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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies XI+

Star Trek Movies XI+ Discuss J.J. Abrams' rebooted Star Trek here.

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Old April 21 2013, 06:25 PM   #136
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

How can people criticize the writing of the Abrams movies in comparison to the old trek movies? I mean, seriously?
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Old April 21 2013, 06:27 PM   #137
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

horatio83 wrote: View Post
There, you got me. I am not a fan but only a "fan" (i.e. not a real fan) because I only view everything about ST09 except for the abysmal writing to be top notch. The party requires 100%, everything else is unacceptable.
Don't be so dramatic. Your opinions are fine, you are entitled to them for it is your God-given right. I'm only commenting on the idea that Trek now-a-days is something less than it was in the past.
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Old April 21 2013, 06:38 PM   #138
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

I am reacting quite allergically to your antidemocratic (disrespect is the essence of democracy) "who are we to criticize these giants?" stuff as well as to the old real fan (I am a fan, you are "fan") nonsense. I don't have problems with real Trek comments though. Especially today some dogmatism or, to use a softer word, adherence to basic principles would do the franchise some good.
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Old April 21 2013, 06:48 PM   #139
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

horatio83 wrote: View Post
I am reacting quite allergically to your antidemocratic (disrespect is the essence of democracy) "who are we to criticize these giants?" stuff as well as to the old real fan (I am a fan, you are "fan") nonsense. I don't have problems with real Trek comments though. Especially today some dogmatism or, to use a softer word, adherence to basic principles would do the franchise some good.
You are more than welcome to criticize them, forgive me if I insinuated otherwise, but when you or others like you say that this incarnation of Trek is not "creative" or "artistic" or "intelligent" or whatever buzzword that I've heard for the past four years; I will get angry because by saying such things YOU are saying that those who have enjoyed this are none of these things. So forgive me if I seem snippy or abrupt, but dogmatism never works, it just kills in the most embarrassing fashion whatever it sets out to "save," and this is coming from a Catholic.
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Old April 21 2013, 07:12 PM   #140
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

I am an ex-Catholic and also dislike many stupid Catholic dogmas but I also think that the line from Matthew in your signature is something that should be a dogma or a basic principle for all Christians. It is not dogmatic in the sense of rigid and inflexible but simply describes the very basics of what being a Christian should be all about. In the execution of the principle you are fairly free or in a Sartrean sense even condemned to be free; it is not always easy or straightforward to even know how to love (of course not in the romantic sense but in the Christian sense), let alone do it.

Same in the case of Trek. I think that there are a few very rough guidelines that describe what Trek should be about (bright future, humankind trying to become better and peacefully coexist with the nice guys out there and so on) and they are in my opinion (very important, what you could call the spirit of Trek is something very subjective) ignored in this incarnation of Trek which is why I don't like it. As a close friend of mine said about the movie, "it is a nice sci-fi action movie but not a good Trek movie". Just doesn't feel like one to some of us.
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Old April 21 2013, 10:35 PM   #141
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

My Name Is Legion wrote:
How can people criticize the writing of the Abrams movies in comparison to the old trek movies? I mean, seriously?
Yes, seriously. In terms of variety of stories that were told the old Trek looks to be superior to what Abrams is giving us. I don't feel that anyone could argue that he has given us "Star Trek"-lite so far, and by definition that means less than what we were given before.

Not everyone thinks a great time at the theater is to stare wide-eyed and slobbering at the screen as they're assaulted with one bombastic CGI sequence after another.

That, of course, is just my opinion.
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Old April 21 2013, 10:40 PM   #142
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

Kruezerman wrote: View Post
It's very doom and gloom where it should be hope and celebration.
I'm curious. When you say you want "hope and celebration," what kind of story are you advocating?

