BENDER'S GAME (2008)
Futurama: Bender's Game (2008)
Actors: John Di Maggio, George Takei, Kath Soucie, Lauren Tom,
Billy West (II)
Directors: Dwayne Carey-Hill
Format: AC-3, Animated, Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, Subtitled,
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
Number of discs: 1
Studio: 20th Century Fox
DVD Release Date: November 4, 2008
Run Time: 90 minutes
paraphrase Woody Allen: Futurama is like sex - even mediocre sex is
better than no sex at all!
With this in mind it is difficult to outright dislike the third full-length
made-for-DVD Futurama movie, Bender's Game. But there is no
disguising the fact that it is definitely mediocre not even just by the
show's own high standards.
With fuel prices skyrocketing the Planet Express crew sets off to wean
humanity from its dark matter dependency by, um, destroying the entire
Earth's supply of the stuff. All of which is a bit like Green types blowing
up all the oil fields so that we can use clean alternative fuels instead of
wasteful oil. Hey, it doesn't really make any sense, but this is a
Futurama movie, a franchise (like The
Simpsons) known for its wild leaps in plot logic. An even wilder leap is
that our heroes are somehow transported to a medieval land of dragons and
sorcery, all of which serves as a clothesline onto which to hang some lame
Lord of the Rings and
Dungeons & Dragons jokes.
Okay, the Lord of the Rings gags are several years too late, but the
truth is that the writing in this latest installment of this otherwise
stellar animated comedy franchise is on the lazy and uninspired side
(especially on the medieval bits). Laughs are simply way too far in-between
and the plot lacks the inspired and outright lunacy of this sadly cancelled
The usual caveats apply: newbies should check out the brilliant first season
and Bender's Game is only recommended for die-hard fans. The best
thing about it is its title which has its own air of inevitability about it
. . .
One can only hope that Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder, the
fourth - and final - movie scheduled for a 24th of February 2008 DVD release
date, will improve on Bender's Game and end the series on the high
note it deserves to go out onto.