Just gotta say it again. Greenwood was SMOKIN' in that scene.
Where the trailer version was oratory, this was a complete bollocking, an emasculation, a man taking on a child. I felt every ounce of Pike's experience, his frustration, his disappointment. And I have to hand it to Pine, after a few token justifications which, on first utterance he believed wholeheartedly, Kirk just looked shattered, chastened, beaten. He looked so completely deflated that it made sense that Pike immediately went to Marcus to reinstate Kirk to active duty, then came looking for him to reignite his confidence in himself.
Last night I was watching it thinking.. have we EVER seen Kirk taken down a peg like this? And I don't think we have. And it was absolutely perfect because Kirk does want Pike's approval. I like how it takes quite a bit of dressing down before it sinks in too, it's a great Kirk scene as well as being fantastic acting from Greenwood.
Then in the scene, I just believed Pike was in terrible agony. That shallow puffing, that glassy-eyed stare of the nearly gone putting every last ounce of energy into just hanging on. And then he managed to look completely corpse-like and lifeless with a single tear running down his cheek.
Tour de force performance. In every thing BG does he is completely convincing. He can be a thoroughly terrifying villain or a magnificent hero. I am SO sad to have lost him in this universe.
I think it was the most realistic death scene I've ever witnessed. Actually started worrying about death in the middle of it!