Originally Aired: 2009-5-7
When Ambassador Spock attempts and fails to save Romulus from destruction, he and a disgruntled survivor Nero are propelled deep into the past where Nero decides to take revenge on Spock and the Federation by undermining their history. [Blu-ray] [DVD]
- Why would the Romulans design Nero's ship the way they did? The design looks cool and menacing but hardly practical for being a simple mining vessel.
- Why was nobody aboard the Enterprise surprised that the Romulans looked like Vulcans? Did word of this make it back to the Federation after Nero destroyed the Kelvin? Though the crew of the Kelvin didn't seem all that surprised either.
- Spock said to Kirk that in his timeline a supernova threatened the entire galaxy, something that would not be the case. Perhaps a bungled line?
- The planet Delta Vega is not located anywhere near Vulcan. Its presence within the Vulcan system in this film is a continuity error. (Perhaps two planets with the same name?)
- With Delta Vega being close enough to Vulcan that the planet's implosion was visible with the naked eye, why wasn't Delta Vega destroyed too?
- Old Spock beams Kirk and Scotty back to the Enterprise while the Enterprise have been moving away at warp speed for a considerable time. I don't care what technological advancements Old Spock is privy to. That is ludicrous.
- Travel time to Vulcan from Earth and visa versa is too fast.
- The physics behind the portrayal of black holes in this film are a bit fuzzy at times.
- Technically the title of this film is just Star Trek, but I have prepended the "Star Trek [MovieNumber]" format to maintain consistency with the other films.
- Tiberius was the name of James Kirk's paternal grandfather. James/Jim was the name of his maternal grandfather.
- Young Kirk gets called on a "Nokia" wireless communications system while driving his step father's antique car.
- This film establishes that the Cardassian Union is known to the Federation at this time.
- This film establishes that Uhura's first name is Nyota. Kirk's fascination with wanting to learn her first name throughout the film is an in-joke reference to the fact that in all the years we've known the character, we have never heard her first name on screen until now.
- In this universe, McCoy's nickname "Bones" is a reference to his divorce. In the aftermath, all he was left with were his bones.
- The Kobayashi Maru test Kirk cheats on was first introduced in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.
- Majel Barrett died shortly after recording her lines as the ship's computer.
- Scotty makes a reference to having performed a transporter experiment on "Admiral Archer's prized beagle." A descendant of Captain Archer from Star Trek Enterprise?
- Old Spock's ship was built in 2387, eight years after the events of Star Trek X: Nemesis.
- There is a distinct break in visual continuity in this film. The inside of the Enterprise looks very different from TOS. This isn't necessarily a technical problem though because the changes in the timeline which begin with the destruction of the Kelvin could have easily had an effect on the Federation's industrial design preferences in the following decades.
- Zachary Quinto, the new Spock, was unable to naturally perform the Vulcan V salute, so they glued his fingers in those scenes so that he could. :)
- The attack on the Kelvin and the death of George Kirk while James Tiberius Kirk is being born.
- Young Spock being teased by his Vulcan classmates for being half human.
- Young Spock and his father discussing Vulcans and emotion in the aftermath of Spock beating the crap out of his classmate.
- Sarek's reason for marrying a human: "As ambassador to Earth it is my duty to observe and understand human behavior. Marrying your mother was logical." Ouch.
- The Vulcan Science Academy ministers insulting Spock's human heritage and Spock deciding to join Starfleet instead as a result.
- Uhura calling Kirk a dumb hick.
- Pike to Kirk: "You could be an officer in four years. You could have your own ship in eight." Ironic given how the movie ends. Pike: "Your father was captain of a starship for twelve minutes. He saved 800 lives. Including your mother's and yours. I dare you to do better."
- Kirk observing the construction of the Enterprise.
- Kirk meeting Dr. McCoy. McCoy: "Space is disease and danger wrapped in darkness and silence."
- Kirk cheating on the Kobayashi Maru test.
- Nero: "Hello." Pike: "I'm Captain Christopher Pike. To whom am I speaking?" Nero: "Hi Christopher, I'm Nero."
- Pike arbitrarily promoting Kirk from a cadet to first officer of the Enterprise.
- Kirk: "So what kind of combat training do you have?" Sulu: "Fencing."
- The obligatory redshirt death of Engineer Olsen.
- Chekov beaming back Kirk and Sulu.
- Spock attempting to rescue the Vulcan High Council and his parents.
- Spock's mother's death.
- Vulcan imploding.
- Spock: "I am now a member of an endangered species."
- McCoy: "Dammit man I'm a doctor, not a physicist!" Count 37 for "I'm a doctor, not a (blah)" style lines, which McCoy was famous for.
- Spock neck pinching Kirk for mutiny.
- Kirk encountering old Spock on Delta Vega. Old Spock: "I have been and always shall be your friend."
- Old Spock mind melding with Kirk to show him the original timeline.
- Old Spock and Kirk encountering Scotty.
- Old Spock: "I just lost my planet. I can tell you I am emotionally compromised."
- Kirk provoking Spock into assaulting him so Spock would relinquish command to Kirk.
- Sarek: "You asked me once why I married your mother. I married her because I loved her." Aww. Damn liar lied before!
- Spock to Kirk: "I would cite regulation but I know you would simply ignore it."
- Spock mind melding with one of Nero's guards to get intelligence.
- Spock upon taking control of his future self's ship: "Fascinating."
- The Enterprise engaging Nero's ship and Kirk rescuing Pike as Spock rams his ship into Nero's vessel.
- Spock: "Captain, what are you doing?" Kirk: "Showing a little compassion, may be the only way to earn peace with the Romulans. It's logic, Spock. I thought you'd like that." Spock: "No, not really. Not this time."
- Old Spock and young Spock meeting each other.
- Kirk being formally promoted to captain and being given command of the Enterprise.
- Pike in a wheelchair. That's some twisted continuity right there.
What would happen if somebody went back in time and severely traumatized a significant historical figure, causing them to grow up to be a different person? That's the question this film grapples with in its fresh faced take on Star Trek. James Kirk is a different man now and as a consequence of his paramount importance to the timeline, everything else is profoundly different too. The broader implications of this remain woefully inadequately explored in both a character sense and a timeline sense. The former issue of the inadequate character explorations can be attributed to this film's hyperactive pacing; there is little time to explore what kind of people Kirk and Spock are now that their lives are so different. The latter issue of the status of the original timeline I discuss in more detail in another article, however the short version is based on the evidence presented in the film we can't really conclude one way or the other whether the old timeline still exists or not. It's possible the events of this film exist in an alternate universe like Ent: In a Mirror, Darkly. But it is also possible that this film pressed permanently the biggest, most giant reset button ever pressed on Star Trek, all for nothing but a fun action romp; something that would be unspeakably tragic to the long term health of the franchise.
But regardless of whether or not our beloved timeline has been irreconcilably destroyed, this film by itself is indeed an undeniably fun ride. The action in this film is unparalleled by anything previous, the destruction of Vulcan was horrifyingly touching and compelling, the performances of the new cast (with the glaring exception of Chekov and at times Sulu) were exceptional, and the directing and feel of the storytelling invoked all the best aspects of the dark and gritty universes of Firefly or Battlestar Galactica. The new film is of course not without its annoyances. The score is remarkably repetitive and derivative, much of the action is superfluous, such as the ice monster that attacked Kirk on Delta Vega, and Scotty's alien comrade felt more like the painfully immature comic relief of an Ewok character or Jar Jar Binks from a Star Wars film than something we should expect from Star Trek. What's more, there are a few embarrassing technical and continuity problems (documented above) as well as some painful cliches. For example, why was most of the Federation fleet not available? And isn't it a little convenient that Nero forgot to put up his shields when he attacked Earth, thus allowing our heroes to beam aboard his ship and surprise him?
