Saturday, 16 May 2009

Star Trek (2009)


I come to this a little belatedly, I know; and what I have to say riffs in part off reviews I’ve read (the estimable Abigail Nussbaum has a selection of interesting links). And—OK, the film is kind-of fun. The time passed. It's kinetic, apparently fashioned according to the current blockbuster logic: 'imagine a 13 year old boy at your shoulder at all times; if, for any reason, that boy goes "boooring" at any character, sequence or shot--cut it out!' Certainly the special effects are visually very nice. It is full of lovely little details. But actually, it’s more than full of details: it is nothing but details. Its contempt for the larger architectonic requirements of filmmaking and storytelling amounts to a slap in the fangirl/fanboy face.

There are two parts to my dislike of this movie, and I'll start at the level of most obvious: [item] that the plot holes are more than holes. Red matter has been injected into the script, leaving vast distorting black holes of unlogic, anticontinuity, nonsense and bollocks everywhere.

Here's the plot: the Romulan villain, Nero, in charge of a vast spaceship shaped like Don King’s hair, is dragged through a black hole back in time. (Elderly Spock is also dragged through, although, for reasons unexplained, he arrives back in time 25 years later). Nero pops out and chances upon a fully armed Federation battleship. Now: the Romulan craft is a commercial ship, for the extraction and portage of raw materials -- hence its enormous size. This is as if to say the Exxon Valdez slipped back in time and chanced upon the HMS Ark Royal. Who do you think might win if two such vessels fell to fighting?

Anyway Nero blames Spock for the destruction of his whole world, and has his mind set on vengeance (which is to say: on ‘VENgeance!’), so he immediately wastes the Federation ship, and Kirk’s father, and then completely vanishes for 25 years. Whither goeth he? Not to pursue his VENgeance!, certainly, or we’d hear about it. Somehow he manages to hide a vast, futuristic Edward Scissorhands Hairstyle In Space from all comers. Then he returns 25 years later because he knows (how?) that the spacetime anomaly is about to open again. (Presumably it hasn’t been open the whole time, like a barn door, or surely somebody would have gotten around to investigating it) Through pops Spock with the Red Goo that destroys worlds. Good! Now Nero can destroy Spock's world, and make him watch as he does so, just to learn him. Does Nero make Spock watch from the bridge of the Romulan spacecraft? No: he deposits him, unguarded, on a planet adjacent to Vulcan.* Judging by how big Vulcan is in the sky of this ice world it must be about as far away as Earth is from our own moon—although it is entirely uninhabited by Vulcans, and is regarded as a fantastically remote and faraway place on which to dump unwanted Star Fleet officers by the Federation.
*[I like to imagine the following exchange, after the event -- NERO: how did you feel as you watched your world being destroyed? buahaha! ELDER SPOCK: the who did the what now? NERO: wait ... didn't you see the destruction? E.S.: I've been inside my cave. All I've seen is the, eh, inside of my cave. To be honest, this isn't a place where you want to be wandering around outside too much, especially not with your attention fixed upwards --there's enormous ravening red beasts under the snow, you know, will eat you quick as mustard. NERO: You were supposed to be watching! My revenge depends upon you actually watching! E.S: Well excu-use me. Would it have killed you to say something beforehand?]

The next stage in Nero’s plan is to dangle a big laser-platform at the end of a very long chain into the atmosphere of Vulcan, in order to dig a hole right down to the core and deposit therein a small phial of the Magic Red Goo. Stop for a moment: it’s worth dwelling on this, because this Terror Weapon, Shatterer of Worlds is the main menace around which the plot of the film orients itself. It's dangled on a long chain. Why? Well, in order to provide the filmmaker with a Very High-up Platform on which to stage swordfights and fistfights, adding the spice that our hero might fall off the edge to his certain death to the conventional thrills of punching and slicing. Similarly, Nero vanishes mysteriously for twenty-five years only to allow Kirk enough time to grow up. No other reason. Nice of him, really.

