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Ratings and reviews for Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure

Ratings and reviews for Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure
4.4
based on 108 rating(s)
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Price: $2.99 $2.99
Actor(s): Keanu Reeves, George Carlin, Alex Winter, Terry Camilleri, Dan Shor
Director(s): Stephen Herek
Release Date: 5/26/2009
Theatrical Release Date: 2/17/1989
Binding: Amazon Video
Running Time: 90 minutes
Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Studio: MGM
Product Group: Movie
Genre: Adventure
Sales Rank: 498144

Ratings
Reviews 1 to 10 of 108
Pageof 11
amazon logo Hilarious All-Time Classic
Here's a whoppin' good adventure comedy that succeeds bedause it so unabashedly pushes the limits and risks absurdity. A couple of high school students are so clueless that when asked who Joan of Arc was, one replies "Noah's wife?". But this title pair are about to embark on a life-changing adventure! Suddenly they meet a strange dude with a telephone booth altered into a time-machine! What a concept of how to build a time-machine! I wondered if they thought about how we're living in a time when phone booths have become a rarity? How it won't be long, if things continue on their present course, until you couldn't make a time-machine out of a phone booth until you first used another time-machine to go back in time and get a phone booth? Well it's an interesting twist, whether intentional or not! Once back in time, the title characters transport several historical figures to the present, and thereby change their world. One of those figures is the very Joan of Arc they shortly before didn't know from Noah's wife! I found it most uncanny what historical figures they were able to bring back to the present, including no less that three that were me in former lives! They got it pretty right about Genghis Khan! I'm sure I would really really have liked twinkies when I was he! The part about Billy-the-kid they stretch a bit, even addressing him as "Mr. the Kid". Now no one really ever addressed me that way in my former life as Billy-the-Kid, but what a neat concept! Now some things of the present get streched just a bit too. For example, Bill and Ted get themselves out of one bind by use of a programmable audio tape player, programming it to play a certain message on the following afternoon. Now who's ever heard of that? Time-machines have become a familiar thing, at least in movies. But programmable audio tape players? Not even any video recorder that I know of can be programmed to play at a certain time; programming applies only to recording. Much less have I even imagined an audio tape machine programmable as to either recording or playing. So the movie does employ a few unrealistic devices. But it employs them most cleverly and hilariously!
28 of 32 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo It's About Time
Someone already made the point that Amazon's official reviewers often seem entirely out of step with their hordes of unofficial ones. This movie is a great example. It deftly avoids pitfalls that sink other films and does so seemingly effortlessly. It gains so much in sublety that it falls beneath the Hollywood radar of critical acclaim.

First, here's a film that delves into the real entanglements of time travel, but unlike Back to the Future, keeps it light. George Carlin plays himself, a burnt out hippie in the role of enlightened visitor from the future. Like Jeff Goldblum, he always plays himself, only the scenery changes-- check him out as the priest in Dogma (which is not at all a family film). Keanu Reeves does a great job in this film which, if it falls in the Doofus Duo genre, is at least as good as the Wayne's World and Dumb and Dumber films.

It's also cleaner. Anyone can write a dirty joke; try writing a clean one. This movie is full of them. Chesterton said it's harder to write a joke than a sermon. Obviously that's why there are so many (bad) sermons. This film succeeds with both good-natured humor and the light-hearted message of "Be excellent to each other." Has the Golden Rule ever been put better?

Why is this film so much better than its sequel, Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey, which has an excellent if unrealized story line? Because all the special FX budget was spent on the "hell" sequence in that film, which bogs down the rest of the picture. There's a most excellent line of comic books that accompany the Bill and Ted saga, by the same artist who did Milk and Cheese. The story arc is both humorous and gripping. This is one of the few properties that really could deliver a few sequels and works well as an animated series. I join hundreds of reviewers who love this film in recommending this most excellent DVD.
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo Really Overrated
I'm sorry. I just don't see how people can get this. It's not funny in the least. The plot is retarded, the acting even more so. It obviously took the main characters no time at all to memorize their lines. "Heinous, dude, like, excellent!" is basically the whole movie. It takes real effort to make a movie this monotonous. For that I applaud the director. The first time i saw it, I thought it would be funny, but I fell asleep. REAL COMEDIC.
1 of 16 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo Hilarious!
Bill & Ted are flunking history class. If they don't pass their final exam, they will never form their band "Wyld Stallions". Along comes Rufus, a man from the future, who gives them a time machine, so they can gather people from the past to give an oral report at the school. A crazy adventure with lots of laughs. Recommended.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo If you're looking for the best of Keanu Reeves...
...you won't find it here. For the longest time, I thought that Reeves was simply playing himself in this movie. It seems as though every role he playing -- including in "Dangerous Liasons" carried with it a bit of the "dude" mentality that is so pervasive in "Bill and Ted." (Like, milady, you are so totally beautiful...)

However, in the years since, we've seen Keanu tackle roles in "Speed" and "The Matrix" with great command -- and, happily, sans the "dude" dialect.

In "Bill and Ted," however, that, like, awesome talk is ever-present from beginning to end. Even so, I set out to enjoy the movie, and was almost accomplishing that when the final sequence came on. I can bear almost anything in movies, but one thing that I can't bear is hearing Abraham Lincoln say, "Party on, dudes!" Somehow I just can't fathom the great emancipator being on the same wavelength with Bill and Ted. That would likely leave him somewhere near braindead, which is how I felt after enduring this film.

