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"(T)Raumschiff Surprise" is sometimes funny, sometimes hilarious but it
is also embarrassingly stupid at times. It has some new jokes but what
I found shocking is that some of the jokes were "borrowed" (from Austin
Powers; Loriot,...). So really you have creative ideas and funny and
original jokes but in the same scene you have old or plagiarized jokes
and gags that are complete misses.
I like Bully and I think he is funny, loved "Der Schuh des Manitu". There was a huge hype around this movie and when I finally saw it I was disappointed as the movie did not deliver. About a year after watching it the first time, I watched it again and I laughed about 5 times and smiled maybe another 10 times. I remember laughing quite a bit the first time I watched it but even back then I found it disappointing.
This movie is not quite as bad as the IMDb-rating (5.4) suggests but way worse than the hype around it makes you believe it is. (Most of the time my ratings for a movie are below the IMDb-average so me rating it the same as the average voter while saying it deserves a higher score is not a contradiction. Hope you can follow.)
** 5.5/10 **
This movie is so insanely gay! And I mean it in both sense of the word.
No wonder this comedy broke the German box office with its madcap,
low-brow, at times, crass humour. But it's all in good fun.
If you're looking for a plot, be reminded that a spoof-fest only has an outline of what resembles a story. The story's not award winning material to begin with, and it was never the intention of doing so.
In the future, Earth has colonized Mars, and some aliens aren't happy with it, so war is declared on the Earthlings. Somehow, Earth's last hope lies in the hands of Dreamship Surprise and its crew of merry men, led by the gayish Captain Kork, and equally feminine-like officers Mr Spuck and Schrotty. Needless to say, the crew of Dreamship Surprise is a complete spoof of Star Trek's Starship Enterprise crew, right down to the uniform, the multi-racial crew, and the technology available on board. Serious Trekkies might not take this too kindly though, to see their beloved franchise taken to "new" heights.
To save Earth from the aliens, the team has to travel back in time to prevent the discovery of alien lifeforms in Area 51. But it's made more difficult when Kork and crew are more interested in their rehearsals for an upcoming Miss Waikiki competition (don't ask). Which is crazy I tell you. If you think that the Chicken Little ad now showing in theatres is cute, you haven't seen nothing yet! Spoofing obvious movies like Star Wars - pod-racing, battleships hovering in orbit, the Jedi Council, Coruscant, Queen Amidala, Han Solo, Emperor Palpatine, Darth Vader, Stormtroopers, the list goes on, and Star Trek - the main leads, there are also numerous references to movies like Austin Powers (the phallic-shaped starship), Back to the Future (time travel), Minority Report and even A Knight's Tale. Spoofing and combining key characters from Star Wars and Star Trek have been attempted before in Hollywood comedies, but definitely not in the manner that Dreamship Enterprise had.
Stay tuned during the credits, where some blooper scenes are shown, and if you stay until the end of the credits, you'll be rewarded with yet another short hilarious scene.
Definitely recommended for an evening after a hard day's work.
After having read all postings and comments about the movie in this
place up to now I simply want to tell that I love it! Surely the movie
cannot be to everyone's taste especially not to the taste of those who
run into cinema with a checklist about "will it be better than 'Schuh
des Manitu'", "how many gay-jokes will be cracked", "does German comedy
still exist" and so on. I myself was skeptical, too, whether Periode 1
will reach Schuh des Manitu but I was disappointed positively. Tonight
I watched Periode 1 the second time and, like in Schuh des Manitu, I
discovered gags I haven't perceived the first time because there are
enough of it in there! Why do most of the commentators put emphasis on
the gay-factor? Surely that was the original attention of "Unser
Traumschiff" in Bullyparade but in the movie there surely is more! You
remember "Men In Tights" (Helden in Strumpfhosen) by Mel Brooks, the
Robin Hood-spoof? O.k., there was no gay-topic in it but it was very
smug! Enjoy the details! The counselor of "William der Letzte", the
rented spy, the taxi and so on - there's so much in it you can laugh
about! Michael Bully Herbig surely accepts the inheritance of Monthy
Pythons and Mel Brooks, in my eyes!