But wait: let's think about this chain, from which the laser platform depends. Is it superstrong? By no means: at the end of the movie Spock, flying a spaceship no bigger than a shuttle, cuts it neatly with a quick phaser blast. Now: Captain Pike, in charge of Starfleet’s hideously beweaponed flagship, comes upon this Weapon of Terror in mid-blast. What does he do? (Never mind that the Vulcans haven’t destroyed it with their own planetary defences. The Vulcan science council can manufacture Planet Blasting Red Goo, but have nothing in their cupboard that could chop through an anchor chain).

Now admittedly, Pike stumbles into the middle of a battle, because Star Fleet doesn’t have long range sensors; and their ability to broadcast communications breaks down entirely if somebody fires a Big Laser; and their ships lack the sorts of warning systems that would prevent them from coming out of warp into the middle of a debris field (something that must result in a lot of collateral damage to the fleet, you'd think). So Pike’s caught on the hop. But nevertheless—could he not direct one single phaser blast to cut that cable? One photon torpedo? Could he not send out a shuttle to shoot it? Could he not—if these other options were denied him—direct a shuttle on autopilot to fly into and smash into the cable? No, his plan is better: send three members of his crew skydiving down on the platform to wrestle mano-a-mano with the Romulans guarding it.

Fuck. Off.

There’s a much bigger, much more damaging problem here, though. Plot holes are one thing; but this is something far more serious. It is that this movie cannot, no matter how much it strains and heaves, think systematically. The individual is the entire horizon of its universe. Now, when you’re 15 (say), and particularly when you’re 15 and male, your own hormone-saturated individuality—its ego, its randiness, its stroppiness—can look like a whole universe unto itself. But it's not. Society (community) is the necessary context of individuality.

What was so great about Trek—and particularly TNG and DS9 (less so Voyager and Enterprise)—is that it got this. What’s cool about TNG is not Picard, or Riker, or Worf: it’s the representation, on primetime TV, of a whole and properly functioning organization. Properly functioning in the sense that: it works, it is efficient and adaptive and coherent without being too rigidly heirarchical or oppressive. It wasn’t just a number of individuals going through the motions of relating to one another, but a network in which individuals had their place. It’s a model rather than an actual society (of course it is: the representational logics of the medium dictate that). But it is a model with surprising quantities of nuance and believability.

This is why Deadwood (which is more than just swearin' Al Swearengen: it’s the representation of a whole believably interconnected and functioning town) and The Wire (a whole, and rather larger, town) are so sublime, and why those two titles are better than the third member of the Holy Trinity of Great Contemporary Telly, The Sopranos: which did become, increasingly, too much 'Tony Soprano (plus support)', especially in its later series.

Now, the representation of TNG’s Enterprise was coloured Utopian, of course: and of course it can’t duck the accusation of nerdiness (as Nick Mamatas wittily if lunkishly points out in his review). Nerdiness, clearly, is The Worst Thing In The World. If there's one thing we learned from George W. Bush's presidency, it's that it's much better to have the allegedly reformed, onetime drunk hellrake with no knowledge of the details but a strong gut-sense that he can make the right decision in charge, than the policy-wonk guy with the high IQ and the good grasp of the inherent complexity of national and international relations. Jesus. Imagine if we had one of those in the White House.

Nevertheless, the representation of TNG’s Enterprise was a believable and rounded piece of collective realization. The latest Trek? Not so much. Not, indeed, at all.

Trek09 is a text so absolutely incapable of representing a collective—a functioning group, a society—that it strays into rank idiocy. It is teenage wish-fulfilment bang-zap-frot fantasy all the way through. But (and this, I’d say, is what people celebrating the Star Warsification of the Trek franchise in this film, are missing) precisely what made Trek so notable in the first place was its creation a communitarian world. Not an ensemble cast all vying for screen time; a knit-together group of people. The Star Wars universe is an open-ended, malleable space for individual adventure. The Trek universe is about having a place. It is, really, about belonging.

