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08-05-2009, 09:10 AM
Post: #1

Is anybody going to see the new STAR TREK....? I think it looks promising.

(is anybody out Survivor land!!) :-O
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21-05-2009, 08:09 AM
Post: #2
Hi 'Everyone'. SAW it....LOVED it. It was great to see the old Enterprise back in action again.
A great film...although I DO have a problem with Kirk's a certain scene.Well...they are not very 23rd century, now are they! :-)
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09-06-2009, 08:33 AM
Post: #3
I saw it as well - really enjoyed it. Great film. However, not everyone is happy. Here is a friend/colleague's review:


The key to whether this latest movie ‘rebranding’ is a fitting addition to the series comes down in some ways to what you feel the ‘essence’ of Star Trek is; what makes it work and sets it apart from other franchises, whether the film captures that spirit, and if it doesn’t, does it give us something new which couldn’t be better served by something outside of Star Trek.

Gene Roddenberry’s original series used the medium of sci-fi to explore essentially moral and philosophical issues such as what drives us as people, what our weaknesses are, and how we relate to other cultures. The premise of a space ship of explorers gave the show romance, though also allowed the characters to encounter a stream of ‘strange new worlds’, each with its own societies and traditions, or used the far-flung technology of the Enterprise and uncharted phenomena to create scenarios which expose something of the human condition and raise moral questions particularly pertinent during the 60s, a period when many of the old institutions were being reassessed. Star Trek followed more in the tradition of The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits than Lost in Space, yet with the addition of a recurring setting and ongoing characters, central among them Kirk and Spock, a two-handed exploration of impulse vs logic. Roddenberry showed us that sci-fi is far from pure escapism – at least if it’s any good.

Later incarnations of the show have largely continued this tradition, with the addition of ongoing ‘soap opera’ storylines, though occasionally to the point of repetition (not helped by explosion of concept-hungry sci-fi franchises launched with the increasing availability of digital effects technology). Many of the shows’ original ideas are now genre clichés, while the actuality of space exploration has largely faltered as we have reached the limits of what is possible and the vast distances to even the closest star. While ideas such as Spock’s exploration of humanity has continued to be well-serviced by the character of Data, continued spin-offs have retained the interest of fans but failed to attract enough new audiences, perhaps put off by the ever-increasing backstory and lack of fresh ideas.

The new Star Trek movie attempts to bring the story back to its roots, allowing an attractive ‘hop-on point for new audiences while appeasing old fans; charting the events leading up to the original series, while integrating events from the future of the Star Trek ‘timeline’. The film is, innovatively, both a prequel and equel - or arguably satisfies as neither: The decision to use time-travel as a major part of the story effectively creates two separate versions of events, and two sets of ‘similar’ characters, negating its purpose as a prequel. We are watching a different Kirk doing his own thing rather than the events building to toward the Kirk and the events we know – a ‘prequel’ to, possibly, a different version of events (demonstrated by the major ‘altering’ of history in the destruction of Spock’s home planet).

While the use of time travel in a plot can be used effectively when kept simple (Terminator) or for fun (The Voyage Home) or simply as a device to gain access to an historical setting (‘old school’ Doctor Who), its danger is it arguably cheapens anything that has or will happen in the show by creating multiple versions of events and characters and putting everything into a state of flux where no event is set in stone and irreversible. If one character dies we are aware that other versions exist independently; something ‘old’ Spock recognised when reminding his younger self that they could ‘work together’ (bizarrely, after already stating how it was imperative he does not meet himself)

However, the film also fails to take advantage of what is achievable in a prequel: While the Star Wars prequels sets the scene for events later to happen, building on our knowledge of later events by examining the circumstances which led them to occur, Star Trek tells us very little about the lead-up to the Federation, or events on Earth or Vulcan. Star Fleet itself is explained only in passing as “a peacekeeping armada”: This appears to be a new definition, which bizarrely changes at the close of the film when its mission has suddenly resolved to the familiar task of searching for new life forms. Who or what controls Star Fleet, or how it came about remains a mystery. Meanwhile, ‘logical’ Vulcan culture is illustrated by way of by Vulcan children reciting maths, complete with Pythagoras’ Theorem. With none of the ancient ceremonies or traditions we’ve seen before, there is really little mysterious or romantic about them. Neither are we told about their relationship to the Romulans (a major plot point). The filmmakers seemed like they couldn’t wait to ‘get the team together’. Conversely, the Star Wars prequels, if nothing else, took their time establishing the conditions that led to the later stories.

The main plot, concerning a vendetta against Spock by a Romulan, never left the characters in a position where they had to face moral dilemmas or choices. The villain himself was simply deluded (why would he think Spock responsible?), and with no real argument to make remained entirely unsympathetic and disposable: The heroes simply had to get there and kill him.

The credibility of the plot elements also seemed to take a nosedive compared to earlier versions – not because earlier plot elements were realistic, but because they were more clearly defined and compelling. In particular, it seemed in the movie almost effortless for ships to cross between worlds, travelling ‘at the speed of plot’ to the extent that The Enterprise is effectively 'scrambled' to deal immediately with a situation affecting Vulcan (“seven minutes to Vulcan!”Wink. The Enterprise can of course 'warp', though the ease with which is seemed to flit Tardis-like between places negated the whole 'voyage' element of the original premise: If it is that easy, they are hardly ‘explorers’ at all. What’s more, eager to get everyone in place, Star Fleet gives command of a ship to a rookie crew who, as far as we know, haven’t even been into space yet. The ‘drilling into the planets core’ seemed to negate both the durability and size of planets while the ‘red matter’ was barely explained at all. Furthermore, the plot relied on a huge coincidence (that of Kirk meeting ‘old’ Spock at random). Half-human Spock seems to show little anguish at the destruction of his home world in the circumstances, when this could have been an epic heart-wrenching scene as his two sides pull in opposite directions. Considering that grief and vengeance were as close as the film had to ‘themes’, they seemed remarkably understated: It all seemed okay once another ‘home world’ had been found (possibly a way of getting Nemoy, a prominent spokesman for the Jewish community on board with its parallels to the Biblical Exodus?).

Star Trek is, essentially, an effects-heavy action film, yet stripped of these elements there remains little by way of themes – and considering philosophical, moral and political musings were always the cornerstone to the show, taking them away seems a strange thing to do, unless onlyt taken as a re-branding exercise. A continuation of its old formula of adventure mixed with heady topics and moral dilemmas would likely have failed to rejuvenate the its fortunes. Something had to give to make it popular again, and that something was vision.


Yes, he has far too much time on his hands!


[Image: pot001.gif]jobs kent
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17-06-2009, 08:22 AM
Post: #4
Crippes.What a nit-picker.The film was totally good fun.I think it will appeal to the older fans and a new generation of fans. Ha...dread to think what he would think of the new Terminator film.Which I thoroughly enjoyed too.
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