Bury­ing The Ex

SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Rated -

Re­lease Date: OUT NOW!

2014 | 12 | Blu- ray/ DVD Di­rec­tor: Dean Is­raelite Cast: Johnny We­ston, Sofia Black- D’Elia, Ginny Gard­ner, Amy Lan­decker, Katie Garfield

The geek

he­roes of this breezy, un­de­mand­ing time travel tale come prepped for quan­tum cliché. “You have to kill Hitler!” says one. “Have you never seen Time­cop?” asks another. Some­one ref­er­ences the rules of “Ter­mi­na­tors 1 through 4”. Some­one else de­clares “Boom! We’re Doc­tor Who!” If only it was that easy, kids.

In truth Pro­ject Al­manac feels like an ’ 80s Amblin movie reengi­neered for Gen­er­a­tion Y. It has the wide- eyed, sweet- na­tured vibe of Ex­plor­ers or an episode of Spiel­berg ’s Amaz­ing Sto­ries, its wish- ful­fil­ment premise dis­tilled into a sin­gle line of di­a­logue: “So you’re telling me dad left a time ma­chine in the base­ment?”

Stum­bling upon this ex­per­i­men­tal piece of mil­i­tary tech, the kids go wild in the fourth di­men­sion. Well, no, they hit a Lol­la­palooza fes­ti­val they missed. And fix high school in­dig­ni­ties. And run down a street, yesterday, whoop­ing, as if on a gi­ant Red Bull rush. Be­cause, y’know, time travel, bro.

It’s shot found- footage style, and while that gives the teenage by­play an en­dear­ing im­me­di­acy – we hear ev­ery class­room mum­ble and aside – it’s never quite used clev­erly enough. In fact it turns in­ti­macy into so­cial media sto­ry­telling. By the end of this sun­lit, up­beat, Pepsi- ad time trip you’ll feel like history – and hell – is other peo­ple’s In­sta­gram feeds.

An al­ter­nate open­ing; two al­ter­nate end­ings; eight deleted scenes. Nick Setch­field A brief shot of a plane crash­ing was cut af­ter it emerged it used real footage from a 1994 US Air Force crash.

The Eve­lyn Dead

Re­lease Date: OUT NOW!

2014 | 15 | Down­load/ view- on- de­mand Di­rec­tor: Joe Dante Cast: An­ton Yelchin, Ash­ley Greene, Alexan­dra Dad­dario, Oliver Cooper

If you only

watch one movie about a girl­friend re­turn­ing as a zom­bie this year… don’t make it this one.

It’s no plea­sure to re­port that this zom- com trails in sec­ond even in such a lim­ited field, be­cause Joe Dante is some­one your av­er­age SFX reader roots for. The guy brought us Grem­lins and Pi­ranha, and is ir­re­press­ibly en­thu­si­as­tic about our genre. Sadly, Bury­ing The Ex is not a tri­umphant re­turn to form.

For starters, the ba­sic con­cept feels fairly of­fen­sive, with dom­i­neer­ing, jeal­ous eco- fa­natic Eve­lyn hit by a bus, then re­turned to bossy life. Pre­sum­ably we’re meant to em­pathise with An­ton Yelchin’s un­der- the- thumb hor­ror store em­ployee Max, but his in­ac­tion ( and will­ing­ness to over­look his part­ner’s flaws when she’s dress­ing up as a “Naughty Nurse”) screams “man- child douchebag”. Se­condly, un­less you find the mere thought of necrophilia scream­ingly funny, it’s not that amus­ing.

Dante also over- in­dulges his fan­boy im­pulses; there’s con­stantly some­thing in the back­ground, be it a TV show­ing Plan 9 From Outer Space or a poster for Ro­bot Mon­ster, re­mind­ing you that you could be watch­ing some­thing else.

Age­ing male geeks who day­dream of ditch­ing their “ball and chain” for a hot rock chick with im­plau­si­bly niche knowl­edge of hor­ror- themed 1970s break­fast ce­re­als may find this an ap­peal­ing wish- ful­fil­ment fan­tasy. Any­one else should watch Life Af­ter Beth in­stead.

None. Ian Ber­ri­man Death Race 2000 star/ Andy Warhol as­so­ciate Mary Woronov had a role as the owner of Max’s store, but it was cut.

But can it get Lon­don Week­end Tele­vi­sion?

Al­ways use a servi­ette.

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