplistic in plot and sentiment but will make for a good family film if you have slightly older children

Author: bob the moo from United Kingdom
19 November 2006

Jimmy Garrett wants to be an air force pilot but taking his girlfriend up in a jet while drinking champagne was not a move that seems likely to aid that career goal. That little stunt sees him bust down to helping in a special pilots project (Project X) which he hopes will see him trained up to be a pilot but really sees him looking after chimps who are being trained as pilots for some reason. Jimmy takes to the job once he befriends chimp Virgil, who appears to have been taught sign language. Things are good and Jimmy's technique benefits the programme until, that is, the painfully naïve chap learns the aim of project x.

Very much aimed at a young teen audience, this film is a solid family drama with a conscience and a message about animal testing. The basic plot is pretty obvious but it is effective in drawing the audience in with humour and of course the fact that monkeys are legally very cool and cute. I doubt anyone watching is as naïve as Jimmy and most viewers will see the obvious plot development long before it is revealed and from there it continues along a fairly predictable path. It is to its credit though that it is still quite engaging, exciting and touching despite this simplicity and older children will eat it up. It does have a message about animal testing but don't expect it to be balanced or weigh up pros and cons or anything like that because this very much has its Disney agenda. It is still sweet family fare though but it does take a lot of swallowing in both the simplicity of the message and the high-concept of the plot.

Broderick takes billing after all the monkeys which I suppose is only right. He is solid and works well with the chimps but the film is not his by any means. No, the film belongs to Willie (Virgil), Okko (Goofy) and the others. Virgil in particular is expressive and very well trained – in fact trained to the point that he does convince as the character he plays. Support is basic by comparison but still does the job. Sadler does his usual bad guy shtick while McGee, Stark and Hunt are all solid for what they have to do.

Overall then a basic but enjoyable family film that is simplistic on all levels but is cute, sentimental and quite dramatic. Probably not anywhere near good enough to stand up to viewings by discerning adults but it will make for a good family film if you have older children.

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9 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

A very touching and uplifting movie, regardless of what PETA says...

8/10
Author: inianj02 from United States
6 March 2005

I really enjoyed this movie, despite what cynics, bigots and critics say, who can't appreciate a drama that stands on it's own two feet.

It may be regarded as a "chick flick," but it's designed for those who have a heart, who have feelings. I saw this movie as a kid and recently bought it on DVD; I enjoy it now, just as much as I did when I was younger.

I realize that what was done in this movie has been done already in real life years ago, by the US Air Force, but this is a movie--it should be taken lightly as one.

The soundtrack is important in most movies and does great justice to this one. You'd have to appreciate composers of classical music, such as Horner, to appreciate this one. The acting was good and the chimps steal about half of the scenes because it's mostly about them.

I wonder how PETA felt about this movie. I just don't want to hear or read about them whining about anyone harming the chimps...

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Lord of the Apes.

10/10
Author: jerekra from United States
5 March 2009

There are a lot of great ape films. King Kong, Mighty Joe Young, Congo, Planet of the Apes, and Gorillas in the Mist are all great ape films. However I feel that Project X is not also a great ape films, but one of the greatest and most under rated films that I have ever seen.

A young chimpanzee named Virgil is raised by a lady named Terri at a university. THere she teaches him how to use sign language. After a few years she loses custody of Virgil and he is to be sent to a zoo. However instead of going to a zoo Virgil is sent to a U.S. Air Force base where they use Chimps to simulate flight to help the Air Force understand some war tendencies better. At the base a young man named Jimmy starts to work closely with Virgil and develops a friendship with Virgil that will change both of their lives.

A big reason why this film is awesome is that it has awesome acting. Matthew Broderick is awesome in this film. He is a great actor but this is his best film in my opinion. Broderick shows great emotion at various points in the film. ALso he has a great presence with all of the chimps in this film and is truly a "Lord of the Apes".

Helen Hunt is pretty good too. I do not think that this is her best film the way I do with Broderick but she is pretty good. I think she plays the trainer who is sad to see her animal student leave great.

However as good as Broderick and Hunt are, there are other actors in this film just as awesome. Those whom I am speaking of are all of the chimpanzee actors in this film. VIrgil is awesome as the main chimp in the film who learns sign language and has a deep understanding. I also liked Goliath, the circus chimp who likes to smoke and does not like to listen to people more than he has too. The chimps do a great job of adding humor and understanding to the film. A lot of what they are doing is funny at times but by watching them and what they go through you gain an understanding of why it is important for animals to not be used as lab rats.

The message in this film is a great one. Many animals are used in tests that are not unusual to the ones done in this film. So by showing this on screen it helps people to realize that it is important to be ethical to animals and not just use them as lab rats.

I should warn viewers that there are some very touching parts that get emotional in this film. A lot of parts in this film touched me greatly and made me nearly get choked up. But I think that this helps to get the films message across.

A great film. Really under rated. Great acting by humans and apes. Highly recommended.

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