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Joseph B
Mon, Oct 9, 2017, 8:11am (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S1: The Butcher's Knife Cares Not for the Lamb's Cry

I gave this episode 3 1/2 Stars!
Had it not been for the presentation of the Klingon scenes, I’d give it 4 Stars!!

The plot was pure Trek, with the “monster” ultimately revealed to be the crux of the entire Spore Drive. And I *really loved* the execution of this scenario.

I have to admit that I was very skeptical that this series could even approach something that even felt like Trek. But I’m ALL IN now!!

LLAP!

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Joseph B
Sat, Sep 30, 2017, 1:17pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: If the Stars Should Appear

All I can say right now is that I’m having *fun* with this show.

Yes, this plot was terribly derivative of several Star Trek:TOS eps, but there was some originality with the execution. As mentioned by Jammer, the first part recaptured the “sense of wonder” we all crave from Star Trek. And the last part was enhanced by a surprise guest star along with the title revelation. In the middle we got a “mini” space fight.

I think the bottom line here is that a lot of us are starved for a new “Star Trek” type show back on TV. And “Discovery” is now stuck behind a pay wall. I’m going to pay for a month of CBS-AA to give the “official” show a real chance, but I’m not happy about it. And right now The Orville seems more familiar. And it’s certainly more accessible.
It *does* need to get a little better, but I’m willing to give it plenty of time to get there.


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Joseph B
Sat, Jul 23, 2016, 1:39am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Jammer, Thanks for the Review!!!

I was wondering --- all this time --- how this movie would be rated from a reviewer totally steeped in the Star Trek mythos.

I, myself, had given it an 8 out of 10 for the first two thirds of the movie, but thought it stumbled badly to a 2 out of 10 for the last third. Average it all together and it ekes out to two-and-a-half stars for me. I just couldn't get past the movie ripping whole scenes and dialogue from TWoK for the "clever" role reversal.

But I will say this: I have lots of friends and co-workers in their 20's --- many of which had never considered viewing Star Trek prior to 2009 --- and they were unanimous in their praise of the movie. One of them even told me he was *shocked* at my negative attitude. So, bottom line: Abrams mostly reached the audience he was going for. And you have vindicated that perspective with your insightful review.

Thanks again for following through with this. It's always a pleasure to read Star Trek reviews from a Star Trek expert!

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Joseph B
Thu, Jul 21, 2016, 4:20pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

@ James:

I think, technically, Jammer has until 7:00 pm EDT today to get the review of STID up before "Beyond" is out ...
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Joseph B
Sat, Jun 25, 2016, 10:14pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

This movie was just released in the new 4K UHD Blu-ray format!!
According to reviewers they used the IMAX format (1.78:1) aspect ratio for many of the scenes and they say it looks phenomenal! The package also includes the regular 2K Blu-ray releases for both Star Trek (2009) and "Into Darkness" as well as $8.00 off on a movie ticket to see "Beyond".

So if Jammer was waiting on the 4K iteration of the movie before writing his review, he has now run out of excuses!
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Joseph B
Wed, Jan 27, 2016, 1:00am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi

@Eric:

Well we all know that the "Nooo" inserted into the Blu-ray iteration of "Jedi" was meant as a "close-the-arc" moment for Vader echoing back to the "Nooo" in "Sith" which was a "close-the-arc" moment for Anakin.

In "Revenge of the Sith" the last vestige of Anakin was shed by the "Nooo" in response to the revelation of Padme's death (and --as far as he knew at the time -- his son as well). Saving Padme was, after all, the main reason he had chosen this path. Following the "Nooo" he was 100% a slave to both Palpatine and the suit. (Ironic that he started as a slave in TPM and ended as a slave in ROTS.)

The "Nooo" in "Jedi" was meant to signal the end of Vader and the reemergence of Anakin as the son that he had not known about until the events in "Empire" was about to be killed.

The problem that we all have with it, of course, is that from 1983 until the Blu-ray release in 2011 this "Nooo" was not in this movie and it therefore seems awkward for it to be there now.

