Plot: What’s it about?
Bill (Alex Winter) and Ted (Keanu Reeves) may have passed their history presentation, but they’re in the clear just yet. A new challenge faces them now, as they must enter and win the Battle of the Bands competition and since they still can’t play that well, it could prove to be a most difficult proposition. But even the contest isn’t their main concern, as an evil man named De Nomolos (Joss Ackland) has used the tunnels of time to knock the twosome out of the picture, once and for all. You see, he has created cutting edge robotic twins of Bill and Ted, which he will send back through time to murder the real buddies, then demolish their lives and a result, their impact will not be felt in the future, just as De Nomolos wishes. The plan starts off well enough for the evil dude, as Bill and Ted are killed by the robots, but they manage to convince Death (William Sadler) to give them a chance to win back their lives. But even if they can somehow outplay Death to return to their lives, can they defeat De Nomolos and win the Battle of the Bands?
After the success of Bill & Ted’s first adventure on screen, it was time for a sequel and thankfully, the production team nailed this one. Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, and George Carlin all return to their roles and instead of rehashing plot material from the original movie, this sequel takes off in some new directions. The issue of time travel is still present and is explored a little more, while Bill & Ted might be a tad older, but are none the wiser. As such, that means the antics are as much as before, but with new supporting characters to share in the good times. It is always good to see Death featured in a prominent role of course, while the robotic Bill & Ted are also quite cool, with some of the best moments in the picture. The scenes in Heaven and Hell are very cool, I think and while this movie is no brainbuster, it is a fun ride and well worth a look. MGM hasn’t done much with extras, but the price is so low, the value is still tremendous with this disc. If you liked the first one, then you’ll want to pick up this sequel, without a doubt.
I never would have guessed that he’d go on to become a name player in the business, but that’s just what Keanu Reeves has done. I think he is best suited for roles like this one, where minimal dramatic presence is needed, but he hasn’t been too miserable in his more recent roles. But his persona seems to mesh with Ted to sheer perfection, as he always seems natural within the role, as it if all comes without any effort, which could be the case. He nails the lines in these two movies better than he does at any other point in his career, so one has to wonder why he refused to star in a third installment. Even so, I will always remember Reeves not as a dedicated cop or a cyber nerd, but as Ted Theodore Logan. Other films with Reeves include The Matrix, Point Break, The Watcher, The Devil’s Advocate, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and Speed. The cast also includes Alex Winter (The Lost Boys, Freaked), William Sadler (The Shawshank Redemption, Hard to Kill), and Joss Ackland (Surviving Picasso, Lethal Weapon 2).
Video: How does it look?
Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey is presented in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. This is a more than solid visual effort, but some problems do surface at times. I saw more print defects than expected, with a lot of small pops and nicks, as well as more grain than I had counted on, especially in the darker scenes. But even so, this transfer remains more than acceptable, with bright colors and stable contrast in most instances. Aside from the print flaws and troubles in the darker scenes, this transfer is terrific and as such, fans should be pleased.
Audio: How does it sound?
The included Dolby Digital 5.1 track is by no means a reference level treatment, but it does sound better than I had expected. The metal driven soundtrack allows the speakers to pulse when needed, while some decent surround presence is also found in a number of scenes, though nothing too powerful. The dialogue never slips however, as vocals sound crystal clear and no volume errors emerge in the least. This disc also includes French, Spanish, and Portuguese audio tracks, as well as subtitles in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.
Supplements: What are the extras?
This disc includes a brief behind the scenes featurette, as well as the film’s theatrical and teaser trailers.