Mere seconds before the Earth is to be demolished by an alien construction crew, journeyman Arthur Dent is swept off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher penning a new edition of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."
Private Joe Bauers, the definition of "average American", is selected by the Pentagon to be the guinea pig for a top-secret hibernation program. Forgotten, he awakes five centuries in the future. He discovers a society so incredibly dumbed down that he's easily the most intelligent person alive.
Astronaut Sam Bell has a quintessentially personal encounter toward the end of his three-year stint on the Moon, where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY, sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet's power problems.
Everyone has bad mornings. You wake up late, you stub your toe, you burn the toast...but for a man named Arthur Dent, this goes far beyond a bad day. When he learns that a friend of his is actually an alien with advanced knowledge of Earth's impending destruction, he is transported off the Earth seconds before it is exploded to make way for a new hyperspace motorway. And as if that's not enough, throw in being wanted by the police, Earth II, an insane electronic encyclopedia, no tea whatsoever, a chronically depressed robot and the search for the meaning of life, and you've got the greatest adventure off Earth. Written by
Some additional shots were filmed to fit in with Arthur waking up at the beginning of the movie. In one shot (included in an early trailer, but cut from the film, and not on the DVD), Arthur's identification as a BBC employee can be seen. The original Hitch Hiker's radio and TV versions were produced by the BBC. See more »
When the mice say "To business!" (in the last scene at Arthur's house), the teacup is not in the saucer. Although Arthur drinks from it once more and puts it down, it never appears in the saucer again. See more »
It's an important and popular fact that things are not always what they seem. For instance, on the planet Earth, Man had always assumed that he was the most intelligent species occupying the planet, instead of the *third* most intelligent. The second most intelligent creatures were of course dolphins who, curiously enough, had long known of the impending destruction of the planet earth. They had made many attempts to alert mankind to the danger, but most of their communications ...
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The film has effectively two title sequences. The first is part of the opening song, when the title appears out of a screenful of bubbles as the "So Long And Thanks For All The Fish" number gears up. The second is after the Vogon ships destroy the Earth and we see The Book for the first time - as the original theme music of the radio show and miniseries plays, the book's spine rotates into view and we see its - and the movie's - title. See more »
Overall a tremendous success. It's very funny, very kooky and visually gorgeous. I saw it with about 2000 media persons and we all loved it, which is a pretty hard thing to accomplish.
If you've never read the books (and I suggest you do, it moves at such a pace you might find yourself going 'eh?' a lot) then I don't know what you'd make of it. Think Monty Python in space, or a very British version of The Fifth Element.
As an adaptation I think it works extremely well though there were a few confusing moments even for me as the large philosophical questions were crammed into two hours worth of movie. The new stuff is cleverly done and works a treat IMO.
The cast: never been a fan of the office but Martin Freeman is perfect as Arthur Dent, Sam Rockwell hilariously OTT and Mos Def a surprising choice but one that really works. Trillian isn't that important in the novel and the movie bumps up her role to a love triangle situation between her Arthur and Zaphod. Again, Deschanel is an odd choice (another yank) but she is utterly spellbinding (oh the shower scene...hubba hubba).
The FX are great, both CGI and the Jim Henson creatures (the Vogons, brilliantly voiced by The League of Gentleman). The opening title song is worth the price of admission alone (think Eric Idle at his peak).
So I loved it, though the ending is also a bit of an anti-climax, but only perhaps because I was expecting something bigger. Still, it's p***-funny and that's the main thing.
Best moment: Ford attacks the Vogons with a towel and foils them by closing a tiny garden gate ("Oh no! We'll have to go around!").
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