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The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005)

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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."

Director:

Garth Jennings

Writers:

Douglas Adams (book), Douglas Adams (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Popularity
1,782 ( 150)
1 win & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bill Bailey ... The Whale (voice)
Anna Chancellor ... Questular Rontok
Warwick Davis ... Marvin
Yasiin Bey ... Ford Prefect (as Mos Def)
Zooey Deschanel ... Trillian
Su Elliot Su Elliot ... Pub Customer (as Su Eliott)
Martin Freeman ... Arthur Dent
Stephen Fry ... Narrator / The Guide (voice)
Richard Griffiths ... Jeltz (voice)
Dominique Jackson ... Fook
Simon Jones ... Ghostly Image
Thomas Lennon ... Eddie the Computer (voice)
Mark Longhurst Mark Longhurst ... Bulldozer Driver
Kelly Macdonald ... Reporter
John Malkovich ... Humma Kavula
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Storyline

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 radioactive

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Don't leave Earth without it. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements, action and mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 April 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy See more »

Filming Locations:

Canary Islands, Spain See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$21,103,203, 1 May 2005

Gross USA:

$51,085,416

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$104,478,416
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Douglas Adams's head appears as a planet during Slartibartfast's tour of the galaxy. See more »

Goofs

The Vogons hit the wheels of the caravan and they deflate. Later the frame detaches from the rest of the caravan and falls to the ground and the wheels are fully pressurized. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Book: 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 ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

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 The Book is shown for the first time; as the original theme music of the radio show and miniseries plays, the book's spine rotates into view and reveals its, and the movie's, title. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Commander in Chief: First Choice (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

So Long & Thanks for All the Fish
(End Title Version)
Written by Joby Talbot, Garth Jennings and Christopher Austin
Produced by Joby Talbot
Performed by Neil Hannon
Neil Hannon appears courtesy of Parlophone/EMI Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Here's a rather non-committal review!
25 April 2005 | by ianrickardSee all my reviews

So, is the Hitchhikers' movie any good?

Yes and no.

It is great to finally see one of my favourite stories finally get the big screen treatment. There are moments where the budget has clearly benefited the overall experience, with some breath-taking CGI sequences. Two particularly spring to mind: An impressive backwards zoom out from earth's surface, past the Vogon demolition charges before the planet is so hastily disposed of, and Arthur's journey onto Magrathea's staggeringly colossal factory floor, which is simply overwhelming. Both illustrate, to great satisfaction, the dramatic readjustment of scale Arthur Dent has to undergo in such a short space of time in a stark manner that is just not possible in any medium other than cinema. The on-screen format of the guide itself is an appropriate update of the format developed for the television series, and it's highly enjoyable to see such delightfully silly animations grace a giant cinema screen.

Cinema is a different experience, and that is the nub of the matter. We are dealing with a radically different medium from any of the other that Hitchhiker's has materialised in, and not only does that offer new opportunities to explore Douglas Adams' marvellous universe, it also necessitates dramatic changes. Most noticeably, and perhaps most important for a two-hour motion picture, there is more effort to form a conventional plot than is present in the original incarnations and this change is accompanied by major changes in character motivation. This is interesting, because (here analysis becomes problematic since it is impossible to know which changes were instigated by Adams and which were down to Karey Kirkpatrick), none of the characters in Adams' earlier material really had any significant motivations that would lend them to becoming interesting protagonists in a more conventional setting.

Previously, Narcissist Zaphod wanted his ego stroked by fame and fortune, Ford was content with the prospect of a decent party to go to and Arthur's only desire was a palatable cup of tea. Trillian didn't really do anything. Although they are far from unrecognisable, the introduction of tangible drives into most of the characters alters the pattern of events in the story to accommodate what begins to resemble a more conventional story structure. One of the first casualties of this is that the principle players overshadow others, who are introduced, half-heartedly expanded upon, and then almost entirely dropped in deference to the favoured few. It never goes the whole way towards a standard structure though, as half of the principle story is seemingly abandoned in favour of a concentration on the romantic subplot and an overall resolution that is at least reverent to the previous formats. The result is a mixed bag. I found Arthur much more likable and Zaphod funnier than I ever have done, but it never actually occurred to me until the film that Arthur was a bit of a whinger and Zaphod quite boring, because I was too busy paying attention to what happened to them, rather than what they happened to do.

The other major objection, which may or may not have been inevitable, given the time that must be given over to visuals in cinema, is that the filmmakers appear to try and get too much into a two-hour film. As a result, some brilliantly funny lines are missed and key explanations fudged and both are replaced by a general silliness, which appears to be a compromise between the demands of hardcore Hitchhiker's fans and those of the cinema-going public. A lot of the new material is funny, but some of it doesn't really fit with Adams' universe and sticks out like a sore thumb. Whether this is the consequence of those responsible being caught between the rock of Adam's inventiveness and the hard place of the medium they were working in is hard to say. Perhaps someone braver could have produced something more appropriate, or perhaps this is the best that there could ever be. I suppose we'll never know.

To summarise: It's very different.


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