So Trek09 grandly misses the point. My problem was not that Kirk, in this film, is a tool at the start and a tool at the end. He is, but that’s not the problem. The problem is that Star Fleet is so toolish: so completely, dysfunctionally unbelievable as an organisation. Kirk is a cadet and an arsehole, who is under suspension. Nevertheless, Pike promotes him to First Officer on the strength of (a) I admired your father and (b) I liked the way you burst into the bridge and yelled at me that we needed to raise shields and ready phasers. When Spock takes charge and Kirk argues with him Spock ejects him from the ship (because the Enterprise lacks a brig? Because the brig isn't fitted out with a huge scarlet hairless icebeast? Who knows). When Kirk gets back on board, he goads Spock into attacking him and then seizes the captain’s chair. This is presented as a necessary and saving action, but it all speaks to an organization in its death throes. Hiring Some Guy You Met Along the Way as chief engineer (in effect: ‘you’re real smart about engines and shit … you do the job’) is part and parcel of this dysfunction. The Enterprise, as a group of individuals functioning together to crew a space ship, is—in this film, and for the first time in the Trek franchise—Not Fit For Purpose. It's a wholly unprofessional bunch of people squabbling and vying. It's dysfunctional. And I've now used 'dysfunctional' three times in this one paragraph. Which is stylistically clumsy, but at least stresses the main feature of Star Fleet, as an organisation, as presented in this film. Dysfunctional.

The opening sequence—the best portion—doesn’t suffer from this. The evacuation of the USS Kelvin looks like a coordinated, effective group performing a difficult task. People follow orders even though they’re not happy about it, because the orders are in the best interests of everybody. This isn’t the world of Star Fleet 25 years later, which is all contempt and testosterone, staff yelling and throwing punches at one another; senior officers have sex with their subordinates; those in charge making random seat-of-pant decisions about staffing, strategy and everything else, or else abandoning their posts to rush off and rescue their mum and dad. Rather than, you know, doing their duty. All very much unGood.

The larger function of this myopia is a complete inability to even begin to deal defensibly with the representation of genocide. The mass-murder of all the universe’s Romulans and almost all the cosmos’s Vulcans is not just here offensively stupid plot-pointing. Although it is that. It is something that the film cannot comprehend on any level except the personal. What is the murder of an entire people? What it really boils down to is, like, Spock losing his mother. It is really, the film is saying, just an individual tragedy. That’s so enormously and profoundly mendacious it’s breathtaking. It is summed up, for me, in Old Spock’s volte face about meeting Young Spock. First of all he refuses to do so, even though it would be a very useful and helpful thing to do, and even though the fate of entire planets hang in the balance, for reasons to do with the sanctity of the time lines, and the potential for disaster. Later he happily chats with his younger self, and reveals that the actual reason he didn’t pop up earlier is that he didn’t want to get in the way of Young Spock’s bonding with Kirk. Vital that their friendship be cemented, you see.

Imagine a cosmos in which genocide really mattered less than whether you and your best friend were getting on swell. That’s the cosmos of Trek09.

46 comments:

Abigail Nussbaum said...

This is just perfect - both as an expression of what Star Trek should be and as a condemnation of the film. I think I've become so accustomed to the Hollywood trope of prioritizing the hero's personal growth or even achievement over society as a whole that even though I was really bothered, for example, by Spock's comment at the end of the film, I couldn't quite express why. So thanks for making sure I didn't have to.

Adam Roberts said...

Thanks, Abigail!

I think my reaction was shaped by the false dawn of the pre-credit sequence with the USS Kelvin. It made me think: maybe this film is going to do something interesting with its subject ... with, for instance, Imperialism. Imagine what it feels like, when you're toddling along minding your own business, when you run smack into a much more technologically advanced and much bigger power that starts blasting you for no reason. Kirk's Dad's heroised Mohamed-Atta-esque piloting of the spacecraft into the architectural enormity of Nero's ship was an intriguing bit of cinema, I thought.

But then, post-credits, the film goes abruptly downhill, and scrapes the bottom all the rest of the way. Boo!

bill benzon said...

LOL!

Though I didn't think of it in those terms - which are rather like those I used to analyze King Solomon's Mines - you're right. 09 simply ditched the guts of the original series.