Some cliches of the film are more deliberate and more enjoyable. There are too many delightful references to previous episodes to list. And while it stretches realism to see Kirk go from cadet to captain in one day, the film's story as a plot device to reassemble the old crew unnaturally early strangely works quite well. It feels like in the face of the trauma they've endured, they've emerged stronger than ever. The characters as well as the franchise has been revitalized by the continuity-contorting events of the story. Having old Spock play a major role was lovely, though as with the murky implications for the timeline, it is not well understood why Spock can't simply go back in time to stop Nero from destroying the Kelvin. Also, Leonard Nimoy's recitation of the "space, the final frontier..." theme was unnecessarily nostalgic and makes the film's ending feel somewhat overwrought. Overall though, this film is enjoyable and establishes the new-old universe quite compellingly. I look forward to the next installment.
The following are comments submitted by my readers.
- From Lennier on 2009-05-11 at 1:24am:
I can't for the life of me figure out when Majel Barrett's voice is used for the computer... Does anyone know when her voice comes up?
- From JRPoole on 2009-05-11 at 6:59am:
For many years, you were in love with an incredibly smart, beautiful woman. She excited you, challenged you, changed the way you thought about the universe and humanity's place in it, and she gave you hope that maybe, just maybe, everything was going to work out in the end. Most people failed to understand your attraction to this woman. Even you had to admit that sometimes she was embarrassingly corny, and it was often hard to tell whether she was taking herself way too seriously or just making a big joke. But you loved her, and you were willing to forgive her flaws. She came back to you in several different guises over the years, most of them a little different and better than before, but in the end she drifted away. Then suddenly, she comes roaring back into your life. She's got a whole new attitude, and she's sleeker and sexier than she's ever been. But something just doesn't feel right, like the love of your life has been replaced by a pod person, and though you know that you should be happy she's back, you can't help but think about how it used to be. That's what J.J. Abrams' newly "rebooted" Star Trek is going to feel like to many longtime fans of the franchise.
Abrams set out to completely re-imagine the entire Trek universe, and he has succeeded. The script of the film gives him a neat little loophole for doing that, since the events of this movie take place in an alternate time line, an entirely separate reality created when the elderly Spock's attempt to prevent the Romulan sun from going supernova fails. This drags our villain, a newly stylized Romulan by the name of Nero, into the past, where he kills James Kirk's father just as the future captain is being born. It seems that Nero now has a bone to pick with Spock, and devotes the next 25 years to finding the young Spock in order to force him to watch as he creates an artificial black hole to destroy the entire planet of Vulcan.
Abrams has done well with all the characters we've come to love. The now fatherless Kirk, played adequately by Chris Pine, is a more interesting and fully realized character than William Shatner's Kirk. Thankfully, Pine's performance doesn't ape Shatner's much-parodied portrayal of Kirk, and we see Kirk as a cocky, two-bit punk on the verge of becoming the alpha male of the galaxy.
Zachary Quinto's Spock, meanwhile, is in some ways the best thing about the new Trek. Abrams explores Spock's childhood, focusing on the tension created by trying to fit in on Vulcan as a half-human, and casts Spock's decision to join Star Fleet as a rebellion against the very Vulcan culture he has consciously decided to uphold. The new movie, in fact, is the best exploration of Vulcan ideaology in any Trek production yet. The new Spock is also in a torrid secret relationship with Zoe Saldano's smoking-hot Uhura, who plays a meatier role here than ever before.
Fans of DeForrest Kelley's crochety Dr. McCoy will be happy to find that Karl Urban's performance is a virtual clone of the original. Simon Pegg does an excellent job with Scotty, and John Cho seems to be playing Sulu as if his character Harold from the Harold and Kumar movies had gotten stoned and decided to join Star Fleet, but it works. Even Anton Yelchin's Chekov (who diehards know shouldn't even be on the Enterprise yet) is a pleasant surprise, complete with the Cold War accent.
Aside from the characters, the trickiest thing about this production was updating the look of Star Trek. This is, after all, a movie set before the original series, whose technology and style already seem dated. This is another front on which Abrams succeeds. The new/old Enterprise captures the look of the original one but looks entirely more viable, and its hot-rod-esque lines manage a look at once futuristic and vintage. The costumes and uniforms here manage to pay homage to the original series as well, making it seem entirely plausible that 60s-styled fashions come back into vogue in the 23rd century. The new Trek also does a good job of acknowledging the original series' inherent campiness without falling victim to it, though there are a couple of scenes that are obviously played for laughs and don't seem to fit with the rest of the film.
Despite its successes, the new Star Trek has some pretty serious flaws. The first is the villain. It's a bit problematic within the established canon of Star Trek to have a Romulan villian, since the original series made it clear that no one from the Federation had ever seen a Romulan, even after fighting a war with them, until Kirk encountered one near the neutral zone. But Enterprise clouded the continuity issue during its troubled run, and this is, after all, a reboot of the franchise taking place in a different reality from the franchise as we know it, so I'm willing to drop the fanboy grudge. But Nero is a pretty flat character, nowhere near as interesting as Trek's greatest villains like the unforgettable Khan. His motivation to kill Spock doesn't make a whole lot of sense, and his plan is nebulous at best. The technobabble and the science behind the science fiction is also pretty weak here, with black hole singularities acting as time travel portals and the vague mumbo jumbo about the supernova-inducing red matter.
The biggest risk that Abrams takes in his new vision of Trek is a huge one: he destroys Vulcan. The entire planet, along with most of its billions of inhabitants, including Spock's human mother, dies, turned into a massive singularity. Here's the ballsy part: in a movie that plays with time lines and alternate realities, he LEAVES IT DESTROYED. In effect, this renders all the previous films and series (with the exception of Enterprise) completely moot. They never happened, not in the time line established by this film anyway. This is a huge decision, as it changes the very fabric of the Trek universe in a way that can never be explained away as some minor inconsistency. Killing Vulcan sends a message that the Trek franchise is poised to boldly go where it's never gone before, but it remains to be seen if that place is worth going.
All in all, the new Star Trek is a success. it's a big, loud, sleek, brand new Star Trek, a bona fide summer blockbuster with all the trimmings. For longtime fans, that's both the good news and the bad news.
- From Orion Pimpdaddy on 2009-05-11 at 11:19am:
What made the previous Original Series episodes, Original Series movies, TNG, and DS9 so meaningful to the hardcore fans was the "commentary" about morality, ideals, and the human experience, not the special effects. This sounds boring, but it is not, because those things made the franchise stand out from other shows and movies, and have kept it around since the late 60's. How many other franchises have lasted so long?
The makers of Star Trek (2009) have decided to do away with all of that "moral stuff" and focus on creating a summer action popcorn movie.
The common belief out there is that today's audiences want to see explosions and action, not meaning. I don't hold this belief, and I think the current generation of movie goers are unfairly stereotyped as having severe ADHD. Give people a chance!
