Man, alive, has it been a month since the new Star Trek Film debuted?
I had planned on posting my review a week after the film, but got so wrapped up in writing my thoughts that things took on a life of their own, and I wrote so much, even before getting to a discussion of the performances, and effects, that I was so exhausted that I set the review aside for a few days.
Then I got pre-occupied with other things, including my Genealogy.
In the next 2 chapters I want to share all that I had written of my review, a month ago, and prepare to do the final chapter in the coming days.
So let me continue where I left off in my last post...
My mind is a jumble of thoughts, and feelings, most of them emotional, as I try to put my opinion on paper in preperation for sharing it online.
There were several emotional moments, through the film, where my feelings were stirred, but when the crew took the helm that last time, as leonard Nimoy spoke those immortal words for, yes, the "1st time", and those immortal musical notes poured forth for the "1st time" as well, for a new generation to thrill to, as all of us from the original gnerations have done...I lost it.
I could contain my emotions no longer and the tears poured forth, unstoppable.
They were tears of excitement, and joy.
Excitement at the power of the complex story that was the re-imagining of the origins of an old, and very dear friend.
Amazement at the effects, old and new.
Joy at the fact that they got it all so damn right, in every way I could hope for.
I am writing this as I sit in the lobby of the theatre 20 minutes after seeing the film in Imax, awaiting the time to go see it on the regular screen, and the tears are welling up again just thinking about what I've just seen.
Beautiful, Simply Beautiful...Right now I'm incapable of writing more....
A few hours later the writing continues...
The 2nd time around was only slightly less powerful an experience as the 1st...at least I shed no tears at the end this time.
That's not to say I didn't come close. ;-D
I am sitting at a table outside a Food Court, at the Irvine Spectrum, as my thoughts return to my original question: Where the hell do I begin?
Let me start with the Official Prequel to the film...the Graphic Novel called Countdown, which sets the stage for the events of the film:
Spock, long a resident, hidden, then openly, of the home planet of the Romulan Empire, warns the High Council of an impending danger only to have them call his warning preposterous, despite the support he has from a simple miner named Nero, and his crew, whose knowledge supports his call for action.
There are several things about the book that bear directly on how much you, as viewer of the film, and especially if you are a long time Trekker, want to enhance your understanding of the plot machinations.
While it is not really neccessary to read Countdown, I heartily recommend it, especially if you are a Trekker, or at least familiar with the last film, Nemesis.
When Countdown is considered in the mix, and Paramount DOES seem to consider it as a part of Official Continuity, then the new film serves as a sequel to Nemesis, and certain fact as they pertain to the Leonard Nimoy Spock.
Without reading Countdown, the film still serves as a sequel to Official Continuity as its plot pertains to the same character, just not as fully explained.
As I wrote above...In Countdown we 1st encounter Spock who, when last heard from had went underground on Romulus, years before.
Now, living freely among the people, and grudgingly respected, he tries to warn the Council of impending danger, and we encounter a miner, and his crew who support him in his effort...
The Council, not entirely believing Spock, one thing leads to anotehr, and Spock, and Nero (Reluctantly leaving a pregnant wife behind, but promising to return.) are off to Vulcan to convince the Vulcans that they need to provide the technology to allow them to use Red Matter to save Romulus.
Along the way a certain Android Enterprise Captain, a certain Frenchman Ambassador to Vulcan, and a certain former Enterprise Engineer who used to have eye issues, are deployed to great effect (It's the engineers "baby" that Spock pilots in his attempt to save Romulus.), and what happens to a certain Klingon General (Once a Starfleet Officer) we all know, and love, will shock you.
In these setting we encounter a nero who cares about his crew, his wife, and his culture.
We see how he trusts Spock to save them all, at least more than the Council does, and how natural events transpire to, um, put a crimp in Spocks plan.
We see how Spock is thus unable to to save Romulus, yet save Vulcan, and the Federation, and how Nero can come to blame Spock for all he has lost, and set events in motion that lead to his seeking revenge in the film to come.
We learn to care for this man, and his crew, seeing the cultural reasons for those beautiful tattoos, and why the Romulans are bald in the film.
What seems menacing to an outside are moving, and touching, deeds, born out of tragedy.
Like Khan, this man has suffered great loss, instead of the good he expected, and like Khan, he misguidedly blames others.
And so...going into the film, while we may admire the man Nero once was, we will come to desplore the man he becomes, and the actions he takes...
And, yet...never mind, I'll get to that later...
When a trailer claims that "This isn't your parents Star Trek" it makes a claim that is only half true:
This film is everything I love about all previous Star Treks, but on a Budget it deserves, and then some, while at the same time finding a way to make the concept, and beloved characters fresh, and new to its long time fans while introducing then to a new generation to discover, grow with, and come to love.
It finds a way to preserve the past, yet change it as well.
Yes, Trekkers, we CAN have our cake, and eat it, too! And it tastes devine!
To be continued...