2009 Running time: 86 Certificate: 15 Rating: 3

Synopsis

In a galaxy not very far away... a bunch of Star Wars-obsessed geeks head from Ohio to George Lucas's Skywalker Ranch in California to steal a print of the yet-unreleased Star Wars: Episode 1 so their terminally ill friend can see it before it's too late. The Force is with Kristen Bell, Jay Baruchel and Dan Fogler on an eventful and affectionately spoofy road trip that's dotted with more stars than the Dagobah system.

Director

  • Kyle Newman

Cast

  • Sam Huntington

  • Jay Baruchel

  • Kristen Bell

  • Chris Marquette

  • Dan Fogler

Review

Combining traditional road trip antics with a perfect understanding of the geek mind, Fanboys is a must for anyone who ever took their childhood obsession into adulthood.

But you don't have to know what planet Chewbacca comes from to enjoy the ride as writer-director Kyle Newman sends his motley crew of Star Wars freaks on a mission to nick a copy of The Phantom Menace from under George Lucas's nose.

All the usual clones are here: the slobby, Jack Blackish one (Fogler), the ultra-geeky one (Baruchel, latterly of The Sorcerer's Apprentice), the feisty female one (Forgetting Sarah Marshall's Bell), and the one who's trying to leave his geeky past behind (Sam Huntington).

The only type you don't generally see in knockabout comedies is the one dying of cancer (Marquette), for whose benefit the whole escapade is planned.

But don't fret about the dark side as everyone's having too much fun with all the sci-fi riffing, 90s technology, mild lewdness and other genre conventions.

So it's into the Millennium Falc...van and into cross-country hyperdrive, taking in a gay biker bar, a night in jail, a stop in Vegas (call girls included) and numerous geek-offs with "Kirk-loving Spocksuckers" (Star Trek fans).

The cameo force is certainly strong, with appearances from Danny Trejo as a peyote-pushing mechanic, Seth Rogen as a pimp with a Jar Jar tattoo, Jay and Silent Bob, and the almighty Shatner himself.

Avid skywalkers will also enjoy the gang's run-ins with Lando Calrissian (Billy Dee Williams, as an amusingly named judge) and Darth Maul (Ray Park, harder to recognise without the horns). There's even a stolen kiss with Princess Leia - the real one!

But while the script makes its affections spoofily clear, it's not a total Lucas love-in. It is, after all, a film set before anyone actually saw The Phantom Menace.

As far as genuine fanboys are concerned, the last line says it all.