PS I like your metaphors for that utterly absurd Romulan ship. I'd toss feather duster and Brillo pad into the mix as well.

Rich Puchalsky said...

What people forget about Star Trek is that Roddenbury's idea wasn't just communitarian, it was communist. They don't even have money in the Federation. This was downplayed in the original Trek because of anti-Communist sensitivities, and probably emerged most noticeably in TNG. Deep Space Nine started to deep-six it as part of their darker, grittier environs, Voyager was too self-contained for it to matter, and from there on I'd guess (I haven't watched) that the makers of the series are more or less forgetting about it.

But it's really what enabled the best TNG stories, and some of the DS9 ones. Those people can be depicted as acting within a community because it's in the DNA of the series in some sense.

zunguzungu said...

This all seems really right to me. But Rich's point makes me want to respond that there also is an awful lot of liberal-capitalism in the show's DNA as well -- the ship is the USS Enterprise, after all. Which doesn't deny the point (we have a lot of reptile genes in us, don't we?), but I wonder if the federation wasn't communist the way the united nations is communist: in ideals, sort of, but also fully able to co-exist with capitalist economies. But then, I was never really clear on what kind of jurisdiction the federation had, whether it had sovereignty of its own or whether it simply represented a treaty system like the UN.

Gaenor Burchett-Vass said...

Thank you for making me laugh, Adam! I'm glad Roy showed me the way to your blog because it's very amusing. I'm afraid I'm still going to go and see Star Trek, despite your scathing review, because it has Simon Pegg in it. That's a good enough reason for me!

Adam Roberts said...

You're very welcome, Gaenor.

One problem with the film is that it doesn't have enough Simon Pegg in it, though.

David Moles said...

"...and particularly TNG and DS9" -- yes, exactly. Adam, did you ever watch the original series? It was the Jim Kirk show. As for Starfleet in those days, Nick Mamatas has it right: "Starfleet? Forget that nonsense—whenever a commodore showed up he'd be crazy and try to kill everyone, and those Academy professors were literal Nazis."

Not to say that everything you say about the plot isn't true. But I'm not convinced the Platonic ideal Trek you're comparing the film to ever existed, and if it did, it must have been some time after the death of Gene Roddenberry.

Guy said...

In short, firstly because it made me sheepish - you are of course totally right in your criticism of Starfleet, secondly because you are, in my eyes, also totally wrong. Star Trek has always worn the insignia of the efficient socially equal future on its sleeve (Starfleet its cuddly military), but in actuality, the shows themselves were always about individuals taking ludicrous risks that would have landed them with a court martial tout suite in any real setting – Picard going on multiple away missions, or risking the ship to save Data, Kirk shagging every female he sees and ignoring the supposedly inviolable Prime Directive at will, the same four or five people on Starships of anywhere between 200-1200 people doing all the jobs. Das Boot is a realistic depiction of life aboard a ship, Star Trek is not, and never has been. All that Federation bollocks is just to give it a cloak of universal respectability. It's not about whole societies, it is about friendship circles. It is about American smalltown values, TNG, with its carpeted command living room, only made this more apparent. When Picard says to Worf "Well done, you behaved like a human today," not only is he rejecting Worf's Klingon-ness (surely in contravention of the values of this glorious future?) he is also really saying "Worf, today you behaved like an American." Star Trek is, and always has been, a show about selfish people in space hanging out with their mates. The future it depicts comforts because it tells us we can behave like the various casts do, and everyone can still be equal, rich and free (which is nonsense). Take issue with the things in Abrams' film that you do by all means, but as you do, you are really taking issue with Star Trek as a whole.

It is all bobbins, basically. Always has been. (Also, why do you need to drill into the centre of a planet when you can just MAKE A BLACK HOLE NEXT TO IT?!? Silly). Abrams at least made some fun, frothy, up to date bobbins.

Guy said...

Whoops. That reads a little abruptly, for which I apologise, but I cut my jolly, hail fellow well met opener off by accident!

Adam Roberts said...

David M.: "Adam, did you ever watch the original series?"

Wait ... there was an original series? Why wasn't I told?

