Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Pardonable Sin

Once again, a rant started elsewhere has become fodder for a more detailed rant here.

To wit, the core reason why JJ Abram's attempted Star Trek movie is so intolerable.

To boil it down to brass tacks, though, the unforgivable sin of JJ's movie is it was, not just stupid, but deliberately stupid.

Remember, the whole reason for Star Trek's existence was to elevate filmed science fiction out of the kidvid ghetto it had been relegated to for so many years and above such slop as "Lost in Space" and "Land of the Giants" and do real, grown up stories, address the big issues of the day that other television shows couldn't come within ten miles of, and, above all, make people think...

STAR TREK IS NOT ALLOWED TO BE DELIBERATELY STUPID!

Fun, exciting, thrilling, humorous, absolutely, but never at the cost of intelligent, thoughtful storytelling. To do so risks undermining the whole thing.

And it is for that one basic reason that I am convinced that Gene Roddenberry would not only have hated this film, but done everything in his power to keep it from being made.

I can just picture him in his office, leafing through the script, scratching through the scene where young Jim Kirk comes riding up on his motorbike to look at the Enterprise under construction, with the margin note "Starships are built in orbit", scribbling through that first scene with Spock and Uhura ("Uhura didn't sleep her way to the top & Spock wouldn't be a part of it"), then hitting on the destruction of Vulcan, at which point he'd call studio security and have JJ and his staff removed from the lot while GR sets fire to the script in the wastebasket and calls up the studio front office to see if they have any other bright ideas for who should write the new movie.

"Yeah, and can you send someone over this time who isn't hellbent on destroying everything I've spent the last forty-five years building up?"

1 comment:

John said...

From the beginning I viewed this film as just another person's take on the subject of Star Trek. It was not going to erase the last 43 years of what had preceded it. I went into the viewing with an open mind and hoping I was going to be somewhat entertained. As the final credits rolled I felt I had watched Star Trek in a sense, I mean the last time I saw Trek in this incarnation brand new was as a 10 year old so my reference base has been severely altered in the 35 years since. Were there points in the movie I disagreed with? Where do I start? I actually really like the Kelvin although it makes no sense in the unaltered time line but as a ship onto itself I liked it. Now the Enterprise herself, the saucer and nacelles I can live with but that garbage masquerading as a secondary hull and neck is just terribly wrong and in my opinion trashes the entire ship and that isn't even taking into account the different scales used in the movie for it. And don't even get me started on the engineering section. When it comes right down to it I put this Star Trek movie in the same category as the Battlestar Galactica series created this past decade.It's an ok facsimile but that's about it.