There is something inherently intriguing and entertaining about watching people do foolish, and yet exciting, things in the movies. There is something, dare I say, magical about watching characters do the unthinkable, about watching situations slowly spiral out of control. This all applies to Project X, a ridiculously over-the-top party movie which, while far from artistic, succeeds through its commitment not to the usual narrative beats, but through its absolute insanity.

Directed by Nima Nourizadeh from a screenplay by Matt Drake and Michael Bacall (who co-wrote Scott Pilgrim vs. the World), Project X is a curiously executed found footage film, which at times seems to completely abandon this premise, but at the same time isn’t afraid to embrace its potentials. (Much of the proceedings are filmed by the group’s mysterious friend, Dax.) The film follows high-school friends Thomas (Thomas Mann), Costa (Oliver Cooper), and JB (Jonathan Daniel Brown) as they throw a birthday bash for Thomas, whose parents (played by Caitlin Dulany and Peter Mackenzie) go out of town for the weekend.

Costa is gleefully crass and unapologetic in his insistence on throwing the largest bash imaginable – despite Thomas’ parents insistence not too – and proceeds to invite seemingly all Pasadena to what he is advertising as the most epic party of all-time. Now Thomas, Costa, and JB won’t exactly win popularity contests, so they’re not all that surprised when evening rolls around and nobody has showed up – save for Thomas’ friend and inevitable love interest, Kirby (Kirby Bliss-Blanton) – yet just as they are about to give up hope, the crowds begin to arrive.

Thomas is extremely (and justifiably) worried; the crowds continue to roll in, as Thomas’ backyard begins to fill. A party bus even arrives carrying Miles (played by the hilarious Miles Teller), who is apparently an ex-baseball star at their high school. The alcohol begin to flow, the music begins thump, and the party is officially out of control. The trio even hire two young neighborhood kids as security to keep Thomas’ house out of ruins, and of course be on the lookout for neighbors and cops. Yes, the premise and execution are completely ridiculous, but its the fact that the filmmakers embrace this so much that the film succeeds. With an excessive amount of lewd behavior, partying that never stops, and the gleeful way in which the party slowly spirals out of control, Project X is everything you’d fear could go wrong during a party – and it’s entertaining as hell.

From an angry drug-dealer seeking revenge, to an abusive little person (Martin Klebba), and even an angry and violent neighbor attempting to shut down the party, there is never a slow moment. Project X moves at a frantic pace, capturing every aspect of this party through the documentation of Dax and other present cameras. Soon the party generates an unstoppable life of its own – how did the party get so big? “It’s plus one.” – as nobody, not even law enforcement, can put a stop to it.

At the center of this movie is it’s use of music. It would be hard to think of a movie released in recent months that uses its soundtrack so much to its advantage. The soundtrack, which includes tracks from Kid Cudi, Tyler the Creator, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Nas, and more, masterfully dictates the pace and rhythm of each scene. When coupled with the sleek camerawork, which incorporates an impressive amount of slow-motion and interesting angles, the soundtrack breathes all life into the movie.

While “found footage” is usually used to ground a movie in reality, the climax eschews so far from it that the gimmick at times feels entirely useless. Like a continuous Jackass stunt gone-wrong, Project X never ceases to entertain as a party-movie on steroids, taking the good and the bad from such a premise and spitting out an absolutely insane 90 minutes of cinema.

Grade: B

Rated: R (for crude and sexual content throughout, nudity, drugs, drinking, pervasive language, reckless behavior and mayhem – all involving teens.)

Project X opens nationwide on March 2nd.

After all that talk of inclusivity, Star Trek Beyond falls into the Hollywood trap of implied sexuality.

Mild spoilers for Star Trek Beyond.

Star Trek Beyond, already a wildly anticipated movie, made headlines ahead of its release because of the franchise’s decision to introduce the first openly LGBT character: Mr Sulu, played by John Cho.

While this decision was certainly met with excitement, there was disappointment, too. The original Mr Sulu, George Takei, openly voiced his opinion that they should have introduced a new LGBT character rather than expand on original canon (as they have been the whole trilogy), while Simon Pegg beautifully argued that there was power in using an established character who wouldn’t be defined by his sexuality.

Then came the movie itself, and while the introduction of gay Sulu is still a great thing, we’re left sorely disappointed by Beyond‘s decision to depict the LGBT relationship — or rather, hardly depict it at all.

As reported by our friends at The Mary Sue, the scene featuring Sulu and his husband Ben depicts a “lukewarm” relationship, although Sulu is very affectionate with the pair’s daughter.

This is, unfortunately, a common problem in Hollywood when an LGBT couple — almost impossibly — makes it into a big franchise film. They’re allowed to be there, but having any kind of physical interaction even remotely resembling what a heterosexual couple might have still seems to be off-limits.