"It was the Jim Kirk show. As for Starfleet in those days, Nick Mamatas has it right"

There's something in what you say, sure: Starfleet was a null quantity in TOS. But by the same token I'd argued that the show was more than just Kirk. It was the Enterprise, and the interactions between the key players. (This, rather than naked adolescent wishfulfilment, was the DNA that came down to the later series, and it was this that was the heart of the show's appeal to most of its fans, I'd say) The TOS Enterprise functioned properly as an entity unless (you know) it was specifically taken over by some malign alien force. In the reboot movie, the ship itself is a dysfunctional school playground.

Adam Roberts said...

Hi Guy! Hail Haley, well met etc.

"Star Trek has always worn the insignia of the efficient socially equal future on its sleeve (Starfleet its cuddly military), but in actuality, the shows themselves were always about individuals taking ludicrous risks that would have landed them with a court martial tout suite in any real setting – Picard going on multiple away missions, or risking the ship to save Data, Kirk shagging every female he sees and ignoring the supposedly inviolable Prime Directive at will, the same four or five people on Starships of anywhere between 200-1200 people doing all the jobs. Das Boot is a realistic depiction of life aboard a ship, Star Trek is not, and never has been."

Well, yes, kind of: it seems to me there's several things tangled up in this comment. Of course Trek isn't Das Boot, and not just because the latter is based on historical fact at the former on wishful thinking; but because the latter is styled as tragedy and Trek was always an attempt to inhabit a more utopian idiom. Of course you only get to see a dozen actors, not a crew of thousands: that's the limitations of the representational logic of the medium. Otherwise I think you're talking about the tension between the need for dramatic edge as against the dramatic inertia of a properly functioning whole. Picard does go on away missions, because it makes for more interesting stories; but at least the show establishes that this (like the violations of the prime directive) is against the rules. In Trek09 there are No Rules; and No Fear!; and No Sleep Til Brooklyn! And NO thing else!

"It's not about whole societies, it is about friendship circles."

Again I half agree with this; but that's more to do with the limitations of representation than the logic of the show. TNG Enterprise is a village in space (in that 'it takes a village ...' sense).

"Star Trek is, and always has been, a show about selfish people in space hanging out with their mates."

I don't recognise the show from this description, I've got to say.

"The future it depicts comforts because it tells us we can behave like the various casts do, and everyone can still be equal, rich and free (which is nonsense)."

Probably nonsense in actuality; but the future of the show is specifcally based on a communitarian, post-scarcity premise. Which isn't the same thing as nonsense.

You're onto something with the shows' humanocentric bias, yes; and from time to time (the sixth film, say) it even showed a little selfawareness on that front. But the ideological penetration of Liberal-humanist assumptions into US discourses of utopia is a large topic, too large for this tiny coments box. La-a-a-rge, I say.

Guy said...

Indeed, far too large. And the show(s) do waver right the way across the spectrum, even within the confines of one particular series, from two-fisted space adventure to thoughtful, high SF intelligence. And one of my own personal criticisms of the film, which I did not include in the review (I was high on space fights), and actually, this is probably the biggest criticism of it, is that no-one, at any point whatsoever did any kind of thinking.

I stand by my initial point, though, that the whole communitarian backdrop to Trek is mere papier mache flimflam, (The other hastily bashed in crits are mere side points) and that I don't think you can really criticise the new film on this basis (Kirk STOLE A STARSHIP to save his friend who might not even have been alive for cripes sake!). However, the new film is not really Star Trek, for the following reasons:

i) Much of its drama is predicated on conflict within the crew, rather than co-operation between its members (wider issues of believable space military/ federal planetary governments notwithstanding).

ii) There is no considered action on anyone's part, simply action.

These rougher edges of humanity poking out, they rip the fakey future up to bits which, I grudgingly own, did at least provide a sustained illusion of some sort of believable near cosmic utopia in the old Trek, precisely because its more thoughtful kind of drama is very unusual. (Even if, under the most cursory examination, said illusion is revealed as a load of self-contradictory bobbins : ) )

I really enjoyed the movie, just because it was a lot of exciting lights flashing in my face, but unless they return to some of the original's core values in the next one, then this new series won't run for terribly long.