HOWEVER, as a popcorn movie, this is pretty fun to watch. The casting is wonderful, and we get to see them in some funny situations. The soundtrack is also wonderful. These, and other strengths almost make me forget about the "moral stuff," .... almost.
What about the plot? In short, it is pretty pathetic, even for an action movie; lots of clichés and pieces similar to the previous movies (especially Nemesis). I don't want to waste too much space explaining specifically what I found dumb about the plot, but there are some real problems that I think people will be talking about for the next 15 years.
I ended up giving this movie a 5. I'm conflicted, which isn't a good thing. I think they have a chance to do something better in the next movie, they just need to remember Roddenberry’s vision.
- From elim on 2009-05-11 at 2:00pm:
E tu, Kethinov?
I actually am in partial agreement with your “bad idea, good execution” assessment of the movie. It was, indeed a bad idea.
The characters, with the exceptions you gave of Chekov and Sulu, to which I would also add Kirk, were decently to well acted, but they were almost all terribly written. The writers were apparently unaware that frustration and vindictiveness are emotions, so they made all of the Vulcans express those emotions all the time. Then to emphasize Spock’s human lineage and contrast it with the already emotional Vulcans, they made him downright Emo. Kirk on the other hand, seemed incapable of expressing any emotion other than smug, and he came off as a complete asshole throughout the movie and offered no reason for anybody to care about him in the slightest.
Scotty’s acting was fine, but his character was wasted on his pet Ewok. Despite the effort they made to show that Uhura was an expert at xenolinguistics, she only did three things during the entire movie: make out with Spock, take off her clothes, and get accidentally groped by Kirk. The only character who was actually done well was McCoy, and a good part of that was due to the fact that he got to torture the thoroughly unlikable Kirk.
For a movie that tried so hard to be funny, the attempted jokes were groan-inducingly awful. Kirk falling on Uhura’s boobs? Scotty’s pet Ewok sitting on the equipment? Seriously? Then there are all the jibes the human characters make against Spock and Spock makes against the other Vulcans for being so emotional, which really doesn’t work when they have such emotional reactions. Finally most of the “nods to continuity” you mentioned were painfully self-aware meta references to various clichés of the various series that constantly broke the fourth wall.
The action scenes were also uniformly awful, from the flashing-lights-and-jump-cuts direction of the space battles to driving a car into the Great Gaping Chasm of the Iowa Plains (did Nero’s time travel escapades cause the Xindi to attack Earth again?), to the button that retracted the parachute back into its case, to the fact that Sulu and Random Romulan Dude both dropped their guns at the same time, but both just happened to bring archaic weaponry with them just in case. By the time Kirk and Nero had their climactic battle in the Romulan ship that was designed for the sole purpose of being dangerous, I felt like Sigourney Weaver’s character in Galaxy Quest demanding that “whoever wrote this movie should be killed.”
To top it all off, the attempts at tugging the audience’s heartstrings with “intense emotion” fall completely flat (unless you count the burning desire to punch a hole through the screen, but I don’t think that’s what they were going for). The big emotional scene, the destruction of Vulcan, was so utterly contrived and unrealistic it was impossible to take seriously.
Just think of the sequence of events. A supernova destroys Romulus (and all the effort done over the course of the years to make the Romulans one of the more interesting species) Spock tries unsuccessfully to save them. Unfortunately, the few Romulans who survive are really, really stupid so they blame Spock for the supernova and decide to go back in time to suck Vulcan into a black hole. Despite that they are complete imbeciles (and terrible architects) they somehow have enough black-hole-making knowhow that they are able to do this. And why did all this happen? The Romulans motivations don’t make any sense, but the writer’s motivation was clear: it was to teach Spock and Kirk a valuable lesson about the importance of friendship. Also, if Spock’s mother had been standing a few feet to the side, she would have survived.
The treatment Romulans is where the movie gets downright offensive. When the Romulans were first introduced in “Balance of Terror” the best episode of TOS, made especially awesome because of how sympathetic the villains were. Then over the course of the franchise, we get things like “Unification” and “In the Pale Moonlight” and other classics, humanizing the Romulans as a race. How does it all end? The majority of the Romulans die an off-screen death, the rest of them become stupid cartoonish supervillains so the good guys can bond and have a bit of a giggle at the species extinction. They come in with “In a different reality I could have called you ‘friend’,” and go out with Spock: “‘Captain, what are you doing?’ Kirk: ‘Showing a little compassion, may be the only way to earn peace with the Romulans. It's logic, Spock. I thought you'd like that.’ Spock: ‘No, not really. Not this time’.”
The question you asked at the beginning of your review would make for an interesting premise, but this movie, contrary to your claim, does not grapple with the question in the slightest. Kirk is told that in the original reality his father survived, but nobody mentions that he was a wimpy bookworm who got picked on by Finnegan. He never actually learns anything about the “non-traumatized” version of himself and audience members who haven’t seen TOS wouldn’t even know that old timeline Kirk was a different character. The time travel stuff barely gets any attention and it serves two main purposes: to provide an extra cog in the Rube Goldberg Vulcan-Destroying Machine, and to provide a cheap excuse for continuity errors.
This is not a clever examination of the consequences of time travel. It’s a repetition of the half-assed attempts at building a coherent DC Comics Universe. There, because the writers made no attempt at continuity for most of DC’s history, they used a cheap multiverse explanation to cover up their tracks. Thus the golden age characters and the modern characters get their own universes. Adam West’s, Tim Burton’s, Joel Schumacher’s and Chris Nolan’s versions of Batman all get their own universes. The result is that the continuity gets extra convoluted to the point where there is no point thinking about it at all.
Until now, Star Trek never messed things up so badly to the point where stuff like that was necessary to maintain a single continuity. There may have been alternate realities, but it was always clear that we were following a single reality, even if they made occasional slip-ups. This movie turns the entire franchise into an incoherent mess. They should have either made a genuine effort to follow continuity or go the BSG route and make it completely separate without even the pretense that the two realities are connected (frankly I would have preferred a female Spock to Scotty’s pet Ewok).
As it is, the newly introduced continuity is atrocious. But even if we chose to go back to the old continuity, the movie screws that up to, by destroying Romulus in a supernova and making the survivors a bunch of idiots. For those of us who wanted to see a movie dealing with Federation-Romulan relations post-DS9, “Nemesis” was a wasted opportunity, but this movie not only crushed those dreams but salted the earth so nothing would ever grow there again.
Frankly, the only way that I could even tolerate this episode as being part of the same continuity as the rest of Star Trek is if it turned out the whole movie was a Holodeck adventure created by a 12-year-old boy. The whole thing was excruciating and unwatchable.
- From Kethinov on 2009-05-11 at 3:19pm:
Elim, your post is well written and touched me. I feel many aspects of your pain. For a moment you convinced me that the destruction of Romulus was nothing more than a cavalierly conceived of plot device, an egregious insult to one of the founding members of the Star Trek universe. Like Federation replicated Romulan Ale, you had me convinced for a moment. But only for a moment. On further reflection, it occurred to me that the destruction of Romulus didn't phase me because it was actually a pretty smart move.
