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Rated PG
Copyright 1984 Sherwood Productions
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Buckaroo Banzai - Peter Weller! Brilliant particle physist and neurosurgeon, he is also a martial arts master and plays in a band.
  • Lord John Whorfin - John Lithgow! Evil leader of the "Red Lectroids." Buckaroo vaporizes him.
  • Penny Priddy - Ellen Barkin! The lost twin sister of Buckaroo's deceased wife.
  • New Jersey - Jeff Goldblum! A cowboy at heart, this neurosurgeon partner of Buckaroo is joining The Hong Kong Cavaliers.
  • John Bigboote (Bigbooty! Hehehehe!) - Christopher Lloyd! Red Lectroid from planet 10, shot by Lord Whorfin for talking back.
  • Rawhide - Clancy Brown! (He played Kurgan in "Highlander.") Member of The Hong Kong Cavaliers, poisoned by a Red Lectroid.
  • Perfect Tommy and Reno - Two of The Hong Kong Cavaliers. Tommy has some serious bleached hair.
  • John Parker - Black Lectroid, sent to help Buckaroo save Earth before his people are forced to destroy it.
  • John O'Conner - Vincent Schiavelli! (He's been in lots of stuff, the teacher in "Better Off Dead" and the subway ghost in "Ghost.") A Red Lectroid. Vaporized.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

This movie has more famous people in it than most blockbuster films! Look at them all! Just look at them! What we have here my friends is a seriously out in left field piece of work. Buckaroo Banzai and his partners have just perfected the "Oscillation Overthruster" and it allows them to travel into the 8th dimension. Why did we miss all the ones between? I dunno! How can a 3rd dimension being interact on the 8th? I dunno! Lord Whorfin is trapped on Earth with a select group of followers, he wants to steal the overthruster and free all the Red Lectroids from exile in the 8th dimension. Then they will return to their home on the 10th planet and defeat the Black Lectroids! Black Lectroids are the good aliens by the way, they're also all Jamaican oddly enough. Need a romance in here somewhere so Buckaroo runs into Penny while performing at a club, she's the lost twin sister of the woman he loved. (She died, we don't really know how.) Well, the Black Lectroids can't let Lord Whorfin escape Earth, they are fully prepared to precipitate a nuclear war if necessary. They do have the courtesy to shock (literally) Buckaroo so he can see the alien's true forms. With his elite band of six shooting scientists, The Hong Kong Cavaliers, Dr. Banzai is able to defeat Whorfin and save Earth. Do you get the idea? What more do you need? Okay, how about Christopher Lloyd running around and everyone calling him "John Bigbooty?" Or Jeff Goldblume as New Jersey, decked out like a cowboy - he even has black and white spotted luggage. Gateway 2000 luggage! Watch the film two or three times, the plot is there...

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Neurosurgeons shouldn't tug on things they don't recognize.
  • Rocket powered pickup trucks don't look right.
  • The 8th dimension looks a good deal like what you might see through an electron microscope.
  • New Brunswick, Maine is a tough town.
  • Aliens with bird like ships should stay well clear of Earth during duck season. Especially you, yeah you, darn Romulans.
  • Alien Lectroids have nads.
  • Hologram viewing glasses are made out of bubble wrap.
  • Girls: Never try to get intimate with some guy carrying a electric charge.
  • Bacteria can affect people via television.
  • Good aliens appear to hail from Jamaica.
  • Four star generals should not use the phrase, "I'm barely holding my fudge."
  • Alien thermal pods carry parachutes.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 7 mins - This is some serious high tech stuff!
  • 10 mins - Buckaroo is driving through a mountain?
  • 13 mins - John Lithgow is applying electric current to his tongue!
  • 23 mins - If Peter Weller was bawling out a song to me I'd do the same thing.
  • 32 mins - Somebody shut Penny up, damn blonde...
  • 48 mins - That little asian guy looks funny riding a Harley.
  • 50 mins - Awful lot of folks named John.
  • 53 mins - What the heck did the alien kill him with? Spit?
  • 60 mins - Yeah, why is there a watermelon there?
  • 78 mins - These guards don't notice a double decker bus?
  • 85 mins - Now that is a mad looking slug, um thing.

