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May 10th, 2009


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08:08 pm - Star Trek! Na Na Na Na Na Na Na, Star Trek!
Star Trek currently has a 96% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. NINETY-SIX PERCENT, YOU GUYS. FOR A MOVIE THAT IS NOT BY PIXAR NOR AN INDEPENDENT FILM ABOUT BEING SAD. It also currently has a 96% rating or so on Rotten People Who Have Seen the Movie Before Me. Naturally, I was excited.

I am not a Star Trek fan. I have seen one episode of the original series, "City on the Edge of Forever," and it was okay. I have seen one episode of Next Generation, "Brothers," and it was okay. I have seen The Wrath of Khan, The Voyage Home, and First Contact, which were all fine, except for First Contact, which I remember really liking. I've played some of the DS9 Sega Genesis game where you play Odo as a rat. And a Star Trek adventure game on DOS. So I am not that familiar with the canon beyond what everyone knows through popular culture.

Star Trek is a very good, solid sci-fi/action flick and a clever reboot of the franchise, but it was not OMG SUPERAMAZING!! I was thoroughly entertained because I like spaceships and explosions and hilarity, though. The movie is well paced and never boring; after the first twenty minutes or so, it's a continuous action-adventure romp with each scene leading to the next—even though the movie clocks in at over two hours, I never looked at the time once. And even those first twenty minutes are good, as they establish Kirk's and Spock's characters very effectively, which is important since the major focus of the movie is their relationship. We know they are destined to have a legendary friendship so strong that it will cause everyone to think they're gay for each other, but it turns out that in the beginning, they're constantly at odds...just like love interests are at the beginnings of most romantic comedies. Uh.

ANYWAY. Chris Pine doesn't play Kirk like Shatner at all; this Kirk is a brash, seat-of-his-pants guy who speaks without odd emPHAsises and—strange pauses. Zachary Quinto made me completely forget Sylar with his portrayal of a slightly dickish Spock, a man torn between his two ancestries and thus his sense of logic and his emotions. Karl Urban as McCoy is serious enough to be taken seriously but still funny. John Cho has a couple great scenes as Sulu. Anton Yelchin is sort of adorable as Chekov. Simon Pegg is a real hoot as Scotty. Zoe Saldana sure wears a miniskirt as Uhura. It's a very well assembled cast, and even though I'm not really familiar with the original portrayals, I bought all these young upstarts as the iconic characters. It's a diverse, talented crew on the U.S.S. Enterprise.

But what if you're completely unfamiliar with these characters, so unfamiliar that you can't even laugh along with the audience when they say familiar lines? Is there anything for you? Why, of course! Like I said, spaceships and explosions and action-adventure! And destinies! Everyone likes a good destiny. Also, sci-fi shenanigans. Alias fans, prepare to burst out laughing, for, lo, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, Masters of the MacGuffin, believe in recycling.

Star Trek gave me everything I could ask for from a movie of its genre, so now I say: bring on the sequel.
Current Mood: satisfiedsatisfied
Current Music: Garbage - Begging Bone
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(30 memoirs | Describe me as "inscrutable")

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[User Picture]
From:duchessdogberry
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:25 am (UTC)
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Also, sci-fi shenanigans. Alias fans, prepare to burst out laughing, for, lo, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, Masters of the MacGuffin, believe in recycling.

Oh yeah. I just about shouted out the TWoP-given name for the ALIAS MacGuffin when that showed up. It still looks silly, too.
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From:glasseseater
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:36 am (UTC)
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this is good news, because Sean REALLY wants me to see it.
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From:gymble
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:50 am (UTC)
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Tell me that you at least got the red-shirted ensign moment.
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From:spectralbovine
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:52 am (UTC)
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That actually went over my head because there were so many people in red shirts! I was looking for the red-shirt joke, but it was camouflaged.
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From:sterope
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:51 am (UTC)
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But who does Greg Grunberg play???
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From:spectralbovine
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:53 am (UTC)
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Kirk's stepdad! You only hear his voice! Thank you, credits.
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From:mycenae
Date:May 11th, 2009 03:57 am (UTC)
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Zoe Saldana sure wears a miniskirt as Uhura.

