Bill & Ted Face The Music

Jacob Richardson | 8/09/2020

Woah dude, a perfectly fun time to be had at the cinema approaches.


After having saved the universe 20-plus years ago, Ted (Keanu Reeves) and Bill (Alex Winter) find themselves struggling to crack the code on new music. When Kelly (Kristen Schaal) comes from the future to warn them that they have mere minutes to find an play the song that will unite the entire universe through all space and time, and save reality as they know it, Bill and Ted immediately travel through time to visit their future selves, trying to find the elusive formula to this crucial song. In the meantime, their daughters Thea (Samara Weaving) and Billie (Brigette Lundy-Paine) travel through time themselves, on the search for the greatest band possible to aid their parents in this reality altering quest. 


After an extremely lengthy hiatus, the Bill & Ted franchise returns. For fans of the original, this is likely to tick all the right boxes. Many of the same jokes are replayed, modernised and winked at, and the history of the cult classic originals are infused in the DNA of this piece. It’s also a joy to see Reeve and Winter back in these roles, reprising characters that helped cement their careers so early in their journey. 


The new additions are also fun. Bill and Ted’s daughters are smart and entertaining additions to the central cast of characters, and bring a much needed freshness to proceedings. Their quest to put together the greatest band of the most famous musicians in history is also a strong plotline that reaps rewards in the humor department. 


Visually, the CGI and prosthetics here can sometimes take you out of the film due to their quality, but for a comedy spectacle that is to be expected. At the same time, when practical sets are in use, the added CGI can prove to be a fun uplift to the scene - it’s really just in the full green screen wasteland that the charm of Bill & Ted gets lost at times. 


The problem with Bill & Ted 3 however is the staleness of the plot. There is a lot to like here, but the story suffers from two crucial issues. Firstly, we’ve seen a lot of these throughlines in the first two films. While more nuance is added and the circumstances surrounding the duo are updated, fundamentally the broad strokes of this piece won’t surprise anyone. Secondly, the plot mechanism of revisiting the same pair of characters at different intervals through their life could be an interesting one, but in this film gets tired fast. Thankfully, the two daughters have a side plotline which the film cuts back to in just enough amounts to keep the movie afloat, but the returns to Bill & Ted as the film goes on start to grate. 


A fun farce, perfect comedy to turn your brain off for a couple of hours. If you’re a fan of the originals, this is a must see.