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Genre-Buster
Wed, Aug 24, 2016, 3:05pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

Chrome: Wow. Big gaping plot-hole just occurred to me: How were Kirk and company able to get back to the Yorktown station and blast the Beasties in a ship so woefully unequipped to pass a nebula?

This is the big perennial problem with Abrams' Trek - really Abrams' Everything. STB is perhaps the least afflicted of the three reboot films, but it's still damned sloppy.
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Genre-Buster
Mon, Aug 22, 2016, 9:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

Peter G: Yeah, It's all well and good to show us a proud native with groovy ethnic tattoo, and I have to say it got off to a great start: a federation defector who joined a rebel group and has to work with the very ones he rebelled against in order to get home. Boy, they could have really taken that places, but no, the Chakotay story arc was a real cop-out. You've got to give them credit for trying, though. Native Americans underwent something close to genocide a century-and-a-half ago, and the recovery has been slow and bitter. To show a future where they've reclaimed their dignity is all well and good, but we never got a hint of the struggle they went through to get there. The problem is also synecdoche - CHakotay was somehow expected to represent an entire ethnic demographic, and it just didn't work, and Beltran's cardboard performance can only be partially at fault.

Corey: It might be a little harsh for you to throw the United Nations into the mix, but I see your point. I think the problem goes back to Paramount's requirement that Trek be primarily an action vehicle. I shamefully admit that I liked the film primarily because it managed to stay engaging and even Trekkish at times while working within the appalling parameters that Paramount demanded. The Yorktown space station was the real standout in this regard, not just the spectacular art design, but its very purpose: to supply the Federation with an outpost without violating anyone else's territory. This had me genuinely rooting for it not to be destroyed - a refreshing experience in the contemporary action movie genre, unfortunately.
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Genre-Buster
Mon, Aug 22, 2016, 1:55pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

Memory is a weird thing - I first watched Space Seed well over forty years ago, and as a child, I assumed Khan to be "Indian," as in Native American, or my rather misguided west-Texas suburban understanding of Native culture based on the other stuff I was watching at the time - Gunsmoke, Bonanza, the Lone Ranger, John Wayne movies, etc. Having just now revisited the episode, I can see that Khan was indeed intended to be an East Indian warrior type - pretty much exclusively. American Indian analogy retracted, and apologies if I offended anyone.

But Space Seed is nevertheless a pretty offensive episode on a number of levels - particularly when it comes to women. Uhura is shut down by Kirk before she can get two sentences out at the beginning of the episode, and Khan's seduction of McGivers' is insultingly instantaneous. And I still maintain that Khan's barbarism is coupled with his race in a very troubling mixture that the franchise has gone to great lengths not to repeat since. In the final analysis, the argument made in the episode against eugenics does win the day, but it certainly could have been done without the dark-face makeup.

But we digress. The topic here is STB and racism, and I have to say, the decision to make a non-caucasian the movie's villain strikes me more and more as an extremely risky move. In the previous films they always made a point of casting a white dude, even when he was a Klingon: Christoper Lloyd in 3, Christopher Plummer in 6.

Now in my opinion, Idris Elba worked just fine as STB's bad guy, but Corey's post has me wondering: Does that make me racist? It's actually kind of a serious question. After all, Kirk & co. do defeat Krall's fleet by playing the Beastie Boys - i.e. white guy music.
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Genre-Buster
Mon, Aug 22, 2016, 1:58am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

It's been a while since I saw Space Seed - Googled it just now. From the production stills I can see that Montalban was given a couple of vaguely Eastern Indian type costumes - the tunics in particular - but he doesn't look even vaguely Sikh or Mongolian, and certainly not Mexican. Nope: His shirtless open vest, his bronze makeup, his black pony tail, it's all straight out of a John Wayne movie - all that's lacking are the feathered headdress and warpaint. Fine, give him an Asian name, but the Space-Seed-Khan's costume, hair and makeup are all pretty impossible to mistake.

