The hunky hubby and I recently saw the new Star Trek movie. We both left the theater quite pleased. A pre-quel is always a tricky sort of thing. Will I be able to jump into the world and believe it? Can they take beloved characters that are out of date and modernize them while still retaining those aspects that made us love them in the first place?
But they did. The casting was amazing, they really did look a lot like younger versions of the 1960’s characters. Not exactly of course, but I was able to jump right in. And Kirk had that same swagger. He even copied some of William Shatner’s classic movements. The way he walked onto the bridge. The way he would turn. The young Spock was great. They even picked someone with almost exactly the same build as the old Spock. His posture, the way that his shoulders and back looked in the uniform were exactly the same. Not sure how they did that, but I watched a good deal of Star Trek when I was 12 and was madly in love with both Spock and Checkov and I swear to you that Spock’s shoulder blades were exactly the same.
They saved some of the silliness from each character. Their repeatable lines. Bones McCoy’s hatred of space flight. Checkov’s mispronunciations. And the special effects were glorious. Fun creatures trying to eat Kirk. A great bad guy. A “Space Walk” that was the epitome of understatement. I loved it. We both decided that we shall be purchasing this movie immediately upon its release. It just felt the same and yet avoided some of the geekiness from the old series. But not too much of the geekiness. If you took it all out that would be a terrible terrible mistake. I felt that they got the balance just right.
In fact that was the problem that I had with Star Trek the Next Generation. They tried to remove all of the silliness. All of the geekiness. It was all so serious all of the time, so intense that I would think: “Oh come on! We know that this isn’t real anyway. Just get over yourself and throw out one of those disembodied heads floating in space that has sworn to wreak havoc upon the known universe.” And then the problem that I had with the movies (which in general I like by the way) is that Captian Kirk was and is and always should be an Arrogant, Reckless, Womanizer, who manages to blaze through the universe on little more than bluster and an excess of testosterone. It is hard to do that in a movie where he is older and wiser and lumpier. I don’t want older wiser Kirk. I want the arrogant jerk that I loved and hated from my youth. This movie brought him back, and for that I will be forever grateful.
And they were very very tricky. Since the bad guy entered the past at the moment of Captain Kirk’s birth and altered the future, now everything is different. The old series, that happened in an unaltered future where Kirk had a father and a brother and Spock had a mother, that old reality is forever lost. But the movie that we just saw, it occurs in a changed world. Forever altered by a madman bent on revenge, the possibilities for the future… So as long as they keep the characters believably similar to the old ones, anything is possible. Even the characters have been changed by the death of various parents and worlds. Inconsistencies with the past series are no longer a problem, because the reality that we saw as re-runs when “we” were 12 has been forever changed. The future is limitless! Trekkies Unite!
To see my lovely sister’s review of this movie please click here. Just to warn you though…She’s not a Trekkie. And her post just might contain some sacralidge.