Tuesday, 8 September 2020

Film Review: "Bill & Ted Face the Music" (2020).

"The future awaits" in Bill & Ted Face the Music. This science fiction comedy film directed by Dean Parisot and written by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon. It is the third film in the Bill & Ted series, and the sequel to Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey (1991). The ruler of the future tells best friends Bill and Ted they must compose a new song to save life as we know it. But instead of writing it, they decide to travel through time to steal it from their older selves. Meanwhile, their young daughters devise their own musical scheme to help their fathers bring harmony to the universe.

After the release and success of Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey, there were no immediate plans for a sequel. Around 2005, Keanu Reeves was asked if he had any interest in playing Ted again, to which he responded positively. Around 2008, conceptualization for a third film began. In September 2010, Alex Winter confirmed that they had come onto an idea for a plot that they felt appropriate with Matheson and Solomon beginning to work on the script with significant input from Reeves and Winter. By April 2011, the first draft of the script had been completed. By August 2012, Parisot was hired to direct. While Reeves and Winter were both eager to return to their roles, but there was little interest in the script from any studios. Around 2014, the filmmakers began trying to appeal to fans. In September 2014, after the release of John Wick, the film's outlook changed. David Haring and Patrick Dugan, came in to provide the financial backing for the film, and by the end of September 2014, rewrites on the film begun while efforts were made to find a studio. Even with initial funding, it still took several years for them to make necessary deals for the actual production. During this time, the script was mostly finalized and entitled as Bill & Ted Face the Music. The filmmakers then approached MGM to secure distribution, prior to its relaunch of Orion Pictures in September 2017. MGM accepted the offer. In early May 2018, the film was formally greenlit. In late March 2019, Winter and Reeves affirmed that production was ready to commence, and that they had secured an August 21, 2020 release date. By early July, Winter, Reeves, and William Sadler were confirmed to reprise their roles, with Kristen Schaal, Samara Weaving, Brigette Lundy-Paine, Anthony Carrigan, Erinn Hayes, Jayma Mays, Holland Taylor, Kid Cudi, and Jillian Bell. At the same time, principal photography commenced and wrapped in late August. Filming took place throughout California and New Orleans. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the film was moved to August 14, 2020 before then being delayed to August 28, 2020As further complications from the pandemic continued to threaten movie theater openings, it was announced in late July that the film would be released in a combined theatrical and Premium VOD premiere on September 1, 2020. Then, in early August, Winter announced that the film had been moved back to its August 28 slot.

The cast, especially Reeves and Winter, are clearly having a wonderful time. The enthusiasm is contagious.

Though not as strong as its predecessors, this is a better threequel than expected, and it's well worth an hour and a half of your time.

Simon says Bill & Ted Face the Music receives:

Also, see my review for RED 2.

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