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Old October 27 2013, 06:21 PM   #31
Christopher
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Re: Khan #1 Review

I don't think they made the movie TWOK. They made one scene a copy of TWOK, and it was a misfire that pulled me out of the story; but the rest of it felt fresh and very different from TWOK. I mean, Kirk and Khan actually had multiple scenes face to face! Khan was actually sane, calculating and manipulative rather than a melodramatic nutcase! And he wasn't even the main villain this time -- Marcus was. In almost every respect, this was an entirely different, and IMHO better, story than TWOK; but unfortunately it did have one sequence that gratuitously copied TWOK, and that tends to overshadow the rest in many viewers' minds.
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Old October 27 2013, 08:44 PM   #32
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Re: Khan #1 Review

King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
George Steinbrenner wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
It was never conclusively established that Daniels's future was the same one we saw in TOS through VGR.
What about his final appearance? If the post-"Storm Front" timeline - meaning, the real Trek timeline - was any different from what Daniels knew to be true, he would have said something. (Daniels was always very gung-ho about making Archer fulfill his destiny, so if Daniels believed Archer still had work to do in changing the timeline to something Daniels would recognize, he would not have simply let Archer go.)
There's the little thing about Archer destroying the Delphic Expanse in 2153, when Daniels' history has it expanding for centuries until it fills the quadrant by the 2600's. Trek Prime is definitely not the same timeline he knew.

But who says it's the same Daniels as we saw earlier? We did see one explode in "Cold Front" and another die of rapid ageing in "Storm Front"
They seem to be running out of "Fronts" for Daniels to appear in. If the show had lasted longer, what would have been next? Popular Front? People's Front?
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Old October 28 2013, 12:48 AM   #33
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Christopher wrote: View Post
In almost every respect, this was an entirely different, and IMHO better, story than TWOK; but unfortunately it did have one sequence that gratuitously copied TWOK, and that tends to overshadow the rest in many viewers' minds.
That's a fair point but for me it wasn't just that one scene that was overblown and silly. The scene with Scotty and the security guard was so painfully drawn out that it made all the characters and the writers look incompetent.

That's not to say i didn't enjoy it. the characters were nowhere as brain-frazzlingly inept as those in Prometheus and I had higher hopes for that movie.

I'm also hoping that the comic will come up with a plausible reason to leave people inside torpedoes...
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Old October 28 2013, 02:11 AM   #34
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Re: Khan #1 Review

To smuggle them out. The torpedoes were obviously going to be shipped out, it's a clever way to get the Botany Bay crew out of whatever Section 31 hole they were being stored in.
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Old October 28 2013, 05:03 AM   #35
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Christopher wrote: View Post
I don't think they made the movie TWOK. They made one scene a copy of TWOK, and it was a misfire that pulled me out of the story; but the rest of it felt fresh and very different from TWOK. I mean, Kirk and Khan actually had multiple scenes face to face! Khan was actually sane, calculating and manipulative rather than a melodramatic nutcase! And he wasn't even the main villain this time -- Marcus was. In almost every respect, this was an entirely different, and IMHO better, story than TWOK; but unfortunately it did have one sequence that gratuitously copied TWOK, and that tends to overshadow the rest in many viewers' minds.
I feel like the main problem with both Trek 09 and STID is that they had good storyline ideas, but then no one went back to tighten up the nuts and bolts to make a good final product. It's like they were more interested in peppering gratuitous name-drops of other Trek series (including the one super awful scene in STID) and left out vetting bits and pieces that little tweaks to the script or dialogue or scenes might've done.

I don't know how much of this is the director and how much of it is in the writing, but it feels like a little more editorial care would've done wonders to tighten up the movie. Getting rid of that gratuitous scene, making Marcus's emphasis as villain more concrete, changing timescales so that everything's not rushed into a single day, etc.

I felt the same way about ST09, in that the flaws seemed to me to come from a lack of care on details than anything pertaining to Trek or continuity. I mean if Nero was okay with floating around for 25 years (or was in Rura Penthe for that long or whatever) I don't think that the story would've been that much more damaged by giving Kirk a somewhat more credible rise to captaincy, maybe inserting a couple montages between say the Kobayashi Maru face-off and the Vulcan system thing, or finishing off Nero and becoming captain.
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Old October 28 2013, 08:48 AM   #36
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Nob Akimoto wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
I don't think they made the movie TWOK. They made one scene a copy of TWOK, and it was a misfire that pulled me out of the story; but the rest of it felt fresh and very different from TWOK. I mean, Kirk and Khan actually had multiple scenes face to face! Khan was actually sane, calculating and manipulative rather than a melodramatic nutcase! And he wasn't even the main villain this time -- Marcus was. In almost every respect, this was an entirely different, and IMHO better, story than TWOK; but unfortunately it did have one sequence that gratuitously copied TWOK, and that tends to overshadow the rest in many viewers' minds.
I feel like the main problem with both Trek 09 and STID is that they had good storyline ideas, but then no one went back to tighten up the nuts and bolts to make a good final product. It's like they were more interested in peppering gratuitous name-drops of other Trek series (including the one super awful scene in STID) and left out vetting bits and pieces that little tweaks to the script or dialogue or scenes might've done.

