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Old June 14 2013, 07:18 PM   #42
Christopher
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Re: Has anyone else noticed the major plot flaw in TWOK?

dub wrote: View Post
By the way, TWOK is still awesome! It's my favorite Trek movie to this day. I think it's easier for me to overlook some of the plot holes in this movie because the dialogue, the character and relationship moments, the acting, the score, directing, all of it made me actually care about these characters, care about what happens and actually made me interested in watching every moment of this film in comparison to some other Trek films.
I get that in principle, and it's the reason I'm able to enjoy the Abrams films despite their plot and logic holes. But this film is one I don't enjoy that much, for a variety of reasons. I feel it damaged the franchise by replacing the intelligent, plausible science fiction that Roddenberry aspired to (but often fell short of achieving) with cartoony melodrama and overblown action. I find it too violent and bloody for my tastes, yet at the same time extremely sluggish in pacing (and I'm saying this as someone who likes ST:TMP).


This never bothered me. It's a simple concept and yes it's far-fetched, but this is sci-fi (in some cases fantasy). A transporter scattering your molecules across the universe and bringing them back together is equally far-fetched in my mind.
The fact that transporters exist in the Trek universe is the one thing that makes Genesis remotely swallowable in that context, since it's the same principle of disassembling matter and reassembling it, just in a new form. But the sheer power involved to transform a whole planet demands something bigger than what we saw. I read the novelization before seeing the movie, and I imagined the Genesis torpedo as some enormous missile. When I finally saw what a dinky little thing it was, I thought it was ridiculous.


Christopher wrote: View Post
Why does Scotty bring his bloody, dying cadet/nephew (depending on the cut) to the bridge instead of sickbay?
I agree with another person here that it was purely for dramatic effect. In this case, it wasn't a mistake or lazy writing. The scene could have easily been omitted and the story would still make sense. But this scene was intentionally added for the sole purpose of dramatic effect.
And that is exactly my problem with the storytelling priorities of the film. It wasn't just "dramatic," it was over-the-top, corny melodrama, like everything else that passes for dramatic in the film (Kirk's "KHAAAAAAANNNN!!!" is the most embarrassingly corny moment in the history of the franchise). The original goal behind Star Trek was to approach science fiction as maturely and naturalistically as any cop show or courtroom drama or medical drama of the day -- to get away from the exaggeration and corniness and broad caricatures of previous SFTV and do a show that was about believable human beings doing jobs that just happened to be in outer space in the future. ST:TMP was in the same vein -- going for the same kind of cool, understated naturalism as Robert Wise's The Andromeda Strain, although perhaps taking the "understated" part a bit too far. But TWOK reversed that and turned ST into a broad, cartoony, larger-than-life melodrama, and I think that betrays the original intention behind the franchise. It might be a fun film in its way, but it's not a believable film, either on a technical level or a character level, and that's a failure to live up to the original goals of the series.


I believe Kirk said "I've never faced death. Not like this." In a sense, every death we face is different. Spock was very special to Kirk, so he hadn't faced death "like this" before. Not to say that the other people you mentioned weren't special to Kirk. But I think he was saying this death hit him especially hard and in a unique way unlike other countless deaths he had experienced before. Also, since this was a reaction to his son's assessment of Kirk's obvious lingering shock and pain, Kirk was speaking emotionally here. Instead of saying, "No son, you're wrong. I've faced death throughout my life and career...just not like this," he said it a different way: "no [in a sense you're actually right], I haven't faced death. Not like this." And then it all sort of ties back nicely to the Kobayashi Maru. So to me, that was a lovely bit of writing.
I think that's bending over backwards to justify a line that doesn't really add up. Again, it's a matter of believability -- I can't believe that Kirk would feel that way about it, that he'd dismiss all the other terrible tragedies he's been through as if they never happened.


Sran wrote: View Post
I'm inclined to think Starfleet wasn't paying attention at all. The system would seem to be in relatively close proximity to Klingon space, so it wouldn't surprise me if the Federation avoided the area as much as possible.
Based on what? There's nothing in the movie to suggest that. Star Trek Star Charts shows it as being about as far from the outer reaches of Klingon space as Earth is from the nearer portions, but that's as of the 24th century; in the 2280s, Klingon space probably didn't extend as far in that direction.

Perhaps one can assume from TSFS that the Mutara Sector was relatively close to Klingon territory, given that Kruge was able to get to it without being challenged, but we don't know how far that was from Ceti Alpha.

And it still doesn't change that the speed of light is finite, allowing you to observe things that happened years or decades or centuries ago if you're at the right distance. If the explosion happened 15 years earlier, then the Reliant should've seen it happen as soon as they came within 15 light-years of the system. And even if they missed it, they certainly would've been able to detect the aftermath, the remains of the exploded planet. There'd be a huge cloud of debris spread out along the planet's orbit. There's just no way they could've missed that.
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