Beloved actor Ryan Reynolds stars in his first Netflix original film, The Adam Project, which released earlier this month on March 11. The movie is an action-packed sci-fi adventure featuring time travel, high-tech equipment, and an interesting take on where the future of science and physics might lead us in our technological developments.
Apart from Reynolds, the cast is star-studded with other household names like Jennifer Garner and Mark Ruffalo. You may also recognize Zoe Saldana, who played Gamora in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, or Catherine Keener from her role as Boro in Netflix’s original series, Brand New Cherry Flavour.
Perhaps the most impressive performance in this film is delivered by Walker Scobell, 13, who played Reynolds’ character’s younger self in his debut film. Scobell’s screen presence was moving and his dynamic with Reynolds was delightful to watch. Scobell is set to star in Secret Headquarters in August later this year.
The Adam Project, directed by Shawn Levy, focuses largely on family bonds and their complications, making it relatable for a large audience. The tone of the movie feels like one that is ideal for child entertainment. The stakes are real and scary for the characters, but there is also a lightheartedness that will make you smile and laugh. The level of violence and adult themes may not be appropriate for some children, the PG-13 rating is appropriate in this aspect.
Reynolds certainly brought something different to the screen in this film, but it wasn’t in complete contrast with his previous filmography. The time for Reynolds to stretch as an actor is now.
Reynolds is known in Hollywood, and in most of his movies, to bring his Canadian charm to the screen. He is glib, funny, sarcastic, and an all-around likeable guy. In one of his most notable films, Deadpool, Reynolds plays the unlikely, rather unorthodox superhero. He introduced a new type of superhero movie to the Marvel franchise and it’s clear that his own personality took shape in this character.
It feels as though most of Reynolds’ movies are like this; he seems to always play the same type of character. It may be time for Reynolds to show he can perform a variety of roles, especially when his net worth is $150 million.
This type of character he typically plays works with viewers because he is easy to like. He is the ideal celebrity in the way that he almost doesn’t act as one; he is easy to relate to. This is one of Reynolds most likeable qualities, but it continuously shines through in his movies.
Jennifer Lawrence, Academy award winning actress, is another example of a celebrity that is incredibly well-liked by most people. She shares some of the same traits as Reynolds in that she is funny, easy-going, and relatable. However, based on Lawrence’s filmography she has been able to play a wide variety of characters and bring them to life. Most notably, her role as Dominika in Red Sparrow is in large contrast with her true personality, as are her other films.
The Adam Project attempts to have Reynolds step into a more serious character. There are emotional moments in the film where we see Reynolds dealing with feelings of loss and guilt. Peppering this film with emotional moments doesn’t change the fact that Reynolds has yet to step out of his comfort zone.
Nevertheless, this film was quite entertaining to watch. While lacking in unpredictability, it was fun and lighthearted, which is clearly what Levy was trying to achieve. He used Reynolds’ persona to his advantage; he was the ideal choice for Adam, who is meant to be loud-mouthed and sarcastic. The dynamic he had with Ruffalo, Adam’s dad, also worked well.
The music choice for this film set the perfect tone. The opening scene is backed by The Spencer Davis Group’s 1966 rock song, Gimme Some Lovin. Classic rock was the main genre of choice for many of the scenes, featuring other songs such as Peter Townsend’s Let My Love Open the Door, and Good Times, Bad Times by Led Zeppelin. This genre was an ideal choice because it fell in line with the energetic yet fun tone of the movie. The rest of the score was composed by Rob Simonsen.
The Adam Project displayed family, marriage, sci-fi adventure, and brought them together in one film. It was a playful movie with plenty of action and laughable moments. Complete with scenes that are sure to tug on your heartstrings, the film delivered in terms of enjoyment.
While concerns around Reynolds acting career becoming stagnant are present, it’s hard to deny his presence in this film and the movie would not have felt complete without him. The Adam Project earns a 6/10 rating, thanks to the excellent soundtrack and captivating performance from the cast members.