I don't know how much of this is the director and how much of it is in the writing, but it feels like a little more editorial care would've done wonders to tighten up the movie. Getting rid of that gratuitous scene, making Marcus's emphasis as villain more concrete, changing timescales so that everything's not rushed into a single day, etc.

I felt the same way about ST09, in that the flaws seemed to me to come from a lack of care on details than anything pertaining to Trek or continuity. I mean if Nero was okay with floating around for 25 years (or was in Rura Penthe for that long or whatever) I don't think that the story would've been that much more damaged by giving Kirk a somewhat more credible rise to captaincy, maybe inserting a couple montages between say the Kobayashi Maru face-off and the Vulcan system thing, or finishing off Nero and becoming captain.
This. 100%
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Old October 28 2013, 09:34 AM   #37
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Pauln6 wrote: View Post
My principal issue is that making the movie the Wrath of Khan stole a lot of its emotional resonance - Kirk hadn't really wronged Khan, his relationship with Spock is in its infancy.
Precisely why it was done that way. To create a different story. "Into Darkness" is neither "Space Seed", nor "The Wrath of Khan". It's a new adventure for Khan, and a very different story arc for the characters.

And I thought STiD had plenty of emotional resonance. Different emotional resonance, but no less emotional. For me, at least. Until that tribble revived, I was sure Kirk was staying dead... at least until the next movie.
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Old October 28 2013, 09:40 AM   #38
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Pauln6 wrote: View Post
My principal issue is that making the movie the Wrath of Khan stole a lot of its emotional resonance - Kirk hadn't really wronged Khan, his relationship with Spock is in its infancy.
Precisely why it was done that way. To create a different story. "Into Darkness" is neither "Space Seed", nor "The Wrath of Khan". It's a new adventure for Khan, and a very different story arc for the characters.

And I thought STiD had plenty of emotional resonance. Different emotional resonance, but no less emotional. For me, at least. Until that tribble revived, I was sure Kirk was staying dead... at least until the next movie.
Different strokes. Pike's death had emotional resonance for me. I was laughing too hard when Kirk died! It was just so contrived and silly. I really thought it was meant to be an in-joke.
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Old October 28 2013, 01:22 PM   #39
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Nob Akimoto wrote: View Post
I feel like the main problem with both Trek 09 and STID is that they had good storyline ideas, but then no one went back to tighten up the nuts and bolts to make a good final product...
I think the same can be said for most Hollywood feature films today. A lot of them have gaping story problems and structural problems, because writing is considered a secondary element in the industry, and because the emphasis is more on visceral impact and spectacle and action than on plot logic or cohesiveness. A lot of what people blame Abrams and Bad Robot for is really, I think, endemic to feature-film culture as a whole. Bad Robot are just doing what they can within the constraints imposed by the studios and the financial backers.
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Old October 28 2013, 03:05 PM   #40
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Re: Khan #1 Review

King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
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Personally, I think it was the writers' idea to create interest and put butts in seats.
Isn't that the goal of every movie writer in human history?
Affirmative, just some have more respect for the source material than others.
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Old November 1 2013, 05:44 AM   #41
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Christopher wrote: View Post
I don't think they made the movie TWOK. They made one scene a copy of TWOK, and it was a misfire that pulled me out of the story; but the rest of it felt fresh and very different from TWOK. I mean, Kirk and Khan actually had multiple scenes face to face! Khan was actually sane, calculating and manipulative rather than a melodramatic nutcase! And he wasn't even the main villain this time -- Marcus was. In almost every respect, this was an entirely different, and IMHO better, story than TWOK; but unfortunately it did have one sequence that gratuitously copied TWOK, and that tends to overshadow the rest in many viewers' minds.
I agree with just about everything here--except that I found the "copied" scene more compelling than the original. Different strokes...
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Old November 2 2013, 12:57 AM   #42
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Christopher wrote: View Post
Nob Akimoto wrote: View Post
I feel like the main problem with both Trek 09 and STID is that they had good storyline ideas, but then no one went back to tighten up the nuts and bolts to make a good final product...
I think the same can be said for most Hollywood feature films today. A lot of them have gaping story problems and structural problems, because writing is considered a secondary element in the industry, and because the emphasis is more on visceral impact and spectacle and action than on plot logic or cohesiveness. A lot of what people blame Abrams and Bad Robot for is really, I think, endemic to feature-film culture as a whole. Bad Robot are just doing what they can within the constraints imposed by the studios and the financial backers.
Is this a function of Hollywood being filled to the cup rim with mediocre writers who never had to go through the discipline of weekly television scriptwriting or is it a function of lazy Hollywood writers convinced that they'll be bailed out by the effects?

