I realize I’m late to the game on this one, because by now everyone and their brother have weighed in on this movie. However, I’m a publishing author on deadline, so I see movies when I can, versus when they release.
But first, a disclaimer. I am not a huge Star Trek fan. My grandmother was the original Trekker and she loved, nay adored, Star Trek in all its forms. The hubs is also a huge Trek fan. Me — while I’ve seen every movie and all of both the original and Next Generation, along with much of the many other spinoffs — I think they’re merely okay. I like them just fine, but I don’t care about “canon” on this series. Who did what to whom in which of the many versions and iterations of Trek means pretty much nada to me. I care about being entertained. And while I had a couple little niggles about J.J. Abram’s Star Trek reboot, overall I thought it was awesome.
So, now that I’ve finally gotten into the theater to see this movie, what do I think? I think it’s a freaking perfect movie, that’s what I think.
The longer you write, the harder it is to watch movies and TV shows, let alone read other people’s books. Why? Because you spot all the things done wrong — where someone left a gaping plot hole or three, where someone went with a take on a scene you’d have done very differently, when an ending is blah, and so on. But you enter every entertainment experience hoping that it’ll be the one that blows you away and reminds you that it’s still possible to do it all right. This is that movie.
First off, the cast is amazing. I love all the ways they’re different and yet still sort of the same as the original cast, but I love how they’re different more. Chris Pine is great as Kirk, Zachary Quinto is awesome as Spock, and I adore John Cho as Sulu (with all love and respect to the Ambassador of SciFi Cool, George Takai, who we all know is pretty much one of the most awesome people on the planet). I squeed at the “surprise” cameo (which, for the sake of the two people out there who haven’t yet seen the film I will not reveal here). Karl Urban is awesome as Bones. Take the waxing rhapsodic about the rest of the cast as a given.
Next, the story has no plot holes. Let me say that again — NO PLOT HOLES. Every scene works, everything connects back to something prior, there is clear connection to the first movie, and every necessary question is answered, with the questioned unanswered clearly being saved for upcoming movies. But it’s all done organically, so that you don’t realize every box has been checked, every t crossed, every i dotted, until the end.
There is a perfect blend of action, humor, romance, pathos, danger, heartbreak, drama, intelligence, and adventure. And the pacing is spot on. The writing is terrific, the cast’s timing is excellent, and the visuals are great — you never feel like you’re watching something done against a green screen or on a computer, even though you actually are.
I’ve heard some Trek purists complaining about a couple scenes as being sacrosanct and arguing that they shouldn’t have been used in this movie. To which I reply, poppycock. Trek in all its forms is popular entertainment, not a religious text. Stop complaining and boldly go where Abrams is taking us — into a fabulous new future filled with awesome new adventures with the new and, yes, improved crew of the starship Enterprise as they go on their new mission to entertain in a perfectly constructed and executed fashion.