Thirty years later, Bill and Ted’s first adventure has lost none of its excellence. Bill And Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
Uninterested in historical accuracy or scientific credibility, time-twisting comedy adventure “Bill And Ted’s Excellent Adventure” still manages to make it’s warped plotline make sense and entertain in equal measure.
In the small town of San Dimas, Bill S Preston Esq (Alex Winters) and Ted Theodore Logan (Keanu Reeves) are facing the prospect of flunking history and dropping out of high school. Seven hundred years in the future, however, they are hailed as the saviours of human society, having ushered in an era of peace and harmony based on the rock and roll stylings of their band ‘Wild Stallyns’. To save the future, Rufus (George Carlin) travels back in time to help the duo pass their history report and avoid the band being split up when Ted is sent off to military school.
There’s such a lightness to the whole film that it’s nigh-on irresistible. It’s not interested in the myriad of complications and contradictions which pepper its timeline, such as language, racing against a deadline when you have an actual time machine or accidentally altering the past by changing things, it’s just a fun ride through the years gathering together a group of history’s biggest celebrities to pass a test.
Reeves and Winters are effortlessly likeable as the deceptively dim San Dimas slackers who in reality are the world’s greatest rock musicians while Carlin adds a knowing edge of tongue-in-cheek cynicism that adds just the right amount of self-awareness to sell all the ridiculousness. It offers a two-for-one in terms of time travel comedy high-jinks as we get 1980s teens romping through history and a parade of historical figures causing chaos in a San Dimas mall, especially Napoleon and my personal favourite gag – Beeth Oven.
While it may not be cinematically nutritious, there’s no denying it’s absolutely delicious; it’s movie junk food for the soul.