"Star Wars virgins" -- viewing these movies for the first time -- have no problem with it and recognize it as the callback to "Sith" that it's meant to be.
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Joseph B
Fri, Jan 22, 2016, 1:36pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith

I see a lot of comments here regarding the "inane" death of Padme.

There is actually almost overwhelming evidence that Palpatine killed Padme.

Check out this YouTube video for the presentation of the evidence:
https://youtu.be/XiftMcW2rWM

Alternatively, there is also a theory that her death and funeral were faked, and that she actually lived long enough to help organize the Rebel Alliance. There are rumors that this latter theory could be cannon by, say, December 16th of 2016!

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Joseph B
Wed, Jan 20, 2016, 1:21pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens

@Dom (and others),

I don't think that anything can be assumed regarding what Rey can or cannot do until we see the additional episodes in the Sequel Trilogy.

It's quite possible that she may have been in Luke's Jedi Training Class which is why she seems to "know" some of the things she does with the Force. Luke may have placed a Jedi Block on her memories to hide her from Kylo Ren since he was seeking out and killing all the trainees in the class. My impression upon viewing the movie was that her latent Jedi training started to come to the fore due to the combination of being exposed to Luke's lightsabre and the Kylo Ren mind-probing. She didn't show any Jedi abilities until those incidents and then all of a sudden she could perform Jedi mind tricks and fight off an injured Kylo Ren in the snow confrontation. (Please don't forget that Ren had just taken a phaser blast to the chest from Chewbacca that had to slow him down at least a little in the two mini-lightsabre duels which followed.)

In short, I feel we'll know more regarding Rey's abilities when Episode VIII hits!
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Joseph B
Wed, Apr 1, 2015, 4:17am (UTC -6)
Re: TOS S3: Requiem for Methuselah

After viewing this episode for only the second time in 20 years, I can only assume that Kirk's judgement was impaired by early symptoms of the onslaught of Rigelian fever. That's the only way to explain his totally out of character actions in this episode, since it had already been well established on multiple occasions that his first love is his ship. Perhaps Flint was even aware of this early symptom of the disease and decided to exploit it in his effort to unlock his android's emotions.

If that was, indeed, the rationale driving this story, I sure would have appreciated a few lines of exposition by McCoy or Spock confirming it.

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Joseph B
Tue, Dec 30, 2014, 8:59pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Wow! Jammer's coming right down to the wire on this one!!
I'm still hoping for a 2014 review ...

"Live Long and Prosper" everybody!!!
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Joseph B
Sat, Dec 20, 2014, 8:15pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I think Jammer stated that he was going to try to get this review out before the end of 2014, so we're apparently just *days* away now!! I certainly hope so, since I've been waiting on the review so I could watch the IMAX version of the movie on the recently released Star Trek: Compendium Blu-ray release from Jammer's perspective.

In the meantime, IGN just posted this little blurb on how Star Wars may have ruined Star Trek:

www.ign.com/articles/2014/12/20/how-star-wars-ruined-star-trek
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Joseph B
Mon, Oct 13, 2014, 3:47am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I would definitely go with Option 2 since that was what I hoping for for the second movie as well.

It's been several months since I checked this site (haven't had time to view any classic Trek TV lately) but was really hoping that Jammer had posted his review of the movie by now. I just picked up the Star Trek Compendium Blu-Ray package which includes the IMAX version of STID (although in 2D only) and was hoping to view the disc after reading Jammer's insights. I guess the good news here is that we're into the final three months of 2014, so the review should be up in the next 60 days or so ...
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Joseph B
Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 3:10am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: Rejoined

Just finished viewing the first season of "Arrow" which is a new super hero series based on the "Green Arrow" comics series. The show utilizes the tone of "The Dark Knight" movie to good effect and is reasonably entertaining as a result.

While viewing the eps it seemed to me that there was something hauntingly familiar about the actress playing Oliver Green's mother. Sure enough, it’s the same actress that played Lenara Kahn in this groundbreaking (at the time) DS9 ep. It seems incredible that this episode aired almost twenty years ago. And Susanna Thompson is still a very capable and attractive actress even after all this time.
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Joseph B
Sat, May 24, 2014, 2:50pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

@ Captain Jon:

Jammer's review -- whenever it's posted -- will still be relevant. There are still new reviews of this movie being posted all over YouTube. (I think the "Confused Matthew" review went up just a month or so ago.) This is, after all, a *Star Trek movie*, so it will be discussed for decades. (Just like the Star Wars films).

