Futurama: Bender’s Game (2008)

futurama benders game poster fry bender leela mom
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Bender’s fantasy world, Yellow Submarine opening

Story is unbalanced, not enough of Bender’s world

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Futurama:  Bender’s Game

Studio:  20th Century Fox

Genre(s):  Animated/Comedy/Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):  November 4, 2008

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated


Everything is wonderful in a world of rainbows, centaurs, and butterflies!

Planet Express finds their business at risk with a dark matter shortage raising the cost of travel.  Professor Farnsworth realizes that Mom’s control of the dark matter is being manipulated and the Planet Express team sets out to find the source of Mom’s dark matter.  Unfortunately, Bender has gone crazy with an addiction to role-playing games.  When Bender’s imagination mixes with the dark matter, Mom and her children Walt, Larry, and Igner and the Planet Express crew find themselves sucked into a world of fantasy!

Directed by Dwayne Carey-Hill, Futurama:  Bender’s Game was a direct-to-DVD movie.  The movie was part of a four movie series sometimes considered Futurama—Season 5 (and in reruns the films were broken down into episodes).  Futurama:  Bender’s Game follows Futurama:  The Beast with a Billion Backs in 2008.


My precious!

Futurama is a fun series.  I didn’t really watch it much when it was on but reflecting back on the animated sister series of The Simpsons is rewarding.  With the longer plots of the TV films, the movie needs plots to go along with the runtime…and Futurama:  Bender’s Game just doesn’t seem to flow as well as it could.

The problem is that the story is very fragmented.  The fragments of the film just don’t blend together like some of the previous stories.  The real thrust of the story is the RPG mock-up of The Lord of the Rings trilogy…and it takes forever to get there.  The logic of how it reaches the RPG world is pretty weak so it seems that if the writers had gotten the characters to the fantasy world sooner, it would have been a better film.


Say cheese!

The fault can’t be any of the voice actors who have honed their skills over the seasons.  The cast’s timing is perfect and much of the dialogue is laugh-out-loud funny.  A great cast and great dialogue doesn’t necessary make a great script even if it is funny.

Like the story, I love the RPG portion of this movie.  I like the character designs and how they were adapted (for the most part) to be a parody of The Lord of the Rings.  The rest of the film looks good as well, but it does just look like most Futurama episodes (I do have to say I love the Yellow Submarine opening sequence however).

Futurama:  Bender’s Game isn’t my favorite Futurama story, but it isn’t all that bad either.  I wanted a lot more from this story and felt it did have the potential to be more.  I think that Futurama was overlooked by many and now that it has concluded, it should be reexamined.  Futurama : Bender’s Game was followed by Futurama:  Into the Wild Green Yonder in 2009.

Related Links:

Futurama—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Futurama—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Futurama—Season 3 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Futurama—Season 4 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Futurama—Season 5 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Futurama:  Bender’s Big Score (2007)

Futurama:  The Beast with a Billion Backs (2008)

Futurama:  Into the Wild Green Yonder (2009)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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