Friday, October 21, 2016

Movie review: The Philadelphia Experiment (2012)

Continuing research begun with the original Philadelphia Experiment, scientists hope to finally find a way to cloak warships. Instead they bring back the USS Eldridge, the subject of the original 1943 experiments, and a host of new problems.

Nicholas Lea (Bill Gardner), Michael Pare (Hagan), Ryan Robbins (Falkner), Emilie Ullerup (Molly Gardner), Gina Holden (Kathryn), John Reardon (Deputy Reed), Malcolm McDowell (Salinger), Marsha Regis (Rami).

The Philadelphia Experiment (2012) begins well enough as it jumps straight to the current experiments on invisibility leading to the sudden appearance of the Eldridge more than 60 years after the original tests and disappearance. Sadly, the film then strays off with no solid links to the original film, devolving into a mild sci-fi. The rest of the film follows scientists, and victims, as they try to understand and remedy the problem, sending the Eldridge back to 1943 before space and time are ripped apart.

Acting was decent with Lea putting forth a decent performance. Pare being cast in this film, in a different role that is contradictory to his role in the original, was amusing but that was it. Robbins was an interesting choice and delivered nicely. Ullerup, while she had good energy, spent it in the wrong places and felt overly dramatic. McDowell was a solid addition, and Reardon did pretty well.

Camera work, sets, and backgrounds were reasonably well done. CGI however was obvious and felt contrived which actually detracted from the film. Action scenes were okay, though several were over the top and absolutely inconsistent with the previous film and story. Dialogue was soft and could have used more depth. Sound and soundtrack were mediocre.

Overall this sequel is somewhat disappointing. The lack of focus on the original film or story, poor CGI, thin storyline, and lack of chemistry with the cast park this one squarely in the mediocre sci-fi category. Those with strong interest in the legend, or original film, will likely be disappointed with this one.

Other than some mild sci-fi horror, this should be fine for teens and above.

Released: 2012
Reviewed: 10.10.16
Star rating: 2 out of 5
Genre: Sci-Fi, Mystery, Adventure, Sci-Fi Fantasy, Action Sci-Fi

copyright ©2016 Dave Riedel

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