Thoughts on new Star Trek movie (*spoilers!*)

Discussion in 'Off-topic Zone' started by frostytheplebe, May 8, 2009.

  1. frostytheplebe

    frostytheplebe Seventh Part of the Seal

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    ***Potential Spoiler Warning!***

    I just wanted to get everyone's view who saw the movie last night. Personally, I thought it was an excellent movie. A little more action then I'm used to in a Star Trek Movie, but it was really good. My take on the Acting:

    Christopher Pike: Not bad... I still say Frank Liotta would have been a better Pike, but that's my opinion.

    James T. Kirk: I liked him. I thought they made a good choice with him, no complaints.

    Spock: They got a guy who did his personality very well. Appearance though... left much to be desired in my opinion.

    McCoy: I did not have high expectations here, but seriously THIS GUY CARRIED THE MOVIE! He did the best job of any of the cast members.

    Scotty: Very Funny, I liked him.

    Chekov: This was terrible. They made him a bad joke, the accent wasn't believable at all, and he made me want to throw something at the screen when he tried to make an effort at pronouncing his Vs.

    Uhura: I like who they got, had they just put her hair into a bun, it would have been completely perfect.

    Sulu: Not bad, not a very big part so not a whole lot to comment on.

    Sarek: Didn't like, personally, they could have done better.

    Amanda: UUUUUGGGGHHHHH!!!!

    Nero: Lacked dimension. Wasn't really the type of villain you're going to remember or see quoting... he was certainly no Khan.

    Anyway, didn't they just completely invalidate the rest of the Star Trek Universe, with the exception of Enterprise, in that movie?

    Final Opinion: Worth seeing, definitely an edge of your seat film with great acting, and comedy. A casual/semi hard Star Trek Fan will most likely love this movie... a die hard one though probably will not. Me, I loved it.
     
  2. Max Gene

    Max Gene Spaceman

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    NOT POTENTIAL BUT ACTUAL SPOILER WARNING



    No, they very clearly state that by going back in time, Nero has created an alternate timeline, or alternate reality. They did this for that very reason- a prequel of any sort was bound to clash with some bits of continuity the way Enterprise did, so they came straight out and said that this is separate. I'm a fan of that- I enjoyed the story but it can't work without that bit.

    I agree with the Spock bit, minus the whole romance with Uhura deal- not only is that Chapel's place, but it just...doesn't...make...sense. No complaints about seeing Uhura more as a result but it just doesn't sit right! For the rest, I generally agree with your opinion, although Chekov has always been noted for that sometimes overwrought accent. It did feel overdone, but I preferred that over ignoring it.

    I was expecting big things from Nero, but in the end he felt more like someone they nodded to occasionally rather than an actual villain- a sort've "we need to justify Romulans coming back, let's have this guy be upset for an irrational reason" deal.

    Overall I give the movie two thumbs up but expect a fair bit of anger from the crowd that wanted to see more of Trek's diplomacy. It stands easily on its own merits, I'll be seeing this one again soon.
     
  3. frostytheplebe

    frostytheplebe Seventh Part of the Seal

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    Hmmm, well i stand corrected on that note. I admit that I tried to steer clear of the conjecture as a means of staying neutral on this movie until I actually saw it.

    That is perhaps the biggest flaw in the movie, I'm sure most people would agree that a memorable villain makes the movie. (Vader, Khan, etc.)

    And I agree with you on your final point.
     
  4. Dundradal

    Dundradal Frog Blast the Vent Core!

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    You guys know there is a spoiler tag right? spoiler /spoiler with [] around them.

    Look I'm spoiling something!
     
  5. Max Gene

    Max Gene Spaceman

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    I knew it was there but couldn't recall how it worked. You're risking spoilers just by entering a thread with a title like this now anyways, though... and if you kept reading despite our warnings you obviously don't care too much anyways.
     
  6. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    It's pretty natural that a thread discussing a movie will contain spoilers. But you probably should have made the thread title a bit more explanatory - just fixed it for you, though.
     
  7. Worf

    Worf Vice Admiral

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    I might see this in the theatre - a friend is visiting me and we might go see it. If not, no big loss - I'll just catch it on blu-ray.

    My one disappointment is the reviews I read had way more Klingon in it than the movie.

    Ah, that reminds me to get the Klingon apps for the iPhone.
     
