See, I recall watching the curiously-named The Adventures Of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension in theaters, and I distinctly remember being bored silly with it. As is often the case with genre flicks, I loved the premise -- the whole idea of this band of adventurers headlined by a super-genius, super-scientist, super-rock-star -- and I was totally into the kinda/sorta whacked out possibilities of differing dimensions and the like. But somehow I just thought the sum of the parts never quite equalled a whole.
I know, I know, I know. "But how can you ...? But why don't you ...? But won't you just ...?"
What can I say? It is what it is.
Directed by W.D. Richter with a script from Earl Mac Rauch, the film boasts one of the most talented ensembles one could imagine for its day. Peter Weller. Jeff Goldblum. John Lithgow. Ellen Barkin (before she got all bitter with politics and was just one of the hottest actresses on the planet). Christopher Lloyd. Clancy Brown. Those and a whole host of familiar faces. Here's the plot summary as provided by IMDB.com:
"Adventurer, brain surgeon, rock musician Buckaroo Banzai and his crime-fighting team, the Hong Kong Cavaliers, must stop evil alien invaders from the eighth dimension who are planning to conquer Earth."
Heck, you know what? I can even remember giving this one a second chance when it came out on home video, something I almost never do. My sentiment at the time was maybe I'd seen it theatrically on a bad day or something, and -- given the strength of the idea and the line-up -- I'd watch it again and be entirely surprised. Two hours later? Nope. Nothing. No change. In fact, I may've even had trouble staying awake through all of it that second time. It just never stuck. Can't say why.
Banzai is also famous for promising a sequel well before it had achieved any measure of legitimate box office success (that never came). I believe someone shared with me recently that the sequel did see the light of day in book format (comic book? novel?), but -- my opinion of the original being what it is -- I've no compunction to see out and explore that. God bless those of you with the stones to do it. Maybe a follow-up could've been something special.
As always, thanks for reading ... and live long and prosper!