>.> I'm so pissed they brought the miniskirts back.
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From:miniglik
Date:May 11th, 2009 04:06 am (UTC)
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HEE!

When he wrote that I thought, "oh, just the thing to get mycenae's blood boiling.


Personally, I kind of got a kick out of the miniskirts. I'm sure they say something bad about gender relations... but they're super cute with the boots. ;)

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From:radiotelescope
Date:May 11th, 2009 04:18 am (UTC)
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Have we had the discussion about what to call the next movie yet?

I'm voting for "Star Trek 2i". According to Google, I'm the only one.
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From:chasethestars
Date:May 11th, 2009 04:31 am (UTC)
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I just saw it again! I would like to add on to that last part of "is there anything for you?" Giant blue eyes on screen!!

Loved loved loved Simon Pegg as Scotty. It did take me about halfway into the movie before I stopped thinking Spock was going to slice open heads, but this time, he was Spock to me all the way.
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From:bsidetales
Date:May 11th, 2009 04:44 am (UTC)
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I really want to see this, now.
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From:jeremytblack
Date:May 11th, 2009 06:33 am (UTC)
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Did Anton Yelchin or John Cho wear miniskirts?
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From:etherealclarity
Date:May 11th, 2009 12:14 pm (UTC)
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Star Trek is a very good, solid sci-fi/action flick and a clever reboot of the franchise, but it was not OMG SUPERAMAZING!!

I agree with this, but Brett is one of those in the OMG SUPERAMAZING camp. He totally wants to go see it again in theaters, but I'm happy to wait for DVD. :)
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From:tamarai
Date:May 11th, 2009 01:12 pm (UTC)
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I'm in the OMG SUPERAMAZING camp. Can't wait to see it again! Everyone was great, and especially Simon Pegg and Zach Quinto. Everyone's eyes looked lovely!
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From:harper47
Date:May 11th, 2009 05:40 pm (UTC)
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I'm so glad you liked it. I am a HUGE, HUGE, HUGE Star Trek fan and I had a blast. Yes, they make some radical changes but it's an alternative reality. That's scifi. I'm glad they didn't just recycle things. I loved the actors. I felt it was wonderfully cast with McCoy/Urban a big standout. And I adored Pegg and liked Chekov for the first time (one of my least favorite ST characters)

And the telling point to me is my son Hudson - who had never seen any Trek - came home and immediately started downloading the Classic series.

[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 11th, 2009 05:49 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, the movie made me want to watch some TOS!
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From:lynevere
Date:May 11th, 2009 10:16 pm (UTC)
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NINETY-SIX PERCENT, YOU GUYS. FOR A MOVIE THAT IS NOT BY PIXAR NOR AN INDEPENDENT FILM ABOUT BEING SAD.
Aww. This made me smile.

96% is pretty impressive, though. Granted, it's possible that none of those reviews rated the movie as OMG SUPERAMAZING, since Rotten Tomatoes merely counts whether a movie is recommended or not. That's pretty useful when you're looking for a consensus movie with a large group, but it's not necessarily the most useful metric for choosing the movie a single person will like best. Does metacritic weight the score for degree of recommendation?
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From:spectralbovine
Date:May 11th, 2009 10:26 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, I think metacritic has more of a sliding scale. It's got an 83 there, which is perhaps more of a sensible rating.
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From:ethanvahlere
Date:May 12th, 2009 12:25 am (UTC)
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I also liked it, but didn't think it was OMG SUPERAMAZING (certainly, as far as re-invention stories go, I think Batman Begins was better). I do think the actors for the most part were trying to copy their predecessors, rather than make the part their own, except for Pine as Kirk, and Saldana as Uhura (I also think she's a good actress, as well as being great-looking. I do agree I wish they had shown her smarts off a little more).

My favorite part was when Nimoy showed up. He was always the best actor on the original series, and he lent the movie the gravitas it needed.

As far as Star Trek movies go, I'd rank this behind my two favorites, Voyage Home and First Contact. I am looking forward to see what they do next.
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