Many of Jammer's reviews for the classic crew movies weren't posted until the DVDs were released a decade or more later. Perhaps Jammer is just waiting for the new 4K-format version of the movie to post his review. :)

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Joseph B
Fri, May 16, 2014, 1:46am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

OK, If we're going to list favorite *genre* TV series other than Star Trek, I'm in!

Here's my Top 10 (Keep in mind that Star Trek:TOS, DS9, and TNG would be my Top 3 if we were including Star Trek series; and ENT and VOY would have made the Top 10.):

* Babylon 5 --- It's more like reading a giant, sprawling, Asimov trilogy than viewing a TV show. Starting with the last 5 eps of the first season and running through the end of season 4, it was totally immersive. During that stretch of shows I can only recall 2 clunkers. Pretty incredible for a show producing 22 eps per season.

* Farscape --- "Alien" aliens traveling in a living ship accompanied by a contemporary human astronaut. The highly imaginative Jim Henson alien designs drew me in initially, but once Scorpius enters the fray near the end of Season 1 the *real* fun begins! The whole of Season 3 is a TV treasure.

* Firefly -- And speaking of a "TV treasure" ... Following a few "foundation" eps this series hit its stride quickly, leading to an incredible string of high quality entertaining SF shows. And then, of course, it was cancelled!! Guess it was just "too good for TV".

* Battlestar Galactica (reboot) -- Ron Moore of Star Trek fame shows how to *really* reboot a franchise with this humanistic SF drama series. And talk about going "Into Darkness" ... the final 10 eps were so dark they bordered on gruesome, but it was impossible to look away. The three hour finale still provokes discussion (and interpretation) to this day.

* Doctor Who --- So are we talking about "classic" Who, or the one from 2005 on? Both --- because it's the *same character*!! Thanks to this aliens' regenerative ability, multiple actors can fill the role of the same entity. So the Doctor Who we see today is still the same character introduced in the '60s ... just with better production values! This sometimes bizarre Time Travel series goes all over the place from week to week. The one constant is that our friend from Gallifrey can always be counted on to save the day --- eventually --- and even if he has to (occasionally) "team up" with some of his former selves to do so!

* Stargate: Atlantis --- OK, I'm the first to admit that this show was highly derivative and even occasionally (blatantly) ripped-off plots from TOS and DS9. But, doggone it, it was also highly entertaining and with production values which bordered on incredible for a TV show. The first three seasons were the best.

* Stargate: SG1 --- This long running "militaristic" SF show was rarely great, but did provide pretty decent SF entertainment from about the middle of Season 1 through Season 7. And the "different direction" started in Season 9 was starting to pay off in Season 10 when it was cancelled. Should you choose to view the latter two seasons be sure to seek out the straight-to-DVD movie "The Ark of Truth" which neatly wraps everything up.

* Batman: The Animated Series --- This series arguably provides the best overall incarnation of Batman in any format outside of his native comics. Heavily influenced by the first Tim Burton Batman movie, it captures the style of that movie and mixes-in elements of the 80s comics to really good effect. The Joker episodes in particular are all outstanding.

* Star Wars: The Clone Wars --- This surprisingly deep CGI animated series depicts the events which transpire between the second and third Star Wars Prequel movies. Here we see Anakin Skywalker as a real hero -- albeit a troubled one at times. The characters of Count Dooku and General Grievous are fleshed out to good effect, and even Yoda appears with some frequency. Some of the CGI space battles are quite epic in scope. Season 6 (available exclusively on Netflix) provides needed background on "Order 66" and the genesis of the Clones. This series is so good at times that it (almost) redeems the Prequel Trilogy.

* Quantum Leap -- A future captain of the Enterprise gets stuck in a Time Travel experiment gone bad. Hmmm ...