And yes, I do believe that Space Seed owes its Khan design to a tinge of racism - vague racism perhaps, but racism nevertheless. Why else would Nick Meyer and co. change Montaban's look so dramatically for TWoK? The "stranded on a planet" thing only goes so far - the desert conditions on Ceti Alpha 5 would have made his skin even darker wouldn't they? And notice how Abrams completely scrubbed the race thing for his Cumberbatch incarnation. Meyer and Abrams know the rules of political correctness, and rule number one is to stay away from cultural stereotypes, especially when you're making a villain.

G-Rod was in many ways a revolutionary TV producer - arguably the great grandaddy of political correctness itself, but 1960s television was a wholly different beast. By today's standards TOS is embarrassingly simplistic - an improvement on its era but still very much a product of it, riddled with stereotypes that would never go over nowadays.

In fact, you need look no further than Corey's post for evidence of how acute the race issue is. Idris Elba is the first non-pasty-white Trek movie villain to come along since... well... Ricardo Montalban, and look how offended Corey got...
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Genre-Buster
Sun, Aug 21, 2016, 3:54pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

I don't know - if you go back to Space Seed, Khan was clearly a Native-American stereotype. Trek has always been a champion of equal-opportunity racism, and STB takes it to new heights with Krall, who could apparently change species based on whoever he last drained.

But yes, Corey's post is almost dorkishly ludicrous. They could have done a lot better than Idris Elba if they wanted some kind of stand-in for the black race to play their latest arch-villain and make everybody say "lol, they so crazy". The guy's a Brit, ffs.

Zero stars, Corey. Try again.
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Genre-Buster
Wed, Aug 17, 2016, 12:10am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

Dougie:
No-one is trolling, and to level that accusation at anyone here is kind of insulting, so knock it off.

OTDP:
I really do sympathize with your basic argument, but considering the fact that you have posted more on this thread than just about anyone else, Dougie does have a point. Maybe you should go ahead and see STB in the theater. You can still do the whole "vote with your dollars" thing by purchasing a ticket to see Jason Bourne or The Secret Life of Pets or whatever and then sneak into the STB theater - that's how I saw STID the first time.

Just a thought...
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Genre-Buster
Sat, Aug 13, 2016, 6:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

I vote no for the "click and rate" feature. If you want to know the general attitude the posters on this site have toward any given movie or episode, then READ THEIR POSTS. I personally don't like it when my opinion becomes statistized; leave that to Rotten Tomatoes. JammersReviews.com is as popular as it is because of its message boards, not its ability to analyze data.

On another note, I just saw STB for the second time, and flawed though it is, it was a truckload of fun (maybe even more fun the second time) and I continue to advocate it as a valid Star Trek experience. That said, I'm certainly not going to tell OTDG or Peter G. that they HAVE to see it. Their lives will be no poorer for having missed it at the theaters, and they do have a valid point. The pressures to make Trek an action vehicle AND NOTHING ELSE have not diminished in the least, and there is no indication that the next installment will be worth a flying f*** for as long as those pressures remain. Trek'11 and STID certainly were not, so at this point, I would have to call STB an anomaly.

But yes, I recommend it. It's the first time I've revisited a Trek film in the theaters since the 1980s.
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Genre-Buster
Thu, Aug 4, 2016, 10:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I had no problem with Kirk's death per se, it's just that it wound up being of no consequence whatsoever. Death is supposed to have consequence, yes? And the "science" that was supposed bring Kirk back to life was insultingly contrived.

So no, this was not a "mirror image" of TWOK. Bringing Spock back took an entire movie with a good amount of fairly nuanced and complicated sic-fi (Genesis planet, Vulcan mind-melding, not to mention a whole s***-ton of sacrifice), and even after being resurrected, Spock didn't return to his usual self until the end of Trek IV.

Sorry, Jam. I'm glad you liked STID, but even after reading your review, I still don't understand why.
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Genre-Buster
Wed, Jul 27, 2016, 12:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Hard fact: Trek's characters are hopelessly canonized - nobody is ever allowed to truly die - think about it: not even Tasha Yar. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, although like any trope it can be misused - witness STID and Nemesis. It's just a limitation of the franchise, and limitations can be exploited.

