Director – Nicholas Humphries (ABC’s of Death 2.5, Crypt Fables)
Starring – James Gallanders (Bride of Chucky, Saw II), Deragh Campbell (Never Eat Alone, Mobile Homes), and Daniel Fathers (The Void, Orphan Black)
Release Date – 2019
Rating – 2/5
Tagline – “They were always here”
Science fiction and horror often come together to create something rather unique. Anytime you cross genres you are often a film that breaks expectation and gives the view something that will stick with them. That can’t be said for every genre mash up but there has been countless horror/sci-fi spawns that have been fan favorites for decades with no signs of slowing down.
A few weeks back I was sent the press release for the new sci-fi/horror flick Project Ithaca. The synopsis looked interesting so I agreed to check it out. Thanks for sending this one my way!
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows a group of adults who awaken in a dark room. They are strapped to a chair by black tentacle like things that grip tighter and tighter the more you struggle. They try to figure out why they are there and discover they are all from different decades and one of them has a special ability that has ties to an alien race that crashed in the 60s. The aliens are now trying to find their way home and are using the human’s fear as fuel. They abducted thousands and placed them in their ship but the one little girl with a special ability is their only saving grace.**Spoiler Alert**
I wanted to like Project Ithaca. The artwork and synopsis made me thing that I was about to watch a bold and ambitious horror/sci-fi crossover but that was not the case. Instead, I was greeted with a predictable and painfully slow sci-fi melodrama that I could not finish in one sitting.
The acting in this one is extremely forced and awkward most of the time. The characters are extremely clichéd and the cast does very little to make them their own. The over the top performances and dramatic dialogue puts the viewer in mind of a Sy-Fy creature feature or a day time television drama.
The story for this one has potential but fails to use it. The people being abducted as a fuel source is nothing new but has the potential to be something greater is there with that story arc. Sadly, the film focuses more on the dilemma of the characters in the room over the bigger picture which makes the story feel very small. If the focus was on a world level it would have been a film with a bigger scope but having people in a tiny room bickering and fighting almost ruins it. The pacing is extremely slow and predictable.
Finally, The film has a stellar looking set. I loved the look of the spaceship and the room the characters is in. I was also very impressed with the visual effects. The acting may be Sy-Fy quality but the visual effects are not. We do get a few on screen kills but only one is worth mentioning and it has phenomenal practical effects. This scene honestly caught me off guard. Overall, Project Ithaca has a solid idea but fails to deliver an entertaining film. The effects are fantastic but nothing else stands out.