movie coverI'd rather be watching TV![IMDB link] [Netflix link] Time to watch all 9 Star Trek movies, the last 3 or 4 of which I’ve never seen.

PEOPLE: Duh. Who do you think? They brought in some new people, but they quickly became nobodies anyway.

QUIRKS: 10 years after the last Star Trek episode, they finally make a movie. Significant time has passed, so they had to make time pass in the Star Trek world as well.

VISUALS: It’s a 1970s movie. The visuals most remind me of of 2001. At least the teleporter special effects were updated, and they could actually afford to finally depict weightlessness in space :)

MORALS: In order to grow, you have to take illogical steps sometimes. It is our human limitations that help make us so superior.


1) Like 2001, they had some gratuitously slow parts. This was the Director’s Cut, and there’s a sequence near the beginning where they just stare at the Enterprise for like FIVE MINUTES. Carolyn left the room. It just cuts between “oh look at our 1979 special effects!” and “oh look at Shatner’s face in amazement”! And then at the end, he says, “Thank you, Scottie,” and the scene ends incredibly lamely. I had a enough long, slow, nothing-happening-in-space while classical music plays moments in 2001 for a lifetime. Fortunately that business stopped once the movie’s plot began to unfold. (Spock‘s descent into VGR really reminded me of the end of 2001 as well. But I pretty much hate 2001 as a movie. It’s a must-see, but it hurts. Like Eraserhead.)

2) WIDELY heralded as the worst Star Trek movie ever. Star Trek 2: The Wrath Of Khan is one of those movies that’s ALWAYS in people’s “lists of sequels that are better than the original”. Indeed, Star Trek 2 is, so far, my favorite Star Trek movie, so this holds true for me as well.

3) The special effects, battle scenes, and sets are much better in later Star Trek movies.

4) Many scenes have a background inexplicably blurred in the shape of a circle. It’s like they went back, remastered the movie, and tried to blur out some of the cheezier parts. It’s not camera focus — it’s literally that half of a background (where the whole background is equidistant form the camera) is circularly blurred in some cases, for no apparent reason.

GOOD STUFF: Despite it’s flaws, I liked this WAY better watching it in 2009 than I did watching it when it premiered on network television (probably around 1982ish?). Some people complain that movies “just feel like long episodes”. I think that’s an OBVIOUS criticism of most adaptations, and that adaptation movies SHOULD feel like long episodes. However, Star Trek movies NEVER felt like long episodes — so much went on that it never could have fit into even a long episode. And movies often related to things that had happened in previous movies — something you didn’t get with the series.

THIS Star Trek movie, Star Trek 1, however — really does just feel like a long episode. And it’s actually a bad thing here. This is hopefully one of the few times I will say this.

RECOMMENDATION: Go back and re-watch it. It’s not as bad as you remember. There’s no sense in skipping straight to Star Trek 2. The punchline of the plot (VGR) is neat too — that was the one major thing I remembered from being a kid.

BROMANCE QUOTE: Captain James T. Kirk: “Damn it, Bones, I need you. Badly!

FRIENDS’ RATINGS: Glen didn’t like it. For once, I don’t blame him. I didn’t like this either, until 2009.

Mood: yawn
Music: The Misfits – Hollywood Babylon