In 1984 moviegoers were treated the ultimate sci-fi light speed adventure, a movie that would change the world for generations – that film is; Back to the Future. Another Sci-fi action light speed adventure movie snuck out that year; The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension.
Starring a young Peter Weller as the martial arts master/expert neurologist/rock musician, Buckaroo Banzai as he is testing the limits of a Jet car he created alongside his band of scientists; the Hong Kong Cavaliers.
The Jet Car sends Buckaroo through the solid matter of a mountain – collecting a mysterious orb from alien race. The aliens have been scouring the earth for years disguised as humans trying to retrieve the orb. Now it’s up to Buckaroo and his merry crew to save the earth from their invasion.
Buckaroo Banzai is a nutty, weird and wonderful movie. I have never seen this film prior to reviewing it and I came away enjoying it! It is easiest the perfect example a cult Sci-Fi B-Movie from the 80’s. It has all the elements, handfuls of famous actors (before they were famous), funky music and actors wearing rubber aliens masks!
Coming off of its 30 year anniversary, the cult classic DVD/Blu-Ray label Arrow are known for their generous amount of special features when it comes to celebrating the classics. Buckaroo Banzai is no exception with over a dozen special features including; Interviews, Audio Commentaries, Q&A Panels, Making Of and alternative, extended and deleted scenes – Oh my!
My particular favourites from the bunch is the forty minute Lincoln Centre Q&A which was filmed as part of the 2011 New York Film Festival featuring Peter Weller and John Lithgow moderated by “the Human Hockey Jersey” Clerks director Kevin Smith. Weller and Lithgow seem pleasantly overwhelmed by Smiths appreciation for the film. Weller is razor sharp on mic, at one point where he notices an audience member has nodded off, he stops talking about the film and urges the audience to wake him and teases that he’s on narcotics. Lithgow has his fair share of stories, highlights include that he used his Italian make-up artist as his dialogue coach and went as far as get the artist credited in the film as Mr. Lithgow’s Dialogue Coach.
Other notable features on the disc include Banzai Radio, a 10 minute audio only interview, a primitive podcast almost where Denise Okuda and Terry Erdman discuss fans reactions to Banzai at conventions – creating merchandise and the possibilities of having Buckaroo Banzai released on DVD in the near future. If those features aren’t enough there’s also fourteen! Aye, fourteen deleted scenes included in this release.