October 26, 2014
Wayne Workman does an excellent job of condensing the plot of the first Bill & Ted movie down to 15 minutes.
Unfortunately, a lot of the humor and the personality of the film got lost in the process. For instance, the hilarious interplay between Socrates and Billy the Kid is completely gone here. Also, cccasionally, a scene would have to jump ahead rather abruptly and obviously to get to the next plot point.
Mind you, I say all of this with sympathy. I tried unsuccessfully to prepare a Doctor Who edit for this consecution, and found myself running into the exact same problems: To get the story under 15 minutes, the cuts become rather merciless.
My favorite sequence in this short came with the revised montage of Bill & Ted picking up the historical figures set to the film's song "Two Heads are Better Than One." Based on a similar sequence in the original movie, Wayne expands the montage to cover a lot more historical figures. It's seamless, and if I weren't so familiar with the movie already, I never would have known that this wasn't how it was originally done.
Wayne keeps all the major plot points intact and tells a coherent story, which are two big plus factors. He skips over the introduction of the princesses, but as the short came to a conclusion, I realized that it wasn't necessary. The females worked just fine at the end, since they're wearing modern clothes by then. It seemed like they were just a couple of people who had joined the band.
If you're looking for a quick 15-minute reprise of the movie, this is a good way to go, and it will probably work better if you haven't watched it hundreds of times like I have, and therefore could more instantly spot the changes. My comments above reflect the harshness of the 15-minute constraints, and should not be taken as disparanging against Wayne's editing skills. He's clearly quite talented.
Party on, Wayne! ... Whoops, wrong franchise. :)