Sunday, August 30, 2009

Star Trek (2009) - 4.5/5

To say that I was scared of this film doesn't even begin to describe my hesitation for a franchise 're-boot'/prequel for one of my favorite franchises of all time. But, as my star rating would indicate - this film is what a modern "Star Trek" film should be.

It's a combination of modern filmmaking with all the elements that make "Star Trek" shows so fascinating. The high budget special effects and very awesome action sequences are going to keep those new watchers busy in awe at the scale of the film (even the credits must have cost a couple million in fucking CGI funds) but most of the aliens were done with make-up and costume when available (sans the some what ridiculous 'monster' chase on Delta Vega which is the one scene where I felt like they tried a bit too hard and is perhaps my one complaint about the film).

Casting wise, again I was worried that they would screw with me with Mr. Pine as James T. Kirk, but alas his days as a romantic love interest in teeny bopper flicks seems to be long gone and he gives a pretty solid performance. Quinto as Spock worked very well for me and that includes the entire cast. At times I felt Bana was underused as the villain, Nero (he had moments but I wanted them to really bring out his 'working man on a vengeance craze a bit more).

In the end though, it wasn't all these great new elements that made this "Star Trek" work. It was the little nuances for the fans that made so delighted. When the parachuting scene came up I laughed so hard at the third guy wearing the red suit - if you are a Trekkie then you know why I would laugh. The fact that they included Kirk's 'cheating' the system subplot into the film delighted me to no end as that was my one extreme hope for the film. They kept all the quirks about the characters intact (including the ever vigilantly down trodden McCoy) all the while not making any of these elements too blatant that non Trekkies are going to wonder what they missed.

So my final word has to be that of massive praise for this film. The story also allows for this re-boot to fly its own direction (a whole new reality anyone?!) and this could be the beginning of a beautiful new franchise. It was so much fun I didn't want to leave the theater even after it was done. J.J. won me over again. 

Written By Matt Reifschneider

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