The Beast With a Billion Backs, Futurama Feature (2008)

by | Jun 25, 2008 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

The Beast With a Billion Backs, Futurama Feature (2008)

Voices of: Dan Castellaneta, Brittany Murphy, David Cross
Studio: Futurama/Fox TV [Street date: June 24, 08]
Video: 1.78:1 enhanced for 16:9 widescreen color
Audio: English DD 5.1, DD 2.0
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
Extras: Commentary by Matt Groening, David Cohen & others; Futurama The Lost Adventure – 30-min. video game adventure with commentary by Matt Groening; Meet Yivo! Featurette; A Brief History of Deathball Featurette; Blooperama: with Futurama voice actors; 3D Models with animator discussion; Storyboard Animatic: The Beast with a Billion Backs, Part One; Sneak Peek at next Futurama Epic!
Length: 89 minutes (feature)
Rating: ****

Though Matt Groening’s Futurama Fox TV series ended its run some time ago, fans are being served by a series of direct-to-DVD Futurama features, of which this is the latest.  It was so much fun I’ll probably have to find the earlier ones as well, since I like it just as much as The Simpsons. There’s something about sci-fi parodies that just cracks me up (if you like this one you must see Hardware Wars).  There are so many easy targets for humor.

This one is described as Futurama’s most tentacle-packed epic, and that sums it up pretty well. Space in the future world rips open to reveal a gateway to another universe. Robots and anything electronic or mechanical can’t pass thru but humans can (if they’re in a wooden spaceship). When Fry – the pizza delivery boy who was accidentally cyro-frozen to be thawed in a future century – enters the other universe he wakes up Yivo, a planet-sized tentacled monster who has romantic intentions on all earthlings. There’s also a side story about Fry’s relationship with a new girlfriend who asks him to move in but he finds she already has five other boyfriends there. All the Futurama characters are here with Fry: Cyclops Leela, self-centered robot Bender, Asian Amy and her alien husband, the scientist Dr. Zapp, and the wonderful sea-creature alien with the two stomachs and a Yiddish accent. A couple of my favorite bits were the livings heads of Stephen Hawking and Nixon, and the girl friend’s skyscraper condo where instead of taking an elevator up, the entire building sank into the earth up to the floor you wanted. Some of the extras are worth a view and others are a waste of time, as with most extras.

 – John Sunier

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