Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder
Directed by Peter Avanzino
Starring Billy West, John Di Maggio, Katey Sagal, Lauren Tom, Phil LaMarr, Maurice LaMarche
Fox Home Entertainment
Release Date: February 24, 2009
Futurama aired from 1999 to 2003, but it was canceled after its fifth season. Though it got off a few more seasons than Family Guy and Firefly, it’s definitely classified among the shows that Fox has canceled way too soon.
As we know, Family Guy was brought back and soared to immense success, while sadly, Firefly remains buried and cold. Futurama kind of fell in the middle of these two. It wasn’t brought back to TV, but noticing the fan demand, it was decided that four direct-to-DVD movies would be made to see where the shows popularity stood.
The first three to arrive were Futurama: Bender’s Big Score, Futurama: The Beast with a Billion Backs, and Futurama: Bender’s Game. Bender’s Big Score was loved by fans and did well, while the other two did decent, but weren’t quite as praised as the initial offering. Either way, fans were thrilled just to be getting some fresh content.
The last movie to come along is our review today: Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder. It’s a little bittersweet this time, because after this movie, the future of Futurama is uncertain. There’s always the chance that this may just be the last we ever see of the gang.
If that is indeed the case, they absolutely saved the best for last, kids. Into the Wild Green Yonder is a complete return to brilliant Futurama hilarity. The story is good, which is always a plus, but most importantly, that humor we all love so much is here in droves and I literally found myself rewinding multiple scenes and laughing harder than I have at a movie in a long time.
Into the Wild Green Yonder revolves around Amy Wong’s father Leo. After building the biggest and best Vegas on Mars (the planet he owns), he sets off to build the world’s biggest mini golf course. This course has balls the size of houses and uses cannons to shoot balls to other planets around the universe. Among all of this construction Wong is up to, he disregards other life forms with plans of destroying a Purple Star Nebula which would also destroy a nearby planet that holds many creatures. In an effort to stop him from destroying this life, Leela and other women protest and sabotage away. While all of this is going on, Fry has developed the ability to read minds, while his complete lack of intelligence once again makes him the hope of all mankind.
It’s difficult to actually review something like Futurama. We’re used to watching something and looking at so many different elements and dividing them into pros and cons and eventually an opinion. With Futurama, it’s very simple — you either love it, or you don’t. I actually used to hate it, as much as that pains me to say now. I still have no idea why, but in 3 or 4 attempts at watching it, I found myself bored and fully unentertained. One day I saw the Roswell episode and loved that one, so I began watching every night on Adult Swim, and finally saw the proverbial light. Since then, it’s easily passed most of my favorite animated shows. Eventually, we all come around, right?
I still haven’t actually been able to see Bender’s Game, so Futurama isn’t completely over for me. But from what I can tell, this will by my high point of the movies. This is a sad feeling, especially watching it just a short time before the recent Battlestar Galactica finale. But hey, if I’m feeling sad, I can just pop in Wild Green Yonder for a 36th time and giggle myself to sleep.
I usually like to specify every special feature and say a little something about them, but there’s not a need for that here. While the features are there and definitely worth watching, most are very short. Features include a look at Bender’s movie theater etiquette, and learning how to draw characters, including Hypnotoad!
Out of them all, I definitely recommend watching one feature which shows all of the work that goes into the making of an episode; it’s pretty hilarious.