For this month’s next review for Genre Grandeur – Spoof/Parody Movies, here’s a review of Galaxy Quest (1999) by Jane of 500 Days of Films
Thanks again to Ashleigh of The Movie Oracle for choosing this month’s genre.
Next month’s Genre has been chosen by Simon of Moustache Movie News and it is Road Trip Movies.
Please get me your submissions by the 25th of December by sending them to firstname.lastname@example.org
Try to think out of the box! Great choice Simon!
Let’s see what Jane thought of this movie:
Spoof Movies – Galaxy Quest (1999)
Galaxy Quest is one of my all time favourite ‘spoof movies’. Dean Parisot’s film (released in cinemas in 1999) has an intriguing concept and that rare and perfect mix of laughter and heart.
Galaxy Quest also features one of my favourite performances from the late, great Alan Rickman. For me, Rickman’s performance as Alexander Dane – a former Shakespearean actor forced to play the alien Dr Lazarus (complete with prosthetic head) – elevates this movie from good to truly great.
If this movie has somehow passed you by, the story takes place some time after the cancellation of the cult science fiction television show, Galaxy Quest. The cast have fallen on hard times, resigned to opening shopping centres and signing autographs at Sci Fi conventions.
However, everything changes when an alien race (called the Thermians) mistakes them for real astronauts. Having watched Galaxy Quest, they believe the show to be based on factual “historical documents”.
The Thermian race is under attack from the evil General Sarris (Robin Sachs) and they believe the Galaxy Quest team is their only hope for survival. As a result, they have recreated every aspect of the show and have come to Earth to collect the unsuspecting crew.
What follows is a fun and hilarious adventure. Can Galaxy Quest Commander, otherwise known as actor Jason Nesmith (Tim Allen), and his jaded crew confront evil and save the day?
Will Gwen DeMarco (Sigourney Weaver) keep stating the obvious? Will Dr Lazarus ever repeat his brilliant catchphrase (“By Grabthar’s hammer, by the Sons of Warvan, you shall be avenged!”) without bitterness?
Tune in to find out…
Rickman’s resentful eye rolling performance is just superb. He steals every scene. However, the rest of the film’s cast are also brilliant. I particularly love Sigourney Weaver’s Gwen DeMarco. She certainly has some fabulous lines (and a fabulous wig, which Weaver was allowed to keep at the end of the shoot).
Meanwhile, the aliens and the film’s special effects are equally impressive – as you might expect having been created by Stan Winston’s studio. Check out the wonderful creative work on the Thermians, Sarris and the alien Pig Lizard!
Galaxy Quest’s resemblance to Star Trek is clear. Parisot and his crew worked long and hard to create an in-depth study of Star Trek lore (the Galaxy Quest spaceship even includes a reference to Star Trek in its serial number: NTE 3120. The ‘NTE’ reference is thought to stand for “not the enterprise”).
However, the film is not laughing at Star Trek. It is nothing but deeply respectful of this classic sci fi series and (crucially) its fans. I love the scenes when the cast/crew call on Galaxy Quest super fans for help.
As a result, Galaxy Quest has been warmly received by both the Star Trek crew, cast and the show’s loyal fan base. Indeed, director J.J. Abrams has called it one of his favourite ‘Trek’ movies… and I absolutely agree.