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Overall Rating
3.57

Awesome33.71%
Worth A Look: 28.09%
Average: 11.24%
Pretty Bad: 15.73%
Total Crap: 11.24%

9 reviews, 124 user ratings


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Star Trek (2009)
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by William Goss

"Keep Your Eyes On The Enterprise"
4 stars

Space. It’s grown a bit louder, hasn’t it?

When sixties sci-fi staple “Star Trek” made its leap to the silver screen in 1979, it opened with a sweeping Jerry Goldsmith overture and not one phaser was fired throughout as the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise made their way across the depths of our galaxy. Thirty years later, exploration has given way to excitement, as J.J. Abrams drops us in medias res as a starship (not the starship) is forced to take a very sudden and intense stand against a looming threat. The number of those narrowly escaping the skirmish includes the barely born James Tiberius Kirk, who lost his father in the heat of that battle and will grow up to earn a reputation as a genius-level repeat offender in the Midwest of the future (which, it should be said, is still mostly plains).

In the neighborhood and among Kirk’s father’s fans, Capt. Pike (Bruce Greenwood) dares the rascal to sign up for Starfleet Academy, maybe even serve a purpose for a change. It is among these ranks that Kirk (Chris Pine) will bond with Bones (Karl Urban), flirt with Uhura (Zoe Saldana), and butt heads with the logic-loving likes of Spock (Zachary Quinto), he too of a troubled adolescence. And before you ask, yes, Chekov (Anton Yelchin) and Sulu (John Cho) have their place on the bridge as well, each helping as they can to fend off the attacks of Romulan extremists, led by a very determined Nero (Eric Bana), whose motives will be revealed in due time…

Abrams (Mission: Impossible III) just barely keeps his direction on the proper end of the frenzied mayhem spectrum, rivaling the attention spans of today while suggesting that those of tomorrow may only grow shorter. For all of Bones’ talk about space being “disease and danger wrapped in darkness and silence,” the peril faced here is often bright and loud and proudly disorienting – after all, there’s no ‘up’ up there, only where the enemy is firing from or toward – with lens flares invading almost every frame to a nearly annoying degree. We get that the future’s bright, J.J., but the audience shouldn’t have to wear shades. For every lens flare, there’s a horn's blare, as Michael Giacchino’s score hits all the right notes of bombast and triumph and menace that one could hope for without being slavish to the themes that came before it (the screenplay follows suit, but we’ll get to that). Even the film’s poster is a striking blur of motion, of sheer velocity, and when framed against the rings of Saturn in the money shot of money shots, the Enterprise itself can barely be contained on the screen. It’s all so much, all so close, and yet instead of damning Abrams for his sense of sensory overload, the effort ultimately comes across like a prime example of the modern kinetic blockbuster (as opposed to an ideal one). This must be what it looks and sounds like when they’re giving it all they’ve got.

Not to write off most of the cast, but many of them are doing such a capital-s Suitable job of emulating their predecessors and then adding their own spin on it that it’s hard to elaborate on most to any great extent. Yelchin pulls off teenage pluck, Cho can wield a sword when need be, Saldana credibly struggles with one’s obedience to order over their emotions, Greenwood carries the gravitas of an experienced officer, and Urban is as endearingly ornery as they come. The humor is front-loaded by way of Urban, while Simon Pegg’s Scotty arrives just in time to bring up the rear (as he had in M:I-3), with all manner of medical mishaps, wacky accents and gleeful exclamations popping up exactly when appropriate and without ever really wearing out their welcome. That really just leaves Bana, who comes across as equally intimidating whether staring down a foe, screaming out in anger, or subjecting his rivals to pain equal to his own; Pine, whose cocksure demeanor slowly, surely, convincingly gives way to doubts and defining moments of leadership; and Quinto, whose character’s lineage both on-screen and off- makes his quiet balance between logic and passion all the more remarkable for not giving in to simple imitation.

Having worked with Abrams on his “Alias,” “Fringe,” and (yes) M:I-3, writers Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman step up their game accordingly (they also wrote the perfectly Bay-worthy Transformers, mind you), coming up with a crafty narrative catch-all that excuses them from heeding endlessly to Trek canon while allowing just enough room for reverent touches that amuse more than distract. The logic holds up to the scrutiny of multiple viewings, the pacing rarely flags in terms of action beats, and the feat of working in franchise keystone Leonard Nimoy makes this passing of the torch seem that much more consecrated, as if blessed by his mere presence.