  8. powell99

    powell99 Aviation Junkie

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    I was surprised how much I loved it. I was all set to hate it, but it was great. I liked just about all the characters, the special effects were mind blowing, the Enterprise looked better than I thought it would, and my God Michael Giacchino's score was perfect!
     
  9. Dragon1

    Dragon1 Rear Admiral

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    I didn't care for it much. To me, it felt like a bad action film with a few nods to Trek. Many of the crew introductions seemed forced, and the whole incident with Spock stranding Kirk only to find Scotty was ridiculous. I realize this is a successful reboot of Trek, and a way to introduce it to a new generation of viewers (and for that alone I am thankful). But, there's just no way around it...Star Trek has *always* been about social commentary. This had no commentary, no higher meaning, in the end, it was just about fancy CGI and explosions.

    Sure there have been bad episodes of TOS and TNG; however, Trek has always been known for providing us, the viewer, with some hope for a better future, or some alternative look at life and aging (STII).

    I like Trek, and I like bad action movies, but, this movie has proven for me that I don't like bad Trek action movies. The aesthetic was pretty piss poor as well. I don't know what Bush Gardens brewery they filmed the engineering interior shots at, but I do wish someone told the art director that never in Star Trek history has the Enterprise ever looked like a refinery.[/COLOR]
     
  10. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    Oh, pfffffft. Star Trek was never about social commentary. It happened to have a few social commentary episodes along the way, but there's no way anyone could seriously claim social commentary was the purpose behind the show. Star Trek was supposed to simply be a western in space - it was literally pitched as Wagon Train (1957) in space. Just a different adventure every week. The social commentaries appeared along the way for much the same reason as they did in the new Battlestar Galactica - because they're easier to write than a coherent, fun and interesting stand-alone story.
     
  11. Bandit LOAF

    Bandit LOAF Long Live the Confederation!

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    No in the Star Trek 'world' sense because the events of the new movie are still a linear progression from the original Star Trek (and all that followed). Star Trek (2009) doesn't exist if the original series, Next Generations, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, etc. haven't previously happened and ultimately given birth to Nero in the first place.

    ... and no by any reasonable measure because it's idiotic to think that one story can "invalidate" another in the first place by being set at a particular time irrelative to it. How could it possibly work? Oh no, i saw the new Star Trek movie and now 'A Private Little War' isn't a commentary on the Vietnam War anymore! Golly, now that I've seen this movie, 'The Visitor' isn't a touching emotional piece anymore, etc., etc.

    Anyway, I thought it was great. The main crew casting-and-characters were universally perfect and everyone left the theater wishing they could go right ahead and see Star Trek II now that the crew had come together properly.

    GOOD

    - The movie had its own entirely new style, which is something Star Trek movies have often been recalcitrant about. That is to say that cinematographer or costume designer on Star Trek III through Nemesis was probably a pretty sweet gig -- they just dusted off the previous production's sets, props and style and moved on. Abrams' movie with all the fast cuts and the lens flair and so on built an important stage for making the movie its own.

    - Similarly, a big hand for the art style... because I think it was designed to be obsolete in 2030 in the same way the original series is dated today. The "Apple store" bridge is going to be a product of its times... but the Enterprise with the same beautiful lines and the intentionally-retro-timeless new aspects (big Buck Rogers-styled nacelles) will still feel like the original did.

    - I liked that they essentially showed the water-navy fetishizing of the previous films to the door. It was a crutch that TNG also tried to drop (with less success). Changing the definition of Captain harkened back to the original show and made it a much more satisfying (and 'realistic') goal for Kirk.

    - The lengths to which it went to respect the original continuity were excellent without being overbearing. It's a story that relies entirely on the previous Star Trek history having happened but still seamlessly gives us a fresh start for the future, and it's a lot more believable than I would have thought possible. At the same time, it kicked things out for the sake of its story rather than simply to change up the Star Trek footprint...

    - The simplicity:complexity ratio. Star Trek here is like a great video game... it's a simple linear action experience for anyone looking for such a thing and it's also a complex tapestry of timelines and off-screen history for anyone who wants more. It doesn't go out of its way to explain *anything* about the timeline switch, but everything is there for older fans to latch onto.

    - Try picking the standout cast member -- you can't do it because they all did such a great job of making the original roles their own.

    - Evolution. The movie did a wonderful job of moving from everything that was a little awkward (product placement, teen angst, plity Kirk) to that incredibly satisfying last scene. The music gets a big thumbs up here, supporting that exactly - how cool was working up to the original Alexander Courage music, played once the crew had come together at the end?