Simply enjoy it like me!
I absolutely loved this movie. I didn't know exactly what to expect,
probably some very under-the-waist gay-jokes (the fact that I still
bought this DVD proofs that I'm not really above THAT). But this turned
out to be much better and different! In fact there's hardly any actual
sexual connotation (okay, the outer form of the spaceship DID remind me
of something familiar and at one point there's some sexual innuendo
concerning a gravely mistaken shadow!). But otherwise the gay premise
is not exploited in nudity, or in provocative gay variations on
tits-and-ass jokes, it's mostly limited to the being gay of the three
protagonists, which colors their attitude, their actions and their
conversation, in a very tongue-in-cheek way. This gives this parody of
Star Wars and Star Trek (and probably Back to the Future) an extra
dimension that's very original, to say the least, and to me it worked
There were more surprises: the FX of this non-American movie is absolutely stunning, as was the sound on this DVD, which at times blew me out of my chair! The whole story develops in a very high pace, we get time-traveling, space trekking, medieval jousting, everything in a hilarious way yet enough believable to get yourself involved into the story and with the characters. The actors do a great job and are all very funny, especially of course the two bickering and ad-libbing male leads Michael Herbig (also the director) and Christian Tramitz. And Till Schweiger, although past forty, is still a treat for the eyes, I remember him from "Der Bewegte Mann", another German gay classic some ten years ago that's among my favorites: equally entertaining but with a bit more of a serious message underneath the very comical surface.
I guess that many hard-boiled gay-rightists will find that a movie like this is stereotyping gays, but not I (and being one myself I think I have a right to speak). On the contrary, I actually find it a treat to witness (albeit in a movie) a world in which gay characters (even such "extreme" ones) are considered by everyone around them as just an exotic variation of the human species and in every other aspect as valuable and worthwhile as anyone else. Notice for instance that no-one in the movie makes fun of the gay characters just for being gay or ridicules their all too obvious homosexuality. Alas: up until now such a world still is a fantasy!
All in all, I rank this movie 9 out of 10.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I have to say, the movie directed by Michael Herbig was part of my childhood when I saw in Germany. It wasn't that funny, then. Its still, isn't that funny, today, when I just re-watch it. It wasn't as bad, other parodies I have saw, but it wasn't that good. Dreamship Surprise: Period 1 is one of those so bad, it's good. I can't truly hate the film because it really did try to be entertaining. The movie is based on a recurring skit from Herbig's 1997 to 2002's TV Show 'Bullyparade'. After making 2001's Manitou's Shoe, Michael Herbig allow his audience to choose, what subject his next movie should be. The viewers could choose between "Manitou's Shoe 2", "Lissi und der wilde Kaiser" (later made in 2007), "Ein Film, wo keiner mit rechnet" or "Dreamship Surprise". This movie claims to be the first democratically chosen movie. The movie is spoofing everything from 1960s American TV Show, Star Trek, to all the Star Wars movies, to 1990's Back to the Future Part 3, and even have bits of Das Traumschiff, a German television series, similar to the series 1977's American show, The Love Boat. Even characters from Michael Herbig's previous film 2001's Manitou's Shoe show up in this film. The movie is about the Space War between the colonies of Mars against Earth in 2304. When most of Earth's forces is destroyed by the fleet of the Mars Regulator and his henchman Jens Maul (Rick Kavanian), Queen Metaphor (Anja Kling) of Earth debate her last options with her staff. They decide to call for a three man crew from Dreamship Surprise, Earth's last available ship, to travel 300 years back in time. Their mission is to destroy a UFO which had crashed in Nevada in 2004. Its technology had enabled mankind to colonize Mars in the first place, hence its destruction would prevent the attack 300 years later. I know this plot is from a comedy, but wouldn't that cause a grandfather paradox? Anyways, most of the comedy come from the three men crew that is parodying Star Trek, made out of Captain Kork AKA Captain Kirk (Christian Tramitz), Mr. Spuck (Spit) AKA Dr. Spock (Michael 'Bully Herbig) and the engineer, Schrotty (Rick Kavanian) whom name is a play on words, meaning trash. All characters are stereotypically gay that speak in strong Bavarian accents that might annoy some people. It's only Schrotty that doesn't seem to match his Star Trek character counterpart. I think the creators, got confused, as he looks like Dr. Bones McCoy, while the doctor, in the film seem more like Scotty. Schrotty spends most of the movie, doing nothing as he was captured early on. It was kinda a waste, not to involve him in the adventures as the billing had these three characters playing off each other. Instead, we get a Han Solo's type character played by Til Schweiger named Rock that provide the action scenes that these three can't do. I have to say, the action scenes are pretty damn good. The CGI is pretty amazing for the time, and what time of film, this is. Still, there were some badly gone, green screen, and fake explosion. What makes this, different from most Star Wars & Star Trek movies is the time traveling. Not only do you get to see the future, but also Middle Ages Britain, and the Wild West. Most of the jokes fall flat. There are some certain ones, like how all the Americans agents have the name 'fields' in them. I do like, how they break the fourth wall, time after time. Some jokes seem borrowed from other comedies like 1997's Austin Powers like with the shadow sexual innuendo humor. The movie does have over the top offended stereotypes that some people might not like. The gay premise was mostly tongue-in-cheek humor. The movie even add credits outtakes bloopers for one last laugh. The music is pretty catchy. I found myself listening to the silly music of 'Miss Waikiki" and 'Space Taxi", even if it's a bit dumb. When Stefan Raab's "Space Taxi" comes on; memories come running down. The movie was so popular in Germany that a PC Game was create, and then was even a campaign for a burger restaurant theme of the movie. I wouldn't say the movie is a German film. Being American, and speaking little German, I did find some International humor here. Still, it was hard to find a copy of the film with English sub-titles. I watch it, twice in the original language with no sub-titles, and in French. I hope one day, they release a DVD version in English. Overall: Not bad of a parody. Just hard to find.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I picked up a copy of this film based on a friend's recommendation. And
whilst what I watched was a Chinese translation, with English subtitles
over a German film I still found it funnier than Either of the
well-noted American spoofs, Spaceballs or Galaxy Quest.
Set in a Sci-Fi Universe that's visually a lot like Star Wars, but structurally much like Star Trek the plot sees the (Emporer Plapatine-like) Martian Regulator blockading the Earth with aspirations of conquest.
Earth's only hope? The crew of the Dreamship Surprise - most notably it's camp command crew, Captain Kork, Spucky and Schotty. As they travel to Earth to make a journey back in time to save the future they acquire the assistance of Earth's beautiful young queen and a Taxi Driver.
The plot manages to skewer both Star Wars and Star Trek quite effectively, whilst somehow maintaining the looks of both (The sets on the Surprise are very sixties-Trek, most everything else seems Star Wars inspired). The journey in the past takes detours through Medieval Europe (Allowing a few Knight's Tale style moments) and the Wild West before ending up at Area 51 (which is foreshadowed in the opening).
I'd seen a brief clip of the film before watching but was surprised at how consistently amusing it was. Yes, there's a few cheap gags, and more gonad jokes than I'd expect from it's American counterparts but it's still darn funny. Some nifty sight gags lurk in the background and some of the puns are meticulously set up and had me groaning out loud (in the manner of someone who appreciates a bad pun).
If you like or hate sci-fi, there's many a reason to track this down. Some of the 'gay' gags may not be up everyone's street (and may cause a little offence to some - but it's hard to say) but that's par for the course with any parody.
The soundtrack echoes it's inspirations very effectively, and a few times I thought it was actually going to take the plunge and rise dramatically into a John Williams soundtrack. Not only that, but there are actually a handful of brief musical numbers thrown in as well (Most often from the crew of the Surprise).
