Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Movie Review: Star Trek

I know I'm behind the curve and that most people who would consider seeing Star Trek in the theater already have. But most of what I have to say is for those who have already seen it.

I was disappointed. My father, who watched the original series when it aired in the sixties, was particularly disappointed. His main beef was that the young Kirk was not very likable. I stumbled over the fact that all the "main" characters jumped from barely graduated students to the senior crew commanding a spaceship. Cadet to captain? I think not.

For all that it was a good summer action flick. I particularly love the notion of "space jumping" -- it's a lot like sky diving except you do it from outside a planet's atmosphere into the planet's atmosphere. That was cool.

Not cool? The alternate reality. This wasn't a prequel, it was an alternate reality created by time travel. And unlike previous sci-fi time travel gigs, this one irrevocably changed the circumstances of the present reality and while the same characters eventually meet their circumstances and therefore their relationships are different.

Now I'm not a Trekkie -- I haven't seen all the movies, I'll watch the show if I'm channel surfing and it's on but I've never followed it religiously, and I just don't do conventions. Period. -- but this new movie feels like a cheat. Everything that has been made before it with the title Star Trek -- and it's such a body of work that it is an institution in the realm of TV and film -- has been wiped clean and discredited. It leaves me feeling very unsettled and unsatisfied.

All the in jokes were there. The lines characters delivered so often or so well that we'd never believe the new actor if he didn't give us "fascinating" or "dammit, I'm a doctor not a physicist" or "I'm givin it all I got!" shouted up from Mr. Scot in engineering. But the novelty clashed with my wondering through the whole film how they were going to "right" the situation and get it back to the "reality" that I knew. They didn't. And I'm bummed. If there's anyone who should be able to fix a time-space anomaly it's Hollywood, and not even they got it right this time.

Highly Recommended