Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure

Has it really been 20 years? This 1989 time-travel comedy about two genial teenage ninnies struck an extended Reagan-era chord. Their sheer cluelessness, and affability, made them like chips off the old Gipper. Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter may be dumb American teens, but they're dumb American teens willing to learn a bit about history (just enough to graduate high school and preserve their band, Wyld Stallyns). Meeting Lincoln and Socrates, among other historical figures, may not make them wise. But at least they cheerfully embrace the idea of wisdom, instead of sneering at it. A 1991 sequel didn't recapture the B&T magic, yet a trilogy might work if the two characters were brought forward to early middle age, kids, wives, and mortgages. By now, they might be a little more receptive to lessons ignored in their youth. The late George Carlin plays Bill and Ted's grizzled mentor. (PG) BRIAN MILLER

Fri., April 24, 11:59 p.m.; Sat., April 25, 11:59 p.m., 2009

 
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