Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey (1991)
A review by Shlomoh Sherman
September 13, 2018

Read about Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey On the Internet Movie Data Base

Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey (1991)
Director: Peter Hewitt (as Pete Hewitt)
Writers: Chris Matheson (characters), Ed Solomon (characters)
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, William Sadler, George Carlin
Plot Summary: A tyrant from the future creates evil android doubles of Bill and Ted and sends them back to eliminate the originals.
Plot Keywords: Lucifer - Death character - Other characters: Albert Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, James T kirk character
Tagline: Whoa dude!
Genres: Adventure - Comedy - Fantasy - Music - Sci-Fi
Certificate: PG
Parents Guide: See below
Country: USA
Language: English - Italian - Russian
Release Date: July 19, 1991 (USA)
Also Known As: Bill & Ted Go to Hell
Filming Locations: Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant - 6100 Woodley Avenue, Van Nuys, Los Angeles, California, USA
Box Office:
Budget:$20,000,000 (estimated)
Gross USA: $38,037,513
Company Credits:
Production Co: Interscope Communications,Nelson Entertainment
Runtime: 93 min
Sound Mix: Dolby SR
Color: Color
Wins and Nominations: See below


I cannot tell you how excruciatingly painful it was to sit through this movie but since I liked the original Ted and Bill movie, BILL AND TED'S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE, I decided to check this one out. Also, I am a fan of Keanu Reeves, and of George Carlin who plays a futuristic time-wizard reprising his role from the first film.

Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Ted "Theodore" Logan are two 20th Century rock and rollers who forever are getting into messes wherein they have to save humanity for a future of excellence.

An evil would-be conqueror, De Nomolos, threatens to throw history off-track by sending evil Bill and Ted robots back in time in order to kill the good goofy heroes of the film. To save themselves from death, the boys devise a plan to overcome the Grim Reaper.

I guess the scriptwriter could not miss including a scene in which they play board games with Death, giving homage to Ingmar Bergman's similar moment in his 1957 classic, THE SEVENTH SEAL.


The boys find themselves traversing Heaven and Hell to return to the Land of the Living. They must also re-establish relationships with their "babes" who have quit them as girlfriends, and end up having a "most triumphant" concert at the all-important Battle of the Bands. Just why the girls broke their engagements with the boys is still not clear to me. I must have missed something.

All in all, my opinion is that this movie is dopey. But one thing did was funny. Every time those two played air guitar, I laughed my ass off.

In 2010, Keanu Reeves told a reporter that a script for a third Bill and Ted movie, BILL AND TED FACE THE MUSIC, was being worked on. This never came to fruition. As late as 2018, scriptwriter, Ed Solomon, reported that he still hoped to make the 3rd movie but was having problems getting funding. In this 3rd movie, Bill and Ted would be mature married men

The Bill and Ted movies may have had an influence on Wayne's World

Here's an excerpt from Vip_Ebriega's IMDB September 6, 2008 review:
Imaginative and silly; Good fun.
My Take: A goofy, yet imaginative mess.
Keanu Reeves (Yes! That Keanu Reeves) and Alex Winter return as the two punk-rock idiots in this sequel to the time-trotting adventure comedy BILL AND TED'S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE, now a cult classic.
BOGUS JOURNEY's array of exuberant special effects, gimmicks aren't up-to-date standards, and even some of the humor and the for-the-time look and feel are somewhat dated. To be honest, the film also feels like it was released on the wrong year, even for the 90's. But with it's no little lack of imagination and a lively turn by both the performances and direction, BILL AND TED'S BOGUS JOURNEY is fun, imaginative, and yes, bogus.

