The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension!, often shortened to Buckaroo Banzai, is an American science fiction film that was released in 1984. It was directed and produced by W. D. Richter, and concerns the efforts of the multi-talented Dr. Buckaroo Banzai (Peter Weller), a physicist, neurosurgeon and rock musician to save the world by defeating a band of inter-dimensional aliens called Red Lectroids from Planet 10. The film is a cross between the action/adventure and science-fiction movie genre, and also includes elements of comedy, satire, and romance. It is also made to feel like one in a series of movies, by the use of ongoing allusions to other characters, adventures and events.
The theatrical release version of the film opens with Banzai performing a test-run of his Jet Car, a heavily modified Ford E-Series van powered by a jet engine, and capable of exceeding Mach 1. The car is also equipped with a secret device called an "oscillation overthruster", which Banzai and his associates hope will allow it to drive through solid matter. The test is a success; Banzai stuns onlookers by driving the Jet Car directly through a mountain. Emerging from the mountain, Banzai finds that an alien, pod-like organism has attached itself to the car during transit.
Hearing of Banzai's success, Italian physicist Dr. Emilio Lizardo (John Lithgow) breaks out of the Trenton Home for the Criminally Insane in New Jersey, where he has been imprisoned for 50 years. A flashback sequence shows that Banzai's assistant and mentor, Dr. Hikita (Robert Ito), was present at a failed overthruster experiment of Lizardo's in 1938. Failing to transit through the target wall, Lizardo is briefly trapped in the 8th dimension where his mind is taken over by Lord John Whorfin.
Whorfin is the leader of the Red Lectroids, a race of alien reptiles whom he had led on an expansionist campaign on Planet 10. After being defeated by the peace-loving Black Lectroids, Whorfin and his band of followers were banished into the formless void of the 8th dimension. Lizardo's failed experiment accidentally released Whorfin, and he soon brings over a thousand Red Lectroids to Earth in an incident that was reported in 1938 by Orson Welles in his radio broadcast The War of the Worlds, only to have it retracted as fiction.
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Official Site: 20th Century Fox Films
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