Bill & Ted Face the Music
Written by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon
Directed by Dean Parisot
Starring Alex Winter, Keanu Reeves, Kristen Schaal, Samara Weaving, Brigette Lundy-Paine, William Sadler, Anthony Carrington, Erinn Hayes, Jayma Mays, Holland Taylor, Kid Cudi and Jillian Bell
A visitor from the future tells best friends Bill and Ted that one of their songs can save life as we know it and bring harmony to the universe.
It’s been 25 years since Wyld Stallyns took the stage to help usher in a new future for humanity. Unfortunately, the song that was supposed to unite the world still hasn’t been written and Bill and Ted’s musical careers have been on the decline ever since. Unwilling to give up on their mission, the duo finds that things in their lives outside of music are also being affected. This becomes apparent when the duo brings their wives to couple’s therapy and the pair can’t seem to connect to their wives separately or express their feelings for them individually.
At the same time, reality is beginning to splinter with historical figures and monuments shifting through time and space. Rufus’ daughter Kelly travels back in time to bring them to the future because they have one more chance to write the song that will fix reality. Unfortunately, they still can’t think of it and decide to go to the future and take it from themselves. The duo’s daughters decide to help their wayward dads by traveling through time and convincing some of the greatest musicians in history to form a super group that will help save all of reality.
Bill & Ted Face the Music is exactly what you want from a Bill & Ted movie. Two lovable, but inept guys with the best of intentions but not the most thought out of plans doing everything they can to save the world while also dealing with the adult issue of trying to save their marriages as well. It’s fun to see these characters expand beyond their mission and even more fun to see how both literally and figuratively, they get in their own way. Reeves and Winter shine in characters they really seem to love deeply and there is a growth to Bill and Ted that you see in the beginning of the film and throughout.
Reeves and Winter also do a great job of playing versions of themselves dealing with the aftermath of their own bad choices and the writers do a great job of not having a traditional villain to overcome because this journey for the duo is about their personal growth. Weaving and Lundy-Paine do a good job as Thea and Billie respectively, but there are moments when Lundy-Paine seems to be trying too hard to do an impression of Reeves’ Ted.
The film isn’t perfect. There are some pacing issues with some of the scenes and some of the jokes don’t land, but the movie is a fun ride that concentrates on character over spectacle. The worst thing the film could have done is go too big with the story and effects at the expense of the characters, but director Dean Parisot uses the effects in service to the characters and story and the film has a lot of heart. Heart which is evident in the overall message of the film. A message that the viewer learns right along with the characters. A fun, funny and sweet film that does service to both the characters and their fans.