Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter party on in the first 'Bill & Ted Face the Music' trailer

Ethan Alter
Senior Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

In a time of rancor and strife, the nation turns its lonely eyes to the only two musicians who can possibly unite us. No, not Simon & Garfunkel: Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Theodore “Ted” Logan. The founding members of Wyld Stallyns (played by Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves respectively) return for an overdue encore in Bill & Ted Face the Music, which — for now anyway — is set to rock out in theaters on August 21. But the first trailer for the film reveals that our heroes have been closer to zeroes in terms of their rock career. Twenty-five years after their triumphant barnstormer of a set at the San Dimas Battle of the Bands, the duo is reduced to playing $2 taco nights in Barstow, Calif. (Watch the trailer above.)

Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves in the first trailer for Bill & Ted Face the Music. (Photo: Orion Pictures)

Needless to say, their career slide is a cause for great concern among the citizens of the utopian future that the Wyld Stallyns is supposed to bring about. “Bill and Ted — what have you got to say for yourselves?” asks the world of tomorrow’s Great Leader (Holland Taylor). The now middle-aged rockers try to play their hits, responding: “Be excellent to each other” and “Party on, dudes.”

But it’s clear those slogans won’t be enough anymore: Bill and Ted are going to have to get serious about living up to their potential. So they hatch a time-traveling scheme that’s straight out of a classic Calvin & Hobbes strip: journeying to the future to nab the song that’s supposed to save the world without having to go through the pain of having to actually write it. “But isn’t that stealing?” asks the forever-innocent Ted. “How is that stealing if we’re stealing it from ourselves, dude?” replies his semi-sage partner-in-future crime.

Reeves, William Sadler and Winter in Bill & Ted Face the Music. (Photo: Orion Pictures)

With that, it’s back into the phone booth for Bill and Ted as they navigate their future — which appears to include some prison time — and encounter old friends like the not at all bogus Grim Reaper (William Sadler). They also have to repair their relationships with their now-grown daughters, played by Brigette Lundy-Paine and Samara Weaving. In other words, it’s a most excellent adventure.

On Twitter, fans are happily celebrating #BillAndTedDay by setting the Face the Music trailer to autoplay.

Wyld Stallyns couldn’t keep us away when this movie is ready to premiere.

Bill & Ted Face the Music will party on in theaters on August 21.

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