Monday, May 11, 2009

My Star Trek Review

Okay, so I went to see Trek last Thursday with my good friend and fellow Trekkie (Trekker?) George. Let me just say that -- I believe -- being a fan of the original series works as a bit of a detriment when going in to this film for the first time. The new Trek had many "tip of the hat" moments and to be honest, they were distracting. At least to me. I'll explain in a minute.

Overall though, I must say I was very entertained. Despite a few WTF moments, I would say Abrams and company got it right. As my friend and I left the theater, we compared notes. We seemed to agree on most everything. Here are some of the pros and cons:

• Abrams & Co. made Star Trek accessible to the masses and not just closet-dwelling nerds like me (although for the record I have never dressed up as a Klingon and/or attended a convention)
• Extremely "epic" in its presentation... not since
TMP back in '79 has Trek been done on this scale
• TOS was treated with the utmost respect
• An added level of realism... reflections on the glass viewscreen, gritty surfaces, etc
• Gadgets maintained their purpose and their names... phasers, tricorders, communicators
• The original characters... Kirk, Spock, McCoy and the TOS crew maintained the personalities which made them so appealing in the first place (for the most part)
• Solid acting throughout... Bruce Greenwood made for an awesome Captain Pike, and Karl Urban...? Karl Urban OWNED as McCoy
• Exciting pace
• Fantastic special effects and sound effects... going into warp was just F$@#ING AMAZING... to see AND hear!
• Some of the action scenes had heart-stopping moments
• Strong plot
• They kept the energizer sound effect nearly 100% intact, as is, from TOS... personally, I thought this was really, really awesome
• Attractive set design, particularly the new iBridge
• Leonard Nimoy gave the film added credibility, even though he played out like an Obi Wan Kenobi
• Kirk's cocky Kobiashi Maru scene, and the fact that Spock was the one who programmed it
• Nice running time (2 hrs, 6 min)

• Plot was a bit confusing, could have been explained more clearly
• Some character issues... Spock taking time out to make out with a chick while Kirk is waiting for them to potentially save billions of lives could not be more "illogical" in my book
• Forgettable score... seriously, 30 seconds after we walked out, I could not recall one single bit of music
• Realism is great but there were way too many lens flare applications
• Scotty's stupid gremlin side-kick... all I kept saying to myself was "man in suit... man in suit..."
• Kirk was a bit too cocky... I would have liked to see him more vulnerable... I think it would have made for a stronger emotional investment in the character
• They literally stole the little rhino beetle looking, "creatures in our bo-deez" concept from Wrath of Khan
• The scene in Nero's ship when Nero is standing in front of a giant, round window... it looked so much like the Vader Vs. Luke scene in Return of the Jedi
• "Future Tech" is one of the main things that made TOS so bitchin' back in the day, and I wanted to see it represented on a more evolutionary scale... when an iPhone looks more impressive than a Starfleet communicator, there's something wrong... where was my freaking 3D mini-hologram communicator?!
• Nero could have been characterized and played out as a bit more evil... Eric Bana was good but he always seemed to be two steps from entering "Classic Villain" status... Reagan once said to Mondale, "You, sir, are no John F. Kennedy." Well, I would have to say to Nero, "You sir, are no Khan Noonien Singh."

I gave the film a 7 out of 10. That was Thursday.

I went to see the movie again on Saturday and I found myself enjoying it more for some reason. I think maybe once I let go of my nit-picky, TOS self I was able to enjoy the movie for what it is, and not for what it used to be. I stopped comparing the new actors with the original ones (or at least I did it to a lesser degree). I also stopped looking for little things like numbers on the ships and tribbles in the bar.

As it stands now I'd have to give the film a good, solid 8 out of 10. I think perhaps if I view it a few more times, that score may rise even more.

Oh, and if anyone says this film is better than STII:TWOK, they're smoking crack. My opinion. As far as I'm concerned Khan gets nothing less than a 10 out of 10.

JJ Abrams and crew, I salute you. Thank you for respecting one of the most legendary fictional icons of the twentieth century. Star Trek is back.


  1. So do you think the new Terminator flick is any good? I despised T3 but this one looks like they took it seriously...story intriques me as well. I've always wanted to see more of the Terminator future that James Cameron briefly alluded to in 1 and 2 after the machines took over and nuke LA! Was he involved with this film at all? What happened that he's no longer involved with Terminator franchise??

    Ah well, hope it turns out good!

  2. Yeah I wasn't a T3 fan either.

    Not sure what happened with Cameron's involvement with Terminator... I know he's still working on Avatar, the movie that is supposedly going to "f@#k our eyeballs," according to a bunch of fanboys. heh

    I think Salvation is gonna kick ass... maybe to a level of shockingly great! I'll rent a seat for it...