It would seem we might have a new “power couple” on our hands. We used to have Martin Scorsese working a few times with Robert De Niro and, later on, with Leonardo DiCaprio. Or Ridley Scott, making a few movies with Russell Crowe. Well, now, we have Shawn Levy and Ryan Reynolds in their second collaboration (the first being Free Guy (2021, my review here)) and the third one is coming up, as Levy was announced as the director for Deadpool 3 (no date yet). And for what it is worth, I think this collaboration works well even if The Adam Project didn’t break any new ground. What it did, though, was one fun movie.
The first surprise for me was the casting of young Ryan. Yes, I am talking about Walker Scobell, whose name you should probably remember, as I believe he might be the next big star. He nailed the way Ryan talks without it sounding forced or awkward. Also, he got cast as Percy Jackson in the new Disney+ show Percy Jackson and the Olympians (2023), and I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if he got the part of Percy for his performance in this film because he was great. He was, in fact, so great I might check out that TV show and I wasn’t that interested in it. Especially considering he had to go up “against” megastars like Ryan, Jennifer Garner, Zoe Saldana, Catherine Keener or Mark Ruffalo. Yep, as you can see, just from these names, the casting here is full of talented performers who all done well. But I would like to focus on Jennifer and Zoe.
For Jennifer, I will say she has done an amazing job. You understand her pain; you believe she is just a single mum trying to do the best she can with a son who can be “a bit” of a pain in her ass. Her scenes with Ryan, where he is older now and realising how he wasn’t making anything easy for her, were surprisingly touching. But for me, the real heart of the story was Ryan’s relationship with Zoe. From the moment they reunite until they have to go their separate ways, you can tell how much they care for each other. You can also see why Ryan’s character would risk everything for her. Also, on an unrelated point, it was nice to see Zoe Saldana in her “original” skin colour as she seems to be Hollywood’s top pick for “Hey, who do we cast to play this blue/green/purple alien? Oh yeah, Zoe Saldana exists; let me speed dial her real quick.” Anyway, even though her role wasn’t as big as others and she didn’t have plenty of screen time, she made an impact, and she was one of the reasons I enjoyed this film.
The Adam Project is a sneaky movie. Because yeah, it’s a sci-fi story. But it utilises that element to tell a pretty compelling drama about past mistakes and complicated relationships (whether it is between family or romantic relationships), and the film blends those two genres really well. Again, is it breaking any new ground? No, to be honest. But you will have a good time with this film as it is a well-blended cocktail of fun and seriousness, the jokes work, and the emotional scenes land.
Also, let’s talk about the main star of this film, Ryan Reynolds. If you look at his performance here from far, you could say he’s just being his typical self, kind of Deadpool character. But look at it more closely, and you might see that he’s got more earnest moments/scenes, and he is nailing them all. It would be easy to write: “Ryan Reynolds is being another version of him, again.” And sure, there is some element of that; I don’t think that will ever go away. But not because he’s playing one character; no, it might be because that is who he is. And in this film, he showcased much more than his snappy, quick-witted side, and I appreciated that. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wins an Oscar in about ten years, as I think he is getting better and better, and he can make these characters work in his favour.
The only real “issue” I had with this film was its predictability. You knew where the story was going; you could see every twist and turn coming from a mile away. But I honestly don’t think it takes much away, at least in this case. Because the film has a reasonable length, it never overstays its welcome, and again, the casting makes all moments work. The comedic ones and dramatic ones land, and you walk away smiling.
Overall, The Adam Project is a fun half sci-fi, half drama that mixes those genres surprisingly well. The script is decent, the performances were superb across the board, and it seems the new Hollywood duo Levy & Reynolds is having fun. And as longest they can transport that fun onto the screens, I will be rooting for both. This film won’t shake your world, but here’s the thing, it’s perfectly fine for a movie to be “just” fun and not “life-changing”. The Adam Project is the prime example of a fun family movie you put on one Saturday afternoon, and it doesn’t matter how big your family is; there is something for everyone in here. And I love we still get these family films with “higher” concepts. I would definitely recommend you to watch it.
That’s all for this one! Did you see it? What did you think about it? Let me know!
Until next time,