Sure, there are villains and gadgets and creatures, but 'Star Trek' was never about any of those as much as it was about the crew, and now that this one is assembled, I can’t wait to see where Abrams and friends may lead them next. Even if they opt to double-back on the more familiar elements of the series that some have come to known so well, it won’t matter where they go so much as how boldly they decide to get there.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=17128&reviewer=409
originally posted: 05/07/09 08:09:07
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User Comments

10/30/16 morris campbell awesome reboot purists dont like it but who cares 5 stars
5/12/16 D. The R. My version -Brat wrecks classic 'Vette, gets thrown off cliff after it.. 2 stars
10/19/11 Magic Takes a thoughtful sci-fi franchise and fills it with noise, explosions and lens flares. 3 stars
8/14/10 Charles Tatum Outstanding; better sci-fi than "Avatar" all around 5 stars
2/17/10 The Calico Critic, Laura Hartness I loved this one, but I agree, the bridge was lit WAY too much. Enough with the flares! 4 stars
1/23/10 Streeper Started well enough, quickly decended into bullshit though 2 stars
12/30/09 Homer J. Fong Should be called "Star Trek 90210" -- this is like the very worst fan fiction... 1 stars
12/20/09 FrankNFurter This piece of dreck makes "Star Crystal" look like "Citizen Kane". Shockingly overrated! 1 stars
12/13/09 Flounder HBS is way off here. This is the best mainstream sci-fi reboot in decades 5 stars
12/06/09 the dork knight I went in determined to hate it, but failed. Nice to see decent CG for once. 5 stars
11/23/09 Flossdaily This review was too kind. This movie had more plot holes than plot. 1 stars
11/23/09 Thomas Korn why all the fuss over a bland movie and poor filmmaking?? 2 stars
11/09/09 Jeff Wilder As a piece of pure entertainment, great. As Star Trek it's bunk. 4 stars
10/29/09 matt as close to perfect as it possibly could be. and zoe saldana = major fap alert O.o 5 stars
9/09/09 Natalie Stonecipher An exciting romp if you can get past the atrocious start of it. 3 stars
8/31/09 MS Good review and I agree!! 2 stars
8/21/09 Aaron Forget the reviews, good stuff spock kicks butt 4 stars
7/26/09 Bryan This movie did what the previous two failed to, which was revive a sinking ship. 4 stars
7/14/09 Linda I enjoyed this movie very much, I guess the franchise has to start somwhere! 4 stars
7/10/09 whitelaw Awesome movie. Loved every minute of it! Can't wait for the sequel!!! 5 stars
7/08/09 Benny Lava Hopefully in the next prequel, they can go back in time and stop Abrams from creating this. 2 stars
6/20/09 JR I really wanted to like this ST. Alas, no. Kirk is a jerk & story is awful. 1 stars
6/13/09 meep Dissapointingly mediocre 2 stars
6/02/09 MP Bartley Not really a Trek fan as such, but this was smart and terrifically entertaining. 4 stars
6/02/09 aliceinwonderland Thanks to Spock, it was good,nothing special otherwise 3 stars
6/01/09 red hulk are you kidding? 40 years of trek history replaced with this time travel crap? lame 1 stars
6/01/09 Brock Sampson Lame, overhyped crib note version of Star Trek. Poor screenplay, meh overall. 1 stars
5/27/09 Cathal Great in parts but overall agree with reviewer - disappointing. 3 stars
5/25/09 Abhishek Chakraborty Disappointed...trailer 3 made it look much more awesome than it was 3 stars
5/24/09 BoyInTheDesignerBubble Physics be damned. Nothing in this movie made sense. 1 stars
5/24/09 Eurisko I agree w/review & wish to complain about VERY BAD SCIENCE in this "fiction" 2 stars
5/23/09 Allen Called "Star Trek" for marketing purposes - Movie ignores Trek context.. Overhyped! 1 stars
5/23/09 Dan Awesome movie, good acting, and great action scenes. 5 stars
5/20/09 X A must for any trekkie 5 stars
5/20/09 Richard For the first time in my life I am considering purchasing a Star fleet uniform. 5 stars
5/19/09 Suzz Lives up to the original series. Not to be missed 5 stars
5/18/09 San Francisco Joins Wrath of Khan as the only good Trek flicks. Wonderful movie that will be remembered. 5 stars
5/17/09 Mike Movie was awesome in so many ways. Plot was light and emotion rushed, but still awesome! 5 stars
