Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)

Believe it or not, I had never heard of Bill & Ted before Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter announced the third film and basically Film Twitter lost it.  Since I love Keanu Reeves, I decided to check out the first of the series, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure.

The story follows Bill (Alex Winter) and Ted (Keanu Reeves), two Californian teens who want to start their own rock band. Unfortunately, they both are on the verge of flunking in high school and if they don't pass their upcoming history report, they will be expelled and separated as Ted's father (Hal Landon Jr.) will be sending him to military school. Help arrives from Rufus (George Carlin), a man from the 27th century who comes down in a time-travelling telephone booth and gives the dudes the chance to travel back in history and gather historical figures in order to complete their report for the next day and save the future.

The plot is very simple, it makes no sense whatsoever —not only nobody in the past thinks Bill and Ted are oddly clothed, but it also assumes that interactions with historical figures and removing them from their time, even for only a day, will not alter the past nor the present/future— and it's quite predictable —pretty much nothing goes according to plan, but eventually the two friends succeed— and yet it's tremendously entertaining and fun to watch Bill and Ted interacted with historical figures.

Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure would have never worked if it wasn't for the cast though. While the characters are a bit one-dimensional —Bill and Ted are your typical slacker idiots, and the rest of the characters, the historical figures, are barely characterized— the actors are just delightful. Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves effortlessly carry the film with their charm and likeability, and the chemistry between them is such that the friendship between Bill and Ted feels real. As for the supporting cast, the actors do a nice job at shaping up their iconic characters, but Terry Cailler completely steals the show with his over-the-top and hilarious performance as Napoleon Bonaparte.

Orion Pictures, De Laurentiis Entertainment Group
As for the comedy, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure is juvenile to say the least. Despite this, the film is funny as there's plenty of gags —most of which involving historical figures interacting in 1980s California—, fun jokes, and so is the dudes' mispronunciation of the names of the historical figures, and the physical reactions Bill and Ted have throughout their adventure are just priceless.

Ultimately, the film isn't completely original —not only it's not the first 1980s movie involving time travel, but the time-travelling phone booth has also been done before—, but it still feels like a breath of fresh air and it's very enjoyable.


  1. I too haven't heard of this film before reading your review. I am not sure whether I will find it easily, but your review has made me feel like watching it soon.

    1. I hope you'll find it because it's so fun!

  2. I think this film is awesome. It's so funny and full of adventure. Plus, I think it has one of the rare sequels that is actually better than the original mainly because Bill and Ted are just nice guys who just want to rock.