Suppose the original timeline still exists and the Star Trek narrative returns to it some day. The distinct lack of information this film gives us about the events of that timeline is precisely what could make it a compelling drama again. Consider this: we don't know very much about what led to Romulus' destruction. What if the supernova wasn't a natural phenomenon but was the deployment of a weapon created by an enemy of the empire? That's a pretty good premise for a decent continuation of the 24th century right there.
The potential for drama in that premise is nearly endless. Just as one of the Federation's greatest adversaries is on the verge of making peace, one of the empire's rivals from their warlike past destroys their home world. For all we know, the Romulus star was the only star system in the Romulan Empire destroyed. The empire itself could live on in the remaining colonies and the demeanor of the survivors might be something fierce to contend with.
Thinking up fun premises like that are what give me hope that intelligent storytelling in Star Trek can live on. We may have had an immature action romp this time around, but times change. Maybe Star Trek can get back to its roots some day. Thanks for your comment, Elim!
- From MrVicchio on 2009-05-11 at 4:59pm:
I'd like to say I have been a fan of this site, and reading the reviews of TNG as my wife and I re-watched them, so after watching Star Trek: Galactic Reset as I liked to refer to it, I came here eager to see your views, and to be honest, I was surprised, pleasantly that you didn't rip it to shreds :)
A friend of mine is all discombobulated over this movie. "They've destroyed START TREK!!!" he goes on and on about. I did mollify him by pointing out that there is precedence in Trek for this sort of time travel alternating of the Trek Universe. My prime example? Tasha Yar. They changed history, and here it happens again.
I was impressed with the new look, they updated the Enterprise in a way I that just made it seem more plausible. Main Engineering is no longer a small but cozy office, but a working space.
Spock and Bones were near as perfect as you could get, Scotty was fun to watch, Kirk was manageable and the others were... well weak. Uhura was a typical black smart female with sexy sass.. gee we haven't seen that a million times before. The original was much more respectfully and earnestly portrayed, I was very disappointed in her.
I get why they killed Vulcan, to give Spock an emotional depth he lacked, I don't know if that will work out, but I'm willing to give them another movie to convince me Trek has been reborn.
PS Thanks for all the great reviews, and we'll be back here for DS9 when it hits the mail box!
- From Bernard on 2009-05-14 at 3:17pm:
I'll get my gripes out of the way first. I have never so far commented on other peoples ratings when I have put a comment on here, but who is giving the ratings of 10 for this movie?? Maybe someone that has could post a message here to explain the reasoning? I would never give 10 unless I consider the episode/movie to be almost perfect in most departments (based on the premise that no production is ever totally perfect in every way)
Okay, onto the gripes. I hate some of the basic flaws displayed in this movie that have already been mentioned in great detail. For example, we have Delta Vega as close to Vulcan as we are to our moon annoyingly just so that Spock can witness the destruction. Couldn't they just have said that he 'felt' all those deaths, after all vulcans are quite apparently sensitive to other beings with mind melds and such. That would not have been such a large leap of common sense for me. I'll leave it right there for the nitpicky stuff, but we can all agree that simple things were done incorrectly and it's not as if the information is hard to come by regarding the trek-verse is it. I also agree with someone above, that the plot is shaky at best, the movie carries itself off at breakneck pace to hide that particular frailty. I think looking for deep meaning in certain areas will give you a headache though.
I have chosen (and had chosen before I even went to see it in case it was awful) to look at this movie in a completely positive light and ignore everything that I dislike.
The characters, the meat of the movie, are excellently fleshed out for me. The central story of Kirk and Spock is really well done. Spock is how I'd always imagined he could have been, well done to Zachary Quinto. Chris Pine could have so easily fallen into the mire that would have been a parody of Shatner, I know some people will not like him. I think he brings some of the Kirk qualities perfectly and the rest I put down to the difference in his upbringing. He is cocky, but also quite disarming too. I loved the interaction between the two characters.
I thought the other characters were all great too. Chekov was always a bit of a goof in the original series anyway, I didn't have a problem with him. Didn't see too much of Sulu or Scotty (played by the superb Simon Pegg!). I disagree that Uhura doesn't do much, yes she doesn't have the dignified grace of Nichelle Nichols, but Uhura is finally given credit for being a member of the team and is played with a bit more zest. I don't see mimics paying off in the long run anyway... Except, McCoy. I absolutely loved watching Karl Urban as bones from the first moment he got on the screen. He was amazingly close to copying Deforest Kelleys McCoy. I'm glad they didn't all do the same though. Nearly forgot about Captain Pike, Bruce Greenwood is superb. The movie is let down by the villain a bit, when you hire Eric Bana, use him better! but I realise they had to focus on the relationship between the central characters for the movie to work.
I adore the look of the movie, the starships, planets, black holes, uniforms, aliens, everything. The soundtrack is excellent, I keep listening to it on YouTube. The opening sequence is something that I loved too, probably the only scene in the movie when I felt true menace, fear and it was done slightly over the top for me but also the self sacrifice aspect. Surely a true Star Trek scene? The scenes showing Kirks youth, spocks youth and the academy days are so much of what I was looking forward to. I wish they'd spent longer on that. Kobyashi Maru lived up to my expectations though, I loved that scene. I'm starting to put my finger on precisely what is wrong with this movie. Many scenes are very well done, characters are interesting, but plot is gaping.
I think that they have done a clever thing in wiping the slate clean. By changing everything they can go anywhere they like with the next movie (and the one after?). They don't have to get anybody into the right place for certain aspects of continuity, what a relief! They can develop the characters and species etc. in any way they want now because this universe now bears no resemblence to anything else in the Star Trek franchise. I don't care about canon too much anymore since they made 'Enterprise'. In fact I wish they had simply 'remade' Star Trek without any explanation. Why is one needed? To satisfy all the trekkies that care about continuity and so forth? Well in that case mission.... not accomplished! Many are not satisfied with the way it fits into Trek canon.
I did really like this film by the way and I'm not disturbed by the fact that it overrides the trek timeline in the slightest. It is a fun romp of a movie and really it is only the beginning. What follows should be far better now they have set it up. For the next installment, I want them to forget trying to explain anything and just write a damned good story. Let them loose on an interesting premise and watch the characters grow up.
- From Dave E on 2009-05-15 at 5:42pm:
You wanted to know why someone would post a 10. I am a 10 poster. Here's why. For the entire duration of this movie, I was 100% engaged in what was going on. I laughed, squirmed, and cared deeply about these characters. I was touched by all the references to the old show. It was great seeing Nimoy. I was mad when the movie ended, because I did not want it to stop. A friend of mine compared this to the feeling he got walking out of the theater in 1977 after seeing Star Wars the first time.
A "10" rating does not mean the entire movie has to be perfect. It's not a "Mint" or "NOS" condition rating like collectibles. A "10" rating for a movie means it's on your list of Best Movies Ever. And, for me, this is added to the list, alongside Star Wars, 2001, and a few non-sci fi flicks.
- From Obsidian Disorder on 2009-05-17 at 2:11am:
The 3 previews before the film were:
1) The new GI Joe
2) The new Terminator
3) The new Transformers
The previews of all looked similar with lots of explosions and large vehicles/robots/ships blowing up/blowing stuff up. Then we had 2 hours of Star Trek that looked the same and shredded most of Trek history. Vulcan Destroyed? So what! We are going in a new direction for a couple of films! No one cares about TOS, TNG, Voyager, DS9! That's for old folks. I guess they plan to milk their all new Trek universe for some big budget summer movies until one tanks at the box office and then leave it dead on the side of the road. I really wanted to like the film, but I found myself horrified by its assault on all Trek that has come before. Hmmm, one positive: I liked Sulus cool sword.
