Tuesday, May 12, 2009

To Boldly Go - Again

On Friday, May 8th I was joined by two old and dear friends at the Lowes Boston Common cinema for the 10:10 AM show of "Star Trek". Joining myself, Bridget and George was George's oldest son, Chris, who, while not a devout fan, was interested in seeing the new movie with his Dad. George and I first saw "Star Trek II - The Wrath of Khan" on opening day in June, 1982. It was a pleasure and a surprise to realize that Christopher was the same age as George was when we went to that premiere, so long ago.
Soon we were seated in the cinema (center aisle, middle seats) with bags of popcorn and a sense of excitement. I can't remember the last time that I was excited about a "Star Trek" movie. Finally, after seemingly hours of previews and commercials, the sound came up, the film was rolling and "Star Trek" had begun.
Two hours later, I was floored. What a fantastic movie. Part sequel, part prequel, all clever reboot.
The actors are pitch perfect. Chris Pine does not even attempt to be "Shatner" but his Kirk is full of self-confidence, bravado and swagger. Zachary Quinto as Spock looks eerily like a young Leonard Nimoy, and while his voice does not have the same gravitas as Nimoy's he was able to arch an eyebrow with the best of them. His scene in front of the Vulcan Science Academy was particularly telling, for me. However, I believe that the best characterization came from Karl Urban as Doctor Leonard "Bones" McCoy. Urban channels the spirit of the dearly departed DeForrest Kelly and growls his lines just as Kelly would have. Urban was McCoy to me, and that was awesome.
The rest of the cast performs admirably. Uhura has more to do in this movie then the original did in all 79 epsiodes of the original series. Scotty is unbelievably fun to watch and Chekov brings an earnestness to the role the Walter Koenig never had. Sulu gets to prove that fencing is an art form as well as a viable combat choice. All of the characters had a character moment that hearkened back to the original cast and their many adventures together.Each had the opportunity to shine.
Finally, there is Leonard Nimoy. His Spock is everything that I wanted - needed - him to be. He is the heart and soul of this movie. More than Kirk's death in "Star Trek - Generations", this movie seemed like the final goodbye to me to the original cast; the passing of the baton. However, instead of following the adventures of another crew of the Enterprise, we now have the new adventures of the original crew.
I am eagerly going to see this movie in the cinema again and I cannot wait for the sequel.

This blog has remained spoiler-free simply because I am urging all of you to see this movie free of them. There are so many jaw-dropping moments in this movie it is a disservice to anyone who knows of them beforehand. This film deserves to be seen through innocent eyes. Do yourself a favor - go see the best "Star Trek" movie since "Star Trek II - The Wrath of Khan".
Yes, it's that good.