Plot: An angry Romulan known as Nero vows revenge on the Federation in this sci-fi space epic prequel/reboot of the original Star Trek.
In the words of Keanu Reeves: “Whoa.” And I’m not a Star Trek fan. I’ve only seen the first two feature films and bits and pieces of Next Generation. To be honest, I never really liked it that much. Star Trek always bored me to tears. Every time I would catch it on TV, all they did was sit around in a big ship and the pressure of an attack would increasingly loom larger, but ultimately nothing ever happened. I understand they couldn’t do big space battles with the technology back then, but come on, give me something! This is why I was always a Star Wars guy and not a Trekkie. But in this film…holy matza ball soup! The damn movie opens up in a chaotic space battle.
All the action here is downright bad ass. Another thing that ticked me off about Star Trek was that everyone always carried around those phasers but barely used them. Not in this one! We get unbelievable laser battles, sword fights and even bar brawls. Everything I disliked about the series, the director J.J. Abrams (of Lost and Alias fame) said, “Ok, lets give this guy what he wants!” The beaming effects were incredible. These are some of the best special effects I’ve seen in a long time, and believe me, I’m not a special effects guy. The reason these battles were so fantastic though was because I cared a lot about the characters thanks to the top notch acting.
From the little knowledge I have of Star Trek, I thought these actors did a perfect job of emulating the characters they were portraying. Two actors stuck out in my mind. First off, Zachary Quinto as Spock was simply amazing. There are no other words to describe it. His intense look and the way he delivered his lines were just mesmerizing. As he is half human/half vulcan, seeing him play with both emotions was one of my favorite parts of the film.
Chris Pine of course plays James T. Kirk who was Captain of the Starship Enterprise in the original series. He was obnoxious and cocky, but you knew from the performance there was a great leader brewing inside him. It’s hard to believe that this actor was in Just my Luck with Lindsey Lohan. There really isn’t a weak performance here. Without a doubt the best acting I’ve seen so far this year.
I really don’t have much to complain about. I thought at times the music could have been better and wished it could have matched the epic scope of the film more, but I enjoyed it as time went on. The jokes at times got a little goofy and juvenile, especially with the character of Scotty (Simon Pegg) and his relationship with a small alien side-kick. Maybe this was some obscure throwback to the fans, I don’t know, but I found it annoying. But these moments were very minimal and the jokes are very funny for the most part. In a sci-fi movie like this, it’s easy to roll your eyes and sigh at the comedy, but not here. There are few misfires. I loved it all.
The best part about this movie is that it packs in so much action but develops the characters so well at the same time. J.J. Abrams knocked this franchise out of the park. I can’t speak for Trekkies who I’m sure will be going over this film frame by frame, but I can’t imagine they would be disappointed. And for non Star Trek fans, you can go into this with no knowledge of the series and still love it. The ability to please the fans and bring in a new audience at the same time is the true mark of a great filmmaker.
Rating: 9.0 out of 10.