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Joseph B
Wed, May 14, 2014, 1:47am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Orci to direct? Wow! I have to admit that it' s hard to be optimistic considering the fact that this is his first time in the Director's chair! Hope he at least has a good script to shoot from ...

(The only good news here: Fewer lens flares!!)

Seriously, I think Orci is a fairly competent writer. His (Amazing) Spider-Man 2 script wasn't quite as atrocious as STID, and I have actually enjoyed some of the Hawaii Five-O scripts he's penned.

But, still: A first time director for a major project like Star Trek?
What were they thinking???
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Joseph B
Sat, Apr 26, 2014, 4:59am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Ugh!!

I just realized I left "Generations" off my list above. For the record it would have been in 8th place following "The Motion Picture". Between Data singing about "Life Forms" and the unceremonious death of Kirk, I have a tendency to blank this movie from my consciousness ...
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Joseph B
Sat, Apr 26, 2014, 4:47am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Oooh! I want to play too!!

Here's my rankings (And like many here, I grew up on these movies):

1. The Wrath of Khan (Of course!)

2. First Contact - A thoroughly enjoyable romp with the TNG crew. And a terrific directing job by Frakes. Had it not been for "Insurrection" -- which was too heavily influenced by Stewart and Spiner -- Frakes would probably have had the opportunity to direct many more TNG movies.

3. The Undiscovered Country - And Nicholas Meyer certainly knew his way around Trek! It's ironic that his two entries into the series did not involve time travel, as his "Time After Time" is still one of my favorite movies from that genre. (Starring Malcolm McDowell no less!)

4. Star Trek (2009) -- Unlike most of you guys, I had a really good time in the theater with this movie. It was fun personified and still felt like Trek to me.

5. The Voyage Home -- And "fun" certainly defines this movie as well. Nimoy directing Nimoy led to some great Spock scenes. And it really took somebody who was intimately familiar with all the characters to make this into a successful comedy within the Trek framework. Terrific job by everybody involved! (For the record, I like Italian!)

6. The Search for Spock -- A good entry into the series, but not enough Spock. Uhura gets her best scene in the movie series with "Mr Adventure"; and the Klingons are finally front and center as the villains. And the movie is certainly "definitive" with the demise of the NCC-1701 and Kirk's son.

7. The Motion Picture -- I appreciated the effort here, but this was the first original Live Action Trek since 1969 and it was (mostly) a mashup of two TV episodes from the series. And, of course, the execution was plodding to the extreme. A real missed opportunity. The DVD Directors Cut is still the best iteration of the movie.

8. Nemesis -- Agree with most everyone here that many of the deleted scenes should have been included in the movie. (And the mind rape scene should not have been included.) There was a decent movie lurking around in there, but whoever edited this thing was not "Star Trek Knowledgable".

9. Insurrection -- Too much pre-production and meddling from the primary actors (Stewart/Spiner) sunk this movie before principal photography began. Frakes should have stepped-up and leveraged his success from "First Contact", but instead kowtied to the PTB. The movie was meant initially to be a "Voyage Home"-style lighthearted adventure, but instead ended up all over the place. A real shame since the potential was certainly there for many more successful TNG movies. But this effort ripped the soul from everybody involved.

10. Into Darkness -- The first two-thirds of this movie was fun, and even seemed to be going somewhere. The last third -- which included the raping of the most beloved film in the franchise -- was abysmal to the extreme. I left the theater actually angry. The only reason it's not last on my list is the production values.

11. The Final Frontier -- And speaking of "Production Values ...." Poor Shatner! His first directorial effort is torpedoed by teamster strikes, budget cuts, and sheer bad luck. Oh, well: I still enjoy listening to "Row, Row, Row your Boat" in surround sound. And I would still rather view this movie over any of the Transformer sequels ...
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Joseph B
Mon, Mar 31, 2014, 4:16am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

@Dom:
IMO both DS9 and Voyager will come to Blu-ray and HD via new sophisticated computerized upscaling processes. Restoring TNG by going back to the original film elements and then re-editing scene-by-scene has proven to be much costlier than CBS initially estimated. And while the results have been spectacular from a visual perspective, the Blu-rays have not sold as well as anticipated.

