Okay, don’t panic… this 2005 British film
was the much anticipated and long-awaited adaptation to Douglas Adams’ best-selling
novel of the same name… which itself, was an adaptation of a 1978 radio program. Highlighting
an abridged version of the aforementioned formats, as well a popular British mini-series
from 1981, the screenplay from this famous epic was penned by Adams himself, years before
he died – nearly a decade prior to this film’s eventual release. Opening with a catchy Broadway-style
tune from the perspective of dolphins leaving Earth before it’s destroyed – this movie goes
full tilt towards the absurd, and ambitiously embraces it. We’re introduced to Arthur Dent,
a lowly Briton who is promptly whisked off of planet earth by a hitchhiking alien previously
masquerading as Dent’s human friend. Making sure not to forget their towels, the two across
the universe, meeting up with all sorts of strange, hilarious, dangerous, and interesting
life forms. With a dry wit, and impeccable satire, “Hitchhiker’s” does a fantastic job
of keeping things bizarre but familiar – with the actual Guide itself chiming in when additional
bits of hilarious exposition are needed. Elements like the sliding doors that make a “sighing
noise” when opening, or the “point-of-view-gun” make for some hilarious, and quotable cinema.
The brilliantly chosen cast features Martin Freeman, Zooey Deschanel, Mos Def Sam Rockwell,
Alan Rickman, John Malkovich, Stephen Fry, and Bill Nighy. The brilliant characters and
comedy are carefully brought to life with ample use of impressive special effects that
never feel out of place. At 108 minutes, the involved story flies by, unfortunately resulting
in a seemingly rushed ending just as things start to pick up. This old-fashioned sci-fi
comedy series responsible for giving us the answer to life, the universe and everything,
finally receives the big-screen treatment is always deserved. If you’ve enjoyed this
story on a previous format, this feature-length adaptation is required viewing. Likewise,
if you haven’t yet heard the original radio show, or TV series… I’d suggest checking
them out, as both are still very fun today. From Deschanel’s adorable portrayal of Arthur’s
love-interest to Zaphod Beeblebrox’s second head… there’s something for everyone to
enjoy here. “The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy”, a “Memorably smart, goofy, and hilarious”.
Now that you’ve heard my review, let’s see what you had to say in the YouTube comments.
Here’s the rate-o-matic again to rank “The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy”… a double
eight. I have fond memories of the earlier formats of this story – and given it’s limitations,
I felt this film did a terrific job with the material. I thought it was a great movie.
You agreed – everyone praising the acting, effects, and writing – even if you believed
the book may have the advantage… you rated it “great” as well.