Note: It is admittedly somewhat inconsistent for me to review this film immediately after making a comment elsewhere decrying secularization of the church. To see some of my thoughts on the antagonism between Star Trek and Christianity, go here.
We went to see the new Star Trek last night. I am very pleased, overall. They did a great job making a movie that both long-time fans and new-comers can enjoy. I was skeptical when I saw the previews, but I’m glad to say that my fears of “emo-Trek” were not realized.
- Nokia product placement. (And to a lesser degree, Budweiser.) There is no money in the Star Trek future. There is also no marketing. There are also no cell-phone companies and their retarded ring-tones. This is more than a nit-pick. This is a deal-breaker.
- Excessive cutting and camera-shake, although I saw it on an IMAX screen and we were probably a bit too close. Do yourself a favor and don’t go to the IMAX version. I feel like I missed a lot of the movie just because I had no idea what was going on.
- This movie was tough on the Vulcans. The message was clear: logic is bad. All the Vulcans besides Spock and his father are jerks. Most of the species gets killed off, and Spock falls in love with Uhura. Although Spock’s human side did need to be shown more, I just couldn’t reconcile old Spock telling young Spock to “do what feels right.”
- Gratuitous sexiness. Of course Kirk was a lady’s man, but I don’t need to see Uhura stripping off her clothes to appreciate that there is sexual tension in the future. Those scenes were simply pornography for the teenage boys in the audience.
- Star Trek, at its best, deals with the “big ideas”. This film was heavy on action and weak on ideas. This is somewhat understandable, though, as the purpose of this film was to reboot the franchise and get all of the characters together. Hopefully the sequels will start to deal with the philosophy a bit more.
Stuff I liked:
- Just about everything else, really.
- Visually, it was great. The bridge was a bit noisy, visually speaking, but the rest of the ship actually looked like a craft that might travel through space. There was an appropriate “industrial” feel to everything.
- Music was good. Sound effects, especially the ones that harkened to the original series, were a particularly nice touch.
- There were a few teary-eyed moments, especially when Nimoy starts quoting the series intro at the end.
- The casting was very good, and the actors did great.
- One thing this film did capture beautifully was the raw excitement of exploration that helped make the original series so great. The universe is unknown and dangerous!