Sorry that should've read " Shinzon's motivations should've been the genocidal destruction of Romulus based on his background." I edited to reflect it. Well Shinzon says the echo triumphing over the voice was a goal for him. Legitimizing his existence by destroying Picard. Forging his own legacy and erasing everything Picard stood for. If Earth and the Federation were destroyed then everything Picard did, all the treaties, discoveries and battles he won become annulled since no one will remember him.
Couldn't Shinzon just as easily eclipsed Picard by destroying Romulus? The Federation's greatest enemy, wouldn't that have made his life more consequential, in his eyes?
I can get the whole one upping Picard thing that Shinzon says he wants to do, but it just felt a bit too overdone, hackneyed, convoluted or something. It felt like they had to take extra steps that they really didn't need to, to make Shiznon hate the Federation. It made more sense to me that Shinzon would hate the Romulans and want to eradicate them.
If that had been the case, we could've had Picard and company willing to sacrifice all to save Romulus, a reversal of what Donatra did, and that could've been a major moment in Federation-Romulan relations, on par with the events in Star Trek 6. Instead we got another tired Earth is in peril story.
I also disagree with what Christopher said early on about Shinzon and Picard's strong relationship. I think Khan and Kirk worked far better as adversaries because of their history. Picard and Shinzon had no history, so we could never get a great moment like when Khan first appears on the Enterprise viewscreen in Star Trek 2.
The line between paying homage and ripping off would be to blatant if they ended the TNG saga the same way they ended the TOS saga.
The biggest difference between Shinzon and his clone Nero is that Shinzon's motives are the result of conditioning and desire. Sure wiping out Romulus would also make him a legend but for what? He doesn't believe in the Federation or it's values. Hell Picard, Sisko and Janeway throw the Fed's values out the window every so often. Having Shinzon become some sort of tool good guy would've been lame. As lame as Darth Vader becoming a good guy in the eleventh hour of ROTJ. Shinzon has all the potential to be a great man like Picard, and Picard tells him that. But Shinzon can't change the man he's become. The Romulans willingly and unwillingly created a Picard in their own image where unlimited expansion is his primary goal. The Dominion campaigns sharpened him in to a fierce warrior and life in the Reman mines hardened his soul.
Compare to Nero who had a shitty day when his planet was blown up. Despite it being pretty much telegraphed that Romulus was in danger Nero did nothing to save his loved ones. Then he went on an indiscriminate killing spree against people who couldn't defend themselves. Using technology from 125-150 years in the future is what i'm referring too. Thing about it is when Nero is talking to Pike he equates destroying the Federation worlds will secure Romulus' future. How? Destroying the sun or warning the Romulans of that era would've secured Romulus' future.
With Kirk and Khan, idk I feel the dynamic could've been stronger. A face to face confrontation would've been nice. Constant rewatches of TWOK have me equating their conversation and subsequent battles as "Epic Penis Showing Contests in Space via Skype Video Chat". The battle and conversations between Chang and Kirk in ST VI i feel is way better because they both got to meet and size eachother up under the pretense of peace. When we the audience knows at that point in the film neither one of them would object to a full scale war between the Federation and the Klingon Empire. But by the end of the movie that's changed. Kirk is fighting for peace and Chang is fighting for war. Two warriors, two ships one destiny.