Your weekly streaming pick is Rim of the World. A Netflix exclusive and a whole lot of fun. Directed by McG who is no stranger to the action/adventure genre. This kid friendly adventure movie fills a gap that has been pretty apparent in movies lately.
Four kids come together at a summer camp. Instead of eating bad food and learning to canoe they arrive just in time to hear and see the beginning of an alien invasion of earth. They find themselves stranded in the woods and try to make it back to camp on foot. On the way a shuttle comes down and an astronaut hands them the key to defeating the aliens. The young teens are tasked with delivering they key to a scientist at a specialized installation.
Rim of the World is the kind of movie I would’ve wanted to see as a pre-teen. It hits you with nostalgia even though it isn’t an existing property. The tropes, layout, story, and arcs are all as familiar as can be. Normally that would become terribly bland but one genre that seems to be suffering in a Marvel world is the kid adventure movie. We’ve gotten great ones like Super 8 that are absolutely amazing but aren’t 100% for kids. Rim of the World is. Even a sixteen year old would start to find this movie childish, it’s just not for them.
This is a Netflix Original
Having such a specific audience could limit the commercial viability of the movie in the old world of pop-culture. If you’ve been paying attention at all you’ll notice that Netflix originals have been skewing younger and younger. Most of the series are here to prey on teen angst and don’t really set the world on fire. Even the series are becoming less instant classic and more cotton candy for the 16-20 year old crowd. None of this is a judgement of any sort. Netflix has the metrics on their users and are obviously doing a superb job cornering the market.
One element of the movie does stand out from the rest. Sadly, it’s not in a good way. This being a kids movie I was confused whenever a character referred to sex, threesomes, and made alien blowjob jokes. The remarks up the apparent target age of the movie where nothing else does.
I always look around online to see what the general consensus is when I do a write up for a movie and Rim of the World is being absolutely shredded. I’m shocked at the beating it’s taking. While it’s not a groundbreaking movie by any stretch it’s a fun adventure for kids full of kid wish fulfillment. The dialogue is a bit clunky and every beat is predictable… for adult audiences. An 11 year old will laugh along with the jokes and think killing a four armed alien with a vintage mustang is pretty cool.
Take Rim of the World for what it is and enjoy it. If you can’t accept a kids movie isn’t for an adult audience steer clear. I thought it was fun and I appreciate Netflix taking a small step on delivering original adventure movies to kids specifically.