For your information, read about 15 Things You May Not Know About BILL AND TED'S BOGUS JOURNEY at

KUDOS TO Keanu Reeves as Ted; Keanu has moved on, matured, and given us great performances
KUDOS TO Alex Winter as Bill; I really have no idea about what has happened with his career.
KUDOS TO George Carlin as Rufus, the wizard from the future; his great standup comedy is sorely missed

William Sadler ("Death"), also plays a bit role as an Englishman when we see various spots around the world when the Battle of the Bands is shown.
The guitar solo before KISS' "God Gave Rock And Roll To You", is performed by guitar legend Steve Vai. The footage had already been shot, and the world premiere was a week away, when he was asked to do it. He also contributed various music in the film, including "The Reaper Rap", which features on the end credits.
The evil character from the future is called "De Nomolos", which is Writer and Producer Ed Solomon's name spelled backwards.
The original title was "Bill and Ted go to Hell" but was changed because of American objections to the use of the word "hell".
In the scene where Bill and Ted are addressing God, there are two statues at the base of the staircase. One is of Michael Powell, and the other is of David Niven, an homage to Powell and Emeric Pressburger's afterlife classic A Matter of Life and Death (1946). The stairway itself is the same as the one in that film, which has the U.S. title "Stairway to Heaven".
The "Riddance of Evil" book that Missy uses to send Bill and Ted to Hell, is actually a re-dressed copy of the Stephen King short-story collection "Four Past Midnight." She opens it to a page in the story "Secret Window, Secret Garden," which can be read clearly in a few frames of the film.
The mountain, to which Bill and Ted are brought to be killed by the evil robots, is the same mountain Captain Kirk climbs in Star Trek: Arena (1967), which Bill and Ted watched in their apartment.
The evil robots arrive in the parking lot of the Circle-K convenience store, the same place where Bill and Ted first meet Rufus in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989). That's why there's a second square burn from the phone booth.
During filming, Keanu Reeves collapsed in his trailer, and was hospitalized with an arm infection.
Stephen Herek declined to return as director, because he thought it was "almost a parody of a movie that was already a parody".
During the sťance scene, the chant to send Bill's and Ted's spirits, can be read backwards as "Ed and Chris will rule the world." Ed Solomon and Chris Matheson being the movie's scriptwriters.
In an early draft of the script, Rufus was the villain.
At first, the studio executives adamantly said "No Way!" to the idea of Bill and Ted dying, but the creators and actors were firm, realizing that it was too good an idea not to do.
In 2010, Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter said that a script for Bill and Ted 3 was in the works and that they liked the story which takes place 20 years after this film. However, George Carlin passed away in 2008.
When Ted attempts to get into Heaven by proving himself worthy, he says, "Every rose has its thorn. Every night has a dawn. Every cowboy sings a sad sad song." These are the key lyrics of "Every Rose Has Its Thorn", a song sung by Poison.
The film takes place in 2691 and 1993.
Alex Winter (Bill S. Preston, Esq.), Keanu Reeves (Ted "Theodore" Logan), George Carlin (Rufus), Hal Landon Jr. (Captain John Logan), Amy Stoch (Missy) and J. Patrick McNamara (Mr. Preston) are the only actors to reprise their roles from Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989).
The film came in at No. 2 at the American Box Office, which it was beaten by Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991). Incidentally, the film itself mocks The Terminator (1984). In the film The evil robot duplicates of Bill and Ted are sent back through time by De Nomolos to stop the real Bill and Ted from winning The Battle of the Bands and when the evil Bill and Ted robots time travel in the stolen time machine, they wear sunglasses.
William Sadler reprises his portrayal of the Grim Reaper in the Tales from the Crypt episode Tales from the Crypt: The Assassin (1994).

In Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, princess Joanna, ends up with Ted, whereas Princess Elizabeth ends up with Bill. However, in Bogus Journey, Ted is with Elizabeth and Bill is with Joanna.
When Death is falling from the sky after finding Station, his mouth is closed as he screams.
When Bill and Ted are freefalling into Hell, when they've turned parallel with the ground, supports/suspension equipment is visible through their t-shirts.
When Bill and Ted are walking out of the desert after they "Melvin" Death you can see the shadow of some piece of equipment on Ted when the camera is rotating to show the sign.
In the scene where the aliens join into the big station the support wires that help them into the air are clearly visible.
When Elizabeth and Joanna are being knocked out, a heap of clothes appears on the floor behind them. This is from a deleted scene where the evil robots dress up as each other.
At the Battle of the Bands, scorch marks suddenly appear on the evil robot heads shortly before Bill and Ted throw them away. This is from a deleted scene where DeNomolos fires at the boys; but they use the heads to block the shots.

