Star Trek review (no spoilers)

For the discussion of Movies, Television, Comics, and other existential distractions.

Moderator: Moderator

User avatar
markabaddon
Posts: 1790
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:24 pm

Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby markabaddon » Sat May 02, 2009 3:55 pm

Star Trek 2009 directed by JJ Abrams

What is old is new again in television and film. Battlestar Galactica, the Bionic Woman, even James Bond have all been re-imagined for modern audiences. Now it is the crew of the Enterprise’s turn to be updated. With a fan base as rabid as Star Trek’s this is no easy task, as JJ Abrams attempts to balance new elements to characters loved by several generations of fans while remaining true to the character traits that drew so many fans initially. I think he has succeeded admirably in this effort.

From the first scene of the film, the audience gets a sense that something has gone wrong. A ship emerges from what appears to be a hole in the universe and destroys a Federation vessel, captained by James Kirk’s father, with impossible ease. The design of this ship is quite striking. You look at its sharp edges with tentacle-like spikes sticking out all over (somewhat reminiscent of the Shadow vessels from the television series Babylon 5) and just know that this is a ship with one evil purpose.

The scene shifts after this and the characters of Kirk and Spock are shown at various stages of their adolescence and early adulthood. Kirk is more or less the same as we know him later in life as Captain, but Spock is subtly different. We see him struggling with his emotions and still finding his way as does feels alien to both the Vulcan world and to humanity.

One thing Abrams does well is he introduces the supporting cast of the film slowly. Characters like Uhura, Sulu, Checkhov and Bones are all given separate introductions and each plays a key role in the film. Abrams also does exceptional camera work. One of my favorite scenes in the film is when Bones and Kirk are first approaching the Enterprise from a shuttlecraft and the camera hugs the contours of the ship like a lover.

Hard-core fans will enjoy that there are nods to the original series throughout the film in such ways as a green skinned woman that Kirk seduces to Sulu’s skill with a sword. The classic lines are also uttered but in a way that seemed natural during the course of the film and not forced. Once the audience heard “Fascinating” or “The engines cannot take much more, sir” they roared with approval.

The overall plot itself was a bit of a letdown, as it is a time travel revenge theme and the main villain was not particularly scary when compared with Khan or the Borg, but he served his purpose in providing a threat that united the crew together and allowed Kirk the opportunity to take command of his shape. The most interesting aspect of the villain is that his actions changed the timestream. What we knew happened in the Star Trek universe might not hold true any longer, so there is an opportunity to wipe the slate clean with characters that we have known for over 40 years.

As an opening act to a reboot of the Star Trek franchise I really liked this film, more than I even expected to. I am very curious now as to what the next step will be for Star Trek.
Highly recommended
Governments, if they endure, always tend increasingly toward aristrocratic forms. No gov't in history has been known to evade this pattern. And as the aristocracy develops, gov't tends more and mroe to act exclusively in the interests of the ruling class

User avatar
Moderator
Site Admin
Posts: 10607
Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 12:17 pm
Contact:

Postby Moderator » Sun May 03, 2009 8:39 am

Nice review Mark -- and it seems to echo the vast majority of the other ones I've read. I am hopeful this one is building enough word of mouth that it should do well.

For one thing, it might shut those Star Wars fuc...er, fans up for once and for all.

:twisted:
- I love to find adventure. All I need is a change of clothes, my Nikon, an open mind and a strong cup of coffee.

User avatar
Ben W.
Posts: 443
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:07 pm

Postby Ben W. » Sun May 03, 2009 11:05 am

I wanted to see Shatner-Kirk, dammit. :cry:

STAR TREK: GENERATIONS is just too pathetic and depressing to be the last word on the matter.

User avatar
markabaddon
Posts: 1790
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:24 pm

Postby markabaddon » Sun May 03, 2009 12:13 pm

Oh c'mon you had Caligula as the bad guy, it was not that bad (OK it was). Shatner will probably never appear in another Star Trek film
Governments, if they endure, always tend increasingly toward aristrocratic forms. No gov't in history has been known to evade this pattern. And as the aristocracy develops, gov't tends more and mroe to act exclusively in the interests of the ruling class

Alan Coil
Posts: 538
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:21 pm
Location: Southeast Michigan

Postby Alan Coil » Fri May 08, 2009 3:50 pm

NO SPOILERS HERE

I saw the movie today. I think it is a great reboot of the franchise. I had problems with 2 scenes, 1 character, and may have seen 1 science error. I'll have to see it again soon.

Liked you review, Mark, but didn't read it until just now. I think I agree with everything you said.