5/17/09 Sam Whatta ride! Nice job sidestepping the continuity issue. HOLD THAT DAMN CAMERA STILL! 4 stars
5/16/09 Paul I'm a hardcore trekkie, fresh off from watching all 5 shows, and I liked the movie 4 stars
5/16/09 DaMan I love how at the end you call Star Trek fans biased...um yeah, thats what a FAN is. 5 stars
5/16/09 Joey B. Title said "Star Trek". Movie was "Star Wars" 2 stars
5/16/09 Aaron I'm no Trekkie, but I had a good time with this. 4 stars
5/16/09 Rick B I mostly agree with you. This movie is way shallow. A lot of promise though. 3 stars
5/15/09 dirtworshipper I don't know what this movie was but it wasn't ST. What an insipid abomination. 1 stars
5/15/09 Pokejedservo I am pretty neutral regarding Star Trek but this was a pretty cool movie. 4 stars
5/15/09 DW This movie pales compared to the reviewer's ability to reboot the run-on-sentence. 4 stars
5/15/09 Brian As an old trek fan, I thought the movie was awesome, fresh, great CGI, fast paced. 5 stars
5/14/09 Baloney Why couldn't the X-Files franchise have created a film this good? 5 stars
5/14/09 sarah eh.... 2 stars
5/14/09 James Worst ST Movie EVER! Not very well thought out-not character driven 1 stars
5/14/09 ES Good, hopefully the last they use time travel in this new adaptation. 4 stars
5/13/09 Tokyospike I like this ship! It's exciting! 4 stars
5/13/09 BadAstronaut What an awful mess. Very sad. 2 stars
5/13/09 Vent Has its moments, but there are several hundred ST episodes better written than this 2 stars
5/13/09 Ming One of the best Star Trek film..Great introduction for the next generation 5 stars
5/13/09 Lifelongtreklover Expected much; hugely disappointed. Script chocked full of cliches; mediocre CGI. Bored. 2 stars
5/13/09 flyboy This film getting more credit than it deserves-mediocre screenplay/dialog, but good cgi 2 stars
5/12/09 Bill Mind bogglingly stupid. Just gets dumber the more I think about it. Shocking. 1 stars
5/12/09 green-bosom Agreed the writers are hacks, merely ok, I have watched all 700-odd star-trek eps though 3 stars
5/12/09 MiloDC Orci and Kurtzman are hacks. Abrams did a lot with very little. 3 stars
5/12/09 ZeroLord Anyone notice Spock demostrating Picard maneuver? 4 stars
5/12/09 Koitus Yeah, it had seom issues (cerebral cortex critters; Uhura roommate scene)-but still good! 4 stars
5/12/09 peter never seen an episode of trek b4 but this was excellent. must see at the theaters. amazing 5 stars
5/12/09 Kenton This guy must not have watched the same movie I did, I went to see it twice. 5 stars
5/12/09 Michael Changing Star Trek history was stupid. 3 stars
5/12/09 I Am Jack's Appendix It was just ok for me, dawg. 3 stars
5/11/09 Shane Yours is the only review I agree with. It was a lazily written, insulting script. 2 stars
5/11/09 killabrams this movie disposes of every concept behind the real star trek. total trash!!!!! 1 stars
5/11/09 malcolm good for ST historians and people looking for a place to jump in 4 stars
5/11/09 Rontianjin Facinating! Saw it 4 times this weekend. Can't wait for the ongoing mission 5 stars
5/11/09 Kai This critic is a douchebag. The movie, while not perfect, is fantastic for STAR TREK! 5 stars
5/11/09 Entropia Thin on plot, but great style and character group dynamic make up for it (mostly). 4 stars
5/11/09 Ronda I love theway they have reinvented the characters! I can't wait to see what's next! 5 stars
5/11/09 TheDemiurge It was like a bad remake of Galaxy Quest. I'm in shock. 2 stars
5/11/09 YoJimbo Just saw it. It's like junk food. You eat it, it taste just OK, and u forget about it after 3 stars
5/11/09 Darkstar Best movie so far this year 5 stars
5/11/09 Terry Super flick. Just the kind to make a critic who wants to stand out in a crowd do just that. 5 stars
5/11/09 Donald You are too kind to this mess. Simplistic contrived plot and dialogue. 1 stars
5/11/09 David Grouix Saw it twice in one day, even better the second time. 5 stars
5/11/09 PAUL SHORTT FRESH, FUNNY, EXCITING AND - BIGGEST SUPRISE OF ALL - EMOTIONALLY ENGAGING 4 stars
5/11/09 Gerry This guy is an idiot 5 stars
5/10/09 Dan Chock full of lame, lazy plot devices which totally alter the entire history of Trek 1 stars
