Futurama: Bender’s Big Score

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Rating: Not Rated

Starring:
Billy West as Fry / Dr. Zoidberg / Professor Farnsworth / Zapp Brannigan / God Entity / Additional Voices (voice)
John Di Maggio as Bender / Robot Santa / Joey Mousepad / Additional Voices (voice)
Katey Sagal as Leela (voice)
Lauren Tom as Amy Wong / Additional Voices (voice)
Phil LaMarr as Hermes Conrad / Additional Voices (voice)
Maurice LaMarche as Morbo / Donbot / Clamps / Additional Voices (voice)
Tress MacNeille as Linda / Additional Voices (voice)
David Herman as Nudar / Additional Voices (voice)
Frank Welker as Nibbler / Seymour / Additional Voices (voice)
Mark Hamill as Chanukah Zombie (voice)
Sarah Silverman as Michelle
Tom Kenny as Yancy Fry, Jr.
Al Gore as Himself (voice)
Coolio as KwanzaBot (voice)
Dawnn Lewis as Labarbara

Special Features:
Commentary By Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, Billy West, John DiMaggio, Phil LaMarr, Claudia Katz, Dwayne Carey-Hill and Ken Keeler
Futurama Returns! A Live Comic Book Reading By The Futurama Cast Featurette
Everybody Loves Hypnotoad – A Spellbinding Episode Of The Future’s Most Popular TV Program
A Terrifying Message From Al Gore: Animated Promo For An Inconvenient Truth
Video Commentary by Al Gore, Matt Groening and David X. Cohen
Bite My Shiny Metal X: A Mind-Shattering Futurama Math Lecture Featurette
Bender’s Big Score: The Original First Draft Of The Script Featurette
New Character/Design Sketches
Original Five-Minute Comic-Con Promo
Deleted Scenes: Monte Carlo, Robot Mafia, Limbo Contest

Other Info:
Widescreen (1.78:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Running Time: 88 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following is from the official synopsis of the film:

“Uncancel your plans for the future: ‘Futurama’ is back! In this all-new, feature-length epic, evil nudist aliens send Bender on a rampage through time, forcing him – slightly against his will – to steal all of Earth’s priceless historic treasures. Will the heroic Planet Express crew save the planet? Will Leela find true love? Will the ancient and terrible secret of Fry’s buttocks be exposed? All will be revealed in ‘Futurama: Bender’s Big Score,’ the greatest adventure of our time, and also the greatest adventure of several other times! In the words of a certain beer-fueled robot… ‘We’re back, baby!’”

Mini-Review:
After two years in the Twilight Zone of cancellation, cult-favorite “Futurama” returns in the first of several direct-to-DVD movies. I never watched it when it was on Fox, but I became a fan during its Adult Swim re-runs. While it’s great to see the Planet Express gang again, I have to admit that “Bender’s Big Score” seems like several episodes of the show randomly tacked together. There’s so much happening in the storyline that it lacks a coherent narrative. You have Leela’s love story, the time travel story, a battle for Earth, all the futuristic holiday characters teaming up and more. It’s a lot to take in and would probably have been better in smaller doses. One thing is for sure – this movie is for established “Futurama” fans only. Newbies will be completely lost if they jump in here.

Everyone returns again in top form. Fry is still a buffoon. Bender is still a lovable menace. Dr. Zoidberg is still creepy. They’re joined by a few new characters including Mark Hamill as Chanukah Zombie. “Star Wars” fans will be further pleased to see Hamill’s character flying a Jewish TIE Fighter against gold Death Stars. Even the overexposed Al Gore has a few funny moments saving the world with lasers instead of slide shows.

If you’re a “Futurama” fan then this is required viewing for you. You may just want to watch it in 30 minute chunks.

There’s a pretty good selection of bonus features on this DVD. Besides the commentary with most of the cast, you’ll also find a live comic book reading that was done at Comic-Con by the cast, a full half hour episode of Everybody Loves Hypnotoad (yes, it’s nothing but Hypnotoad), and a parody trailer for Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth.” Also notable is a bizarre “Futurama” themed math lecture. They discus pi and other math concepts shown in the series. There are also three deleted scenes included. They show Bender in Monte Carlo, Hermes winning a limbo contest, and the Robot Mafia attacking a street kid. Rounding out the bonus features are the original first draft of the script, character sketches, and a Comic-Con promo.

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