It has been 4 months since I was last able to see a movie in the theater. It was during the current pandemic that I heard that the people behind the Bill and Ted franchise had finally completed the long rumored third movie in the franchise and I, within reason, anticipated that it would be one of those films that I would have to wait until its release on DVD to finally see, since the pandemic had seemingly shut down theaters as we know them.
But as it turns out there are a few, albeit in Austin and San Antonio that are making the effort to make some movies available to us. So I made the 20 mile trip north to Austin to catch a viewing of this movie. It's not often that I review a film currently in the theater (only 3 times prior to this one).
As i said in my review of the first two films in the series, I was about 10-15 years older than the average person to whom the franchise was aimed, but I liked the two characters. I think they are kind of like the 90's answer to Cheech and Chong (except neither of these guys does drugs, at least not on camera).
First off an observation; Keanu Reeves has gotten OLD. He looks every bit of his 55. By comparison, Alex Winter doesn't look much older than he did in the originals. Maybe he really IS a vampire. (He played one in The Lost Boys, in case you were unaware.)
Of course, I too no longer look like I did at 25. (Somebody keeps replacing my natural dark brown hairs with grey hairs while I sleep).
Bill and Ted Face the Music (2020):
It has been 25 years since the young duo Bill S. Preston, Esq. (Alex Winter) and Ted Theodore Logan (Keanu Reeves) were approached by an emissary of the future, Rufus (George Carlin) and helped along in the journey to create peace and harmony in the universe with their music. The two have still not had success and are now reduced to doing stage shows at things like birthday parties. Their future as prophesied by Rufus has not been as bright as predicted.
In that context they are approached by Kelly (Kristen Schaal), the daughter of Rufus and taken to the future to meet the Great Leader (Holland Taylor), who just happens to be Kelly's mother. The Great Leader informs the duo that they have to have created their song by 7:17 that night or the whole universe as we know it will collapse.
Knowing they don't as yet have the song, the two decide to use their old phone booth time machine to go into their own future and steal the song from their future selves. But they keep running into the same problem; their future selves are still just as much losers as they are and have always been.
In the meantime, the Great Leader decides that the future may depend on the death of Bill and Ted and sends a robot back to kill them. In the meantime, Bill and Ted's daughters Billie Logan (Bridgette Lundy-Paine) and Thea Preston (Samara Weaving) decide that the key to helping their fathers is to accompany Kelly and kidnap some of the greatest musicians of all time (which include Jimi Hendrix, Louis Armstrong and Mozart, among others).
The convoluted story ends up with several diverse plots coming together, including an excursion in to Hell to rescue people. It doesn't all entirely make sense, but the myriad of plot devices were apparently needed to drive home the need for everybody to come together. And therein is the ultimate point of this adventure (and the point of the film itself) ; a universal plea for that age old adage of "can't we all just get along?"
In my opinion the movie is just only OK. I could have done without the political message that was the underlying point. After all the original two films were just about having fun and the goofiness of it's main characters and if there was a political agenda in them it sure didn't slap you in the face.
Was it worth the 4 month wait for me to withstand between my last venture into a theater? I would say yes, at this point. But was it worth the 25 year wait to see how the characters were getting along from the last film? I would have to say no. This one didn't have near as many funny moments.
Drive home safely folks.