User avatar
Steve Evil
Posts: 3519
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2004 3:22 pm
Location: Some Cave in Kanata
Contact:

Postby Steve Evil » Fri May 08, 2009 11:14 pm

Can't say I liked it that much. Granted, I liked the cast and some of the dialogue, but it was really just a video game, wasn't it?

LEVEL 1: Get to the drill.

LEVEL 2: Incapacitate the Drill

LEVEL 3: Navigate your way through the tundra wasteland to get to deserted Starbase. Avoid the beasties. Defeat the boss monsters

LEVEL 4: Rescue Captain Pike.

You'd have to jump from one moving platform to another, press the "x" button to shoot your enemies as they came at you from the other side of the screen, avoid falling debris, pick up extra lives and power ups.

When it comes to Star Trek, I've never been a "true believer". But I always appreciated that it was about more than blowing shit up. I mean, whatever happend to Boldly Going Where No Man Has Gone Before?

And of all the songs they could have brought back from the 20th century: the Beastie Boys?

User avatar
markabaddon
Posts: 1790
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:24 pm

Postby markabaddon » Mon May 11, 2009 2:04 pm

Alan, thanks for the kind words there are some major scientific errors in the film but at least they did cut off the sound when there were shots from space

Steve, do not blaspheme against the Beasties. There ain't that many Jewish rappers and I tend to be protective of them :twisted:
Governments, if they endure, always tend increasingly toward aristrocratic forms. No gov't in history has been known to evade this pattern. And as the aristocracy develops, gov't tends more and mroe to act exclusively in the interests of the ruling class


Coil 2.0
Posts: 95
Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 11:02 am

Re: Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby Coil 2.0 » Thu May 28, 2009 11:38 am

Ben W. wrote:Old Trek meets New Trek...and Old Trek ain't happy.


Old Trek has to get over itself. It's a new day.

Old Trek is just screaming for the new kids to get off the lawn.

User avatar
David Loftus
Posts: 3182
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2004 2:15 pm
Location: Portland, Oregon
Contact:

Re: Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby David Loftus » Thu May 28, 2009 12:56 pm

Might be more entertaining to see the new kids get off on the lawn.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

User avatar
Steve Evil
Posts: 3519
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2004 3:22 pm
Location: Some Cave in Kanata
Contact:

Re: Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby Steve Evil » Thu May 28, 2009 3:19 pm

Well. . .why shouldn't they get off the lawn? I mean, don't they have their own lawns to play on with stomping around on other people's?

User avatar
John E Williams
Posts: 210
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 9:34 am

Re: Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby John E Williams » Mon Jun 01, 2009 12:14 pm

Oh holy shit, those old Trek/new Trek videos were hilarious. Thanks Ben.

Steve Evil, that is absolutely dead on, re: the computer game analogy. And as I've said elsewhere on this forum, the "boldly [sic] going to seek out new life" theme was abandoned long ago, at least in the films. The formula is basically menace threatens entire galaxy, Enterprise only ship in range, action action action THE END. The new film merely carries on the tradition.

As to the Beastie Boys song -- I believe it is a secret in-joke. Some years ago a tape popped up on Howard Stern and elsewhere of Shatner reciting lines for a Star Trek computer game. One line has him pronouncing a certain word as "sabatazh" (short 'a') and upon being corrected by a producer he launches into one of the funniest prima donna tempter tantrums you've ever heard. Here's a version on YouTube; unfortunately it cuts out the bulk of Shatner's tirade.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlOTRxt-dIw

Methinks someone on the film (Damon Lindelof, perhaps) slipped that song in deliberately. If not, that makes it even funnier.

User avatar
Ben W.
Posts: 443
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:07 pm

Re: Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby Ben W. » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:41 pm

John E Williams wrote:Oh holy shit, those old Trek/new Trek videos were hilarious. Thanks Ben.


You're welcome. You'll probably enjoy this too:
Attachments
shatner2.JPG
shatner2.JPG (27.35 KiB) Viewed 3992 times

User avatar
John E Williams
Posts: 210
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 9:34 am

Re: Star Trek review (no spoilers)

Postby John E Williams » Tue Nov 17, 2009 12:01 pm

Ezra, if you're reading this the DVD comes out today. Rent and watch and comment plz. :D

User avatar
Jan
Posts: 1817
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2004 2:25 pm
Location: Köln

Postby Jan » Tue Nov 17, 2009 5:26 pm

The full excerpt of Shatner in Recording Studio
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMV1bwXyi54


Return to “Pop Culture”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests