Sunday, May 10, 2009

STAR TREK- A Parrothead Review



GO SEE THE DAMN MOVIE!

First off, I need to tell all the old Trekkies to go ahead and brush off the chips perched on pouting shoulders and pull the hairs out of disgruntled asses. Sitting here at my desk, mere minutes removed from leaving the theater all I can say is that finally a Star Trek movie has been made that can interest more than the gaggle of Starfleet and Klingon custom wearing nerds that in some seriously disturbing ways often occupy another universe. Simply put, this film pulls in both the avid, sane, fan and those who know next to nothing of the adventures of those who have crewed the USS Enterprise into an excellent action/adventure film with hugely refreshed characters that still completely retain the original human, and Vulcan, aspects than made them so appealing.
To a great degree I can understand the vague reports I’ve heard of Star Trek fans upset that J.J. Abrams has dared to alter the holy canon of the saga from accepted norms. For years I myself cleared all normal, healthy activities to sit in front of the television whenever any of the television series were on. And like some drug addict looking eagerly for his source I stood in line for what I know now, in the cases of the Next Generations films, are theatrical abominations that should be only viewed as how to screw up a money making franchise. But that is all in the past, and of the many lessons Star Trek has tried to instill one of them is that if you don’t have a time machine, or can’t steal one, you have to move on and build a better future.
This film opens up on the USS Kelvin right after it has discovered something and someone that has traveled through time which quickly goes on to kill most of the crew and destroy the ship. But not before the father of James T. Kirk gets as many people off the ship, one of them being his pregnant wife, to safety before he dies. For young Jim Kirk, his life temporally altered, things don’t go like they should or did before the flow of time was changed. He is still smart and recklessly brave but a slacker with no real direction other than looking for a new babe to bag.
All that changes when he meets an old friend of his father’s that challenges him to do better and enlist in Starfleet. I guess much to the surprise of himself young Kirk joins but his road after that is rocky with him butting heads with an upper classman, Spock, who is himself working through issues from his own difficult childhood. It takes much of the movie for them to both realize that they each bring a unique perspective and special talents that complements the other. It even takes an older and wiser refuge from the original timeline both gently pushing and where needed, sticking his foot up their asses to get them both moving in the right direction in time to save the day.
The rest of the family is there with Bones, Scotty, Uhura, Sulu, and Chekov playing more than supportive scenery for the big two. Each of the people playing them seems to actually care for the character they have been cast for and, in my opinion, do an excellent job. The true beauty in the movie is of course the starship Enterprise, NCC-1701, who while being updated again kept the elegance of the original. All together this is more than a mere summer blockbuster; it is a return to the original theme and I believe spirit of what Gene Roddenberry wanted in his creation. Gone is the techno-babble that infected all the other series and movies making then only appealing to a small group of zealots. In short go see this movie, you will be hard pressed to find something more worth your money and time as the summer progresses.
On a personal note, my biggest problem with the costumed and role playing fans was that this modern epic to me was more than just an excuse to live outside realty. Hell I do that enough in other venues, but for me Star Trek has always been a roundabout promise. That there is indeed more to this life than the commercially inspired corporate rat race here in America and in the rest of the world the never ending struggle between people never loving their children enough to let go of century old hatreds.
Star Trek, in its best form, has always been that humans can do better and set aside the old hates and prejudices. That truth, justice, and knowledge can win out over corruption, injustice, and superstition. That we humans are more than some evolutionary mistake, that we can solve the challenges that we face and do what we are best at, “explore new worlds, seek out new life and civilizations, to boldly go where no one has gone before.”

17 comments:

MadMike said...

I love all things Star Trek but have yet to see the movie. I hate going on opening weekend because of the crowds. I plan on going Wednesday and will post something over at my place.

Beach Bum said...

MadMike: Curiosity got the better of me and I went last night. I usually wait a couple of weeks myself.

Randal Graves said...

Don't lie, you wore your Lt. Worf costume.

lime said...

ok, i have been married to a trekkie for 20 years...thankfully not the costumed variety, but due to my life at his side i can now name almost any original episode within the first line or two. we own all the movies and have seen them more times than i care to admit. ok, if he wants to go i can deal...because seriously the last couple of movies sucked ass (although i do like picard better than kirk).

personally, i enjoyed wolverine but that's mainly because the ever delectable hugh jackman is on the screen constantly and i'd pay to watch him give a dramatic reading of a soup can label.

HILLBLOGGER said...

Hmmm... my son has been telling me about Star Trek coming out soon at the neigbourhood theatre but wasn't paying attention.

Am not a movie buff but if Beach says it's worth my two hours, I'll go see it with Baby Boy.

Vigilante said...

I never was a Trekker, and I think I'm too old to learn how to Trek now.... but I'm glad this floats your boats!

Beach Bum said...

Randal: No, but I'm not beyond putting the Kirk-like moves on the lady Trekkies. And I'm actually surprised at how many there are.

