Galaxy Quest Movie Review

"Galaxy Quest" was birthed from a ripe comedy premise: The leaders of a tyrannized race of pacifist aliens watching TV signals from Earth mistake the cast of a cult status science fiction show for real space adventurers and spirit them away to help save their planet.

It's "Three Amigos" with a tongue-in-cheek "Star Trek" twist and -- at first, anyway -- a pitch-perfect tone of benevolent mockery.

Clad in faux-futuristic Neoprene jumpsuits and sporting bowl-cut hair dos that would embarrass Mr. Spock, the clueless aliens with halcyon smirks, waddling walks and a nasal, monotone vocabulary are themselves mistaken for autograph-hunting geeks when they invade a sci-fi convention to recruit the "crew" of the illustrious fictional spaceship, the NESA Protector.

In these early scenes, director Dean Parisot ("Home Fries") gets the atmosphere exactly right with a sea of paunchy, pimply, badly-costumed extras shouting out space-jargon inquisitions to the faded stars of the long-canceled show as if they really were their characters.

He engineers a few adept displays of splendid "Trek" spoof, too -- complete with exaggerated homages to the 1980s era USS Enterprise sets. He even parodies particular episodes.

But somewhere along the way "Galaxy Quest" forgets that it's meant to be goofing on the serio-comic sincerity of "Star Trek" and its ilk, and lets the comedy stall out in favor of its own superficial earnestness. All that's left are a few scraps of laughs and the absurdly nonsensical sci-fi plot about defending the innocuous nerd aliens from a nefarious race of imposing, barnacled space beasts.

Parisot does, however, get an A+ for the crafty casting of the "Galaxy Quest" crew, whose careers have been reduced to ribbon-cutting gigs at electronics stores grand openings.

Tim Allen is the ham-acting captain, a prima donna lush who feeds his huge ego with the adoration of clamoring conventioneers. Hung over when he's first abducted, he thinks he's just on another inane personal appearance booking. "Great sets," he groans, walking throught to his confused hosts' spacecraft.

Sigorney Weaver is clearly having a ball as the show's busty, karate-chopping blonde, cast solely for her sex appeal (think Seven-of-Nine in a Farrah wig and less about 100 IQ points).

Playing the crew's resident bulb-headed alien, Alan Rickman ("Dogma" "Die Hard") strikes a prefect chord of constant sarcasm as a frustrated British thespian who now can't get serious work to save his life.

Then there's Tony Shalhoub ("The Siege," "Men in Black") as the bemused chief engineer, Daryl Mitchell ("Home Fries") as the show's obligatory child prodigy -- now grown up and bitter -- and Sam Rockwell ("The Green Mile") as a nameless disposable crewman who got killed before the first commercial break in one episode. He now scrapes together a living MC-ing these conventions.

Six hilariously-scripted parts, but they run out of laugh material long before the movie ends, and "Galaxy Quest" must then limp to the closing credits supported by its actual plot, which is, by design, stupider than anything "Star Trek" ever devised.

Comments

Galaxy Quest Rating

" Grim "

Rating: PG, Opened: Saturday, December 25, 1999

Advertisement

More Tim Allen

Ashton Kutcher Crowned Highest Paid Actor On TV For Second Year Running

Ashton Kutcher has topped the list of Highest Paid Actors in Television for a second year running, earning an estimated $24 million over the course...

Chimpanzee Movie Review

Disney shamelessly plays the cute card here, turning what could be a revealing documentary into something almost painfully adorable. We can't help but smile and...

Spectacular Wildlife Documentary 'Chimpanzee' To Hit The UK This Spring (Trailer and Pictures)

Oscar in Disneynature's 'Chimpanzee'Soon to arrive in the UK is the new heart-warming Chimpanzee movie following the life of a happy-go-lucky orphan primate.If you're a...

Advertisement

DUI And Possession Charge For Home Improvement Star Taran Noah Smith

In another case of ‘child star gone wrong,’ Taran Noah Smith has finally been charged on that DUI case he got hauled in for back...

Top Twenty Classic Holiday Season Christmas Films

Little has caused more contention in the contactmusic office than our recent discussion about the Christmas films list! Obviously, everyone has their own favourite, and...

Forbes' Television Top Earners Revealed: Ashton Kutcher Leads the Pack.

Two-and-a-Half Men is the show that forks out the most for its lead actors; last year Charlie Sheen topped Forbes' list of TV's Highest-Paid TV...

Toy Story 3 Trailer

Watch the teaser trailer for Toy Story 3Woody, Buzz and friends return in Toy Story 3! It’s hard to believe the original Toy Story was...

Advertisement