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Star Trek (****)
directed by J.J. Abrams
by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, based on the tv series created by Gene Roddenberry
Star Trek
Principal Cast
Chris Pine -- James T. Kirk
Zachary Quinto -- Spock
Leonard Nimoy -- Spock Prime
Eric Bana -- Nero
Bruce Greenwood -- Capt. Christopher Pike
Karl Urban -- Dr. Leonard 'Bones' McCoy
Zoe Saldana -- Nyota Uhura
Simon Pegg -- Scotty
John Cho -- Hikaru Sulu
Anton Yelchin -- Pavel Chekov
Ben Cross -- Sarek
Winona Ryder -- Amanda Grayson
Chris Hemsworth -- George Kirk
Jennifer Morrison -- Winona Kirk
Ratings are based on Rick's four star system.
One star - the commercials are more entertaining than the viewing.
Two stars - watch if you have nothing better to do.
Three stars - good solid entertainment.
Four stars - you never dreamed viewing could be this good.
Past Feature Reviews
A review by Rick Norwood

I love this movie!

My son, who just graduated from college, hated it. He points out that you don't need to drill a well to hit a planet with a black hole, that the arch-villain was just this guy, see, and that nobody in his right mind lets a cadet right out of space academy command a starship.

I don't care. Emotionally, I was caught up in the whole experience. It hit all the right notes, from the action filled beginning to the closing credits. Captain Kirk looked like Captain Kirk. I loved Scotty. I didn't even mind the Romulan who was thoughtful enough to bring along a bladed weapon, just to give Sulu somebody to fence with. I had fun.

I know this is going to make me sound like a hypocrite the next time I complain about bad science in a movie. Yes, Star Trek would have been even better if J.J. Abrams had run the script by a Cal Tech grad student. But the non-stop action didn't give me time to dwell on the implausibility of it all. And when the characters are right, the science can go by the boards.

No, that's not fair. Star Trek is science fiction, and ought to get the science right. I hang my head in shame. If bad science spoils a film for you, don't go see Star Trek.

But I'm going back for seconds.

       Star Trek Reboot II

So, what should the next Star Trek movie be like? It should have William Shatner in it. J.J. Abrams, with the casual disregard for the truth that is part of Hollywood culture, says he didn't put Shatner in this one because Kirk died in Generations. The reality is that Shatner asked for too much money. Nobody knew the reboot would be this successful. Now, Abrams can easily meet Shatner's price, and Shatner's price will come down because his ego is in warp drive over Leonard Nimoy's success. Here's how you bring Shatner back. Get Guinan. Have the two James Kirks meet in the Nexus. They will, of course, each try to one-up the other. Kirk Prime will tell young Kirk to get a life.

And I'd like to see Kevin Riley in a cameo.

       Is this the best Star Trek?

No. The best films are The Voyage Home and First Contact. Star Trek reboot is number three. And the very best Star Trek is from television: "The Cage," "Shore Leave," "The City on the Edge of Forever," "Amok Time," "Mirror, Mirror," "Journey to Babel," "Encounter at Farpoint," "The Measure of a Man," "Yesterday's Enterprise," "The Best of Both Worlds," "Trials and Tribble-ations," "Treachery, Faith, and the Great River," and "Terra Prime," to mention just a few. Ideas and characters are center stage instead of special effects.

No credit cookies, but a nice dedication to Gene and Majel Barrett Roddenberry.

Copyright © 2009 Rick Norwood

Rick Norwood is a mathematician and writer whose small press publishing house, Manuscript Press, has published books by Hal Clement, R.A. Lafferty, and Hal Foster. He is also the editor of Comics Revue Monthly, which publishes such classic comic strips as Flash Gordon, Sky Masters, Modesty Blaise, Tarzan, Odd Bodkins, Casey Ruggles, The Phantom, Gasoline Alley, Krazy Kat, Alley Oop, Little Orphan Annie, Barnaby, Buz Sawyer, and Steve Canyon.

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