Rim of the World review: A Stranger Things rip-off with no redeeming moments

Rim of the World review: A Stranger Things rip-off with no redeeming moments

If kids to the rescue is a genre, then Netflix’s Rim of the World deserves to be somewhere at the bottom of the list. Director McG’s latest offering is cut from the same cloth as The Goonies, Stand By Me and Stranger Things but is nowhere close to these counterparts in execution as it never realises the potential of its premise. It attempts a new spin on the alien invasion genre by bringing a sci-fi angle, but never quite succeeds in its approach and falls flat on its face. As much as exciting it sounds to see kids taking control of the world, it’s not an idea everybody can pull off convincingly, especially at a time where the world is eagerly looking forward to the third season of Stranger Things which has set the bar very high. Rim of the World is set in an eponymous adventure camp where four kids – after an alien invasion – are the key to the world’s future. Incidentally, they also hold a key that can stop the alien attack and needs to be delivered to NASA’s jet propulsion laboratory.  The story follows the four young teenagers – who come from different economic backgrounds- as they form an unlikely friendship while on their mission to deliver the key. Rim of the World could’ve been an endearing homage to Spielberg’s 80’s classics but the film falls short of any expectations one might have before watching. This is a film that tries to be a comedy and at the same time a sci-fi adventure but ends up making a mockery of both the genres with absolutely no redeeming moments. Even the short-lived good moments – like the lovely camaraderie between the kids - are let down by an otherwise boring plotline and alien attacks which hardly elicit any percentage of excitement or fear. The alien invasion sequences are boring and are a result of very bad CGI. If handled more carefully and with some humor, this would’ve made a great parody on several sci-fi films on alien invasions. Unfortunately, the makers expect the film to be taken seriously but it never makes us feel so. The kids do a decent job and rise to the occasion with overall better performances. Jack Gore plays Alex, a nerdy kid with zero social kills who sheds his worst fears while on the mission to save the world. He’s joined Dariush (Benjamin Flores Jr.), a filthy rich black kid with annoying sense of humour. Then there’s the quiet Chinese runaway Zhenzhen (Miya Cech) and Alessio Scalzotto as Gabriel. As kids from different ethnicity who try hard to fit in and make their presence felt, some of the moments between them are genuinely fun to watch. But when you take out these few scenes, the film is unarguably boring. Rim of the World isn’t bad on the whole but the sheer recklessness to cash in on the few good moments it offers is disappointing. Rating : 1.5/5


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