Story Line:Two high school friends on the brink of failing their history course find themselves traveling through time, meeting Socrates, Abraham Lincoln, Joan of Arc, Beethoven, and other notable figures.
Teaching With This Movie:Pick an historical figure that you would find interesting to talk to. Imagine what it would be like to interview them. What might they say about a modern issue. For example, what might Susan B. Anthony say about Hillary Clinton’s presidential election in 2016? How would Teddy Roosevelt react to climate change and its effect with fires in the western United States? What would Isaac Newton or Galileo say about NASA’s Mars rover programs?
Idea #2:Bill and Ted have to pass their history class because they are meant to go on to help create a “perfect society”. The idea of a perfect society or utopia was first created by Sir Thomas More in the 1500s. Many writers and artists have gone on to develop their own ideas of what a utopia might look like. How has the vision of utopia changed over time? What elements do you think would make a utopia today?
Idea #3:Did this film get you to think about historical figures in a different way with its comical treatment of Socrates, Lincoln, Joan of Arc, Napoleon, and Beethoven? Rewatch the scenes with one of them of your choice. What is it about the person’s real life that makes this treatment funny? What historical figure would you add to the movie? And what aspect of their character or life story would you use for comedic effect?