    NOT AS GOOD

    - Nero wasn't very interesting and you could feel he was just a few inches away from being a compelling villain. We needed a better sense of how tortured he was, which would have really improved him. As he is, he's a very simple villain with the occasional touch of interest (the comm greetings, for instance). The story wasn't *about* him, so it wasn't too important... but it still feels like a missed opportunity.

    - New star date on the Jellyfish. I know it wouldn't work, but Spock's ship should have read a TNG stardate rather than the new makes-sense type. (For the record, I think the new star date system is great... but then I've been using it in Wing Commander for years!)

    - Nods to the original serieses were absolutely stellar throughout (Pike's sweater, 47 Klingon ships destroyed, the complex salt shaker prop, Admiral Archer's Beagle, the post-Enterprise Kelvin uniforms, etc.) so I feel bad putting this in 'Not as Good'... but there were one or two that missed the nail. Specifically, the

    - Coincidences, small universe syndrome. The script is full of connections that should have been a little more subtle -- dropping Kirk on Delta Vega next to Spock Prime, the various cadets being at the bar in Iowa, etc. Obviously it's a movie *about* coincidences, so it's hard to criticize entirely... but still, it felt off.

    - Star Fleet Regulations -- Old Spock knowing one particular regulation was the solution to putting Kirk in charge? Really? It seemed cloying -- I think it would have worked a lot better without the specific numbered rule that would cause Spock to resign if he reacted to Kirk's taunting.

    - The angry, aging Trekkies in back of us at the theater who were furious because Kirk was born on a shuttle instead of in Iowa and also because there weren't any Tribbles in the movie. Really. These are exactly the people Abrams told not to go see the movie, which is a pretty great thing for a director who wants to make money to say.

    - Where was Keri Russell?!:) We hired JJ Abrams for a reason, people... (seriously, did she flash by in the bar?)

    BAD
    - Urg, Nokia logo. I actually like a touch of product placement in Star Trek (it connects you to the world - it's entirely appropriate for Scotty to use the Yellow Pages in 1980 in Star Trek IV and Kirk to order a shot of Jack at the bar in this one) but this one was blatant and stupid. There's nothing timeless or necessary about a little glowing Nokia logo. Chris said: Nokia still exists? When was the last time you saw a Nokia phone? Answer: ten years ago in the Wing Commander movie, where they bought a similarly stupid advertising hole...

    - The car chase. Young Kirk is a great example of why kid actors should be shot into the sun. It seemed unnecessary -- just have the same scene with Kirk as a rebel teen and I wouldn't go into it wanting to gouge my face off. I really feel like the Iowa scenes were shot as San Francisco scenes and then supertitled into confusion to appease some awful fans unnecessarily. Not many giant narrow car-dropping pits in Iowa, guys... and what was Star Fleet Academy doing there in the first place? Worlds most boring field trip? It's a layer of coincidence for the sake of making sure Kirk was in Iowa even though the events of his life to that point must have been completely different...

    OTHER

    - After we got home from seeing it twice we took out the chronology and tried to figure out exactly what's what in the new timeline. The coolest thing is that Kirk is, indeed, born at the same point at the nexus between the two (in 2233). The big differences are that the Enterprise enters service much later (Pike mentions Star Fleet losing its way, I think that was the touchstone for explaining that) and that Kirk enters the Academy five years later (obvious in the events of the film). The movie itself takes place in (I believe) 2258, which would have been during Pike's second Five Year Mission in the original timeline (so when the movie ends and the original crew is assembled it's still five or more years before Kirk would have become Captain in the original timeline).

    - *Is* this a completely new style of design for everything, or did the Enterprise actually look like that during one of Pike's missions? It's entirely possible...

    - If you love continuity, check out the two prequel comics ('Countdown', now in a graphic novel and then the short six-pager in this month's Wired). They're almost essential to the movie, explaining Nero's backstory and connecting the Next Generation to the events that lead up to this film. Both are written by the screenwriters behind this movie and it's totally cool that they're Star Trek fans who are into this sort of thing.

    - I want my own Kelvin salt shaker *yesterday*.

    Star Trek wasn't about social commentary (and it *especially* wasn't about many of the things people insist today -- the whole utopian aspect we all associate with it for some reason is nowhere in the original show and then has nothing to do with pretty much any of the later stories either)... but I think you're also being a bit too cynical. Social commentary - at least the way the original Star Trek did it on the occasion that it... did do it - wasn't easier to write than a simple action piece. Star Trek had a stable of socially conscious 'lit' science fiction writers who were used to writing such stories and it must have evolved from there.

