In lieu of a formal review (which undoubtedly already number into the hundreds by now) I wanted to capture a few thoughts on J.J. Abrams Star Trek reboot and ask readers what they thought of it as well…
- My expectations were high – The film has been gathering very positive reviews from a wide variety of sources. The good news is that those impressions are right on the mark. This is an excellent film.
- It’s an unabashed (and unapologetic) space opera. Space battles, hand-to-hand combat, sacrifice, revenge, drama, romance, sense of wonder…glorious.
- It’s accessible SciFi – This was the first Trek film that my son – not at all a Trek fan – ever expressed any interest in seeing. Not only did he want to see it, he liked it. A lot. This an indication that the film is appealing to old and new fans alike. If you’re a SciFi fan, don’t be afraid to go with a non-fan friend.
- The film respects the property. Yes, it diverges from the original series — and the film explains why — but even so, the core essence of the world and the characters remains.
- The casting was spot on. Even – God help me – with Zach Quinto as Spock, who annoyed me endlessly when I was still watching Heroes. Karl Urban’s gruff-but-lovable Doctor McCoy was probably the truest reflection of the old series. He was exactly what you’d think McCoy would be like in his younger years. Chris Pine’s Kirk was also a worthy interpretation; brash without being annoying or irresponsible. All the others – Uhura, Sulu, Chekov, Scotty – were also well portaryed.
- The film was a perfect balance of several elements. Some might argue that there was not enough of one or the other, but there was so much ground to cover that I was pleased that they managed to fit it all in in decent amounts. Some of those elements include:
- Characters, as mentioned above: Again. perhaps not as focused on those characters as the original series, but I would argue that to do so would have made the film less enjoyable. Consider, too, that I am familiar with the original series, so that may have filled in some of the characterizations. It’s impossible to forget that and accurately predict whether newcomers would feel the same (though I suspect that they would).
- Plot – A plan of Romulan revenge and new beginnings wonderfully supports scenes loaded with action and drama.
- Sense of wonder: To answer Neil Sheppard’s Twitter comment to my one-line Twitter review, how are planet-drilling machines and black holes not wondrous?
- There were a few WTF moments (unlikely coincidences, Kirk’s contrived fat-hands, etc.), but they were largely forgivable in light of all the goodness that surrounded it.
J.J. Abrams had the daunting task of pleasing old fans, welcoming new fans, and launching a new platform for (undoubtedly) further adventures. I think he succeeded on all counts. (Can I say I told you so?) It makes one hope for a similar reboot of another series with still-untapped potential (looks at George Lucas) in…oh, let’s say…10 years.
The bottom line is that Star Trek is everything a Trek film should be.
Now…tell us what you think? Leave your spoiler-free comments below…