Star trekkin’, across the universe.

§ May 10th, 2009 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on Star trekkin’, across the universe.

So, anyway, the new Star Trek movie.

Fun and exciting, with a spot-on cast…many excellent performances, but Karl Urban as McCoy nails it. The plot is a very basic combo of the vengeance seeking villain mixed with typical Trek time-travel shenanigans…I mean, even by Trek standards this plot is simplistic, but the time travel element this go-round provides the very foundation of this film’s reboot of the franchise, which is clever.

Yes, the science is a bit wonky, but frankly, if you’re looking to Star Trek for science, I’ve got some bad news for you. (And Phil Plait happily nitpicks away at the science, if it’s really bothering you.)

Overall, an excellent and enjoyable action film…the plot may be a bit on the light side, but it sufficiently serves as a framework for the real heart of TREK: the characters.

I have only a few SPOILER-ish notes and comments about the film, which follow right after this pic, and end after the next.

  • I am going to assume the usage of the Beastie Boys song “Sabotage” during the scene with young Kirk in the stolen car is a direct reference to this famous Shatner outtake. (I mean, it has to be. I haven’t read any press on this film at all…is there any mention in interviews anywhere?)
  • I like how the planet Vulcan is apparently entirely comprised of the should-be-familiar-looking Vasquez Rocks.
  • I don’t know…I kinda enjoyed young, panicky, has Dave Foley’s hair from the Kids in the Hall King of Empty Promises sketch, Chekov. That they gave him…in fact, gave all the ensemble…plenty to do was very satisfying.
  • So what was up with Planet Coincidence? Kirk just happens to land on that ice planet near where Old Spock is holed up, which is just a few kilometers away from Scotty? I suppose you need to, just to get the story moving along, but still.
  • Nice shout-out to Admiral (formerly Captain) Archer from the last Trek series Enterprise. I haven’t worked out if the timeline fits, exactly but 1) the very nature of this film probably makes all previous timelines moot, and 2) I don’t want to be That Guy.
  • Okay, so ultimately we’re left with an Earth-1 Star Trek, which is the timeline we’ve seen on TV and in the movies (and the merchandise, natch), and Earth-2 Star Trek, which is the new timeline we’ve got as a result of the time-traveling in this flick. And this has me wondering if we’re going to be seeing a new series of licensed Trek fiction based on the new timeline, and when the eventual crossover between the timelines will happen. (I mean, beyond the one that already happened in this movie.)

    I suppose, ultimately, there’s not that much of a difference between the two Treks, here, aside from some cosmetic changes, some changes in the personal histories of the characters, and…well, okay, the planet Vulcan being blown up might alter some scenes here and there. But that some difference has been established is enough for some hay to be made, I’m guessing.

    But, I swear to God, if any of you people start writing Young Spock/Old Spock slash fiction, I will hunt you down.

  • And I certainly hope you all enjoyed our pal, comics aficionado Carla Hoffman‘s appearance in the film. Here comes your Oscar, Carla!

Okay, yeah, I didn’t have a lot to say about the film…I’ve no real complaints about it, and I thought it succeeded in its unenviable task of building on what came before, while not appearing uninviting to a new audience. A fresh start is what this franchise needed, after what seemed to be its slow circling of the drain, and the film seems to have delivered. Here’s hoping that the inevitable sequel, freed of its need to establish/explain the scenario, will be even better.

For more Trek reading:

  • Pal Dorian is giving space to a series of posts about Star Trek to his pal John, starting right here, with more installments to follow. Specifically, John (and his co-writer) will be addressing the idea of “canon” in Trek, and how it’s unnecessary, if not downright harmful, to the show.

    John is one of the biggest Trek fans I know (and when we were hanging out together at a recent social function, I swear about 75% of our conversations were about Trek), so I’m very much looking forward to his essays.

  • Kevin Church has some spoiler free thoughts about the film.
  • Johanna has a few words on the film as well.

And that’s all I got, since I’ve been avoiding articles/spoilers/what have you since the film opened. Luckily, I only had to do the fingers-in-ears/”LA LA LA LA LA NOT LISTENING LA LA LA” thing once at the shop.

So, in conclusion…Star Trek: a very entertaining movie, and quite possibly a franchise-saving one. Glad to see people are taking to it as well as they are.

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