- From elim on 2009-05-17 at 11:17pm:
Okay, I will accept that it’s still possible to redeem the franchise and still count the movie as cannon. The premise you suggested for a 24th century storyline does sound awesome but, as you said about BSG, “I will not gush all over the show over the mere implication of good stories to come.” The prospect that maybe, just maybe, someone competent will take over the franchise and tell a good story doesn’t make up for two hours of product placement, dry humping, contrived plotlines, casual genocide, and really boring fight scenes between two-dimensional heroes and one-dimensional villains. Especially since Obsidian Disorder’s predictions are much more likely to come to pass than any Coto-ification.
If they gave any indication, either in the movie or in interviews or anywhere, that they intended to follow through with the destruction of Romulus by telling what really happened in a future storyline, I’d be more inclined to accept it as a smart move. However, given the commitment J.J. and co. have shown thus far towards developing the Romulans (none whatsoever) it’s hard to view it as anything more a cavalierly conceived of plot device.
Hopefully, they’ll establish some coherent criteria for canonicity amongst the Star Trek novels and comic books, because it’s looking like that’s where all the good stories will come from now.
- From Krs321 on 2009-05-20 at 1:53pm:
1. The reason no one freaked out about the Romulans looking like Vulcans is because besides the ears, these Romulans don't look at all like Vulcans like they do in regular canon.
2. No mention here of the what I assume is an Orion chick? Suddenly they're Star Fleet cadets? Maybe she's a half-breed child raised offworld and doesn't have the intoxicating pheromones? And what's with the inclusion of all the other new races? Annoying.
3. I assumed when Spock said that the supernova "treatened the entire Galaxy", he spoke to the political shockwave that the destruction of Romulus would create. Unintented but potentially useful dialogue line.
4. I echo the comments regarding the treatment of the Romulan race character. The most compelling race is whittled down to little more than alien of the week. I guess the fact that the "real" Romulan empire still exists in the Chris Pine timeline means they're still badass, but excrutiating nonetheless.
5. The biggeswt problem with the plot for me isn't the time travelling (abused in Stark Trek, especially in films) or the blandness of Nero, it's Starfleet/the Federation/Vulcan's plan of sending an ancient ambassador on a solo mission into Romulan space with the most dangerous substance this side of Omega particles. WTF?
Side-bar stupidity: Regulation whatever that says a Captain can be relieved because of emotional whatever blah blah blah. Please. "well, we can't have Bones declare him unfit for command because that threat is even more overused than time travel, let's invent something especially damning for Vulcans". Groan.
6. Kirk - C: Chris Pine did alright but he was written too smug and fratty. he just wasn't cool at all. The only reason anyone did what he wanted was that he had the balls to speak up when Uhura didn't. Wouldn't call him a leader really. Reflection on how people define leadership today? Hmm..
I thought they botched the Kobayashi Maru test scene by making it silly and slightly obnoxious; although, I guess we that meshes with the fact that this timeline's Kirk is part douche and less clever.
Spock - A-: The writers seemed to be a little off on what vulcans are like but overall it was pretty interesting to see the alternate reality Spock with a little more emotion. Hated that "no, not this time" line. I felt that betrayed the character and the franchise.
Bones - A-: DeForest Kelly created an iconic character and Urban nailed a younger version perfectly without letting it devolve into parody. I gave him an A- because I like my Star Trek traditional and I loved the nods and thought Urban really hit Bones' cadences and inflections perfectly, but some people might think it's boring and safe to go that route.
The "stallion" exchange between he and Spock is a delightful piece of writing.
Scotty - B+: The original Scotty wasn't funny because he was silly, he just had a knack for the right turn of phrase + scottish accent. Pegg is amusing and I'm waiting to see the character evolve, but not if it becomes the designated forced comic relief. The Ewok character was a bad move but can be quietly disavowed in subsequent installments.
Sulu - D: One of my favorite characters from TOS is suddenly without a shoehorned character with no personality. Not much to say here other than he's asian, at the helm, and uses a sword (katana btw, not an epee, so not exactly fencing, are we? Just say you're trained in swordfighting next time or something). Forgot to take off the space-parking break? Hilarious...seriously.
Chekov - C+, I guess: Meh. Chekov's once delightful accent is suddenly a parody. I liked that the writers had him say that he's 17 thus making it somewhat plausible that he's on the ship when everyone else is just graduating the academy. Not a bad character revamp considering the original was pretty fluffy and somewhat annoying.
Uhura - C: Abuse of generic characterization alert. She's got boobs and a sassy attitude...watch out! Why is a newly minted cadet able to speak 3 dialects of Romulan when the currently stationed officer on the newly minted FLAGSHIP unable to even differentiate between Klingon and Romulan? I guess she's a phenom or something but use her appropriately and not try to make her the Megan Fox of this franchise. I actually thought her relationship with Spock had/has potential, but was too heaviy handed. Chris Pine Kirk's writing also had a hand in making her kind of a waste.
Overall, I actually enjoyed the movie quite a bit. I liked the new visuals, just ease the pacing and cool it on the punching sound effects (every punch sounded like an Ali haymaker! How does anyone still have a face??) I thought it was still "Star Trek" enough, although I'd rather someone other than JJ direct the next installment. I'm willing to see the franchise move in a new direction as long as it makes sense and is done well.
- From Dio on 2009-05-25 at 6:12pm:
I have not seen many episodes from TOS or anything before TNG Season 1. I've thoroughly examined the entire TNG and a lot of DS9 however. And I understand what makes Star Trek standout - the episodes that examine emotions and relationships. The fighting and aliens are nice but at the end of the day, I remember "The Inner Light", "Tapestry" and "In The Pale Moonlight...".
That's why, as a fan of the Star Trek universe, I didn't like this movie. The action is all well and good but, as stated above, the emotional side of the story was a complete letdown. Even the main plot was confusing and unnecessarily drawn out - I would have loved to see a lot more introduction between the crew members and how they find themselves onboard the Enterprise.
Also, many people who are unfamiliar with Star Trek believe it to be just about guns, aliens and spaceships. This really applies to all sci-fi of course (I'm an even bigger Star Wars fan, sorry!). I saw this movie with some friends who are new to Star Trek, and it certainly reinforced the idea that action is the main reason why people watch Trek. It just gets on my nerves - I wish they could understand the beauty of "All Good Things..." or Q's games with Picard.
Because I don't feel connected to TOS or the characters before TNG, this movie didn't really upset me and I was able to appreciate it for whatever it is. However, if they try something like this with TNG, they better plan it out A LOT better.
- From ek5a on 2009-06-09 at 4:36pm:
This definitely is an alternate timeline - Simply because Old Spock exists. If the original timeline is destroyed by the events of this film that will old Spock will wink out existence. The fact that he remains at the end of the movie means that events of TOS, TNG, DS9 and the rest continue to exist, with Old Spock disappearing from their timeline at some point and diverging into this new alternate one.
So basically it's a long thread that continues on and a split occurs that continues on a parallel plane from the Kelvin incident. I wish I could draw this.