Related: Hollywood is failing the LGBT community: GLAAD slams Disney, Paramount and Warner Bros.

And, according to John Cho, there was actually a kiss filmed. “There was a kiss that I think is not there anymore,” he told Collider. “It wasn’t like a make-out session. We’re at the airport with our daughter. It was a welcome-home kiss. I’m actually proud of that scene, because it was pretty tough.”

Cho points out that Ben was played by a non-actor, writer Doug Jung, and says, “Obviously, I just met the kid, and then Doug is not an actor. I just wanted that to look convincingly intimate. We’re two straight guys and had to get to a very loving, intimate place. It was hard to do on the fly. We had to open up. It came off well, in my view.”

And we wish we could have seen it. Introducing a major LGBT character in the Star Trek franchise is a fantastic first step, and depicting two POC actors raising a child together is a great statement — but, unfortunately, the decision to cut out their kiss (which was already chaste, by the sounds of it) is emblematic of Hollywood’s continuous phobia of depicting LGBT relationships and intimacy on the big screen.

As Screen Crush also points out, this exact same scenario played out in Independence Day: Resurgence, too. In Finding Dory, the lesbian couple are only implied, in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it sequence.

LGBT representation (when present at all) is always so subtle, evidently in fear of offending straight audiences while not totally erasing non-straight sexualities. And, sadly, even that is considered a big step forward — but maybe it’s time we start depicting humanity as it is, and not what society wished it was 100 years ago.

Here’s looking at you, Star Wars.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child reviews from theater critics are glowing, so when the hell can Americans get a chance to see the play in New York?

With just days to go until The Cursed Child script book is released around the world, The New York Post’s theater reporter has spoken to sources who say the play will be coming to Broadway sooner rather than later. Producers are currently holding discussions to bring the play to NY as early as 2017.

They haven’t yet announced a Broadway engagement for “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” but New York theater people say it’s only a matter of time. Word is that Friedman and Callender are in negotiations for a Shubert theater possibly for next season. They may hit Toronto first, however.

The idea of The Cursed Child hitting Broadway so soon (“next season” could mean around May 2017) will come as a relief to American Harry Potter fans who would rather not travel overseas to see “the eighth story” (though it’s a little more affordable to do so right now thanks to #Brexit). It also speaks to this important fact: It’s important to see The Cursed Child rather than reading it.

If the show does go to Toronto first as The New York Post suggests it might, a trip to Canada would also be easier for Americans. Sorry, people who don’t live in North America.

This writer saw the play in June and absolutely loved the characters and magic happening on stage. But the story is… not the best. I’m very eager to see what fans, myself included, think of the story after reading the script book this weekend.

For her part, Rowling has promised that fans around the world will get to see the play. Only time will tell if she’s hinting at a movie or a world tour:

If ‘Cursed Child’ comes to Broadway next year, will you try to see it ASAP?

The West End production currently has dates running into May 2017, but additional dates are expected to go on sale in early August.

Present day Han Solo may’ve left the main Star Wars series after the events of The Force Awakens, but the character’s time in movie theaters is far from over.

The new Han Solo film from Lucasfilm — scheduled to hit theaters in May 2018 — might turn into a trilogy for the reluctant hero, according to the New York Daily News.

The paper reports that star Alden Ehrenreich has signed a three-picture deal, suggesting that the studio intends to expand the Han Solo spinoff into a trilogy. “They feel that his character has the right potential to become a central figure in several movies,” a source told NY Daily News. “They’re keeping things under wraps at the moment, but the deal is that he has signed for at least three movies.”

This makes a lot of sense given the popularity of the character coupled with his absence in Episode 8 and beyond. We also know that Lucasfilm and Disney have many, many grand plans for Star Wars in the years ahead: The very first Star Wars theatrical spinoff, Rogue One, opens later this year. Episode 8 then hits theaters a year later (2017), followed by Han Solo’s own movie (2018). Next comes Episode 9 in 2019, followed by yet another spinoff reportedly focused on Boba Fett in 2020.

As for 2021 and beyond? Only time will tell, but we expect more movies set in the worlds of The Force Awakens, Rogue One, and now Han Solo.

The Han Solo spinoff will be directed by LEGO Movie helmers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. They’re currently deep into pre-production, as this tweet from Lord this morning shows:

“This is the first film we’ve worked on that seems like a good idea to begin with,” the directors said last July. “We promise to take risks, to give the audience a fresh experience, and we pledge ourselves to be faithful stewards of these characters who mean so much to us. This is a dream come true for us. And not the kind of dream where you’re late for work and all your clothes are made of pudding, but the kind of dream where you get to make a film with some of the greatest characters ever, in a film franchise you’ve loved since before you can remember having dreams at all.”