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Review: Spaceballs

September 28, 2011

Mel Brooks’ take on the Star Wars trilogy and sci-fi in general, Spaceballs!

President Skroob of Planet Spaceball has squandered all of his planet’s air, and as such hatches a plan to steal the air from nearby Druidia, a peaceful monarchy that still has arranged marriages and lives in castles despite personal spacecraft, by kidnapping Princess Vespa, daughter of King Roland, on the day of her arranged wedding to the extremely low-key Prince Valium.

This task is to be accomplished by the fearsome 5’4″ might of Dark Helmet and the inordinately large, possibly compensating for something Spaceball One, helmed by Colonel Sandurz of the Imperious Navy. Before they’re able to launch an attack on the wedding, Vespa flees her wedding with her Droid-of-Honor Dot Matrix. This unintentionally makes Dark Helmet’s task much, much easier, as Spaceball One simply intercepts her ship with a tractor beam.

Meanwhile, King Roland has gotten in touch with rogue pilot and mercenary Lone Starr and his mawg (half-man, half-dog. “I’m my own best friend!”) companion, Barf. The two catch up to the Spaceballs in their modified Winnebago, and rescue the princess and Dot Matrix from the ship after jamming Spaceball One’s radar (with raspberry jam, no less!). Shortly after escaping into hyperspace, the Winnebago runs out of fuel and crashes into the desert moon Vega, where they find the wise old magician Yogurt, who teaches Lone Starr the ways of the Schwartz.

Unfortunately, Dark Helmet manages to find them (through use of the videotape of Spaceballs, which if this weren’t a comedy film would completely destroy the universe), recapturing the princess and threatening to reverse her nose job in exchange for the code to the air shield surrounding Druidia (just go with it, it’s not like any of this is serious), which as it turns out, is the easiest password for anyone who passed kindergarten to figure out (12345, “That’s the kind of thing an idiot would have on his luggage!” “12345? It’s amazing! I have the same password on my luggage!”). Long story short, Spaceball One transforms into a giant maid to suck the air from Druidia, Lone Starr and Barf fly in and destroy the ship, get a reward, and fly off. The find out that he’s a prince, go back to Druidia, and he marries the princess, “May The Schwartz Be With You”, the end.

Despite my abbreviated synopsis, this is a funny movie. The problem is most of the jokes are sight gags that don’t really translate that well into a text review. They’re funny enough, but you’ll have a hell of a time trying to explain them to your friends. So, check it out, it’s worth watching.

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