After travelling through time in order to ace a school assignment, Bill and Ted are back and, this time around, they're not so much time travelling as they are dying and coming back to life, like a couple of rock Jesuses.
The plot, this time, is much more intricate (well, for a Bill & Ted movie, anyway) as an evil baddie from the future (Joss Ackland) sends back a couple of Bill and Ted robots to kill off the original Bill and Ted, take over their lives and ruin the battle of the bands they're meant to be participating in thereby denying the world of a hard-rockin' future. Everything goes according to plan as the dudes are disposed of and their "princesses" are tossed aside by their evil counterparts. The duo's adventure then mostly takes place in the afterlife where Bill and Ted foil Death by giving him a "melvin" (wedgie), hang around as ghosts for a while then try to escape from Hell, attempt to break into Heaven and challenge Death to a battle of wits.
Yeah, a lot happens in this movie.
It's like the What Dreams May Come of Bill & Ted flicks!
Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves are, of course, back as Bill and Ted but, this time, we get to see them overact even more than usual as their villainous robot selves, which is a lot of fun. The shenanigans in this movie are endless: exorcisms, possessions, evil Easter Bunnies, the Devil, God, alien scientists with big butts, you name it: Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey goes for it. So in terms of making the most out of a concept, this sequel surpasses the original, the higher budget definitely helping with that a great deal. That said, the simplicity of the first Bill & Ted movie is missing here as the plot is needlessly convoluted. Which doesn't mean it's hard to follow or anything, a cat could follow this, it just means that the characters don't really get that much development. That's all mostly just crammed into the last 5 minutes.
And as likeable as good old Bill and Ted are in this movie, it's William Sadler's surprisingly adorable turn as Death which steals the show. While he initially looks intimidating, as Sadler often does, he is quickly grounded to comic relief as his Death becomes a put-upon loser saddled with doing whatever the dim-witted duo ask of him but eventually enjoying the hell out of this bogus journey. The scene in which he is challenged to a bunch of board games is particularly memorable. It's not everyday you see Death from The Seventh Seal play Twister with Keanu but this movie makes a good argument for why it should be.
Overall, Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey is a worthy sequel. It's bigger, sillier and more ambitious while having just as much charm as the original. Fans should lap it up, just don't expect to feel any smarter after watching it, that's a mistake.
*air guitar solo*
It loses points for having too little Rufus, though.
More Rufus would have been most triumphant.