Number One (UK), April 14, 1990
Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure
by Kate Davies
This is going to be HUGE! It’s one of the funniest, wackiest teen films there’s been for years - the humour is completely off the wall and round the bend as Bill and Ted, two spacey teenagers - motto: ‘be excellent to each other’ - travel through time collecting historical characters to help them pass their final history assessment. So for their historical knowledge doesn’t go back far beyond Van Halen - the pair are in a dreadful band called The Wild Stallyns [sic] - and if Ted (Keanu Reeves) flunks his exams he’ll be sent to military school. It just so happens (doesn’t it always) that a mysterious benefactor from the mists of time, Rufus, turns up and offers the boys a Dr Who time travelling phone booth that’ll whisk them through time. So off they trot and gather up Napoleon (who they later lose along with Freud in a shopping arcade [sic - Napoleon was never at the mall], Joan of Arc (Jane Wiedlin), Socrates and Billy the Kid to name but a few important historical dudes. The film is funny but it’s the spaced out drawl which generates most of the humour - anything great is ‘bodocious’ or ‘totally triumphant’, all people are ‘dudes’ or ‘babes’ and they employ tongue twisting dialogue like ‘we’re in danger of flunking most egreriously’. Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter as Bill are superb as the outrageous teenage dudes in fact, they’re ‘excellent’.