(HBO MAX/VOD) Let’s collectively ignore the fact that sex offender Jeffrey Jones (the titular Dad) is in this — something all DEADWOOD fans have to do — and focus on the credited writers: Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon of BILL & TED fame.
Before you get too excited, let me be clear that this sci-fi film is silly and dumb and campy and cheap and not even close to their best work; Solomon has mostly disowned it, and your tolerance for it will definitely depend on your tolerance for Jon Lovitz. Lovitz plays Emperor Tod Spengo, ruler of a world full of idiots, who is plotting to destroy Earth because of reasons, falls in lust with Marge, a.k.a. Mom, right before pulling the trigger blow up Earth and decides to abduct her to keep as his own.
It’s also occasionally smart and features some great slapstick bits, such as a bit with a light grenade that predates THE SIMPSONS’ rake bit, an Errol Flynn Robin Hood riff near the end, and some quality callbacks. It also has surprisingly good puppet and animatronic work, although at the expense of the rest of the production and costume design budget, most of which wouldn’t look out of place on a MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 set. That said, that’s part of the film’s charm.
It’s mostly good-natured stupid fun and sometimes that’s what you want to watch while working on a project at three in the morning. Although it’s worth noting that yeah, when Lovitz finally ropes Marge to their planet, he administers a ‘love shot’, so there’s still a pretty big creep factor you should be aware of.