Blu-ray Review: Spaceballs – The 25th Anniversary Edition
Article first published as Blu-ray Review: Spaceballs – The 25th Anniversary Edition on Blogcritics.
Yes, it’s back to make us giggle incessantly. Yes, it’s been twenty-five years since it first graced us with its presence. And yes, this is the fifth damn time it has hit Blu-ray in the last three years — making Mel Brooks’ joke about searching for more money all the more amusing (as well as truthful). Of course, the big question that should be on everyone’s mind here is “What’s so different about this release of Spaceballs as opposed to the other two?” Well, not much, really (although, truth be told, the four previous High-Def versions were identical: one released with a bonus SD-DVD, two being part of similar box sets…).
First, though, let’s talk about the feature film itself. An epic parody of George Lucas’ original Star Wars trilogy as well as every other major science fiction hit of the time, 1987′s Spaceballs brings us the absurd adventures of several hapless halfwits — Lone Star and his half-man/half-dog sidekick, Barf (Bill Pullman and John Candy, respectively); Druish Princess Vespa (Daphne Zuniga), and her robot maid, Dot Matrix (voiced by Joan Rivers) — who team up to battle the bad guys. In this case, villains are the bumbling, nefarious forces of the Spaceballs, as led by the evil Dark Helmet (Rick Moranis), Colonel Sandurz (George Wyner), and their commander in chief, President Skroob (Mel Brooks himself, who also appears as Yogurt, the mystical master of the Schwartz).
If, for some reason, you’ve never seen the film before, you might just get the impression this is a pretty silly movie. And it is. It’s very silly, in fact. But, of course, Mel Brooks’ patented style of humor is what made the film a surefire cult classic back in 1987 — a status that is still held highly by fans and newbies alike today. Essentially, this movie is required viewing if you love science fiction movies and/or dumb comedies. This 25th Anniversary Edition brings very little to the table that hasn’t already been released before; the only new item here is the seventeen-minute featurette “Force Yourself! Spaceballs and the Skroobing of Sci-Fi,” which presents a new interview with Mel Brooks.
Presentation-wise, everything is identical to the 2009 Blu-ray (so if you’re looking for technical specs on this one, please read this one), which was also included in The Mel Brooks Collection that same year. Save for the aforementioned featurette, all of the other special features on this release were ported over from that same 2009 disc (again, see here), leading the final ruling on this one to be: if you didn’t pick up the older Blu-ray before, here’s your chance to get it — with a new tacked-on item to sweeten the deal. If you did pick this one up before, I’d advise renting this one first to decide if it’s worth the slight upgrade.