1 of 10 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo great movie another defective dvd
I hope this is just me and my dvd player its a panasonic a150 the same players that many people had trouble with reading dinosaur and scary movie and the kid, those all played fine for me, but this disc does not and it is the second one I tried, so this is a waraning to all people out there make sure there are no problems with certain dvds and players before you buy them. The movie is one of my all time favorites and now i cant watch it and am out ten bucks will atlast its not twenty.
1 of 8 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo ABOUT AS FAR FROM EXCELLENT AS YOU CAN GET!
OK, I know I'm going to get trashed for this one, but I can not believe this film is a cult classic! I love stoner films and I can handle the dumbest of dumb when it comes to stuff like this, but this film is really boring with no laughs to be had. The two stars have no chemistry or charisma and considering the premise the film goes absolutely nowhere. I guess the only good to come out of this film was that it obviously inspired Wayne's World.....which is way funnier than this one......and the sequel???! You've got to be kidding?!
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo Timeless, Optimistic and Brilliant, Dude
For starters, the Amazon review of this all-time classic is downright unfair. 17 years later (can those of you in your 30's believe this was 17 years ago?) Bill and Ted's still pulls a good audience as a TBS Sunday movie. We'll see if anybody remembers Marshall Fine in 17 years.

Both Bill and Ted's movies are warm, funny, witty and extremely optimistic fantasies. By no means am I the type to be offended by sex, drugs or violence (see my 4-star review of Hostel) but it is extremely difficult to think of a highly-successful comedy that didn't need any of the above. Only the most conservative of parents would hesitate to allow a 5-year-old to view this movie, and to be fair, there are a lot of lessons a child could learn from Bill and Ted. On the surface, a movie about airhead (and if made today, stoner) rock and roll loving high-school students, there is a lot more to Bill and Ted's. The movie is about friendship and accomplishment against difficult odds. It's about trying to succeed against insurmountable obstacles. If it's possible to fix a time machine with bubble gum, maybe it is possible to become the greatest rock band of all time without talent. And if not, it still makes for a great 2 hours that still leaves me smiling after countless viewings.

If somehow you haven't seen Bill and Ted's, I can't recommend the film highly enough. A list of influential and creative films of modern times would be incomplete without it.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo A True Original
"Bill and Ted" is a movie startling in its originality and truly well written. It is the exposition of this theme: What if you could go back and redo something that originally you screwed up. Better yet, what if you had help. The climax of the movie, strangely enough, occurs in the Sheriff's station just before the boys put on an history report that actually saves history. (Just another one of the great subtleties that pervade this film.) Ted realizes that he needs keys--so he thinks to himself, "I'm travelling through time, I'll just go get the keys and put them right here." Sure enough, the keys are right there. Simultaneously he realizes that his impatient father was right--Ted did steal the keys. But here is the germ of an endless philosophy--I need something, I'll just apply myself in the future and I'll get the benefits.

Often times the best works masquerade as purely popular entertainment; indeed, the exigencies of today's creative world sometimes drive true creativity to seemingly lesser venues. Whatever the reason, we need only be willing to enjoy the result. I saw this movie as a teenager the summer it came out but it has stuck with me. Now, at midlife, it presents a fantasy even more compelling than that of a slacker high school student wishing for an easy A on an history examination--it presents the idea of what could happen if you were able to go back and do it again. The idea of leaving the keys just where you need them is rather more profound than it appears at first blush.

OK, here's my other favorite scene--cut to the theater where the students are presenting their oral history reports, a jock in full regalia (letter jacket) is stammering his way through a pitiful performance when his face brightens and he shouts "San Dimas High School Football Rules!" and, in turn, receives the predictably positive ovation from the crowd. Obviously, the writer of the screenplay endured the same high school experience that I did.

The movie works at all levels--it is mercifully free from the bad language and suggestive tone of more recent high-school offerings. For all the free benefits that rain down upon Bill and Ted, for the foreknowledge that they will be famous world-altering musicians, they still have to learn to play, that says much about the movie as well as life.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
amazon logo My favorite guilty pleasure
As a graduate student in history and a onetime Californian, Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure is my favorite guilty pleasure. I adore this movie.

Honestly, what's not to love? Two clueless but loveable high school guys from 1988 use a telephone booth that travels through time to collect historical figures for their history report. This goofy-sounding plot is pulled off so astonishingly well that you never stop laughing.

So, what about historical accuracy? I'm going to go out on a limb and say that as far as comedies parodying history go, this one stays remarkably true to the characters of the historical figures. While they don't get enough on-screen time -- their interactions with modern-day San Dimas and with each other are for me the best parts of the movie -- you still get to see occasional small flashes of what makes them tick. Freud is intellectually curious, Napoleon is megalomaniacal, Joan of Arc thinks Ted must be a part of God's plan, and Billy the Kid tries to fit in with Bill and Ted while subtly attempting to flirt with Joan. (If you don't believe me on that last bit, watch the scene where they're washing dishes together.) Of course, some lines are played purely for laughs, like Socrates's profound revelation, "Like the sands of the hourglass, so are the days of our lives." But those lines are rarely done at the expense of a character's integrity. And before you come down too hard on Lincoln ending his speech at the history report with "Party on, dude," remember that in real life, Lincoln was our wittiest president, a man who contemporaries say could never pass up a joke.

So for those of you who don't mind your history tinged with a bit of irreverence, watch, relax, and enjoy, because somehow this movie just comes together. With its fast pace and cheerful sense of fun, it's one of the best comedies there is.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful.

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