Alrighty. I know it's a music blog, but it's also my blog so I can bend the rules a bit, right? Right. I saw the new Star Trek movie Sunday and I'm still on Cloud 12 1/2. I'm totally going to see it again. I think the 2nd time around I'll go see it at the IMAX theatre. So, on the the review. I have so much to say that I have to break it up into chunks. More exciting that way, no?
I’m so excited that people care what I think! Of course by “people” I mean 3-4 friends who know I’m crazy about Star Trek and find my drooling amusing. But anyway, here goes. This is basically a re-write of a nerdfest I had with my friend Matthew, plus other things I thought of as I typed this up.
First, some thoughts about casting: OMG Ben Cross as Sarek. I remember Ben Cross as Barnabus, the vampire in the “Dark Shadows” miniseries. Gorgeous then and gorgeous now. And I didn’t even recognize Winona Ryder (Amanda Grayson), which is good. I was a bit thrown when I saw Tyler Perry because I associate him with Madea and “Meet the Browns” and all that. But it’s most likely similar to “24” or “Heroes” fans seeing Zachary Quinto as Spock or Shaun of the Dead/Hot Fuzz/etc. fans seeing Simon Pegg as Scotty. Everyone did a great job though, and any problems with suspension of disbelief were because of my personal bias and not the actors’ abilities.
It was such a cool movie that nothing could distract me from its awesomeness for too long. :-D
How many of you got the least bit misty-eyed at the beginning? ‘Cause I sure did. I mean, it was obvious that George Kirk—captain of the Kelvin for all of 12 minutes—wasn’t going to make it. But it was just written and played so well… Wow. Also, my brother and I totally geeked out (the first of many times, I assure you) as they picked the baby’s name. Very well done.
Onto actors and characters and their similarities/differences:
1) Chris Pine as Kirk Amazingly cool. Some people complain that he didn’t get Shatner’s Kirk right but his goal wasn’t to be Shatner’s Kirk. This is an alternate timeline so stop your whining!!! And I think he did get the basics of the Kirk we know—not accepting defeat, a bit on the cocky side and humorous. Two of my fave scenes with Kirk were the scene where Bones kept giving him hypos to make him appear sick and then to get rid of the symptoms (swollen hands, numb tongue—classic!!) and the Kobayashi Maru scene where he just non-chalantly ate an apple while ignoring all the “danger” around him. I think that’s one of the times I laughed the hardest.
2) Zachary Quinto as Spock At first I thought he looked a little young, but I did some research and Spock’s only 3 years older than Kirk. Quinto has this almost distracting baby face thing going, but I think I’ll eventually get used to it. I think it reminds us that this is still a young Spock. I don’t have as much to say about his performance—not because it was unremarkable but because I enjoyed it so much and I can’t really put it into words. I think he did a great job of portraying how a young Spock would’ve reacted to illogical situations, losing his mother, meeting his future self, etc. Oh yeah, and marooning Kirk on the planet—I was soooooo mad at him but soooooo amused at the same time.
3) Zoe Saldana as Uhura Gotta get this off my chest. I was not cool with Spock and Uhura being an item. First because it just threw me for a curve and second because I’m jealous, LOL! I always liked Spock and I don’t know if you noticed but Zachary Quinto ain’t to bad lookin’!
But back to Uhura. I’m glad with what Saldana (and the writers) did with Uhura’s character. Because of the time of the show and whatnot, Nichelle Nichols’ Uhura wasn’t fleshed out very much—we knew so little about her, you know? She was from (the United States of) Africa, spoke Swahili, could sing, and was a kickass communications officer. Oh yeah, and she was gorgeous.
Saldana did an excellent job of breathing new life into Uhura, making her intelligent and tenacious. I love how she confronted Spock about being assigned to the Farragut instead of the Enterprise. In case you haven’t committed it all to memory like I have (this is paraphrased, as my memory isn’t THAT good):
Spock: I wanting to avoid accusations of favoritism†--
Uhura: *leans in determinedly* I’m on the Enterprise.
Spock: *does something on the PADD* Yes, you are.
4) Karl Urban as Bones Oh. My. Heavens. This man nailed it soooo well. If any of the characters had to stay the same, it was Bones. (Bones is my favorite Star Trek character of all time so I’m biased of course. I'm such a hypocrite aren't I [go back and read what I said about Kirk]?) Urban was fantastic as a young Leonard McCoy. He just nailed it. The accent, the stubbornness, the irritability… All the things we know and love about the good doctor. Also, I’m glad they chose an actor who was visibly a bit older than the rest of the crew, as Bones was. Can’t say enough good things about Urban’s McCoy. Crazy awesome.
†All these years I thought that word was spelled "favortism," like it's pronounced. Wow. Thanks for correcting me, Microsoft Word.
Part II to come within the next few days.