Fanboys is just as much an homage to writer/director Kevin Smith as it is to Star Wars, the Holy Grail the characters are chasing throughout the movie. Set in 1998, the movie centers on a group of post-high school friends, still obsessed with Star Wars and working in a comic book store (kind of like every other character in a Smith movie). A friend is dying of cancer and likely wonâ€™t live to see the release of The Phantom Menace, so the gang decides to break into George Lucasâ€™ Skywalker Ranch and steal a print. The premise is great; the execution, not so much. There are some interesting cameos including Seth Rogen, Smith (naturally), Will Forte, William Shatner and a handful of Star Wars alum (Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams).
But, the movie struggles between being a PG -13 version of a Smith film and a buddy road movie. It also wrestles with the idea of whether it wants to mock geeks and their culture or write a love letter to them. The final version of Fanboys, which was plagued with reshoots, plot changes and plenty of internal bickering, came out a year and a half after the initial release date. The movie still has some funny scenes and the cameos by Rogen and Danny McBride in particular are worth the rental fee alone, but Fanboys is ultimately a decent movie that could have been a great movie.
Rating: 6.8 out of 10
Fanboys / DVD / 2009 The Weinstein Company, Genius / 90 Minutes