The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth DimensionDirector: W.D. Richter
Despite mixed reviews and a disastrous initial release that dumped the film into theaters for a week in the midst of the 1984 Summer Olympics, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eight Dimension went on to become one of the major cult films of the 1980s, developing a rabid following after its release on videotape. Drifting between satire and improbable sci-fi adventure, the film stars Peter Weller as Buckaroo Banzai, the son of an American mother and Japanese father who is a combination physicist, neurosurgeon, martial arts master, secret agent, and rock star who travels with his band of assistants/backing musicians, The Hong Kong Cavaliers. As the story opens, Buckaroo is driving his car through a mountain to test his new invention, the Oscillation Overthruster. However, a race of boorish aliens called the Red Lectroids have been waiting for such an item to become a reality, as they need it to return to the distant planet they call home. One of Buckaroo's arch-enemies, Dr. Emilio Lizardo (John Lithgow), who has been possessed by the Red Lectroids, attempted to created a similar device decades before; now escaped from an insane asylum, he is back at work with the Lectroids on a plan to control the world. Throw in Rastafarian aliens, unscheduled travel between dimensions, and the odd inexplicable watermelon, and you get a film that defies conventional synopsis. With its fast pace, quotable dialogue ("No matter where you go, there you are"), and barrage of gags (subtle and otherwise), you won't be bored even when you're not sure what's going on. The supporting cast includes Jeff Goldblum as New Jersey, a Cavalier with a snappy cowboy outfit, and Ellen Barkin as Penny Priddy, the twin sister of Buckaroo's late wife.
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Cast & Crew
|Peter Weller||Buckaroo Banzai|
|John Lithgow||Dr. Emilio Lizardo,Lord John Whorfin|
|Ellen Barkin||Penny Priddy|
|Jeff Goldblum||New Jersey|
|Christopher Lloyd||John Bigboote|
|Lewis Smith||Perfect Tommy|
|Rosalind Cash||John Emdall|
|Pepe Serna||Reno Nevada|
|Ronald Lacey||President Widmark|
|Matt Clark||Secretary of Defense|
|John Ashton||Highway Patrolman|
|James Saito||Dr. Masado Banzai|
|Jonathan Banks||Lizardo Hospital Guard|
|Raye Birk||1st Reporter|
|Gary Bisig||Second Radar Blaze|
|Mariclare Costello||Sen. Cunningham|
|John Walter Davis||Star Surgeon|
|Jesse Lawrence Ferguson||Black Lectroid|
|Leonard Gaines||Artie Duncan|
|Robert Gray||First Radar Blaze|
|Laura Harrington||Mrs. Johnson|
|Dan Hedaya||John Gomez|
|Bill Henderson||Casper Lindley|
|Damon Hines||Scooter Lindley|
|James Keane||Duck Hunter Bubba|
|Francine Lembi||TV Anchorwoman|
|Carl Lumbly||John Parker|
|Ken Magee||Duck Hunter Burt|
|Kent Perkins||Mission Control|
|Jane Marla Robbins||2nd Reporter|
|Michael Santoro||Billy Travers|
|Vincent Schiavelli||John O'Connor|
|Yakov Smirnoff||National Security Advisor|
|Kevin Rodney Sullivan||John Gant|
|William Traylor||Gen. Catburd|
|Billy Vera||Pinky Carruthers|
|M. James Arnett||Stunts|
|Sidney Beckerman||Executive Producer|
|David M. Blitstein||Special Effects|
|Michael Boddicker||Score Composer|
|Rick Carter||Art Director|
|Gary Daigler||Asst. Director|
|Stephen Dane||Art Director|
|Linda de Scenna||Set Decoration/Design|
|Michael Evje||Sound/Sound Designer|
|Michael Fink||Special Effects,Special Effects Supervisor|
|Katterli A. Frauenfelder||Asst. Director|
|Bones Howe||Musical Direction/Supervision,Sound/Sound Designer|
|Dennis E. Jones||Associate Producer,Production Manager|
|Henry Millar||Special Effects|
|Virginia Randolph||Set Decoration/Design|
|Earl Mac Rauch||Screenwriter|
|J. Michael Riva||Production Designer|
|Aggie Guerard Rodgers||Costumes/Costume Designer|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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You'll either love this flick (as I do) or hate it. I don't watch it very often, but every time I do, I see layers that I'd missed before. It's the best, most deftly executed film parody I have ever seen--so fast-paced & rich that half the time on first viewing, it's hard to tell what's going on. A serious movie? Not by any means! A lark? You betcha!
