Monday, September 24, 2018

The franchise strikes back

“Star Trek” is a 2009 film which reboots the entire Star Trek timeline, obviously to give the Star Trek franchise a new lease of life. In the film's universe, this is done by letting a rogue Romulan ship flying back in time, changing the history of the entire Galaxy as it moves along. It's a neat trick, although hardcore Trekkies may wonder why it never happened before, as time travel back and forth is a staple of the series and the earlier films!

We get to meet new and younger versions of James Kirk, Spock, Scotty, Chekov, Bones and Sulu. Unsurprisingly, we also get to meet the original Spock starred by Leonard Nimoy, who simply *must* be in a Star Trek production, no matter how rebooted. We also finally get to know Uhura's first name!

“Star Trek” is well done, although I admit I wasn't particularly moved by it. The plot has certain similarities to that of the last “real” Star Trek film, “Star Trek: Nemesis”, with an exotic Romulan consumed by hatred for all things human (and Vulcan) on a mission of irrational revenge. He has a dark and unusual ship, too, just like Shinzon in “Nemesis”. Otherwise, I noticed a few nods to “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back” and perhaps “Starship Troopers”. Captain Nero's starship looks like one of the Shadow vessels from "Babylon 5". The name Nero is also interesting. Naturally, an evil Romulan is named after a bad Roman emperor, but perhaps it's also a reference to Captain Nemo from Jules Verne's novels? Somebody had fun working on this script!

As I said, well done and perhaps of interest if you like science fiction themed adventure or join-the-army-and-be-a-man kind of flicks, but probably non-canonical for Trekkies. The 2009 reboot lacks that weird and nerdy charm which made the original franchise so special as our foremost love-hate relationship…

In the end, I give it three stars (the OK rating). Live long and prosper. Or, as Spock actually said in this new version, good luck!

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