That just won’t fly for airman Jimmy Garrett (Matthew Broderick) and researcher Teri (Helen Hunt) — and it’s up to them to stop the Air Force’s nefarious plot and save the chimps.
The Project X movie scored 8/10 back in the 80s
Adapted from a movie review in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Texas) May 15, 1987
The US military, gleefully anticipating all-out war, is training chimpanzees to fly bomber mock-ups and then brain-frying them with radiation.
It’s up to a maverick airman (Matthew Broderick as Jimmy Garrett) and a behavioral scientist (Helen Hunt as Teri) to save the apes and scuttle Project X.
Broderick is as delightful here as in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and Hunt makes a terrific no-nonsense hero. They generously allow the chimps to swing away with this picture.
The film also stars Jean Smart, William Sadler, Robin Gammell, Stephen Lang, and Willie as Virgil the chimpanzee.
Project X: Matthew Broderick’s been grounded – literally. (1988)
From Splice (January 1988)
In Project X, now available on home videocassette, Matthew plays Jimmy Garrett, a young air force pilot who’s been relieved of flying privileges after using his aircraft as a rendezvous for dates.
He’s assigned to Project X, a top-secret military experiment, and it’s only after meeting superintelligent chimp Virgil that he learns the truth: The project is really a reckless experiment that’s endangering intelligent creatures.
Jimmy learns the secret through Virgil’s special skill — he can use sign language to communicate with humans.
Now Jimmy is faced with a serious decision. Should he follow military instructions and take part, or should he follow his conscience and give up the project?
There’s not a dull moment in this drama, which also stars Helen Hunt (Peggy Sue Got Married) as the university researcher who teaches Virgil how to sign.
Project X, available through CBS/Fox Video, is also Matthew’s reunion with the producers of his earlier film, War Games.
Project X is a bittersweet tale that shouldn’t be missed. It’s serious monkey business.
Project X movie trailer
ALSO SEE: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off: Why this ’80s teen movie is still a delight today