Spaceballs (25th Anniversary Edition) Blu-rayDirected by: Mel Brooks Cast: Mel Brooks, John Candy, Rick Moranis, Bill Pullman Running Time: 1 hr 36 mins Rating: PG Due Out: August 7, 2012
PLOT (courtesy of MGM): The farce is strong in the “uproarious salute to science fiction” (The Hollywood Reporter) when SPACEBALLS: 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION blasts off on Blu-ray August 7 from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Comedy legend Mel Brooks leads an all-star cast of cutups including John Candy (Splash), Rick Moranis (Ghostbusters) and Bill Pullman (Ruthless People).
When the evil Dark Helmet (Moranis) attempts to steal all the air from planet Druidia, a determined Druish Princess (Daphne Zuniga), a clueless rogue (Pullman) and a half-man/half-dog creature who's his own best friend (Candy) set out to stop him. But with the forces of darkness closing in on them at ludicrous speed, they'll need the help of a wise imp named Yogurt (Brooks) and the mystical power of "The Schwartz" to bring peace and merchandising rights to the entire galaxy!
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment combed the desert to bring fans an all-new featurette for the SPACEBALLS: 25TH ANNIVESARY EDITION Blu-ray entitled “Farce Yourself! Spaceballs and the Skroobing of Sci-Fi.” Mel Brooks takes fans on a guided tour into the making of the SPACEBALLS saga, exploring the film’s inspiration, its production, visual effects (including the sizzling creation of “Pizza the Hut”), how the film directly tears down the adventurous (Star Wars), the scary serious (Alien) and even the apocalyptic (Planet of the Apes) in his own uninhibited way and its epic status as Mel Brooks’ most successful and beloved fan favorite film. Additional bonus features include commentaries, behind-the-scenes featurettes, still galleries, trailers, film bloopers and more.
WHO'S IT FOR? Star Wars, Mel Brooks fans and those who love spoofs need to make sure they make room in their collection for Spaceballs.
MOVIE: I was 11. That's right, Spaceballs was perfectly in my wheelhouse for comedy and sci-fi. It couldn't have come at a better time, and I was hooked. It's fair to say I saw Spaceballs 25 times as a kid (thank you HBO). I hadn't sat through the film in its entirety for at least a decade. The 25th Anniversary Edition came along at the perfect time for me.
Forget the comedy, the story works. A princess is kidnapped by the evil Dark Helmet, and her father must rely on a Han Solo/Luke Skywalker wannabe named Lone Star. The adventure takes them across the galaxy meeting a range of characters like Yogurt (Brooks).
The comedy comes from Moranis first and foremost. Since he hasn't been in the public eye for years, it's easy to forget he was one of the best comedic actors in the '80s. The looks, almost always exaggerated, are priceless from Moranis' dim leader. Working just as hard is Candy. The lady in your life might be a tough sell on this one. Perhaps you should remind her the "star" of the film is Zuniga. Sorry, let me put that another way. The "star" is Jo from "Melrose Place." That's some amusing history there, but some of the film is showing its 25-year age. The theme song "Spaceballs" is awful, and it doesn't seem to be a parody, like the rest of the film. We'll allow the guy in the bear suit, mainly because it doesn't make any sense at all. The one thing that continuously bugs me is Rivers. Her android just doesn't cut it. Her cheap looking suit doesn't even compare to the "jokes." This is the last good movie Brooks directed, and with Rivers' one-liners, it seems Brooks was stuck in a vaudevillian time-warp. Luckily Dot Matrix isn't given too many moments. Beisdes, those bits are easy enough to put up with when you have an amazing Alien spoof. John Hurt says, "Oh no, not again." When I first saw this, it was before my exposure to Alien. It's always weird when the spoof hits first. That was the case for me, and probably many of my peers in the '80s. I found it funny the first time, and it has aged quite well.
One more thing, don't worry about this Blu-ray. It looks fantastic. You'll be able to relax with confidence as soon as you see and hear the gigantic, never-ending ship crawl through the opening of the film.
MOVIE SCORE: 8/10
Five Hours of Blu-ray Special Features
- NEW!! Farce Yourself! Spaceballs and the Skroobing of Sci-Fi featurette
- Commentary by Mel Brooks
- Additional Commentary Tracks:
- Spaceballs: The Documentary featurette
- In Conversation: Mel Brooks & Thomas Meehan featurette
- John Candy: Comic Spirit featurette
- Watch the Movie in Ludicrous Speed featurette
- Still Galleries:
- Spaceballs: The Behind-the-Movie Photos
- Spaceballs: The Costume Gallery
- Spaceballs: The Art Gallery
- Exhibitor Trailer with Mel Brooks Introduction
- Theatrical Trailer
- Film Flubs:
- Edge of the Mirror
- Grabs Himself Early
- The Magic Reappearing Ring
- More Than His Head
- No End in Sight
- Track Behind Dot
- Storyboards-to-Film Comparison