Some thoughts on Star Trek.
No, not the new film. Not had a chance to watch that yet. But I thought a re-watch of the 2009 film was in order before seeing Star Trek Into Darkness
My first thought was four years? Has it really been that long? I’m not a die-hard Trekker (though enough of one to know that it’s Trekker rather than Trekkie), but have seen a goodly amount of the TV trek, as well as all of the films.
Oh, alright. I love me some Star Trek. It’s true. And yes, I have not one, but two Star Trek mugs.
I was intrigued to see what JJ Abrams would make of a Trek origins reboot. Or was it a ‘reimagining’? I get confused. Sometimes I wish they’d just make new stuff instead of remaking old stuff, but then you get some really good new-old stuff. Like this.
I’d forgetten quite how much I enjoyed this film. The actors in the key roles do a fantastic job of inhabiting their characters, without once (ok, maybe once and possibly twice) going into a full-on impersonation.
Zachary Quinto is uncannily like Leonard Nimoy and you can completely buy into him has a character. Similarly, Karl Urban‘s McCoy is a joy to behold, channelling DeForest Kelley‘s mannerisms and raised eyebrow perfectly. They recently appeared together in a car advert which is utterly brilliant. Spock vs Spock.
Standout role must be Chris Pine as James T. Kirk. He’s enough of himself to not pretend to be Shatner’s Kirk, but there are some lovely little… hints of Shatner there, just enough to make you think that yes, this young chap could well grow up to be the Kirk that we know and love.
Eric Bana is great as the Big Bad too, giving a suitably menacing performance and it’s nice to see a villain you can sort of empathise with and who has an honest-to-goodness reason for doing what he’s doing.
Some roles don’t work quite so well. Scotty, I’m looking at you here. Whilst I adore Simon Pegg, I didn’t feel he was given the opportunity to really get his teeth into it, and came across almost as pure comic relief. Yes, maybe the film needed a touch of lightness and humour, but I’m sure they could have spread it around the cast a little more, rather than just lump it all onto one character.
Other things? Love the nods to the fans. Chap in a red shirt blissfully unaware of his impending demise? Check. Sulu fencing? Check. Dodgy Russian accent for Chekov? Check. (ov). 🙂
Then we have the niggles. There’s a growing trend in movies over the past few years for shaky camera in films.
Please, Hollywood. STOP IT.
There’s a time and a place for shaky cam. Action scenes, for example. Explosions, people running down corridors, fight scenes. But when two characters are sat at a table, having a serious conversation?
Get a tripod.
Put the camera on it. STAND STILL.
When the shaky camera work is getting in the way of the important stuff going on in the scene, you’re doing it wrong.
Also, lens flare. JJ, we know you love lens flare. We get it, we really do. But the bridge crew on the Enterprise would probably have been better off wearing sunglasses, it was so bright. JJ said:
“I wanted a visual system that felt unique. I know there are certain shots where even I watch and think, “Oh that’s ridiculous, that was too many.” But I love the idea that the future was so bright it couldn’t be contained in the frame.”
Again, too much of a good thing. Chill with the lens flare. He did admit later on that maybe he’d overdone it in some places. Yes, JJ. In quite a lot of places.
And now, there’s a new Trek in town. Into Darkness. Or is that Star Trek Into Darkness? Or Star Trek: Into Darkness?
Anyhoo. Quite excited to see the gang in action again, and looking forward to seeing Benedict Cumberbatch as the villain.
How about you, dear reader? Are you a closet Trekker? Original series or Next Gen? DS9 or Voyager?
- Video: Audi pits Star Trek’s new Spock versus the original (autoblog.com)