Saturday, April 24, 2010

STAR TREK (2009) - Review

It's ether a very brave or very stupid man that decides to take on something as much loved by people as Star Trek. The show has over forty years of history and Trek fans are known (rightly or wrongly) for being the most fanatical people around when it comes to the show.

J.J. Abrams has grabbed the bull by the horns and by doing so has decided to bring it back not only for the fans but for a much wider mainstream audience as well.As any fan knows there is supposed to be an "odd-numbered movie curse" with the Star Trek films in which the odd-numbered films tend to be weaker and the even-numbered ones tend to be stronger.Let me just clear it up now and say this can be ignored concerning this movie because it is absolutely fantastic.

Like anyone else I'll be the first to admit that I wasn't sure what to expect but having kept up with rumours and confirmed facts about this film ever since it was announced I have been pretty open-minded and very excited.J.J. Abrams (a self confessed Trek fan) has brought so many new things to this film and thrown some unexpected twists as well (more about that in a second). Simply put, he has done a grand job.

As some people may know this film goes back to the beginnings of Kirks career in Starfleet but as already mentioned above there are some twists.

Romulan bad guy Nero (Played fantastically by Eric Bana) and his crew have travelled back in time in his mining vessel. His plan is to wipe out the planets Vulcan and Earth and have his revenge on Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and the Federation.The film opens with his ship emerging from a black hole and attacking the U.S.S Kelvin. The Kelvin's captain Robau is captured and killed while First officer George Kirk takes command and sacrifices himself and the Kelvin by ramming it into the Romulan ship in order to allow the rest of the crew to escape. During the escape, George's wife Winona gives birth to a son: James Tiberius Kirk. From then on in you are left wondering what exactly is going to happen. This one little event changes the classic Kirk of old and moulds him into a very different person.Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto (who play young Kirk and Spock) really nail their respective roles.I wasn't sure about Chris Pine when I heard at first he had been cast but as soon as I saw him on the big screen I immediately forgot any worries and realised it was Kirk on screen.
His journey through out this film is cool and where as he starts off as the smart guy who just needs a kick up the backside to for fill his destiny. By the end of it he is once again the brave and noble Captain we all know and love.
Zach Quinto as Spock is a revelation and I can't imagine the role being played by anyone else. The similarities between him and Leonard Nimoy are astounding and where as I thought we might get a bit of Syler unintentionally thrown in there (His character from Heroes) my fears were proved wrong as the man was living and breathing Spock. While on the subject of Spock (Be it young or old versions) I just want to say this... WHAT THE FUCK!?! They destroyed Vulcan!?! I mean...WHAT THE FUCK!?!I never saw that coming. Don't get me wrong I am not upset by this in the slightest and if anything the move to do such a thing is very brave. I found it sad when Spock's mother died (Did not see that coming) and I like the fact that Vulcan's are now near extinction. It puts a new twist on Spock and Sareks relationship now Amanda is no longer there to mediate.I'm so happy Old Spock was in this film so much and I did not realise he was going to be the main reason for Nero wanting revenge like he does. Basically what happens is 120 years in the future from when this film is set Old Spock tried to save Romulus from being destroyed by a nearby supernova. Discovering that by using the red matter in his ship to create a black hole he could neutralise the threat he vowls to save Romulus and the Romulan race. However he does not complete his mission in time to save Romulus resulting in the death of Nero's wife and unborn child.

Leonard Nimoy returns to the movie screens for the first time since Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country and it is so lovely to see him back and playing such an important role it brings a lump to the throat.His scenes with Kirk are really touching and I loved how when they first meet He presumes he is already Captain of the Enterprise having not realised the time-line has been altered.I love it when he tells Kirk the best way to get to Young Spock when he gets back to the ship so he will have to step down and allow Kirk to take on the role of Captain of the Enterprise. I also love the scene at the end of the film between Young and Old and I can't describe or put into words how happy I am Old Spock did not die in the end (Meaning he could return although it is probably best he doesn't).

After Chris Pine and Zach Quinto Karl Urban as Leonard 'Bones' McCoy is amazing. It is spooky how much like Deforest Kelly he is.He has some fantastic scenes and the chemistry between him, Kirk and Spock is just the way it should be. "pointy eared bastard" is used a few times in this.

Simon Pegg as Scotty was really good. His Scottish accent was spot on and he had me laughing in his scenes. I loved how Old Spock tells him his own formula for Trans-warp beaming which he will come up with in years to come. John Cho as Sulu was I feel abit under used but he also did a good job and I like how they gave a nod to the fact Sulu was not originally the Helmsman of the ship. Very funny.
Anton Yelchin as Pavel Chekov started off a bit annoying but having read months ago he was still going to trouble with his "V's" I soon warmed to him when he was trying to log into a computer console. He also came into his own when he has to save two crew members later on in the film.Zoe Saldana as Uhura did a fine job and I liked he relationship with Kirk in this film. Concerning her though there is another 'Relationship' that needs mentioning here and that would be the rather 'active' one she has with Spock. Having spoken to someone about the old show they pointed out to me that there was always that sort of implication Uhura had a thing for him but I had never noticed it myself. regardless though it is explored here and makes you look at Spock in a new light.

The effects and the soundtrack in this film were 100% cool and there are some amazing shots of the Enterprise (Ship porn at it's best). Some of my favourite scenes include - Kirk in the bar.The first time you meet McCoy.The first time you see the Enterprise.Kobayashi Maru (Finally)Spock as a child Handling out some justice to Vulcan bully's.Discovering Scotty for the first time. Uhura in her bra (Sorry, gotta be honest).Spock and Kirk having a bit of a fight.Any scene with Old Spock."I'm giving it all she's got Captain"Old Spock watching Vulcan be destroyed. In fact it's silly to pick out scenes as it was all fantastic.Star Trek is back again and with a sequel already confirmed for 2012 what was once starting to go stale seven years ago with Star Trek: Nemesis has now been reborn and ready to take on the galaxy once again.
I am over the moon with this film and I am so glad that even non-fans of Star Trek I know have admitted to liking the look of this.I would tell anyone who is not a fan to give this a go as you really don't need to know anything about previous films or even shows and it is just a thrill ride sci-fi adventure film that will easily entertain you for a couple of hours.Ignore the purists, they are obviously not prepared to see Trek change for the best.
Live Long And Prosper.

1 comment:

  1. Cracking review Jamie, but hurray up and get started on the loony mad Doctor who fans!lol!