Note: This review was written May 16, 2009 via Movies on Facebook, the date that appears on this post. But was actually not posted to Pastor Zip's Blog until May 30, 2012, shortly after I viewed the (first) sequel.
Star Trek (2009)
4 stars of 5
Okay. Star Trek is really a low-budget TV show, while the re-boot is high-budget for the Big Screen. So in this film one can expect an exchange of quality story for splashy FX. As an sf film and as a franchise re-boot, it's a really good show and I'm looking forward to sequels.
It should have been better. The score is straight out of Star Wars, not Star Trek. Nero's ship looks too much like a darkened Vorlon craft from Babylon 5. The adventures of our heroes and the violations of known physics are, quite frankly, well over the top. Especially egregious is the "orbital skydive" into Vulcan's atmosphere, which should have burned Kirk, Sulu, and Olson to a crisp long before they reached the mid-sky drilling platform.
But for all the whiz bang, Star Trek is not only about the promise and hope of the New Frontier, vicariously taking us where we should already be going in 2009 (40 years after landing on the Moon). It's about characters we've grown to care about -- and this film is about re-introducing them for the 21st century.
Kirk, Spock, Uhuru, Sulu, Bones, Scotty, and Chekov have a lot of growing to do as the Star Trek franchise grows in a new direction. This film sets us all off in the right direction. And so we endure, maybe even overlook, flaws that would be fatal to any other film.
The best Star Trek film yet? Not a chance. But it leaves me wanting more. And that's good cinema.