Lime: I'm shocked at you liking Picard over Kirk. Years ago, during the 90's and when I had AOL, I found some sort of funny list comparing Kirk and Picard.

One of the reasons Kirk was better than Picard was that Kirk would going into any situation with phasers blazing, violate the Prime Directive, and bag the smoking hot alien chick and come out with an award.
Where as Picard would have to hold several staff meetings, contact Starfleet Command, and talk with Guinan about the implications for the galaxy just to take a crap.

Hill: Its American science fiction so you will have to excuse the liberties taken with a whole host of physical laws of nature. But the most appealing thing for me was the green skin Orion lady young Kirk was making out with in the movie. She was hot!

Vigil: Oh come on Vigil, at least its not Red Dawn.

Chef Cthulhu said...

Haven't followed anything Trek in years and years...but I will see this. My wife even says she will, and she is the farthest thing from a science fiction geek you can find.

MadMike said...

I finally went and saw this movie. I was caught from the first moment to the end of the credits. Great flick!!

Burr Deming said...

Okay. I'm sold. Thanks for the review. Looks as if my wife and I will find it worthwhile.

lime said...

mainly i prefer picard because he doesn't lead with his dick the way kirk does. patrick stewart can actually act (seriously, shatner makes me cringe). finally, stewart fills out his uniform better. ;)

lime said...

and and to be clear... lead with dick means his prime directive seemed to be getting laid. i didn't mind that he was a take charge type, the situation would seem to warrant being decisive.

The Zombieslayer said...

In defense of the Star Trek movies, 2 and 6 were actually quite good. 1 and 5 were unwatchable. 3 and 4 were ok.

Not a true Trekkie but I've caught the movies because I like Roddenberry's universe.

And yes, the Next Generation movies were bad, especially the one with that whiney Goth guy as the bad guy. The likelihood of getting beat up by a Goth is next to nil, so why should we be afraid of a Goth taking over Picard and Co? Whose stupid idea was that?

He is still smart and recklessly brave but a slacker with no real direction other than looking for a new babe to bag.Whoa. Sounds like me in my early 20s. Actually, I take that back. It sounds like just about every guy I know in their early 20s.

The rest of the family is there with Bones, Scotty, Uhura, Sulu, and Chekov playing more than supportive scenery for the big two. Each of the people playing them seems to actually care for the character they have been cast for and, in my opinion, do an excellent job.Awesome. I've read the same thing from another reviewer, so looking forward to that. One thing I liked about Roddenberry is he made the supporting cast just as interesting as the top 2.

Star Trek, in its best form, has always been that humans can do better and set aside the old hates and prejudices. That truth, justice, and knowledge can win out over corruption, injustice, and superstition. That we humans are more than some evolutionary mistake, that we can solve the challenges that we face and do what we are best at, “explore new worlds, seek out new life and civilizations, to boldly go where no one has gone before.”Well said. That's something I've always liked about Roddenberry. He saw humans as continuing to evolve, something that we seem not to be doing right now. We made it to the moon in the 60s, and after that? Not much.

Jessica said...

It's on the top of my list.....can't wait to go. Things have been a little crazy at this gardenspot, so it might be a while before we can make it out.

Beach Bum said...

Chef Cthulhu: That's the great thing about the movie, anyone can watch it without knowing the story history.

MadMike: I buying the DVD as soon as it come out. From some of the previews it looks like a bunch of scenes were cut. I swear one looks like old Spock visiting his much younger and expectant mother.

Burr Deming: Welcome and come back soon. I've stopped by briefly at your site but its been a crazy weekend and I'll come back again soon.

Lime: Yeah Shatner is a bad actor. But I always felt the character of Picard was a little to sedate to captain the Enterprise. I will say that James Doohan, at the one Star Trek convention I attended, said Picard's behavior was more along the lines Roddenberry originally wanted for Kirk but the network made him change Kirk for more action and babes.

Slayer: You are right Star Trek 2 and 6 were quite good. In fact, like you said, 5 was the worse and the rest were okay.

I want to puke whenever the Next Generation movies come on, The exception being the one with the Borg.

As for the supporting cast I have fallen in love with Uhura. She is about the hottest lady I have seen on the screen in a long time. She is only slightly behind the green Orion chick, Uhura's roommate, that Kirk was hitting on.

As for the other stuff I wrote, I really getting tired of all the crap going on in the world. I had hoped to see a moon base and humans on Mars before I died but if it happens they may be Chinese, which given certain traits of Red Chinese don't bode well for a warm and fuzzy Star Trek future.

Shit man, I want to explore and discover all that stuff Old Kirk and Old Spock talk about.

Jessica: I know what you mean, and nothing seems to be easing up. If it does the light at the tunnel turns into an onrushing train.

The Zombieslayer said...

I finally got to see it a week or two back. Loved it. And agree, Uhura was hot. Too bad Kirk was a little bit late behind old pointy ears.

Melvin said...

Simply....Great flick!!
thanks for sharing.....
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Melvin
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