Or at least a solid B, if not B+.
I’m talking about the new Star Trek film, of course. My general complaint is that it seemed to trade an explicit, extended focus on Star Trek’s signature — a future where humanity is united in the exploration of space and not, say, riven by deepening social divides, enslaved by technology, or stranded in a post-nuclear dystopia — for action and special effects and what even non-geeks now refer to as origin stories. The previous series (and movies, especially) weren’t necessarily short on conflict, it’s true, and with a sparkling Enterprise bridge that more than one critic has compared to an Apple Store showroom it’s not like director J.J. Abrams grittied up Gene Roddenberry’s baby the way some fans feared might happen in the age of the brilliant, recently concluded reinvention of Battlestar Galactica. I get that the flashy stuff is necessary to compete as a summer blockbuster, or just plain cool in its own right (save for some of the bloodier scenes), and that what Roger Ebert in his review called the “narrative housekeeping” is necessary for the characters’ introduction — period, to casual viewers, and (with fingers crossed) plausibly within established continuity for Star Trek fans. Like I said, it’s at least a solid B from my perspective, overall an exciting relaunch of a cultural institution, but I’ve had respectful arguments with friends who liked and disliked it more than I did, mostly around the fact that, let’s face it, it can’t and probably shouldn’t be the original.
Update: My further musings have finally been posted. Catch ’em before we hit another wormhole!
Related: NCC-1701-DVD • Eau de Kirk • What’s Future Is Prologue