Adam Roberts said...

Guy, as you know there's nothing I like more than a good ole internet barney over questions of culture. But I agree with everything you say in your last comment, which rather takes the wind out of my sails. (I'd go further and say that your last comment actually supports what I say in the post ...)

Declan said...

"because this Terror Weapon, Shatterer of Worlds is the main menace around which the plot of the film orients itself."

The terror weapon is just a commercial ship's drill though. Why would it be indestructible?

Also, being a commercial ship with valuable cargo in hostile space I would assume that it would have good defenses. Your Exxon Valdez analogy doesn't hold up - mainly because the battleship you named was only 20 years older rather than 150/60 years older.

A better analogy might be a WWII cargo ship (all were fitted with good defences) taking on a wooden steam frigate from 1850s. Even an unarmed Valdez could've rammed such a frigate and probably have sunk it without sinking themselves!

While I really like some of your comments I think you're pulling at threads rather than picking holes. A similar approach to any series or the original movie franchise could result in just as many tantalizing threads to pull on.

James Lovegrove said...

I feel moved to correct some of Professor Roberts's hopelessly muddleheaded criticisms of Star Trek.

1) What is wrong with the Romulan starship being shaped like Don King's hair? Don King's hair is very scary. I couldn't think of a better shape for a warrior-race's starship, even just a mining one, to have.

2) The allegedly faraway world where Kirk and older Spock both get marooned is surprisingly close to Vulcan, yes, but the Vulcans would surely consider it remote and not worth inhabiting. Have you seen the place? Monsters everywhere! Any Vulcan worth his/her pointy ears would want to have nothing to do with it. (Incidentally, when I first saw it I thought it was a planet entirely covered in salt. But then I thought, how ridiculous. A planet entirely covered in salt. That's almost as absurd as a planet entirely covered in snow.)

3) Imagining a 13-year-old boy hovering at the director's shoulder during shooting is just plain wrong. An 11-year-old boy would be much more like it. For me the point of the film was to make 11-year-olds feel excited about Star Trek, much as this 43-year-old felt excited about Star Trek (the original series) when he was 11. Which reminds me of the joke: When was the Golden Age of Comics? When you were 11.

4) Original Star Trek wasn't collectivism or multiculturalism in space. It was always about the individual, as in Kirk. Who did the lion's share of alien butt-kicking and alien lady-snogging? I'll give you a clue. It wasn't the entire crew lining up so that each could take their state-mandated turn, that's for sure. Have you read any Ayn Rand? She's awfully good, you know.

Declan said...

Vulcan is a hot planet. Its very conceivable that the Vulcans would favour heat and not want to settle on a small frozen moon/planet next to their own. How would they benefit from that?

Although I do think the jettisoning of prisoners there was a tad ridiculous.

Adam Roberts said...

'Captain? Sensors indicate that there's a rogue Lovegrove loose on the blog.'

'SECURITY!'

Adam Roberts said...

Declan: 'The terror weapon is just a commercial ship's drill though. Why would it be indestructible?'

My argument isn't that it should be indestructible; it's that Pike should have destroyed it rather than faffing around with skydivers and fencing and stuff.

'Vulcan is a hot planet. Its very conceivable that the Vulcans would favour heat and not want to settle on a small frozen moon/planet next to their own. How would they benefit from that?'

'How would they benefit' is an interesting argument. By that logic, though, nobody would have left the tropics, and Europe, Northern Russia and Canada would be wholly uninhabited. (Why would anyone want to go live in Canada, after all? What would they benefit?)

These are trivial points, I'd be the first to concede. My main argument is that this film doesn't really 'get' Trek. Even in TOS, despite Kirk's running around, fighting and snogging, the point of the show was in belonging to the group. Star Wars isn't like that; it's a fantasy space for loners. But if you invest emotionally in Trek, I'd suggest, it's because you want your fantasy space to involve being part of a crew, not a single space-samurai with a laser sword. And though the individuals have fun, the organisation in Abram's Trek is not fit for purpose.

