Movie Review: Bill & Ted Face the Music (2020)

Synopsis: In 2020, 25 years after becoming famous by winning the Battle of the Bands, Bill and Ted have yet to fulfill their destiny of uniting the world. To make matters worse, they learn they need to record their yet-to-be-written unifying song in a little more than an hour to prevent a complete collapse of time. In desperation, they steal the time-traveling phone booth so they can talk to their future selves. Meanwhile, their daughters decide they want to help and travel back in time to assemble a new band.

Who's in it? The movie stars Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, Samara Weaving, Brigette Lundy-Paine and Kristen Schaal.

Review: When I first heard about this third installment of the Bill & Ted franchise, I was admittedly a bit skeptical. However, I almost always stop to watch the first two movies whenever I come across them on TV, despite seeing them more times than I can remember and, because of that, I still would have paid to see this film at a theater had it not been for the pandemic.

I finally had an opportunity to watch the movie with my wife yesterday evening. It wasn't as good as the first two but, overall, I did wind up enjoying it.

Full disclosure, the movie was predictable to the point I was able to make a fairly accurate guess at how it would end when we were only about 15-20 minutes into it. Despite that, it was still a fun movie to watch.

The part about Bill (Winter) and Ted (Reeves) visiting their future selves so they could get a copy of their song was intriguing. I am still not 100 percent sure why they thought their future versions would have a copy of a song they were supposed to write in the present and, in traveling to the future, they did create a bit of a paradox but, based on some of the clues they were receiving regarding their wives (Erinn Hayes and Jayma Mays), I suspected their leap forward would eventually reveal something important.

Their daughters, however, were probably the most entertaining thing about this film. Thea (Weaving) and Billie (Lundy-Paine) nailed the time traveling thing with much more ease than their dads and I found I enjoyed their characters enough to want to see them in a spinoff film (and that doesn't happen very often).

Probably my only real complaint about this film is, unlike the original, the historical figures that were picked up along the way weren't given a whole lot of screen time. It would have been kind of fun to see if Mozart (Daniel Dorr) adjusted to the modern world the same way Beethoven (Clifford David) did in the first movie. Plus a better explanation of who Ling Lun (Sharon Gee) and Grom (Patty Anne Miller) were probably would have helped those of us who don't know the full history of music. In fact, I am honestly still not sure if Grom was a real person or someone that was made up. In other words, I feel like there was a missed opportunity to both entertain and educate that was missed.

Also, other than Death (William Sadler), the movie neglects to tell us what happened to the other members of Bill and Ted's band, including their robot doubles and Station. It was almost as though the film completely forgot about them.

Final Opinion: The first two films were better but I do feel this third installment did just enough things right to still be entertaining. There were a couple things I probably would have changed regarding the screen time given to the historical figures but would recommend taking the time to watch this film.

My Grade: B-


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