The pre-screenings for critics are already underway, which means it's time to start combing through this year's Tribeca Festival entries to see which new films have the most potential. We'll be bringing you our usual fest coverage when Tribeca kicks off later this month on April 18th, but expect us to definitely point out films on our most anticipated radar prior to that start date. One of those films is a little doc called Journey to Planet X, which, as movie-making fans and sci-fi fans, immediately shot to the front of our gotta-see-it list.
The doc tracks two amateur sci-fi filmmakers as they set out to make their most ambitious film yet, Project X, and from the looks of the trailer it has a heavy American Movie vibe, which you'll remember as the 1999 doc that followed another aspiring filmmaking duo who set out to finally finish their long-delayed horror movie. The duo found in Journey to Project X seem a bit brainer and more serious than the small-town, quirky pair found in American Movie, but the same themes of following your heart and chasing your dreams seem to be present.
Early buzz on the film is very strong, which some are also comparing to The King of Kong, but we see more of American Movie in this than anything else. Check out the trailer and synopsis below (more on their official website), and we'll report back after we watch it at Tribeca.
Eric Swain and Troy Bernier are scientists by day and amateur filmmakers by night. Over the years these two friends have turned out many of their own amateur, sci-fi inspired movies. Journey to Planet X follows the filming of Planet X, the duo’s most ambitious endeavor to date, and sheds light on their unique brand of “movie magic.”
While Troy views Planet X as an opportunity to launch a career in the movie-industry, Eric is content with making films as a playful and creative hobby. Troy’s bold new aspirations greatly exceed anything they’ve accomplished in previous films and the pressure of raising the bar forces both to take a leap of faith. They recruit the involvement of everyone they can find – from their own family members, to co-workers, and local aspiring actors. They shoot on sand dunes, highway overpasses, and inside an industrial-sized freezer at a local supermarket. Together with their cast and crew, they form an unlikely community of like-minded adventurers.
Eric and Troy are inspired by the transcendent nature of moviemaking itself, where the fantasies of being space travelers, charming leading men, and even successful filmmakers, all seem quite possible. Our documentary captures their struggle to realize their filmmaking dream.