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STAR TREK

Saw the new STAR TREK movie last night.

No spoilers here, just a resounding thumbs down. Take a pass.

The actors do a very creditable job of creating young versions of all the familiar characters from Classic Trek, but the writing sucks start to finish, and the science fictional aspects are ludicrous even for STAR TREK. Fans of the old show might like the film... but then again, maybe not, since it's a "reboot" (Hollywoodese for "retcon") and pisses all over the original continuity.

Me, I think they should just let this tired, tired franchise die. STAR WARS too. I don't ever need to see another wookie, or another klingon. (They won't, of course. Not so long as there's one more nickle to be made. I know how Hollywood works).

I love SF, and I love space opera, but can't we have some new characters in a new universe? Even BATTLESTAR GALACTICA was a retread, albeit a much more interesting one than anything Trek or SW has done in decades. We did have FIREFLY, short lived as it was... but there's room for more. Let's have television versions of Honor Harrington and Miles Vorkosigan. Let's have someone film the Praxis series by Walter Jon Williams, the best space opera I've read in years. Let's have anything that isn't Trek or STAR WARS.

If they really must remake old shows, screw it, let them remake Tom Corbett, Space Cadet, or Rocky Jones, Space Ranger. Pinto Vortando rules!!!

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( 206 comments — Leave a comment )
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ragnarok_2012
May. 10th, 2009 09:02 pm (UTC)
I would LOVE to see a solid film version of Honor Harrington or Vorkosigan.

I haven't read the Praxis series. But since you're mentioning it in the same breath as Honor Harrington I think I'll check it out in the near future. Thanks for the recommendation.

I did enjoy the new Star Trek. I admit that there were weaknesses gallore, and I liked it nonetheless.
lovefromgirl
May. 10th, 2009 10:48 pm (UTC)
Seconding! Harrington more than Vorkosigan, if only because I loves me some female heroes and B5-era Claudia Christian would've made a great Honor, oh yes.
(no subject) - ragnarok_2012 - May. 11th, 2009 04:39 am (UTC) - Expand
firerosearien
May. 10th, 2009 09:05 pm (UTC)
Dang.

Everyone else I know loved the movie.
mopsie2002
May. 10th, 2009 09:20 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I really liked it. :) As did the other people I went with. Between us, we had everything from never watched to huge Trekkie, and all liked it.
(no subject) - nimbrethil - May. 13th, 2009 04:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
hotclaws
May. 10th, 2009 09:10 pm (UTC)
I'd vote for Niven's unknown space tales,we have the technology to do the aliens now,
colubra
May. 10th, 2009 09:18 pm (UTC)
I gotta second this one. Those stories (and that storyworld) would really lend themselves to episodic drama delightfully. Or perhaps a group of miniseries.
wiredwizard
May. 10th, 2009 09:16 pm (UTC)
As much as I may have enjoyed the new Star Trek, I really *would love to see Honor Harrington, tv series or movie franchise - just not as a cartoon...
ed_fortune
May. 10th, 2009 09:19 pm (UTC)
Loved it, no 'Wrath of Kahn' but as good as 'First Contact'.
fellowmartian
May. 11th, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
Ow.

I thought you said you liked it.

First Contact was pants.
coltaine777
May. 10th, 2009 09:28 pm (UTC)
George I have to respectfully disagree. I enjoyed myself very much watching this movie despite the holes in the plot. I agree there's a lack of imagination in Hollywood right now.
hippoiathanatoi
May. 10th, 2009 09:29 pm (UTC)
For the view of Trekkies, see here. ;)

I'm looking forward to it, personally, and may go see it with Linda next week.

That said, new space opera for the 21st century... Well, there's the forthcoming [i]Stargate Universe[/i] I suppose, but I guess it's part of another tried-and-true franchise.
psiwulf7
May. 11th, 2009 01:49 pm (UTC)
I've always thought that the Warhammer 40k universe would be a good source for a Sci-Fi series. Particularly, any of the series by Abnett.

Maybe even *specifically* Abnett. Most 40k novels are awful!
zekkass
May. 10th, 2009 09:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you. You're the first person on my flist here to not like the movie, which is what I needed.

I'm a stickler for the original series, and heck. I'd prefer an adaptation of some obscure Sci-Fi novels over 'new' Star Trek.
reebchan
May. 10th, 2009 09:38 pm (UTC)
Hey, now! I'd love to see Miles Vorkosigan on the screen, but with you stealing Peter Dinklage for A Game of Thrones, who the hell do you think is talented enough to pull him off?
ragnarok_2012
May. 10th, 2009 11:15 pm (UTC)
Gary Oldman + CGI :D
douglascohen
May. 10th, 2009 09:40 pm (UTC)
I liked it in a mindless sort of way, but my argument is that it didn't feel like Star Trek.
jonaskaufman
May. 10th, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
i liked it, but i had the proper expectation.