A Matter of Life and Death (1946) The celestial stairway is based on the one from the film.
The Seventh Seal (1957) Bill and Ted challenge death to Battleship, Cluedo, electric football and Twister.
Hawaii Five-O (1968) (TV Series) Death says, "Book 'em, Dano."
The Exorcist (1973) Referring to possession, Bill says, "It worked in 'The Exorcist'. One and Three."
Butch and Sundance: The Early Days (1979) During Station's charades game, Death guesses this film.
Smokey and the Bandit Part 3 (1983) The film was the solution to Station's charades game.
Amadeus (1984) Bill and Ted have a copy of the film on VHS in their apartment.

Dream of a New Day Performed by Richie Kotzen Published by Mike Varney, Steve Fontano & Richie Kotzen Written by Richie Kotzen Produced by Big Bag O' Tunes / Richie Kotzen Music Courtesy of Shrapnel Records / Roadrunner Records
The Reaper Written, Performed & Produced by Steve Vai Published by Sy Vy Music / OPC Music Publishing, Inc. Courtesy of Relativity Records
Shout it Out Performed by Slaughter Produced & Arranged by Dana Strum & Mark Slaughter Written by Mark Slaughter & Dana Strum Published by Topless Music / Chrysalis Songs Courtesy of Chrysalis Records, Inc.
The Perfect Crime Written by Mike Patton, Roddy Bottum, Billy Gould, Mike Bordin and Jim Martin Performed by Faith No More Produced by Matt Wallace and Faith No More Published by Vomit God Music / Big Thrilling Music Courtesy of Slash Records
Showdown Performed by Love on Ice Produced by Rick Parashar Written by Dirk Sullivan, Dan Krueger & Stan Robinson Published by Virgin Music, Inc. / Hair Pie Music Courtesy of Interscope Records
Go to Hell Performed by Megadeth Produced by Max Norman & Dave Mustaine Written by Dave Mustaine & Megadeth Used by permission of Mustaine Music / Elfson Music / Asteroth Music / Adam Martin Music (all administered by Screen Gems - EMI Music, Inc.) Courtesy of Capitol Records, Inc.
Battle Stations Performed by Winger Produced by Beau Hill Written by Kip Winger & Reb Beach Published by Virgin Songs, Inc. / Varseau Music, Inc. / Small Hope Music Ltd. / Blue 32 Music Ltd. / Juliankelly Music, Inc. / Virgin Music, Inc. Courtesy of Atlantic Recording Corp.
Junior's Gone Wild Performed by King's X Produced by Sam Taylor and King's X Written by Douglas T. Pinnick, Ty R. Taylor & Jerry Gaskill Published by Jetydosa Music / Ackee Music, Inc. Courtesy of Megaforce Records
For the Love (of Music) Performed by Neverland Produced by Tim Palmer Written by Patrick Sugg, Dean Ortega, Gary Lee & Scott Garrett Published by Virgin Songs, Inc. / Velvet Coyote Music / Red Music / Virgin Music, Inc. / Mother Flight Music / Guess What? Music Courtesy of Interscope Records
Candy Show Theme Written, Performed & Produced by Julian Nott Courtesy of Julian Nott
Tommy the Cat Written, Performed & Produced by Primus Published by Sturgeon Courtesy of Interscope Records
My Honey's Lovin' Arms Written by Herman Ruby & Joseph Meyer
God Gave Rock'n'Roll to You II Performed by KISS Produced by Robert Ezrin (as Bob Ezrin) Written by Russ Ballard, Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons & Robert Ezrin (as Bob Ezrin) Published by Main Spring Music Courtesy of Mercury Records
Happy Birthday to You Written by Mildred J. Hill & Patty S. Hill Published by Summy-Birchard Music
The Reaper Rap Written, Performed & Produced by Steve Vai Vocals by Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, William Sadler, Joss Ackland, Chelcie Ross, Terry Finn & Roy Brocksmith Published by Sy Vy Music / OPC Music Publishing, Inc. Courtesy of Relativity Records


Certification: MPAA Rated PG-13 for sexual content and thematic issues
Argentina:Atp Australia:PG Canada:PG Canada:PG (TV rating) Finland:K-10/7 Germany:12 Iceland:L (original rating) Iceland:LH (video rating) Ireland:PG Netherlands:AL Portugal:M/6 Singapore:PG South Korea:All United Kingdom:PG United States:PG (certificate #31166)

There is a bit of kissing, a brief looking down a blouse, a few innuendos and a mention of a "full-on robot chubby".
A chubby naked space creature with a large rear-end plays a prominent role later in the movie, though this likely would not be perceived as visually disturbing.

