J. J. Abrams Star Trek (2009) – Review, A Great Start for Many More to Come
I am a big Trek fan. The fact that I love astronomy, makes Star Trek almost a vague dream come true for me in many ways. From the very early days of Gene Roddenberry’s Star Trek when James T. Kirk used to be my hero, Star Trek got me interested in Stars and Galaxies and from that time on my love for Astronomy and Star Trek just grew on over time.
Frankly, my expectation was not very high from this new Star Trek movie. I was not quite sure if its going to be anything like the Star Trek I used to watch in the old days of Kirk and Picard. My low expectation basically came from the movie trailer, which sort of represented a very i-Robot’ish kind of futuristic look for the movie, especially the flying bike and the cop sort of completely misrepresented the movie and secondly the new director J. J. Abrams, who admittedly was not a big fan of Star Trek, kind of made me wonder which direction is he going to take this now?
But with all assumptions kept aside, I am very glad to say that this new Star Trek movie was simply amazing!! From the moment the movie started, it was just a captivating adventure. As the very well written story slowly unveiled, with staggering effects and a lot of suspense, it brought the real drama of Star Trek, and most importantly it brought back the flashiness of Captain Kirk and playfulness of Dr. McCoy and thus was able to introduce a lot of great humors with the subtle mixture of classic and modern.
This movie successfully captured the very essence of Star Trek. The essence being: the glory of being on board NCC-1701, the iconic representation of the ship, rough and tough training at the Starfleet academy, relationship between Kirk and Mccoy, and the adventure of space traveling.
It was great to see when the redesigned USS Enterprise NCC-1701 was slowly brought to the screen(after so many years) as all its crew started to approach towards the ship in a shuttle craft and the huge ship slowly started to emerge behind the galactic station. J. J. Abrams wish to give the Enterprise a “hot-rod” look while retaining its traditional shape paid off, the new ship looked modern and powerful yet maintained its iconic representation.
Karl Urban’s McCoy role was excellent. Aside from having a somewhat similar look to the real McCoy, he really did a good job playing McCoy and brought a lot of McCoy style humor in the movie, which was great to see brought back, as it was a missing element in many of the other Star Trek movies.
Although the Spock character was very well portrayed and played by Zachary Quinto but I must admit that Spock falling in love with a crew and kissing in front of other crew was very far from the real Spock and also Spock’s anger was very much exaggerated in this movie. Sure he is half human and he has emotions but raging like a crazy Klingon? I mean, come on that just totally destroys the image of Spock and what a real Vulcan stands for.
Also, the scene of Kirk taking over the bridge from Spock seemed very rushed and was no real drama involved there. It sort of looked like a pre-planned scenario where everything just fell into plan. While everyone in the bridge stood still, a short fight between Kirk and Spock was all that was required to shift the Captaincy, with not much hassle, it seemed very less dramatic.
The sound effects in the movie were greatly enhanced with the association of some great visual effects. A notable moment which created a buzz in the theater among the audience was, when all the ship started powering up their engines to go to warp and then a subtle silence followed by the great boom to warp speed. But as for the music, I was hoping throughout the movie that they would at some point play the real Star Trek music, which ended up never happening. The desire for the real Star Trek music, I guess, basically came from the lack of good and distinguishable music from this movie. There were lot of great scenes where there was opportunity for some real good music to be associated with those scenes or at least the old music but all the musics in many of the scenes sort of ended up sounding very similar and probably will not be something memorable.
Other than introducing some “new” representation of its own history and some minor not quite perfect representation of Astronomical theories, which by the way seems to be a trend in many of the Star Trek movies, this movie basically rocked!! Throughout he whole movie I was captivated to know what will happen next and at the same time was entertained with great visual effects and most importantly great humor, which was a big positive for me in this movie. I watched it at the fairview and at the end of the movie everyone gave it a standing ovation. It was just awesome!!
I hope this is just the beginning of many more to come from J.J. Abrams.
Star Trek image credits: imdb.com