My worst suspicions about films helmed by two directors are confirmed by this squint-eyed superhero fiasco. Never trust any film that has more than one director. Too many cooks not only spoil the broth but they also turn a potential main dish into a sidey affair. Project Power must have meant something more than just another film about a bunch of mismatched misfits saving the city, world and universe. What it finally turns out to be is a damp squib. There are no two ways about it.
The three heroes in this case are the ever-dependable Jamie Fox (here, so short of support from the skinny script that he’s left helpless in his tracks), paired with a whole lot of thoughtful association with Joseph Gordon-Levitt (who was seen recently in that engaging midair thriller 7500) and a likeable new teen actress Dominic Fishback. The trio has to stop the baddies from manufacturing a pill that can turn anyone into a superhero for five minutes.
This is not only a hard pill to swallow but it is also way too bland to make any claims of being grand. The special effects showing the baddies mutating into raging balls of fire are as fascinating as watching a worn-out magician conjuring rabbits out of a hat. The plot is of course incomprehensible. The first rule of a successful superhero film is to make the goings-on as inaccessible to the audience as possible. The climax on board a ship is slippery and self-referential without making any claims to originality or innovation.
Sad to say, Project Power is not only incomprehensible but it is also dreadfully dull. The action sequences fail to hold our interest. The dialogues seem to be written on the sets while the characters were rehearsing for a film that they thought was going to be a game-changer thundering into theatres. Alas, the film was cut down to size by its intrinsic blandness long before the Virus could do its dirty deed. Not that the plot doesn’t try hard to impress us with its cockiness when all fails. There is also a story somewhere in this big-screen mess (cut down to size by the ultimate equalizer Covid 19) of Jamie Foxx looking for his daughter who has special powers. Of that reminds me, everyone in the film seems to have special powers. But the co-directors’ specialty is to make us abhor all super-hero films for as long as they continue to be made. I am sure Project Power took its power very seriously. But the Gods of all thing fun turned their collective face away. What we are left with is a sad, sorry wannabe superhero film with no sense, forget sensibility.