So RT: Love that alternate universe stuff - keep it up. It's proper that good ideas should occasionally make the head hurt. Since Kirk and company CANNOT be killed off (and by now any attempt to do so will only be met with groans), tell us a story that teases their entrance, but then doesn't deliver until the third act, or even better, a later movie. And if the story is good, their entrance would be a secondary development to a plot that's already got us by the gonads.
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Genre-Buster
Tue, Jul 26, 2016, 8:14pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

No indeed - wait as long as you like, and by all means, see it only if it pleases you to do so.

But honestly, I think it will...
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Genre-Buster
Sat, Jul 23, 2016, 7:12pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Thanks, Jammer, for confirming my prediction that you would give this film three stars, but I have to say, this has to be the most negative three-star review I think I've ever read; it comes across more as an act of forgiveness than enthusiasm.

Still, I'm glad you finally got the thing done, and all in all, I think most of your points are well taken. If I had given myself as much time to vacillate as you did, I might very well have done the same.
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Genre-Buster
Sat, Jul 23, 2016, 6:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

@OTDP:

I too swore off of AbramsTrek after the first movie ('09), and am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I went to see STB as quickly as I did, considering how badly the first two films sucked.

Well, what can I say? I enjoyed posting in Jammer's STID thread so much that I just couldn't help myself this time around. That STB wound up actually being a good movie really did catch me off-guard. I'm kind of morbidly disappointed in fact - I have a lot less to post about than I did with Trek11 and STID.

As for the epithet "Bitter Old Complainer," wear it with pride - I do. The two Abrams directed features were f***ing awful, and STB does not redeem them. For me, it's the very definition of a stand-alone.

Of course, that's just one old complainer's opinion. See it yourself and decide.
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Genre-Buster
Fri, Jul 22, 2016, 10:38pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

Hey - this was pretty good. Nice pot-boiler plot with meaningful bad-guy reveal at the end, decent character development, breathtaking landscapes, and even a touch of believable science-fiction. The seizure-inducing action sequences were kept, if not to a minimum, at least at bay, and I actually cared about what was happening.

Dang, who'd've thought?
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Genre-Buster
Fri, Jul 22, 2016, 8:08pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

...which means yet another blown deadline!

Ah well, maybe he should just skip straight to the STB review. It's a better movie, anyway.

(That's right - I saw it and I liked it.)
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Genre-Buster
Tue, Dec 15, 2015, 2:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: Trailer: Star Trek Beyond

A couple of quotes pulled from the above trailer speak volumes when recontextualized...

McCoy: "Well that's just typical."

Kirk: "Okay, let's never do that again."

I couldn't have said it better myself.
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Genre-Buster
Thu, Oct 29, 2015, 12:57am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I don't know, Brandon, good or bad, STID certainly inspired you and me and a whole bunch of others to give more than a little shit - enough to write over and over and over in this thread what we thought of it. We've been at this for two-and-a-half years now.

I think the real truth is that Jammer grew up and out of Trek altogether - something I actually find inspiring in a way. Remember how long it took him to finish his TNG reviews? That might have been the sound of someone finally putting on his big-boy pants.

I think I'll follow suit.

It's been fun, Jammer.
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Genre-Buster
Sun, Mar 15, 2015, 10:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S2: Patterns of Force

A bit of trivia: the actor who plays Eneg - the "nice-guy-Nazi" (???) - is apparently the undisputed king of audiobooks. A recent interview with him has been posted: joycegeek.com/2015/03/05/horgan/.

By the way: I wonder if Jammer is aware that Nimoy just passed away. Someone should tell him.
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Genre-Buster
Fri, Feb 27, 2015, 12:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

R.I.P., Leonard. We'll miss ya.

nytimes.com/2015/02/27/arts/television/leonard-nimoy-spock-of-star-trek-dies-at-83.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur&bicmp=AD&bicmlukp=WT.mc_id&bicmst=1409232722000&bicmet=1419773522000
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Genre-Buster
Thu, Nov 27, 2014, 1:15am (UTC -5)
Re: Interstellar

@Dom and anyone else interested:

For the record, it's my opinion that Confused Matthew's 2001 review is the most insulting atrocity of anti-intellectual pretentiousness to come about since the John Ziegler Show. And mind you, I happen to be a fan of Matthew's, especially his views on the Lion King. Dig it:

www.confusedmatthew.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=95&t=3502&sid=8bf8b014e0ea3e1feed6376369345825

But enough of that. We're here to talk about Interstellar, and I thought I might pitch in with an observation I haven't noticed anyone else yet make about this film, and which I believe should.