- From Kethinov on 2009-06-10 at 12:40pm:
No ek5a, if that reasoning were correct, then all previous uses of time travel would be alternate universes too, which is not the case.
That said, I am fairly convinced this is an alternate universe, but not for that reason. See my article on the subject linked above.
- From Giuseppe on 2009-10-26 at 6:38pm:
This movie was pretty much what I expected: very good as a summer blockbuster, but mediocre as a Star Trek story. The special effects are great, the action is what you would expect from a movie made in the late 2000s, but the acting isn't all that great, the story is pretty iffy at times and it relies on too many extraordinary coincidences to be believable.
Basically, if you're interested in two hours of lighthearted fun then this is the movie for you; if, on the other hand, you're looking for a great work of the science fiction genre then you might as well look somewhere else.
Personally this movie was a fun, if rather shallow, experience. But that's just my two cents.
- From Kirk 377 on 2010-04-22 at 6:32am:
@kethinov -Maybe traveling back through a black hole to go back in time had something to do with the alternate reality? (I don't know, just a theory) I'm sure it's a alternate universe, because the movie says so. I think Uhuru says it on the bridge once they have figured things out. Plus the release of the Star Trek Online game(I don't know if it's cannon, I read it was set after Nemesis) So don't worry Star Trek has done alternate realities before-just for a standard episode. So why would they throw away everything, if they didnt have to. I love the new movie and also can't wait for whats to come, but I don't wanna give up everything thats been. And who knows Universe B(Star Trek XI) could use things from Universe A(40 years of greatness). They already kept our Spock. Maybe have a TNG character visit Universe B, a universe where they might not even be born! Ah just a little idea, I know it won't happen. but you get the idea. Plus Universe A could have alot left in it. If they do things right than Star Trek XI just raised the bar, by giving us basically 2 different Star Trek's. If Star trek 12 does reset everything, I'm not gonna count it as my version of cannon.
- From Pemmer Harge on 2010-07-16 at 3:45pm:
Massively superior to any Star Trek since the end of DS9. Indeed I'd go so far as to say it singlehandedly made Trek relevant again. Bravo.
- From wes on 2011-03-21 at 6:04pm:
I agree that this movie was great as a summer blockbuster. It felt an awful lot like Transformers with all the action.
JJ Abrams said that he wanted to make this Star Trek movie much more like Star Wars because he felt that the pace of Trek was a bit slow. I enjoyed getting to know the little bit about the characters in this setting that I could, but I sure hope there is quite a bit more of what we all knew and loved in the rest of Star Trek in the next film(s) -- commentary on humanity and morals. Correct me if I'm wrong, but Star Wars didn't even really deal much with morals and what it means to be human, did it? The original Star Wars trilogy had some good character development, not great character development.
I really hope Abrams decides to get a real good story pinned down for this next film. Have something that makes more sense and that will allow depth for the characters (i.e. The Empire Strikes Back, The Wrath of Khan, DS9 episodes, etc.).
I understand and will defend that this film was a good way to reintroduce the characters and launch into a new wave of films. However, now let's get back to what made Star Trek great.
Kirk annoyed me at times. He's more of a jerk than he is confident and sure of himself. He didn't really show any leader qualities at all.
Quinto did a MARVELOUS job portraying Spock. I'm glad he has signed on for the rest of the films. He should really get to develop his version of Spock a lot more.
Having lived in Russia, I thought Chekov was great. The way he struggles with his accent and even his "Yomayo!" was PERFECT! I got a huge kick out of him.
Zoe Saldana's Uhura really annoyed me. It seemed almost wrong for Uhura to be a major love interest of anyone. She's always had a quiet dignity about her, which was most appreciated. Now she's sassy and has a big role for no apparent reason.
@Kethinov, How can we let Abrams and his writers hear our voice that he should be sure to go back to what made Star Trek great in the beginning -- social commentary? That's what it seems so many of us want to see.
- From Kethinov on 2011-03-21 at 8:35pm:
@wes The best way I know of is simply to be vocal on the internet about how a summer blockbuster is not the best way to ensure Star Trek's long term health either in the creative sense or in the fiscal sense. This movie may have been a success, but it will not sustain a long term rejuvenation of Star Trek as I have previously argued.
Websites like this one do occasionally influence the creative direction of the producers, but only in extremely rare cases in my experience. I can count on one hand the number of times I have directly interacted with a producer or writer from any sci-fi show. Typically TPTB have their own vision and since most of this stuff is subjective anyway they can be difficult to influence.
- From EvanT on 2011-06-25 at 7:14pm:
"it is not well understood why Spock can't simply go back in time to stop Nero from destroying the Kelvin"
It's never implied that they can control where in time they'll get thrust. But that's hardly the issue. Consider this: N
ero takes his ship and delivers it to the Tal Shiar of the past along with the hunk of red matter and his ship's historical and scientific database --> The Romulans conquer pretty much the whole galaxy in short order.
The villain in this movie is portrayed as ridiculously stupid (you'd imagine he'd have enough time to cool off in 25+ years of waiting and do something constructive with all that technology and fire power), acts in distinctively non-Romulan fashion and he doesn't even act on the immediate threat (or we're not told about it). You know which star will go nova. Go and destroy it now in the past with the red matter so it's never a threat. There! You're wife's now safe. That's the least he could've done.
Where's the delicious Romulan guile, duplicity and industriousness?
Nope, we're treated instead to an unrealistic and monolithic slab of idiocy. And I might buy it if Nero was alone on the ship. But he had an entire crew with him. Where they ALL morons? No one had a more romulan-like idea on how to use their ship?
But enough of that. All in all, it's sad that the premise had potential and the film was really well-made for an action movie. And it had enough effects and action scenes to please the general audience. But no, we just had to have a plot no longer than a single paragraph.
In short: WASTED POTENTIAL
I'm waiting for the second movie and I sincerely hope it won't be the final nail on the coffin and it won't completely alienate the fan base (and in the mean time, we're still waiting even for a rumour of a new TV show).
- From Cory on 2011-08-27 at 1:46pm:
I'm sorry the more and more I read about these negative reviews of this movie, the more angry I get. Now listen, I've been watching Star Trek since I was born, literally, I was raised on the Trek Movies, in fact I know them more then I even know Disney!
Now this movie was by no stretch of the imagination perfect, but a lot of things a lot of you bash the movie for just don't make any sense to me.
First the Romulans being one dimensional cartoony villains. What do you expect people? These were miners, a ship full of minors, I'm not expecting General Chang Hamlet quoting here, they were simple minors who witnessed the destruction of there home world, and Romulans are established as emotional as it is, so of course they would try to blame Spock, of course they would be savages, insanity isn't supposed to make sense, honestly what do you expect here?
How can people bash any of the minor characters, in TOS the only characters that were given ANY arcs were Spock, Bones and Kirk, this movie at least gave EVERYBODY some relevance and allowed them to do stuff.
Guys, this next one is simple, Star Trek established thousands of times a multiverse exists. See TNG Parallels to confirm this, this is just a whole new universe they are asking us to follow, a perfect way to introduce a reboot by star trek standards.
How can people bash this movie for not having moral implications but defend movies like Voyage Home? Voyage Home at the time was created EXACTLY for this reason, to bring in more of a main stream audience to Star Trek, and the plot was laughable, but that isn't the issue, the reason Voyage Home was so good was because it was a good movie first, entertaining, funny, and had you invested for most of it, just like this one.