What i expected was an action-adventure romp with Star Trek makeup. And it does that very well.

But it's not real Star Trek, there's no moralizing, or allegory, or anything like that.

So, it was a poor "Star Trek" movie, but (in my opinion) a great action movie.
count_01
May. 10th, 2009 10:22 pm (UTC)
I second this: I went in expecting a great action flick wherein a lot of stuff blows up and they campily pay apparently sincere homage to the old series (pretty well, I thought) and keep the tradition of ignoring plot in favor of flashy effects and operatic moments of severe overacting. You know, kind of like Star Trek 3: the Search for More Money.

It was no Undiscovered Country, but it was big mindless fun, which I demand in a summer blockbuster, and I especially expect in an inheritor of a longstanding franchise.

That said, I would love, love to see an Honor Harrington space opera, or even Ray Bradbury's Martian Chronicles, either of which would lend themselves pretty well to big-screen shoot-em-ups. (the Chronicles, of course, would need to be pretty extensively re-worked, now we've seen some bits of the surface up-close, but that's neither here nor there)
linfer
May. 10th, 2009 09:45 pm (UTC)
Fans of the old show might like the film.
I hate the film, because I love TOS. Especially the new Spock was a terribly twisted version of the old one and yes, they piss all over te original continuity to use your very fitting words.

Right now I'm trying to pretend I never watched it. ;)
mort_q
May. 10th, 2009 11:33 pm (UTC)
That's what I did with Star Trek V... it never happened.
kizeesh
May. 10th, 2009 09:49 pm (UTC)
I thought it was mediocre at best
The main plot was a retread of at least two of the earlier movies, with added teenage angst as a sideplot. The dialogue was at times so painful it hurt and the shoehorning in of things for each character to do was beyond irritating.
However nothing, but nothing was as continually frustrating and distracting as the CONSTANT LENS FLARE and Light Refractions on the frame.

If they were doing old sci-fi I'd want to see a live action version of the E.E. Doc Smith Skylark series. (or E.E. Smith PHD as he's apparently now known)
Failing that we must be due a Stainless Steel Rat or two.
Maybe a Citizen of the Galaxy? or a Between Planets?
grrm
May. 10th, 2009 11:40 pm (UTC)
retread
I agree completely about the main plot being a retread.

How many times are they going to do the, "big alien thingamabob headed for Earth, only the ENTERPRISE can stop it" magilla?

First time it was v'ger. Next it was a Borg cube. This time it was bunch of Romulans who had somehow stolen a Shadow ship from BABYLON 5 (JMS should sue). A mining ship, right.

And when did the Romulans all go bald and get covered with tattoos? That part was new, at least. Stupid, but new.

Re: retread - alierakieron - May. 11th, 2009 12:06 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: retread - liedra - May. 11th, 2009 12:35 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: retread - lkrobinson - May. 11th, 2009 01:09 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: retread - theantitexan - May. 11th, 2009 01:35 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: retread - kathrynthefair - May. 11th, 2009 02:42 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: retread - kizeesh - May. 11th, 2009 11:53 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: retread - angrylagomorph - May. 19th, 2009 02:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
SS Rat - josh_b_mcc - May. 11th, 2009 12:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
windresistant
May. 10th, 2009 09:53 pm (UTC)
I hope you realize they already have signed a contract for at least one (perhaps two) sequel(s) to this Star Trek. I liked it as a fun film, but star trek was always good at stories. I don't think these writers can pull off an even semi-good movie a second time.
mela_lyn
May. 10th, 2009 10:20 pm (UTC)
There are 2 confirmed sequels. Katz says they might film them adjecently... makes me wonder what they are planning. Ever since The Lord of the Rings that's become really popular.
(no subject) - willem_manderly - May. 14th, 2009 02:36 am (UTC) - Expand
gauroth
May. 10th, 2009 09:53 pm (UTC)
Have you watched 'Farscape'? A space opera cut off in its prime; but there's a feature-length film, 'The Peacekeeper Wars', which wrapped things up. It's a very wry series.