Those who have taken the time to study dramatic form might vaguely recall coming across a term from Aristotle: ANAGNORISIS - it's one of the most effective storytelling tropes known of, and it is as rare as it is brilliant. Only a handful of stories have it: Oedipus Rex, Sweeney Todd, Angel Heart (Alan Parker, 1987), and now Interstellar are perhaps the most well-known examples. Derived from the ancient Greek meaning "self-knowledge," anagnorisis can be described as the discovery a protagonist makes when, after spending the first three quarters or more of his or her story working arduously to unlock a kind of "whodunnit," makes a shocking final act discovery: the person they were seeking all along was themselves.

Just like Oedipus, Sweeney Todd, and Harry Angel, astronaut Cooper is set with the task of unearthing a mystery, but very much UN-like his predecessors, the being he seeks is not some nefarious criminal, but rather the god-head himself, the one who can send morse-code instructions through dust and old wrist-watches. You can like or dislike this film as you please, but the Nolan Brothers pulled off a pretty incredible feat in this regard. Hats off to them.

Thanks, Jam, for taking the time to review this film. It's clear that you're a true lover of REAL science fiction storytelling. Forget STID - blog about what you love...
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Genre-Buster
Mon, Oct 27, 2014, 8:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

That said, I'm still REALLY looking forward to your review, and am thrilled to read that it is indeed forthcoming.
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Genre-Buster
Sun, Oct 26, 2014, 11:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

@Jammer:

You wanna accuse me of being a bad speculator? Bring it on...

Sorry man, but I stick to my guns that it's at least partially the movie itself that made you procrastinate as much as you have. We make priorities based on the stuff we really want and NEED to do. I don't blame you: STID is up against some pretty fierce competition - how could a crappy exploitation movie like this possibly compete with real life?
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Genre-Buster
Thu, Oct 23, 2014, 10:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Hate to troll in on the big Trek'09 love-fest, but if all this gushing goes on much longer, I'm going to need to change underwear.

I will agree that Saldana was a revelation, though. A lot of people were changing their underwear after her dorm-room scene...

Oh well. To each his own, I suppose.
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Genre-Buster
Wed, Oct 1, 2014, 11:59am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Dom-

It's ironic beyond belief; this last statement of yours (and here it is again: "there are too many good movies and TV shows out there now for me to really care") is the exact reason why J.J. & company thought they needed to turn Trek into a filmic meth-lab of hormone-squirting anabolic celluloid in the first place.

I expect I will go and see the third installment - but only so I can comment here.
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Genre-Buster
Mon, Sep 29, 2014, 7:29am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

MSN: the vote is now 1/2, yes/no

I will say, however, that I recently rewatched STID on Netflix, but the thing is, I was truly shocked at how much worse it was than I had remembered - particularly Cumberbatch, whose work I otherwise like.

And for the record I plead "not guilty" to any vitriol, and would add that "snarky" is the worst rating anyone here should get - regardless of which side they're on. This thread does contain a lot of heated opinion, to be sure, but the topic obviously has become much more than just "STID: good or bad." I think the real topic here is the future of a "treasured American pastime," as MSN so succinctly put it, and I for one have never felt it to be under greater threat of permanent disfigurement than it is right now.

Insurrection may have been something of a clunker, but at least it was science fiction - it had me speculating for the first time about the potential complicated politics of Shangri-La. Trek 11 and STID are so far beneath this level of discourse as to be actual intelligence-vacuums by comparison. They just suck the brain right out of your head and leave nothing but adrenaline in its place.

This isn't vitriol - it's genuine disappointment that they couldn't have come up with something better.
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Genre-Buster
Thu, Sep 18, 2014, 9:54pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The Outcast

Expanding the boundaries of the normal. Sounds like a Trekker to me...
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