The performances are pretty over-the-top for the most part, this is not a film that requires much in the way of subtle acting, but again isn't that another shot at it's targets? And before I sign out, Kudos must go to the special effects team, who managed to succeed in making a film that looks worthy of the huge effects budgets on the Star Wars prequels, presumably for a fraction of the price. The film is visually stunning in that regard, The Surprise, The Battleships, The Taxi and even the time-travel sequence (Which takes place on a sofa - surely a nod to Douglas Adams there) all look incredible and the film's one big action scene looks every bit as good as the Pod Race or space battle from the Star Wars prequels.
My opinion, it may not be perfect, but there's no way I'll regret buying it. There were enough laughs to keep me occupied through it's entire run-time even though the pacing could have done with a minor trim.
As a fan of Science Fiction in general I enjoyed it a great deal and would recommend it to most.
Somehow this movie didn't manage to make me laugh ONCE. I liked the
original skits in the TV series so maybe 87mins of Kork & co are just a tad
too much. The best scenes are the ones you can see in the ads on TV, the
rest is just plain silly and boring.
The effects are rather good showing an unusual high production standard for a German movie, but that's about all good I can say about this movie.
I can't make out what kind of humor this is supposed to be. I was looking for more than a couple of gay jokes. Go watch Jay & Silent Bob if you want to see something funny :)
I am an American, but speak German fluently due to my mother being from
Germany. I recently saw the film with family friends while in Germany
for Christmas. I can't tell you how hard I was laughing the whole time
I watched the film. I think the film was very well put together. The
dialog is funny, the little hints here and there about Der Shuh Des
Manitu was also very witty.
I can see why Herr Herbig laughs at night in his sleep from all the gags. I have to say though, the best part of the whole film has to be the sound track. I throughly enjoyed the music from the film. Especially the Miss Waikiki song...that just plan cracked me up.
All in all I give this movie a 10 out of 10 for wittiness, music, fantastic special effects, good plot and well thought out story, and for being something different from American films. Yes. It was very Mel Brooksish, though, and very very funny! I'd say it's a must have for all comedy lovers (I bought my copy already!)
Yeah, so, I'm not German (though I do speak it)...
The humour is not inherently German (i.e. there is some!), but it is funny. Very, very funny. Bully started with "Der Schuh des Manitu", and that was a poor German ape of Blazing Saddles... but this is different. For a start the special effects make you wonder how Star Wars I-III managed to spend their significantly larger budget. They're good. There's something almost British about the comedic understatement and dead-pan delivery. A knowledge of colloquial German is useful though.
The "icon" of the movie, the gay trio of Kirk (Kork), Spock (Spuck) and the other one (it isn't clear which Star Trek character he's meant to be), is the weakest point of the flick, but fortunately it is a minor intrusion. There is plenty of wit, spoofing and entertainment besides. Til Schweiger is excellent - a German Bruce Willis, maybe? Perhaps, as an Auslander, I find this movie more endearing than I should, but I highly recommend it.
To start off, the film's producer Michael Herbig asked Germany to vote
on his next film after "Der Schuh des Manitu" and the people chose
(T)Raumschiff Surprise to be its topic.
Five minutes after film start you know whether you are going to like it or not. Frankly, I'm slightly getting sick of this "you-must-laugh"-humour that has still not reached its climax in Germany. In his first big feature movie "Der Schuh des Manitu" the cool charm was underlined by a "super-gay"-Indian (sorry, Native American) but in this flick we got an all gay spaceship (which only appears VERY rarely). It's not the fact that they are gay which bothers me, it's rather the fact that as the audience you are left with no choice than either laugh about it or leave the theater. I chose to give it a chance but I was more and more disappointed, particularly after about 20min when everything that the title stands for gets totally lost. The movie appears like it doesn't know where it's going and the more it tries to get further, the more it gets stuck with cheap jokes which have no class at all.
To be honest, I hate writing this because I had such big expectations of this movie that it annoys me how disappointed I was. The special FX shots are really cool, the music is state of the art, make up is nice, story got probably written on the dunny and the actors try their best (they really do)... Unfortunately that just doesn't make a good movie! And there has been another Spaceballs already, for humanity's sake! If you keep that in mind while watching "(T)Raumschiff Surprise" it's only devastating... And i seriously wouldn't be surprised if gay people rampage on this one! What a pity!
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