In the beginning, De Namolos, Rufus's teacher, storms into Bill and Ted University and gunfire is used, though no one dies, but people are shot at. Robot replicas of Bill and Ted are shown, as they stretch their prosthetic skin to reveal their machinery. One student faints, played for laughs.
It is implied that Rufus is lost in the circuits of time, but we only see his guitar that he used to tether himself onto the phone booth slashed, and the rope cut.
The robots kill the real Bill and Ted by pushing them off of a cliff in Death Valley. Their dead bodies are seen, as well as an implication that one of the robots spit on Ted.
Bill and Ted "Melvin" Death.
There is a reference to possession, as well as the first and third films in The Exorcist series. Later on, Bill and Tes possess both Ted's father and a police sergeant to tell the police that Bill and Ted were killed. They go to a seance and tell them the same thing. They get sent to hell because of this.
Hell is a bit frightening, even the guardians and the spending of their eternity in hell.
Bill and Ted are taken to Heaven, where they steal some peoples's clothes by punching them offscreen.
The robots trash the place as they both decapitate each other while playing basketball and football.
The machinery is seen around their necks, as well as ports.
Bill and Ted late wake up from being dead, as they find out that a buzzard was pecking at Ted, and a worm was in Bill's ear. Station, as well as Death, both come from Heaven.
The robots trash some girls' house, as well as attempting to run over a mouse on the street. They both reveal their machinery, as well as bad breath to the girls as they faint.
Station creates a gigantic version of himself. He transforms himself from goo, which will disgust some.
The good robots replicas of Bill and Ted, created by Station, kill the bad robots by bashing the heads off, as they fly off and the robots explode.
De Nomolos electrocutes every camera at the Battle of the Bands to transmit those channels to everyone in the world. The handlers survive, but are grazed a little.

Several uses of "dick", and two uses of "fag" and its derivatives, "pussweeds", and "shithead", "Damn", "Hell" and other mild language is used throughout.
Many rude comments are said to Bill and Ted at a simulation of Colonel Oak's Military School, including "bollocks".
One obscene gesture.
Overall, this sequel to their first movie has a little bit more use of profanity, including use of an obscene gesture and the use of the word "fag".

There is one quick scene where the Grim Reaper says, "See you real soon" to a man smoking, implying his death is by lung cancer.

Early in the movie, an obese man hellbent on taking over the world designs two robots resembling Bill and Ted. The frequently use artificial organs as tools, and to prove their robotic likeness. Robot Ted even uses an eye as a communicative device.
The plot centers around the two main characters getting killed and ending up in hell. The scenes in hell have an eery atmosphere, and could be frightening to children.
There are bits of frightening fantasy.

The Parents Guide items below may give away important plot points.
Violence & Gore
Death "Melvins" De Nomolos afterwhich he is arrested.
Ms. Wardroe, who set up the Battle of the Bands, turns out to be Rufus.


Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA 1992
Winner - Saturn Award Best Supporting Actor William Sadler
Nominee - Saturn Award Best Special Effects - Richard Yuricich, Kevin Yagher

Read about Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey On the Internet Movie Data Base

Cast overview, first billed only:
Keanu Reeves ... Ted
Alex Winter ... Bill
William Sadler ... Grim Reaper
Joss Ackland ... Chuck De Nomolos
Pam Grier ... Ms. Wardroe
George Carlin ... Rufus
Amy Stoch ... Missy
Jim Martin ... Sir James Martin
Hal Landon Jr. ... Captain Logan
Annette Azcuy ... Elizabeth
Sarah Trigger ... Joanna
Chelcie Ross ... Colonel Oats
Taj Mahal ... Gatekeeper
Robert Noble ... Bach
Hal Landon Sr. ... Thomas Edison

Return To The Reviews Index Page

Return To The Site Index Page

Email Shlomoh