This movie did everything it needed to do, it gave us die hard trek fans something to fan-gasm about with all of the inside references only we can pick up, it gave us a great action popcorn flick which brought star trek into 21st century households, making it relevant again, and its not NEARLY as insulting as all of you make it out to be. Any nitpicks can be made about every, single, trek film, period.
- From Gul Darhe'el on 2012-01-27 at 11:49am:
If one’s expectation for any production named “Star Trek” is to be defined by work done prior that had the same label, then by all rights this movie should not be called “Star Trek”. “Star Cowboys”, “Extreme Galaxy Protectors”, or “Fast Times in the Milky Way” would seem more appropriate titles to this film. How could anyone give this movie the same name as a series that produced episodes like “Tapestry” or “The Visitor”? It is akin to labeling an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians as “Shakespearian”. For that reason, I think all the debate over whether or not this belongs in the established canon or is an alternate universe is pointless because this movie is simply not Star Trek. It is special effect drenched, soul-less fluff that will be forgotten as quickly as it was watched. The studio may get one or two more sequels out of this before its thrown in the scrap bin with the likes of Thor, Captain America, Transformers, or any of the other short term franchises built around CGI instead of real story-telling. The tragedy is younger generations that this movie was specifically made to target will associate this with Star Trek instead of TNG, DS9, Voyager, or even Enterprise.
- From jonnyskillz on 2012-02-24 at 3:12am:
What about the erroneous use of the uniform emblem? It's used on the uss Kelvin and two decades later at Starfleet academy. The emblem on Starfleet uniforms (of the period before w.o.k.) is supposed to be referential to ones assigned starship. Ie t.o.s. doomsday machine or ent. In a mirror darkly II. It's possibly reconciled if the uss Kelvin were assigned the enterprise emblem (as no enterprise was commissioned at the time). So with the tragic and sudden destruction of the Kelvin, maybe as a tribute, Starfleet adopted the "enterprise" emblem fleet-wide. In the prime or original timeline, Starfleet adopted fleet-wide use of it to honor the enterprise's heroics with the resolution of the v'ger incident in t.m.p. also, didn't spocks mom die at birth as mentioned in part v (t.f.f.)? Other than that, I found jj abrams trek acceptable and even enjoyable.
- From neoteotihuacan on 2012-03-30 at 1:25am:
@kethinov Thank you for this site. Its awesome.
I was thinking that the world can use a Star Trek review site and, upon discovering you (through the Google) you follow through quite well.
Now, about Star Trek 11...I feel I must take issue with some of the criticisms floating around the page here.
- The Romulan ship could be designed anyway that it needed to be...I agree, it is odd (and remarkably, probably purposefully, reminiscent of the Romulan ship in Nemesis, as they are the same species/same time period, so the ship styles would naturally be related). But, importantly, spaceships even in reality have unique design requirements that are very different than craft that are meant to traverse atmospheres. That, combined with a fictional alien race (with its own fictional, alien mindsets) makes it plausible in my mind that an alien ship can be any shape or color it wants to be without any explanation whatsoever. Really, the thing I find most baffling in the universe of Star Trek (and all sci-fi, for that matter) is the covergent evolution of spacecraft design...I mean, does every single species in the galaxy build their starships with a bridge, for example? THAT seems odd to me.
- Concerning your criticism that no one was surprised that Romulans and Vulcans favor, that would be because Earth already met the Romulans in war between 2156-2160.Its true, in canon, that no one human had seen a Romulan until Kirk's time. However, it is safe to assume that Humanity knew somethings about Romulans through intelligence gathering, and through their Vulcan friends.
- As far as Spock's line about the supernova threatening the entire galaxy...I am willing to bet he meant that politically.
- Delta Vega. Ya, they screwed that up. The TOS crew already encountered a Delta Vega, near the galactic barrier, which is NOT in the Vulcan system. But, let's say that there are 2 planetary bodies called Delta Vega. Why would the Vulcans name a moon in their system in a human language? Why not name it a Vulcan name? I thought this was kinda odd. This is a case of the writers not paying enough attention...and they have no excuse really, I mean the internet is right here.
- Delta Vega is too close to Vulcan to NOT be destroyed. There can be no explaining this away. It is an oversight of the laws of physics suspended to show the audience a heartwrenching shot in the movie. And it was heartwrenching...at the time I was watching it I just couldn't believe the writers were that brave.
- As far as the beaming stuff works...we can give fictional Scotty and fictional Spock the benefit of the doubt on that one, right? The Star Trek universe is filled with lots of technology that escapes explanation.
- Agreed on the time of travel between Vulcan and Earth...obviously cut down to move the story along. Although, when they dropped out of warp...man was that a shot! Crazy stuff...
- "The physics behind the portrayal of black holes in this film are a bit fuzzy at times"...to this I say, the physics of Star Trek in general is fuzzy at times!!
Like many of you that have commented, I am torn by this movie. I loved watching it! It was really exciting; a great popcorn flick. Afterward, non-trek-types would discuss the movie and its fictional implications and, generally, are interested when I present them with back story. This 3rd Generation of Star Trek, as kethinov classifies it, has reignited the franchise to a degree. And this is worth celebrating.
However, the movie does trample a bit on Roddenberry's golden rules. It stays true excellently to form for some characters, and poorly reinvents others (quite disappointed in Uhura's changes). Quinto's Spock is soooo awesome. Seriously. It does mention the point of Star Trek nriefly, in a bar with Pike and Kirk, but does not put this to the forefront as a good episode might. And the villains are terribly two-dimensional, a fault not just of this film but of almost every Star Trek film (all but I and IV have villains!! And only General Chang did not suck!). It is possible, in Star Trek to put together a great villain...Gul Dukat comes to mind. So, this isn't J.J. Abrams & Crew's fault; they were simply following form.
While I look forward to more of this 3rd generation of Trek, I know that it will not be perfect. If a writer does happen to grace these comments and then goes on to write the next movie or TV series, then please let me say only two things that will put you on the right path to proper Trekdom:
1) Star Trek is about the future of Humanity...it is a vessel to discuss current issues we currently face. It is not about 2D villains. Please reconsider the villain in the Star Trek universe. Its very outdated.
2) Please research everything. Continuity is a pet peeve, I imagine, but it is held in high regard by Trek fans. I suppose it helps us to suspend disbelief. The internet is alive with Trek resources. THIS site is an excellent resource. So is the sprawling memory-alpha site. Google it, and you will please the fans.
Thanks kethinov. The site is very great! Keep up the good work.
- From Glenn239 on 2012-10-19 at 11:12am:
QUOTE: I'll get my gripes out of the way first. I have never so far commented on other peoples ratings when I have put a comment on here, but who is giving the ratings of 10 for this movie??
No problem, Bernard. I’ll tell you why I gave this one a ‘10’.
The TNG movies were unmitigated dross from start to finish. VII was the worst pile of junk I’ve ever seen, and the others were not much better. The last good Trek movie was VI, arguably the best ST movie made and the posterchild for the argument that old age, and only old age , finished off the “Kirk” team.
