| Star Trek XI (2009) |
Star Trek XI takes us to a time before the original Star Trek series to show us the characters when they were young troublemakers. That's the real fun of it for Trek fans - seeing younger versions of their beloved characters.
There is a lot of character development and solid performances are delivered for the younger versions of Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Uhura, Chekov and Scotty. Uhura delivers real lines rather than just "Hailing frequencies open".
Unfortunately, the characters have been modified a little. Scotty has an English accent now and we see Spock and Uhura passionately kissing! The plan was to take away some of the distinctiveness of Star Trek and make it more mainstream (dumb it down a little). What we end up with is a cross between Star Ship Troopers and Star Trek Nemesis. It reaches out to a younger, teen audience.
Unlike most Star Trek films, there is no message and nothing to think about a day or a week after seeing the film. There is plenty of action and stunning visual effects. That is the meat of the film. It is not about pondering some sort of moral ambiguity, so it left me feeling a bit empty afterwards.
On the plus side, Shatner does not show his face in the movie. He was never really worthy of the honor that the Star Trek series bestowed upon him. He was just lucky to land the part. This is Nimoy's chance to shine. Good for him.
It is male-positive in a macho/chivalrous sense. Just as in Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, both men and women fill out the ranks of the good side, while the ranks of the evil side are entirely male.
Despite all that, it is a really fun movie and it is still Star Trek. It starts out strong and it's a thrilling ride right to the end. If you are a Trek fan, you can't miss this film anyway, so stop reading and see it for yourself! It looks like sequels are already in the works.
- Reviewed by Paul G
Rated: PG13 in USA, 12A in UK due to action violence.
Duration: 2 hours and 6 minutes