Saturday, January 9, 2010

Star Trek - A Review

A prequel to the famous Star Trek saga in the 1980s, this one certainly had gotten my attention. And my high expectations too.

And it didn't disappoint me.

I was introduced to the Star Trek saga when I was about 7 or 8 years old. "Space is the final frontier..." and the Vulcan hand greeting were like, part of my sub culture. I was naturally very excited when there were announcements that there were a prequel to it and the original actor playing Spock, Leonard Nimoy, will be playing Spock again! Then there were news of drop-dead-so-hot actors the likes of Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto (Sylar!!! Don't ask me why...), John Cho, Anton Yelchin and many more in the cast. I was waiting to watch the movie!

The story started with Captain Kirk on USS Kelvin saving millions of lives, including the lives his wife and his new-born son James Tiberius Kirk, by sacrificing himself to defend against the attack of a Romulan ship that came from the future. Fast forward a few years, we saw young James Kirk performing reckless stunts on Earth and young Spock being rididule over his half-Vulcan, half-human heritage. Fast forward a few more years, we saw the adult James Kirk (Chris Pine) being recruited on board of the Star Fleet and Spock (Zachary Quinto) being an officer in the Star Fleet. Kirk and Spock wasn't friendly with each other at first. After assigning to the USS Enterprise on her maiden voyage, Kirk saved the ship from walking directly into the Romulus trap but the entire Vulcan planet was destroyed by something called the Red Matter. Kirk was then sent to an inhabitable moon where he met the older Spock. It was then revealed that the Romulus and Spock Prime were sucked into a black hole from the future and the Romulans were taking revenge at the Federation planets for the destruction of their own planet. They also met Scotty who discovered some time warp thing on that planet and they both got back on board of USS Enterprise. Kirk provoked Spock into showing his emotions and at last took his seat as Captain Kirk. They rescued Captain Pike, destroyed the Romulus ship and saved lives. The movie ended with the trademark almost- legendary dialogue of "Space is the final frontier..."

Being a fan of the original Star Trek franchise, I have to say that JJ Abrams was true to the movie. Fans from the original franchise can relate to the characters and the sci-fi terminologies in the movie and new fans are being attracted to this new way of presentation. Abrams provided ample explanation to new-comers without boring the die-hard fans, and brought the action and cinematography to a whole level. Chris Pine portrayed the young and reckless young Kirk to perfection, that in my humble opinion, explained the older Kirk's confidence and recklessness in commanding the ship. Zachary Quinto also did an outstanding job of playing Spock with a rather emotionless stoned-faced Vulcan who suppressed his feelings and forced himself to be logical. Another noticeable performance was from Anton Yelchin and John Cho who played Chekov and Zulu respectively. Karl Urban also made an appearance playing Dr Leonard "Bones" McCoy with his rather humurous character.

The action scenes weren't exactly remarkable but quite sufficient compared to the originals. And James Kirk got kicked around a lot. But the portrayal of fights and stunts were rather realistic and believable which actually I quite like. I also praised the screen write for the story with "alternative reality" because of the disruption of the time continuum. This released the actors from the pressure of imitating the original casts and also provided more space for development and not worry about not being able to connect to the original stories.

Ratings : 7.5/10. A good movie. Exceeds my expectations. IF you got blur in this movie, I suggest you dig up the old ones and watch. They are pretty addictive too!

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