Consumer surveys indicate that fans would have been more receptive to repurchasing TNG on Blu-ray if the 16:9 aspect ratio had been provided. CBS could have done that by slightly cropping the original 4:3 aspect ratio and then utilizing a process known as "tilt-and-scan", but then they would have had to have *all* of the interior SFX shots re-done to match. They actually tried some tests utilizing the method with the existing SFX simply blown-up to match the cropping: The results looked almost as bad as the Babylon 5 16:9 effort. In retrospect, with all of the money spent on re-editing the original film elements combined with new CGI for the space scenes, CBS probably should have just gone the extra mile with the interior SFX. TNG in HD presented in 16:9 could probably have gone back into syndication.

Fortunately, computerized upscaling has gotten much better just in the past two years. DS9 and Voyager may not look like true HD utilizing this process, but will look much better than SD (without aliasing and stairstepping artifacts) and could easily be provided in the 16:9 aspect ratio. (BTW, it's rumored that Voyager was shot protected for 16:9 in its last three seasons.)
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Joseph B
Wed, Feb 12, 2014, 7:31am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

@Niall:
I thought Jammer would have until around May 2016 to review this movie and still stay current with "all things Star Trek".

Now, I'm not too sure: This new "Star Trek Continues" series is seemingly picking up steam. They just released the second ep in this series ("Lolani") and the acting is vastly improved over the first. In fact, I think it may be "Jammer Review Worthy"! So Jammer needs to review STID so he can get on to reviewing some *real* Star Trek again!!

observationdeck.io9.com/star-trek-continues-episode-2-lolani-1519235192/1519486991/@laurendavis


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joseph b
Thu, Jan 9, 2014, 7:50am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Mitch -- That's a good point. And when you think about it, there's likely not going to be any new Trek movies or eps until at least 2016 (Fifty year Anniversary). So Jammer still has about another 30 months or so to get his Review out ...
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Joseph B
Wed, Jan 1, 2014, 10:55pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

*Oof!*
STID was rated the Number 2 Worse SF/Fantasy movie for 2013 by io9:

io9.com/the-best-and-worst-science-fiction-and-fantasy-movies-o-1485583680

The same site had placed the 2009 movie in their Top 10 List, so "This has gotta' hurt!" as they say. After having just viewed the movie for only the second time since its release, I can't disagree with the placement. Just a terrible embarrassment for the Trek franchise.
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Joseph B
Fri, Dec 27, 2013, 1:35am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

Wow! I just realized that we're getting close to the end of 2013. In Jammer's last update he stated "Maybe I’ll shoot for the end of the year." So it's actually possible that we're now getting close to finally being able to read his thoughts regarding this movie. I've been holding out viewing the Blu until his review was posted (or perhaps I'm just looking for a reason to *not* view the movie again!) But my daughter hasn't viewed the movie at all yet, so we may just break down and spin the Blu if the review is not posted by next Monday ...
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Joseph B
Sat, Dec 14, 2013, 10:24am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I agree that a serialized Star Trek TV series could be great!
Actually, DS9 certainly seemed like a serialized series at times -- as did ENT. But neither went 100% in that direction. (ENT was actually closer with it's third season arc. Too bad they had to throw the darn "Temporal War" mess in there as well ... *sigh*)

I have to confess that I'm ready for some all new weekly Trek of some kind back on TV. This "once-every-four-year" CGI -enhanced retread of previous movies just isn't doing it for me!
Heck -- I'm so desperate I'm about to break out my Voyager DVDs ...
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Joseph B
Thu, Dec 12, 2013, 4:44am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I wholeheartedly agree that STID was the *not* the Stsr Trek movie I wanted to see (the logic inconsistencies were more than appalling, and the raping of dialog and scenes from WoK were incredibly insulting to long-time fans); but I disagree that the current iteration of Trek has destroyed the franchise.

The first Abrams' movie gave this long-time fan a lot to smile about. The "essence and core" of Star Trek was there. STID was an abhorrently bad step in the wrong direction, but I think there is still some hope that the next film could appease both old and new fans.
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