Sometimes it’s not the best idea to reboot a movie franchise. Witness the abomination that was the fourth Indiana Jones flick, where they tried to introduce an irritating and ultimately uncharismatic son into the mix with the hope that he could carry Indy’s mantle into the future. Most of the time when you run modern mega-doses of energy through the rotting corpse of ancient movie characters and storylines, you end up with a Frankenstein-style mess of unpredictable proportions.
Star Trek is no exception. By now, most of the first generation of Trekkies are firmly ensconced in either nursing homes or cubicle-based jobs where their threat to humanity has largely been contained. William Shatner is quietly sipping pina coladas next to his pool while penning insightful lyrics to his next album, while Leonard Nimoy is off directing bizarre off-Broadway plays with an all-nude cast. However, somehow the powers that be decided that 30 years of the original franchise had not squeezed enough dollars out of Gene Roddenberry’s corpse, and ignoring the charring wreckage of Voyage and Deep Space Nine they elected to re-make classic Trek with an all new, under-25 cast.
Well, how could things possibly go wrong? Especially when the movie is set in an alternate timeline where director J.J. Abrams can pretty much do whatever the fuck he wants? Let’s start with the ship. Whereas the original Enterprise was a graceful piece of work, the new version has been butched up to the point where it pretty much looks like it spent a month at Orange Country Choppers. I almost expected Xzibit to step onscreen and say ‘yo dawg, we heard you liked Star Trek, so we put some Vulcans in your dilithium so you could warp 10 while you warp 10’. The only thing missing were giant chrome spinners and a ‘We Miss Eazy’ sticker on the shuttle bay doors.
Another highlight is the fact that once again, the villain is an evil Romulan warlord with a ridiculously huge ship. This time, they creatively named him ‘Nero’. Wasn’t that the plot of the last Next Generation movie? Or maybe the one before that? Anyways, I guess they couldn’t figure out how to get the Borg involved in this flick so they resulted to the Star Trek Plan B evil mastermind.
Not that it matters – the teenage crew of this pimped out ship barely look like they could handle putting it in park, let alone taking it into battle. I would not have been surprised if half the dialogue in this movie had to be re-recorded when the cast’s voices changed due to suddenly having their balls drop. I guess the Star Trek movie strategy has shifted from shooting flicks using the oldest actors available to using the youngest actors available. Look for the inevitable sequel to feature the Enterprise crewed entirely by fetuses.
If you loved the original Trek, don’t go see this movie. Instead, return home to your Spock shrine – which is most likely located right behind your Data shrine – and light a single candle in memory of the death of creativity and original thought.
To spread the word about this Star Trek review on Twitter.To get instant updates of Mr. Cranky reviews, subscribe to our RSS feed.