The loose ends and plot contrivances in both ST09 and STID made me want to vomit.
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Old November 2 2013, 01:37 AM   #43
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Re: Khan #1 Review

section9 wrote: View Post
Is this a function of Hollywood being filled to the cup rim with mediocre writers who never had to go through the discipline of weekly television scriptwriting or is it a function of lazy Hollywood writers convinced that they'll be bailed out by the effects?
No, it's a function of directors and producers having all the decision-making power and writers having none. Unlike in television, the feature industry treats writers as merely hired help whose job is to put the directors' or producers' ideas on paper. The standard writing process is an overcomplicated mess that usually involves a bunch of different people whose ideas are mixed and matched by other people.

Of course, writers can have power in features if they're actually doing the directing and producing themselves. This is actually to the Bad Robot people's advantage, because Abrams is directing and Lindelof, Kurtzman, and Orci are producing. They all came from television, and they're able to bring something more like the television writing process to the table and maintain more control over their work. Although they're still subject to studio pressure to conform to the big action-packed blockbuster paradigm. Another reason writers have so little control over big-budget movies is that there are just so many investors with huge financial stakes in the product that there's a lot of pressure to avoid taking risks and to adhere to familiar formulas. I don't think it's a coincidence that both STID and Man of Steel had climaxes built around gratuitous massive urban destruction; studios just assume that's what audiences want to see now, in the wake of things like the Transformers films and The Avengers.

Plus, of course, there's the simple fact that a 2-hour movie doesn't allow you as much time to develop your characters and your world as you can in a weekly series, so the results are naturally going to be more superficial. Remember how the TNG movies made less effective use of the ensemble beyond Picard, Data, and Worf than the series did, and didn't really get to flesh out the ramifications of their events as the series could.
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Old November 4 2013, 12:10 PM   #44
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Re: Khan #1 Review

This is actually to the Bad Robot people's advantage, because Abrams is directing and Lindelof, Kurtzman, and Orci are producing
I don't know. As noted earlier, I think STID could've used someone outside of that group to pop the bubble of how clever they were being with reference A, B, and C and to pay attention to plotholes.

A careful director or producer can catch these things in the process of crafting a movie, and in this case, I think it's simply the writers weren't held on any leash and Abrams isn't really the sort who cares about details and tends to care more about the flash than substance. That is things like pacing and performances, which in itself aren't bad, but are not a good way to rein in writers who might need some nudging in a different direction.

There's gotta be a mid-point between using writers as disposable stenographers and giving them carte blanche.
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Old November 4 2013, 01:43 PM   #45
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Re: Khan #1 Review

Nob Akimoto wrote: View Post
This is actually to the Bad Robot people's advantage, because Abrams is directing and Lindelof, Kurtzman, and Orci are producing
I don't know. As noted earlier, I think STID could've used someone outside of that group to pop the bubble of how clever they were being with reference A, B, and C and to pay attention to plotholes.
Opinions differ on the merits of an individual movie, but that's separate from the more general issue I'm talking about, which is whether writers are allowed to have creative control over a Hollywood feature film. The only writers who get to do that are the ones who are also directing or producing. Now, fortunately it seems to be getting more common for TV showrunners like Abrams and Joss Whedon to move into filmmaking, so hopefully that means the dysfunctional feature-writing process is starting to give way to something more writer-driven like we have in television. Whether you think a specific movie worked well or not, giving writers some actual control over their work is bound to be an improvement for the feature industry as a whole.


There's gotta be a mid-point between using writers as disposable stenographers and giving them carte blanche.
Maybe, but I'm not inclined to blame the writers for this movie's shortcomings. I feel that those shortcomings are no different from the ones you find in many other big-budget action movies these days, so I blame the studios and the industry for the pressure they put on filmmakers to conform to certain formulas (like the recent fad of overloading the third act with disaster porn).
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