Now, just as Picard and his band of merry morons appear to have ‘double tapped’ the whole franchise out of existence with their painfully bad characters in painfully bad plots, along comes J.J. Abrams. He examined these unqualified atrocities against mankind and decides to ‘punt’ - rebooting the franchise from its original strength, as if Captain Shorty “Surrenderpants” Picard and his Care Bear friends never existed, (which, with a handy asteroid or two on some hometowns in the 2nd film, might even be arranged).
I never cared for Roddenberry’s pompous vision of humanity, and therefore I do not respond to Star Trek’s fantastically tiresome lectures about what the human race shall become. J.J. Abrams got rid of all that pie-in-the-sky TNG ‘huggypants’ stuff and went back to basics. The plot of XI? Terrible. The action sequences? An unending blizzard of over-the-top, completely implausible sequences, (what, the 23rd century cop doesn’t know there’s a cliff coming and so will chase kiddie Kirk right off it? And what cliff like that is in Iowa? C’mon). But all that – beside the point.
I gave this movie a ‘10’ because the rebooted characters are fantastic. The rebooted premise is fantastic. TNG has been expurgated from the face of the franchise. Most importantly, IT HAS BROUGHT THE STAR TREK BACK FROM THE DEAD. It made it cool again. The movie rocked with energy. Kids who walked out of “Nemisis” saying things like, “I wish the bad guy had phasered Riker’s smuggy face off” walked out of this movie saying things like, “That was COOL! When will the next one come out?” If that fact of revitalization, rebirth, of the series, if that alone doesn’t rate this movie at least and ‘8’ or a ‘10’, then one must care not whether the Star Trek franchise lives or dies.
- From Bernard on 2012-11-18 at 8:58am:
Thank you for your replies Glenn239 and Dave E
These posters made responses to my question, "who is giving this movie 10 ratings?"
So far the reasons seem to be as follows:
1. Because it was better than TNG movies
Well watching paint dry is better than a couple of the TNG movies so to me that's not much of a reason. Besides which I would like to think that you would rate this movie based on its own merits, not the problems of its predecessors.
2. It's a non-stop action piece
Does that mean that the three Bayformers movies are 10/10 movies? No? Didn't think so.
3. The characters are fantastic
I will concede this one, this movie is primarily about how characters deal with situations and how they react to them. But for me, the way you then get a 10/10 movie is to add those characters to a super plot!
4. Fully engaged in what was going on.
Yep, this movie does that. It moves at break neck pace to try to make you forget that it has a terrible plot and everything is horrendously contrived.
I would like to mention that I do give this movie its due... it is a fantastic reboot, it is a fantastic summer action blockbuster with action aplenty. It has fantastic characters that you care about deeply after only meeting them briefly. It has emotionally charged and impactful scenes. It pays homage to what went before repeatedly. I do like it a lot! I therefore gave it a strong 8/10
But I cannot give it a 10 because other films have all of these things AND more. Just look at Undiscovered Country or Wrath of Khan. That is why I wanted others to comment to see why exactly they had given it a 10. It seems they are very easily pleased! You guys must give a lot of movies 10's if those are the things you require to but it on your best ever list.
It would be a boring place if we all agreed all the time though wouldn't it. :)
As an aside, just quickly, because I like to look at numbers. Up above the fans ratings show a fan average rating of 6.53. To me, this is skewed by the number of raters that have chosen not to accept this movie as canon by giving it 0. Let's say we ignore all those 0's and also ignore an equal amount of 10's (so now 23 scores of 10). Now the fan rating average would be 7.71. A figure that I believe to be more in keeping with the actual level of this film.
- From k2spitfire88 on 2013-01-15 at 7:53pm:
One of the things I think are consistently overlooked in this movie is something I think is worth examining, that the Star Trek XI did, without being "In your face" about it, so to speak. That is, it addressed the issue of "Nature vs. Nurture". Which is more important to who you are? I think this movie looked at this in a very interesting way. Will Spock continue to embrace logic as he has in the past, attempting to be Vulcan as Vulcan as possible, ignoring his human heritage as much as possible, or will he embrace his human side, now that his mother is destroyed? I think there are some key character questions like this worth exploring. It may not be out in the front like some of the other movies, but they are there if you look for them, I think.
- From DK on 2013-04-24 at 10:12pm:
Wow, a lot to comment on for an old Trekkie like me. Being an old Trekkie it's not hard to figure where I come down. I can't imagine there are very many (any?) Trek fans over the age of 45 who appreciated the reboot vision this movie gave (for any of a number of reasons). I understand why it was done; make a movie that appeals to as wide a range of moviegoers as possible.
Why make a movie? Profit is usually highest on the list and the formula is clear. The action aspect of this movie has been covered extensively elsewhere in this discussion. I would add however that in this movie we see Kirk getting his ass kicked in the bar, then twice by Spock and also it is Sulu who saves Kirk in the fight on the drill (then it is Chekov who saves them both); even the villain in the movie gets a turn at Kirk. I liked how Kirk use to win all the fights. Hell, even Jean Luc won his share of fights. This difference typifies my take on the rest of the film.
Why wear uniforms and follow a command type structure if this is how everyone is going to act? I'm not sure I have the writing skills to adequately describe my feelings about this one but was there any respect for the command structure followed by anyone at anytime? I understand the need to not follow orders or question your superiors when the situation calls for it but shouldn't there be some structure and rules of conduct actually followed by a crew? Which brings up Uhura.
It's not Kirk, Spock and McCoy any longer. Take out McCoy and add Uhura plus Kirk and Spock are now equals. It seems it is now Spock's job to break Kirk like a horse. Once again, I understand why this was done. The formula now days must include a strong, sexy female character and we cannot have a solo leader without someone to question him and challenge his authority. For better or worse, days of yeoman Rand are over. And can you imagine the criticism TPTB would have had to endure if they had Uhura just sitting there answering the phone for Kirk? No, the wider audience now demands that she (or some other woman in the same mold) be front, center and in your face irrespective of previous character history. Which also relates by the way to Kirk now being the ass-kickee rather than the ass-kicker and getting punked for his maneuver during the Kobayashi Maru simulation; it just doesn't fit with the standard of the day or, more to the point the money making formula of the day.
The focus used to always be on how events and situations affect Kirk and to a lesser extent some of the others; you use to always be able to depend upon Kirk killing the bad guy and getting the girl in the end. Add up all the other changes to the formula including all the continuity history and it's just easier to throw the baby out with the bath water and start over.
But for the record. Had I had the opportunityk to make the cash from this movie I'd have sold out too. Hell, I'd have Uhura taking over the whole damn ship and running things her way if I thought I could appeal to just one more demographic (somehow this is likely to happen in the next movie or two anyway).
For those of you who take issue with the tone of my words; your time is coming. The times are changing on you too. One day you will wake up to someone perverting something you are familiar and happy with to fit the times or turn a buck. May you have more grace than I.
So, given the realities that must be followed if we are to get fresh Trek stories with Kirk as a character, is it better to have a perverted Trek or no Trek at all? For me, I will watch the shows as long as I don't have to pay for them.
- From Moi on 2013-05-25 at 12:51pm:
The worst plot hole is that Nero hangs around the worm hole exit for close to twenty years waiting for Spock but at no time in those twenty years does he take his advanced mining ship back to Romulus to warn them of the impending disaster and save his family.
- From Aki on 2013-11-22 at 1:16pm:
In my opinion this movie is non canon due to Starfleet tactical mistakes.