    As for Wagon Train to the Stars, it's worth noting that was the *pitch*... to get money from network executives at a time when westerns and Wagon Train especially were making all the money. I once saw a Privateer remake, identical to the original in gameplay, pitched to EA as "Battlefield 1942 meets Grand Theft Auto". Which is to say that the network pitch isn't especially genuine so much as it is reflective of what's making money at the time. TOS *is* pretty clearly Hornblower in space -- coming from people who grew up with Forester writing a series of adventures rather than something that was tied together (and prequelized) later.
     
  12. gevatter Lars

    gevatter Lars Vice Admiral

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    Saw the movie yesterday and there are parts I like. Like the humor, some quite funny comments in it.
    The action itself was nice but I am realy not a fan of the camera work. I know its kinda modern to do it, still I prefere to actualy see some of the stuff that is there then just a blury images. Thankfully they sometimes stoped the moveing and let you breath.
    The design is strange in some points and Scotty even makes a nice joke about it. I would have prefered a different design but there isn't much we can do.
    Whoever made some of the interior, well they are quite odd somehow but who has been on a luxus liner and then went down to enginiering knows that its quite a contrast to the rest of the ship. The new design isn't much different in that way.

    Frankly I had very little expectations about the movie. When I saw it the effects keept me from thinking about the "whats wrong" parts I aspected to see.
    After sleeping it over I reflected it and saw how piece by piece things where falling into their place and how he used referances from TOS and Enterprise to create the new StarTrek.
    Its not the old, it will never be but it has some potential I think.
    You can find most of the charakters main atributes again.

    I say they made a quite flashy first showoff, now lets see some development behind it. As its now its a good action movie that also could have another title. Now make it earn the name by get a series running and see if they could keep up with what the movie promised.
     
  13. frostytheplebe

    frostytheplebe Seventh Part of the Seal

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    Ok, so I guess the BIG question is... did this movie do what Star Trek fans hoped it would. BASED SOLELY ON YOUR OWN OPINIONS, did this movie give new life to Star Trek?

    My Opinion: Yes.


    EDIT: In my first post, I meant Ray Liotta, not Frank Liotta as Pike... not really sure how I messed that up.
     
  14. Mace

    Mace Vice Admiral

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    The only thing i disliked about the movie was the horrible accent of the guy that did not even distantly resemble Chekov.
     
  15. Tigerhawk

    Tigerhawk Captain

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    Well...it was definitely different. Which, then again, is the reason for the entire thing being set in an alternate timeline, which quite frankly is the only thing that makes this movie work in terms of even being called Star Trek in the first place.

    What I liked:

    - Being a native Iowan, the nod to Riverside, IA. Not long after The Voyage Home came out, Riverside had laid claim to being Kirk's birthplace, even though that story didn't seem to hit the mainstream media until sometime in the mid '90s or so, if I recall correctly. The nod gave the town "official" status, and that's just cool.
    - The references...though it also seemed that half the movie was references, which was good and bad. Some are good. Start throwing them into the pool as much as they did, and it seems a bit self-serving.
    - Kirk's lines and the mesh between him and McCoy. Those two worked GREAT together, and McCoy's jabbing him with the evidently not-so-painless hypos was great. "Stop that!"
    - Some of the one-liners that permeated the movie. It let you know that, while they had a story to tell, they weren't taking themselves too seriously.

    What I didn't so much like:

    - As a sailor, the these first two things bugged me the most. First, the spaces used to portray the bridge, engineering, the water treatment plant (or whatever space that was that Scotty got beamed into), among others, were way too big. Aboard any ship, unless you're onboard a cruise liner (and even then, those spaces aren't all THAT big), every space is at a premium.
    - Second, there is no way on any god's green earth or black space that any cadet would be commissioned as a Captain. That's like saying, "Hi, I'm Christopher Blair. Two minutes ago, I was an Academy Cadet. Now, I'm full-bird Colonel." It ain't happening. Ever. Being appointed as acting captain by the ship's captain is one thing. Being commissioned at that actual rank is frankly impossible.
    - I want to find that place in my home state where we have this giant cavernous pit that you can run classic cars into. (Yes, I know this was nothing more than a plot device, but still...)
    - If you're going to use science references as plot devices, use them consistently. When the black hole was rigged in Vulcan's core, Nero's red matter caused the entire planet to be swallowed. Yet when Nero's own ship has multiple drops slip out inside of his own ship, there shouldn't have even been a Nero line of, "I'd rather die suffering..." blah blah blah...there should have been maybe enough time for an "Oh, shi----", after which nothing of the ship should have remained.
    - I'll agree with Dragon1, Spock shooting Kirk off the Enterprise was a completely implausible move, even for someone who's essentially a stowaway. They have brigs for a reason, ya know.