My BFF is a Trekkie, and I'll be going to see the new film with her with some trepidation. I confess, I find it easiest to regard SF films as always taking place in an AU. Or, if they're really bad, I regard them as fanfiction. I find that that soothes my nerves.
jenjaina
May. 11th, 2009 12:37 am (UTC)
I second this! Farscape was a wonderful SF TV show.
Farscape... - erikleach - Jun. 10th, 2009 04:51 am (UTC) - Expand
aulus_poliutos
May. 10th, 2009 09:53 pm (UTC)
A Miles Vorkosigan movie or TV series would rock, if well made. But I'm afraid Hollywood would makes Miles physically more attractive.
roflcopter_down
May. 10th, 2009 09:53 pm (UTC)
ITT: People stuck in the past
jenniferlee
May. 10th, 2009 09:56 pm (UTC)
Miles Vorkosigan? Now that is intriuging!! Loved those stories!
flake_sake
May. 10th, 2009 10:05 pm (UTC)
If a pretty dead franchise has to be revived, why not Babylon 5 *sigh*

Really don't get what the hype was about, it was a reanactment with a poor plot and far too few women in general and far too many pregant ones...
tom_gladius
May. 10th, 2009 10:31 pm (UTC)
They tried that twice and both failed badly.
Agreed - jameslib - May. 10th, 2009 11:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
Babylon 5 - grrm - May. 10th, 2009 11:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Babylon 5 - jameslib - May. 11th, 2009 12:39 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Babylon 5 - wyldemusick - May. 11th, 2009 04:14 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - alierakieron - May. 11th, 2009 12:07 am (UTC) - Expand
jasheffe
May. 10th, 2009 10:10 pm (UTC)
I liked it. I think they had a nice, clean reason for the change in continuity and it allows them to breath some new life into the "tired old franchise".
nimbrethil
May. 13th, 2009 04:20 pm (UTC)
That was my thought. They knew better than to merely up and change the old continuity without giving viewers a plausible reason to accept it. I thought it was very well done.
fatham
May. 10th, 2009 10:16 pm (UTC)
I LOVED it. Sorry George. I love you, but I thought the writing was great. It was a nice, well acted, modernization of an old standby. I've been re-watching original series episodes for the past few months and I think that even though they updated a lot of it, they stuck by the core of the show. I've also heard a lot of people nitpick over little scientific details ... guys ... I know Trek had a lot of science involved in it ... but it's still science -fiction-. Most of the stuff in the old (and new!) shows hardly makes sense...so just sit back and enjoy!
chocotaco33
May. 10th, 2009 10:17 pm (UTC)
I, like most, really liked it. I see your point about making the SF sloppy and sacrificing some of the feel of The Original Series in order to cater to the action movie-loving masses. But you at least have to admit that the action in most Star Trek incarnations is usually, well, pretty lame and this was a breath of fresh air from that perspective at least. A few other points:

I would love to see new SF on the big screen, but it seems like everything out there is either for a niche audience, or people just haven't figured out how to market it to the public without ruining it. Instead we get the occasional crap SF flick (e.g. Chronicles of Riddick) or SF in other mediums (e.g. Battlestar). Hopefully Ender's Game will be the 21st Century SF we're all hoping for.

I don't think the "they messed up the continuity" argument holds water. They made it pretty clear that this is an alternate reality, one that exists side-by-side with the old one. Was this an all-too-easy deux ex machina on the part of the writers? Sure. But in this rare case I think it was necessary to satisfy the old fans (an impossible task but at least they made the gesture) as well as having the freedom to break away from the original storyline. Like you said, as long as there's money to be made on these franchises they aren't going anywhere. So as long as they're here, I'd rather have them reinvented instead of rehashed.

And lastly, the thing I liked most about the movie was how very, very reinvented it was. This James T. Kirk wasn't the old one, he was a hardened, in-your-face Kirk as a result of growing up without a father. The previously stoic, nearly emotionless Spock was replaced with one who was FORCED to have emotion in the face of his planet's destruction, as well as unexpected love. Is it the greatest writing ever? Nah. But compelling enough to be fresh and satisfying? In my opinion, yes.
kathrynthefair
May. 11th, 2009 01:37 pm (UTC)
i totally agree!
(no subject) - angrylagomorph - May. 19th, 2009 02:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
cissie_king
May. 10th, 2009 10:23 pm (UTC)
I would like to see a remake of 1999... as soon as I can figure out what it should be called.
aota
May. 10th, 2009 10:25 pm (UTC)
Hopefully when Ron Howard does the Lensman movie that will give us something a little different.
texassky
May. 10th, 2009 10:25 pm (UTC)
Now, now, now. It is called "Nostalgia". Yes, the fans want to see the old stuff. Nothing wrong with that either. It changed television forever, it changed Science Fiction from classics like, "the blob" and "Lost in Space," to social commentary.

Sorry you didn't like it or Star Wars, but that's no reason to attack the writers and creators. A lot of people loved it.
nimbrethil
May. 13th, 2009 04:23 pm (UTC)
Er. Not liking the story is more than sufficient reason to attack the writers and creators. Other people loving it doesn't mean that Mr. Martin isn't entitled to express his own, contrary opinion. =P
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