The Future Begins

Story: Star Trek
Written By: Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman
Series: Kelvin Timeline Films
Year: 2009

When I first heard about this new film, a prequel seemed a little aggravating to me, especially when the previous attempt at one (Enterprise) was so mind numbingly dull. I'd like to say that JJ Abrams involvement lifted my fears a bit, but I can't...I tried watching Lost, and it didn't appeal to me. So I'm no Abrams enthusiast, I barely knew his body of work. All of this mixed with my reservations of having anyone but Shatner or Nimoy in those roles, as well as my brutal disappointment in Indiana Jones the previous summer...I was not going to get excited for this.
But it worked. Action packed? Yes. Sure the plot that doesn't entirely make sense, but the tri-colored uniforms? YES. Space battles? YES. Decent villain? Sorta! It is a big dumb summer blockbuster with lots of effects. But good effects, and practical ones, and real sets, and with characters based on characters I grew up loving…with tons of callbacks that work (and plenty that don’t), and most importantly it is tons of fun.

Most of the cast is good. Spock is portrayed slightly unevenly, but convincing enough, Kirk is good but different, McCoy is McCoy, Chekov you will either love or hate...or a little of both, Uhura has a relationship with Spock...a little weird, Sulu is much like Takei...kinda just there but he gets a nice action scene, Pegg is perfect for Scotty. Old Spock by Nimoy is a Spock we all know and love, but he’s so old and wrinkled that now its a little embarrassing seeing him put on the ears.
A major failure of this film might be that it felt like trying to fit it into the Trek continuity to appease Trek fans, which I feel is a bit of a mistake, this movie should've have been a reboot in its own sense, DISREGARD the continuity and start anew. This movie's plot felt like it was trying a little to hard at times to force itself into saying "its an alternate reality, so its OK!" Another problem is that it tries to use the popularity of Wrath of Khan to appeal to the Trek fan. The Kobyashi Maru, the No-Win situation…these were huge themes in Khan, but in this film they are just thrown around with no real pay off. Those issues aside, I enjoyed it. It is no "Khan" but it was fun enough.

NEXT TIME: John Harrison