A time travel movie that’s fun to watch again after so long. I remember my first viewing two decades ago (that long…) when my cousins rented it on video as it was on new release. What a blast I had watching it and a good laugh too at the antics of the not so intelligent Bill S. Preston, Esquire Alex Winter and as “Ted” Theodore Logan (Keanu Reeves). They meet a man from the future Rufus (who never actually tells them his name) who gives them a time machine in order to help them pass their History presentation. Reeves and Winter do a good job of playing these dudes who want nothing more than to be successful with their Band Wyld Stalyns. Except they can’t even play their own guitars.
I don’t think a movie like this would be allowed to be made today based on the concept alone but the 80s were a far more imaginative time with some crazy ass movies around. It’s got a most excellent soundtrack too. Even the image of the future in this movie is so stylish and unreal as any future set 700 years later should be, unfortunately they toned this back with the sequel having the future be something more ascertainable to the 90s generation which ages the sequel more. Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure led to a sequel two animated series and a short run live action series. Recently there has been talks of a third movie with the main characters dealing with the world as Adults.
As with most time travel movies there’s fun to be had with this aspect of time travel. First they use a Telephone box, having first considered a van but thinking it too similar to the delorean concept of Back to the Future they choose this phone box instead, but the phone box idea had already being in use for a long while in Doctor Who. The phone-box in Bill and Ted does have a tighter squeeze though.
To the nitty gritty aspects: Time Travel…
In Bill and Ted the Time Travel theory that is used to great effect is the Novikov self-consistency principle. Which is used to solve the problem of paradoxes. This idea of a “single, immutable timeline” is also seen in such movies as “12 Monkeys” and “Terminator” to less comedic effect. Whatever one does the timeline ‘always’ remains the same. Time is fixed from this view. It’s a closed loop. If you listen to the lyrics of the opening song of the movie “I can’t break away” – Big Pig, the words ‘you can’t change the course of your destiny’ rings true.
Favorite Quote: “69 dudes!” – Bill and Ted