Director/Assoc. Producer: JJ Abrams
Writers: Robert Orci, Alex Kurtzman
Concept: Based on the Gene Roddenberry TV Series
Stars: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Eric Bana, Karl Urban, Bruce Greenwood, Zoe Saldana, John Cho, Simon Pegg, Anton Yelchin, Ben Cross
I admit I enjoy Star Trek and its various genealogical TV sequels and prequels, extended specials, and clones. Although, more recently I warp-jumped from Starfleet Command to the Battlestar Galactica for a little more fashionable action.
I always had a fondness for the original 60s TV show re-runs. Somehow, the ‘80s big screen version of Star Trek never lived up to my expectations. For me, the low point came in ‘Star Trek V’ when ‘Jim’ and ‘Bones’ sit around a camp fire, in a universe far far away, singing ‘row row row your boat’. It’s the only movie I’ve ever walked out of, and I’ve watched a LOT of movies.
Maximum warp speed to May ‘09 and the new version of Star Trek, produced and directed by JJ Abrams of ‘Lost’ fame, with FX care-of ILM, and a sound-track worthy of any space opera. Here, each iconic character is brought loving back to us, in the guise of a fresh-faced cadet joining the Starfleet Academy, and vying for a place on the USS Enterprise.
Star Trek is an origins picture, and in the case of James T. Kirk, we’re talking, the day he was born. Opening straight into the action leaves no time for questions, engaging you immediately before you get a chance to point out any discrepancies with the Trekkie multi-verse you may already know. Ironically, it is not necessary to know anything to enjoy this piece of celluloid, but it does make it fun.
Stellar acting ensures the success and excitement of this actioner. Karl Urban is excellent as a better-looking Dr. ‘Bones’ McCoy, and Zoe Saldana adds allure to the part of ‘Lt. Uhura’, while Bruce Greenwood as Capt. Christopher Pike lends class to the whole affair.
That’s not all; Eric Bana delivers on his sparse bad-guy role as the Romulan ‘Nero’. While John Cho as ‘SuLu’ deserves his own spin-off! Even Simon Pegg as ‘Scottie’ hams it up to perfection. Chris Pine as the rebellious ‘Kirk’ manages to pull-it off, but Zachary Quinto IS ‘Spock’. He nails the character like very few have ever nailed a character before. He is a revelation.
Where X-Men Origins: Wolverine failed to deliver on various levels, being both a disappointment and a criminal waste of good talent, when it comes to the Star Trek franchise, there is so much more to be explored without ever having to look back.
‘Origins’ is the word of the moment, and for this venture into the Star Trek universe it’s very much the birth of a new star…light, bright and noisy. A franchise that is likely to expand through the cosmos rapidly very soon!