Friday, May 8, 2009

Review: Star Trek

Grade: A

Star Trek is the new reboot of the famous franchise. This movie goes back to the beginning and shows how the crew came to be together on the U.S.S. Enterprise. It starts out on the U.S.S. Kelvin which goes under attack by a ship that mysteriously appears out of a lightning cloud in space. George Kirk ends up taking the helm saving most people on board’s lives, including his wife who is giving birth to James T. Kirk during the attack. Next we see the full scene that is in the trailer of a young Kirk driving a corvette off a cliff. We see a young Spock in a Vulcan school being harassed for being half human. Then it’s a few years later and Kirk is getting drunk in a bar starting fights, this is where he meets Capt. Christopher Pike who convinces him to Join Starfleet. Next we see how Kirk meets Dr. McCoy and Spock and all the rest of the Enterprise crew, we also see how they all came to be aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise. I am not going to discuss the plot any further as I don’t want to risk giving spoilers as to what happens as it is very interesting and exciting and you should just see it for yourself.

I would like to take this time to mention that I am not a Star Trek fan. I had in the past tried to watch an episode or two and had only seen the Star Trek X movie before recently. In preparation for this new movie I watched the first four movies and still just could not really get that into them, I liked them, I just didn’t love them. Now let me say that this Star Trek movie is phenomenal. J.J. Abrams (Creator of Lost and Cloverfield) rebooted the franchise like I never imagined someone would. In a way reinventing the Star Trek universe and giving the fans spectacular effects and a great plot. The movie was exciting, thrilling and beautiful, unlike any Star Trek movie you’ve seen before. He also managed to put in plenty of laughs and Star Trek culture references. Some people say that this movie is Star Trek XI while others, most of who believe that every odd numbered Star Trek Movie sucks, call it Star Trek 0. I’m going to have to go with the latter as this is a whole new Star Trek.

I have heard that some people are upset with J.J. Abrams casting choices, I have to say that this cast was perfect. Chris Pine (Bottle Shock, Smokin’ Aces) takes the helm of the U.S.S. Enterprise as Captain James Tiberius Kirk. Pine hasn’t done much and while he’s no Shatner, he fills the role as the new Kirk almost perfectly in my opinion. He’s funny, sharp, smart and clever, everything you want in Capt. Kirk. Zachary Quinto (TV’s Heroes) takes the role of the infamous Spock. Quinto looks amazingly like a young Leonard Nimoy in his Vulcan makeup. He portrayed Spock very spot on, showing no emotion most of the time as per his Vulcan up bringing but still letting some out in bursts due to the Human half of his genes. Zoe Saldana (Vantage Point, Guess Who) played the sexy Uhura. Saldana gave a great performance as the movies beautiful leading lady, she was tough, smart and sympathetic. Karl Urban (Doom, The Lord Of The Rings) played Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy. Urban has a decent resumé as an action star, but here he shows a different side as the nervous and neurotic at times Dr. McCoy. He was very funny at times and really took hold of this role. John Cho (Harold and Kumar) took on the role of pilot Hikaru Sulu and did a fantastic job showing us that he can do more than silly comedies. Break out star Anton Yelchin (Charlie Bartlett, Alpha Dog) did a great job as Russian Pavel Chekov, very funny role at times. My personal favorite casting choice was of the very funny and brilliant Simon Pegg (Shaun of the Dead, Run Fatboy Run), who took the role of engineer Scotty. Bruce Greenwood (Eight Below, I Robot) played Capt. Christopher Pike, a man who convinces Kirk to join Starfleet and is the first Captain of the U.S.S. Enterprise. Lastly, Eric Bana (Troy, Hulk) played the antagonist of the movie, Nero, the captain of a Romulan ship.

As I mentioned before, the visuals of this movie were simply fantastic. Paramount gave J.J. Abrams a sizable budget and it was money well spent. The battle scenes were intense and spectacular. The planets and space travel were beautiful at times. All of the special effects and visuals used to create the futuristic cities were superb. This movie also has a great plot that will grab hold of you and not let go until the credits roll.

This movie was a glorious reboot. If you are a Star Trek fan or simply a fan of movies, go see this movie. It will have you glued to your seat. I was never a Star Trek fan before, but I am now after watching this movie. This is a Star Trek for a new generation and I cannot wait to see the sequel that is already in production.

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