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note buckaroo1.wav Buckaroo: "No,no,no,no. Don't tug on that. You never know what it might be attached to."
Green Music Note buckaroo2.wav Lord Whorfin: "Laugh while you can, monkey boy!"
Green Music Note buckaroo3.wav Lord Whorfin: "I wanna make a call to Mr. John Bigbooty at YoYodine Propulsion Systems."
Green Music Note buckaroo4.wav John Parker: "Wait a minute, I need see Buckaroo Banzai in person. My name is John Parker."
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipbuckaroo1.mpg - 2.5m
Just a moment ago Vincent Schiavelli and Christopher Lloyd were sitting there, but now Buckaroo can recognize them as aliens from the 8th dimension! Lost? That's a normal reaction for people watching this the first time.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 ... 7 8 [9] 10 11
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #65. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by JoJo
I saw this recently on T.V. late at night. It was the most eighties thing I've ever seen. Even Buckaroo Bonzai didn't seem convincing as an action hero because he looked a lot like Adam Ant. But the cheeziness somehow worked because it didn't make that deadly, all-too-common mistake of taking itself too seriously. Plus the plot involving the War of the Worlds broadcast was very clever. I could also see many similarities to "Bad Taste", which is always good.  
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #66. Posted on September 14, 2006, 11:25:51 PM by UKNOWHOO
I love Badmovies. This is one of my favs. Also Hardware, Cherry 2000 and SHE.
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #67. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Force
Have to agree, this movie was awesome, funny, filled with action, and sooo frikking detail oriented that it confuses people used to hollywood pablum where you ONLY get the details that relate to the story.

The watermelon is kind of symbolic of the movie- it's filled with lots of stuff that doesn't necessarily pertain, but like your grandpa's workshop, it's fascinating as a whole.

That's why I think the watermelon was an experiment that Banzai was conducting as a memory storage unit based on the architecture of the human brain.

We can only theorize as to the actual contents of the watermelon, but I would think they would contain a scanned record of every comic book in existence.

I have to admit, I really liked Peter Weller's version of "Since I don't have you", and have searched to download it numerous times, with no success.
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #68. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Datan0de
What is this sample of perfection-in-filmmaking doing on!? I adore this movie, in ways that I can't fully describe on a family-friendly web site. I couldn't guess how many times I've seen it, whether in the theater, the two different VHS copies I've worn out, the DVD, or the rip on my iPod. (Yes, I carry it with me. "Wherever I go, there it is!")

It's not my favorite movie of all time, but it's definitely in my top 10 and probably in my top 5. Thank the powers that be that the folks who put out the DVD *get* it, and gave it the treatment it deserves.

One word of warning for new Blue Blaze Irregulars- this is a very "dense" movie. You're dropped into the middle of an adventure already in progress, and there's an awful lot going on. Don't expect to fully understand everything after just one viewing, or even three for that matter. Just hang on tight and enjoy the ride!

By the way, since nobody else here mentioned it I'll state that the comic book adaptation (if you can find it) is actually quite good, and presents the story in a more easily digestible format.
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #69. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Shonkin
My idea of a perfect movie night would be a double feature with Buckaroo Banzai and Raising Arizona. Both of them are so filled with silliness delivered with completely serious faces that the giddiness each induced in me reminds me of the other. They are nothing alike. But the effects were quite like. Buckaroo became a smash hit in the communal group I was (and still am) part of; we all went around quoting it, occasionally even the "naughty" bits (John Smallberries?!). If a triple-feature were in order, I would toss UHF in, not because it is really as good as the other two, but it does have a similar flavor... anyway, thanks for reawakening the good memories.
Re: The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #70. Posted on February 07, 2008, 02:19:06 PM by Rick Miller
 I saw this movie on VHS about a year after it was made,I was in high school and a pretty wierd guy(still am). The first time I saw it I peed myself. We rewound the tape a hundred times listening to why's there a there-I'll tell you later, laughing till we cried. "How you live your personal life is your business but I'm here to see a God dahm bomber", classic! And let's not forget the hunters pocking at the tree with the space ship in it with a stick. "he's crackling"-"yeh,and we're standing in water". And my all time favorite-"Akita,what is it","it's your hand Buckaroo". If you don't love this film, you have a low IQ,and just don't get it. They should play this movie at the DMV and if you don't like,you should not be allowed to recieve your drivers license!!!! Rick De La New Daddy
Re: The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #71. Posted on February 10, 2008, 10:21:24 PM by yodaswisdom

When it came time to film the end titles sequence, where Buckaroo and pals are walking around a dry L.A. aqueduct in step to the music, the music wasn't ready. Composer Michael Boddicker told the film crew to use "Uptown Girl" by Billy Joel as a placeholder because it was the exact same tempo. Those scenes were filmed with "Uptown Girl" blaring from a boom box tied to the back of the camera truck.
Re: The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
Reply #72. Posted on February 13, 2008, 02:41:03 PM by Kruge
little factoid on the side: Star Trek#s Starfleet ships all have a plaque on their bridge with ... well, the "Motto" of the ship. On the Enterprise it of course is "To boldly go (...)". I can't remember the ship's name, but according to one of paramounts secondary books about Trek there's one ship with "Wherever you go there you are!" as it's motto. :)
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