Talking of which, I'm sure you've seen this. It's funny.

redheaded1 said...

The Romulans were not murdered. The supernova destroyed their planet - that's a natural phenomenon, not a manmade weapon.

The Vulcans were murdered.

Macke said...

I think part of the logic of this film is that, if a time-line is disrupted, it (as if time/space/reality were an agent in itself) will do its best to correct itself. Considering this, the contrast between the organization and rationality of the Star Fleet crew in the opening sequence on one hand and the randomness and impulsiveness of Star Fleet for the rest of the film is not surprising and is consistent with idea of a time-line trying to correct itself. Nero's attack disrupted the time-line. Reality's corrective effort is the source of the irrational impulses that drive much of the plot: The feeling that Kirk should be promoted and become captain; the feeling that Scott should become chief engineer; or whatever else. All the relationships are trying to find their way back to where they "belong"--which is where they were in the original series.

(Now, I don't really by the idea of a self-correcting time-line, but it think that is one of the main assumptions of this plot.)

Thomas the Real Tin Woodsman said...

While I agree with well over 90% 0f the post, one of my main arguments against the film (which I have admittedly refused to see) is that it reduces more than forty years' worth of canon to a value just above fan fiction. Some fan fiction is fantastic, but it isn't official...
If this "new" Star Trek -- and I shudder to use that term in reference to this movie -- would this not eventually lead to two "camps" of fans: one for the TOS/TNG/VOY/DS9 fans and the other for the new? Will this not ruin it for everyone? Or will Paramount/CBS just force this into our collective until we accept it and kill the franchise altogether?
A lot of this fear I have began with Gene Roddenberry's passing. The realization started with Brandon Braga's faux-Star Trek series Enterprise. It was good science fiction, but it was *his version* of Star Trek and basically killed off the franchise in TV. The latest movie just continues the trend of re-writing canon, if not altogether leaving canon.

Jeremy said...

There is no doubt that this is a hi-fi Sci-Fi film with fun. What I actually feel that a box-office success and loads of new and careless fans are no indicator of a good movie, rather a good moneymaker.

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Poppyooooo said...

I happen to accidently stumble onto this "Punkadiddle" and I am very impressed with it.

As for Star Trek 2009, I was completely turned off by the film.

I agree with everything Adam Roberts wrote on his blog. It was very thoughtout and excellent.

I can only add that to me Star Trek's main point was always that we should always "seek out and contact alien life forms" in order to establish communications with them. Many of the early stories had this theme.

Roddenberry always said he wanted his stories to make people think and wonder as well as be entertained.

How many times did the crew of the Enterprise in the 1960's tried their best to help what they thought was "the Emeny" when in truth, many times the emeny was themselves.

Being a big fan of the Star Wars movies ( and nothing against Star Wars, I loved them ) J.J. Abrams will never understand or translate the vision that Roddenberry had.

It is a shame the direction they have taken the Enterprise and Star Trek.

Like someone said early in a blog, this movie is not Star Trek. That is so true!

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You have explained its story very nicely. I think that I should also watch this movie!!
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Anne Javier said...

I have also watched Star Trek! It is one of my favorite movie!
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Rozer Smith said...

I have not watched Star Trek movie but after reading your blog It seems that I have watched it now. Nice post!!
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Hoy said...

Its very conceivable that the Vulcan would flavor heat and not want to settle on a small frozen moon/planet next to their own. How would they benefit from that?


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Hawk said...

Adam! I'm glad Roy showed me the way to your blog because it's very amusing. I'm afraid I'm still going to go and see Star Trek, despite your scathing review, because it has Simon Pegg in it. That's a good enough reason for me!

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Franks said...

Adam! I'm glad Roy showed me the way to your blog because it's very amusing. I'm afraid I'm still going to go and see Star Trek, despite your scathing review, because it has Simon Pegg in it.

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Andres Garcia said...

loved this movie!


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Andres Garcia said...

Loved this movie!

Hines said...

I love Star Trek:) It was a really great show.
btw It's for sure available on Free TV online .