5/10/09 Mal Gibson This movie starts off as Top Gun and ends like Galaxy Quest. Truly awful! 1 stars
5/10/09 Don Great charaters, masterfully directed! And it is so Trek! 5 stars
5/10/09 Brian Peter, you might have noticed by now, but you are in the minority. 5 stars
5/10/09 Miles Great action movie! 5 stars
5/10/09 Wil Entertaining, not Star Trek. 4 stars
5/10/09 Jim nauseam The plot device that erases the previous Star Trek universe was quite a clever idea. 5 stars
5/10/09 mr.mike As close to perfection as it could possibly be. 5 stars
5/10/09 Alex Kirk and Spock are extremely well-drawn characters. This is a characters story. Thumbs up. 5 stars
5/10/09 Harri Good action movie but very very silly with huge plotholes, and its not Star Trek. 3 stars
5/10/09 Demosthenes Locke So, Peter...your problem with Pine is that he emulated Shatner, not Kirk? 4 stars
5/10/09 Alison You've entirely missed the point of an AU story. Your loss. 5 stars
5/10/09 Philip Buckley-Mellor I was thoroughly entertained, isn't that enough? 5 stars
5/09/09 Man Out 6 Bucks Implausible tattered lone wolf revenge theme w/Kahn, Shinzon,Nero. Where did the 'trek' go? 4 stars
5/09/09 Toni loved it!!! I"m sad Peter didn't like it 5 stars
5/09/09 Kevin W. It didn't work for me. I would rather have seen another Next Gen. based film. 2 stars
5/09/09 Brian Mckay My love of Trek has been reborn. IMAX it if at all possible. Jaded fanboy haters stay home. 5 stars
5/09/09 mick As a stand-alone film, would have been extrodinary sc-fi. sexed up star trek instead. 1 stars
5/09/09 Spliner Terrible review. The movie was great! If it wasn't for the ho-hum soundtrack it'd get 5 4 stars
5/08/09 Brian His review was pretty acurrate. Good action Sci fi? Sure, Good Star Trek? Not so much. 4 stars
5/08/09 Tom Overman you are an idiot 5 stars
5/08/09 NotADieHardTrekkie You didn't understand the plot if you thought destroying planets was "collateral damage". 5 stars
5/08/09 John W Good review. Time travel unnessicary & has screwed our time line. Need more red matter now! 3 stars
5/08/09 Don Noble this review is spot on. The move is good at best. The story is weak and copies other movies 3 stars
5/08/09 OrciAndKurtzmanSuck Childress nailed it in his review. 1 stars
5/08/09 Aesop ST? All aces. HB should stop headlining reviewers from Bombay watching bootlegged releases. 5 stars
5/08/09 William Goss Phil: Referring to mine? Thanks. Colleagues aren't out for traffic, tho, I assure you all. 4 stars
5/08/09 Jeff I think he has seen too many films. This movie was AWESOME!! Critic? LOUSY 5 stars
5/08/09 Phil This is the best review so far. The other reviewers seem like they been paid off or somethi 5 stars
5/08/09 the_divvy_with_the_shivvy 5 stars for the review, cracking review indeed, well said, well put, shocking remake! 5 stars
5/08/09 OMAN Haven't seen it.But man,you need a writing class 1 stars
5/08/09 Remi To say that Star Trek: The Motion Picture tried to please mainstream audiences is crazy. 5 stars
5/08/09 David Anderson wow did he attend the same movie I did? disaster? fails? are you kidding? wow, just wow. 5 stars
5/08/09 Damon Thrift I'll 2nd that, Disagree completely. This movie rocks. 5 stars
5/08/09 Mark Ford Couldn't disagree more as an original fan. This movie made my pre-teen nephews new fans! 5 stars
5/08/09 Joshua Childress, have fun eating your words as tons of new "Trekkies" are born. 1 stars
5/08/09 Speck Critics who don't have a elementary grasp of grammar are not credible. 4 stars
5/08/09 Casey Toilsome. Never seen a reviewer so full of himself. I prefer the movie over boresome prose. 5 stars
5/08/09 kock&spirk bitter much? 5 stars
5/08/09 Callighan In the tie-in comics, Nero's history is explained. Resolution in movie is logical. 4 stars
5/07/09 Jonathan Lifelong trekkie. Disagree completely. 5 stars
5/07/09 Jason Laughlin Childress, periods and tense agreement. try to get familiar with them. Your writing stinks. 1 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  07-May-2009 (PG-13)
  DVD: 17-Nov-2009

UK
  N/A

Australia
  07-May-2009
  DVD: 17-Nov-2009



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