2020 has been the year of awful surprises — a global pandemic resulting in a mass quarantine, the loss of some of our greatest heroes, the cancellation of all of our events, and a lot of political and civil unrest. We have needed some reprieve from it all for a while, a silver lining or glimmer of hope that everything was going to be okay. It has finally come in the form of Bill & Ted Face the Music, the feel good movie of 2020, the year we needed it the most.
In 1989, we saw the first film in the franchise, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, which introduced us to Bill S. Preston Esquire (Alex Winter) and Ted Theodore Logan (Keanu Reeves). The two friends traveled through time in a phone booth and picked up historical figures to help them with their final high school presentation to give them an A so they could graduate and save Ted from military school. In the 1991 follow up, the guys find out they are the future saviors of the universe. They must battle death and robot clones of themselves to continue on their quest to write the song that will unite the universe.
This brings us to the third film in the franchise all these years later. The guys are married to their princesses (played by Erinn Hayes and Jayma Mays) that they picked up in the first film, and they each have a daughter (Samara Weaving and Brigette Lundy-Paine) who resembles the guys in their youth. Bill and Ted have worked all these years to fulfill their destiny, and now realize they are on a very short timeline to get the job done.
The movie pays homage to the films from whence it came, following a similar formula to the original film without repeating the same moves. The movie was purely made for the fans, and it served us well. The story moves forward with fresh jokes and turns you may see coming, but are happy to travel. I am being vague here because I so enjoyed the little surprises all throughout the film, and I don’t want to give them away.
The eternal optimism of Bill and Ted partnered with the still small nods to Rufus (the late, great George Carlin) made this movie the balm to our tired 2020 souls. It has been a year of movie delays and theater shut downs, but for an hour and a half, we were able to laugh and sing at home with our old friends Bill and Ted, and it was pure joy.