Movie Review 2007 #122: Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy

An incompletely successful movie adaptation of the late Douglas Adams’ universe.


I still think its a somewhat wasted opportunity. Even once you grok that Adams’ work was a constantly evolving process, from radio show to novel to tv miniseries to Infocom game and now to movie, it still seems to fall short of expectations.
I don’t quite know why. There are some clever bits and re-imagining of things, like the factory floor of Magrathea. Other things, though seem to be shortened things taken from previous incarnations, and feel incomplete, unfinished and undone. John Malkovich’s character and his subplot, for example, seems to trail away. On the other hand, I liked this version of Zaphod more than previous versions, as the perfect unholy union of channeling Bill Clinton and George W Bush.
Maybe, with a last rewrite, this could have been special, perhaps even the beginning of a franchise. (There certainly is enough material in Adams’ canon to do it). As it is, it just sits somewhere north of mediocre and south of good.