    I'll admit, it was better than I thought it would be. There are some other things both for and against this movie in my mind that I know I've forgotten to post and might remember in the future. I didn't quite think it deserved the four out of five stars I saw in the newspaper movie review, but I didn't walk out of there disgusted either.
     
  16. Casper_Orillion

    Casper_Orillion Spaceman

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    I thought it was a very good movie overall. I thought that the beginning of the movie was rather familiar though.

    Now let me think...where have I seen that opening scene before? I just can't remember for the life of me...
     
  17. Sylvester

    Sylvester Vice Admiral

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    I personally loved it - thought it was a fitting tribute to the original series and a great springboard for more exciting stories.

    In regards to Tigerhawk's complaint above - and I'm speaking as a fellow sailor in the US Navy - who said Starfleet operated like our Navy. There was an episode from the first season of TNG where they mentioned a female captain who made the rank at 26. Kirk is 25, going on 26 in this movie. They give Captainships to natural leaders, not guys who have been in a long time. Hell, Picard took command of Stargazer (and was made a captain) at age 28, so its not unprecedented.
     
  18. Captain Obvious

    Captain Obvious Commodore

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    I went in totally expecting to hate and tear this movie apart, but I have to say I absolutely loved it. The characters were spot on and the alternate dimension reboot is the breath of fresh air that Star Trek needed. The Enterprise was beautiful up on screen, the score was awesome, I even really enjoyed Nero but agree that he was a wasted opportunity and could've been more interesting than he was.

    It was a bit annoying how conveniently the crew assembled and worked together but I suppose that was the point. The movie was exciting, the action was fitting, and I have no problems seeing a Trek film that doesn't have some heavy-handed moral lesson behind it.

    My biggest complaint is how badly it left me wanting more.
     
  19. LeHah

    LeHah 212 Squadron - "The Old Man's Eyes And Ears"

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    I thought the movie was good fun. I don't think I'm nearly as enamored with it as the rest of the world (nor do I understand such enthusiasm) but it was a pretty, middle-of-the-road summer action movie. I wish the movie had been given a little bit more time to "breathe" - everything seemed to happen far too fast - but I'll chalk to that up to it being a reboot and needing to prove its self.

    I'm not a fan of shaky-cams or crazy fish-eye camera tilts, so we'll say that and leave it be. I'm also not a fan of JJ Abrams inserting his usual "continuity" jokes into the movie - not the Star Trek ones which were surprisingly good, but I caught two gags from Alias (the Nokia cellphone tone, the "red matter" ball) which really made me wince.

    Casting was excellent, though the villain was pretty cardboard. Blowing up Vulcan seemed to be an "artificial heavy" - the concept is fine but the way they did it had utterly no effect outside of a plot convenience. The first... 15 or 20 minutes were particularly painful but the rest of the movie evened out nicely.

    RE: Music. To be absolutely glib, on Next Generation, they used to label doors with GNDN for "Goes Nowhere, Does Nothing" which is the perfect label for the music through out the movie. No details necessary - the music just kind of sat there without having any character or involvement. It was loud when it had to be loud, soft when it had to be soft and there was nothing memorable about it.

    It could be that I'm just having a hard time adjusting from what Star Trek has been the last twenty years to a newer approach. Rick Berman did a good job carrying Roddenberry's torch (in that - he ended up knowing what ST was more than Gene himself) and I guess it was my fault for hoping that someone would carry it in a similar manner. Not that the movie is some horrible disrespect - its simply its own beast and I will with time probably warm up to it a lot more than this post let on.
     
  20. Vyris Tykin

    Vyris Tykin Spaceman

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    I went to it intending to enjoy myself and I did. So, it was a good flick.

    I went with a mildly obsessive Trek fan and he enjoyed it too (mostly because I gave him a hard time about talking during movies and about not enjoying something because it isn't EXACTLY the same as the past ones).
     

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