Incomprehensible plot? OK, a genius neurosurgeon / rock star / nuclear physicist invents a truck that can, thanks to the Oscillation Overthruster, drive through solid matter by way of the 8th Dimension. When the evil Red Lectroids, banished to the 8th Dimension by the Black Lectroids, learn of the Oscillation Overthruster, they try to steal it so that they can return to their homeworld, Planet 10. The Black Lectroids threaten to attack the Soviet Union if Buckaroo can't stop the Red Lectroids. This attack would appear to come from the US, and thus would cause a counterstrike which would effectively destroy the world. SO, Buckaroo Banzai aong with his friends / colleagues / bandmates (The Hong Kong Cavaliers) have to stop the mad scientist who is possessed by the Red Lectroid leader to save the Earth, and Buckaroo's dead wife's long lost twin sister. See? Is that so tough to follow?
This is the quintessential Saturday afternoon movie. Pop some popcorn, put your feet up and just enjoy. Convoluted plot, sharp satire, cute guys and Jeff Golblum in chaps! It just doesn't get much better than that.
Way before its time and never fully appreciated. It's like ''Saturday Night Live'', good and bad at times but the good is better than what you may find anywhere else.
Tom Swift meets the Marx Brothers, with a dash of James Bond AND Maxwell Smart -- this defies any easy description. Any Jame Retief fans should enjoy this movie. Just relax and enjoy the ride, and remember that this is movie is true to life -- some things just don't make sense if you analyze to closely. And remember & amp amp quot History is made at night. Character is what you are in the dark.& amp amp quot
Remarkable that so many can consume so much of the Harry Potter sort of stuff that is churned out nowadays--and not appreciate something else so outright enjoyable. This movie is a lot of fun no matter how many times you see it. And Peter Weller, John Lithgow and Jeff Goldblum are terrific. So watch it at least once. Twice would be better!
This is a true cult classic-'The deuce you say'! Frank from SF just must not get it. An all-star cast and some great lines-'Laugh while you can' and 'Wherever you go, there you are', 'If it was a snake it would have bit me'. Nice soundtrack too! Dr. Emilio Lizardo (Lithgow) lives! Orson Welles was right after all!
Peter ''Robocop'' Weller, Jeff ''The Fly'' Goldblum, John ''Third Rock'' Lithgow, Ellen ''Sea of Love'' Barkin, and on and on. If you love parody, satire and just plain FUN on the screen, this is for you.
Yeah it's a doofus movie, but it's classic doofus! I mean John Lithgow, way before Third Rock, chewing up the scerary, spitting it out and chewing it up again. (And don't forget Lewis Smith as Perfect Tommy.) This is the Saturday morning cartoon for grownups.
Really. This movie is that bad. If B&N had allowed negative stars, I would have awarded them. It's right up there with Plan 9 from Outer Space and Attack of the Killer Tomatoes. Incomprehensible plot, unfunny jokes, Jeff Goldblum in the dorkiest cowboy outfit ever, and John Lithgow as the most irritating mad scientist ever portrayed. I disliked this movie so much that it permanently soured me on Goldblum and Lithgow. I'll walk miles to avoid a movie with either of those two. And I have never seen a single episode of Third Rock from the Sun, thank God. Save your money. Avoid this movie at all costs.