I mean, sure, Trek is no dystopia, but, as far back as the original series, there's always been plenty of jeopardy, drama, conflict, and heartbreak. Remote colonies and outposts get wiped out by exotic menaces. Hostile aliens threaten the crew. The Enterprise is on the verge of blowing up in five minutes. Kirk needs kill his best friend to save his ship. Joan Collins has to be thrown under a bus . . . .

Last time I checked, all those redshirts didn't die from an excess of "hope and celebration." The Final Frontier can be a very dangerous place . . . and that's always been reflected in the shows and movies.

Seriously, how do you translate abstract notions like "hope and celebration" into an engrossing adventure or drama? By throwing in lots of inspirational speeches? By avoiding conflict and disaster? I admit, I'm not sure what sort of plot you're advocating, as opposed to something that puts our heroes through the wringer.

"Hope and celebration" are something you save for the end of the story. But first you need to test your heroes by putting them through hell . . ..
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Old April 21 2013, 10:54 PM   #143
horatio83
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

Need sounds a bit strong. There are many options to tell a story and as we already got a coming of age story last time I am not too eager to see the main characters go through hell again. Although this is of course most likely what will happen.

You can also tell a story in which somebody learns something without going through hell. Worf learned quite a lot in The Drumhead in a fairly abstract manner (as we often do in real life) and Kirk learned quite a lot in TWOK. OK, he did go through hell but the key scene in TWOK, the death of Scotty's nephew, was intense but didn't permeate the movie. You had to keep Kirk's failure in mind to empathize with him, it wasn't as "loud" as e.g. Picard smashing his little ships.
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Old April 21 2013, 11:20 PM   #144
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

horatio83 wrote: View Post
Need sounds a bit strong. There are many options to tell a story and as we already got a coming of age story last time I am not too eager to see the main characters go through hell again. Although this is of course most likely what will happen.

You can also tell a story in which somebody learns something without going through hell. Worf learned quite a lot in The Drumhead in a fairly abstract manner (as we often do in real life) and Kirk learned quite a lot in TWOK. OK, he did go through hell but the key scene in TWOK, the death of Scotty's nephew, was intense but didn't permeate the movie. You had to keep Kirk's failure in mind to empathize with him, it wasn't as "loud" as e.g. Picard smashing his little ships.
Well, there was more than one intense scene in Wrath of Khan. The Enterprise took a major beating, Chekov got an eel in his ear, Tyrell committed suicide, Khan murdered and tortured the scientists at the space station (offscreen), Spock died, Khan's entire crew died violently,and, in general, things were pretty grim through most of the movie. Heck, Kirk's own son attacked him--which Kirk took pretty hard. Nobody was having a good time, not even Khan.

The point being, I'm not sure anyone would say that WoK went out of its way to be hopeful and celebratory or whatever. And the trailers for the film played up the danger and action and suspense--as trailers tend to do.

Anyway, I don't want to start tabulating the number of Bad Things that happen in such-and-such movies and TV shows. My main point is that, in general, it's not uncommon for Star Trek stories to have the characters, the ship, and the Federation in deep trouble--because who wants to hear about that pleasant, upbeat mission where everything went smoothly and nobody broke a sweat?

Would people still be talking about "City on the Edge of Forever" if Edith Keeler had lived happily ever after? Or "Balance of Terror" if Kirk and the Romulan Commander had simply shook hands and gone their separate ways?

Heck, the last ep I watched was "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield"--which ended on a very somber note, with Bele and Lokai doomed to eternal hatred on a dead, lifeless world littered with unburied bodies.

Star Trek is not just "hope and celebration." It's frequently warped "Into Darkness," as it were.
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Old April 21 2013, 11:31 PM   #145
horatio83
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

But TWOK ended quite optimistically. I really like this aspect of Meyer's work, he seem so militaristic and dark on the first glance but there is always a bright ending and you realize that the guy is not really somebody who is antithetical to Roddenberry. He does the same stuff but, as you said, first everybody has to go through hell.
This usage of contrasts leads to a much more refined notion of paradise and utopia. It is feasible but constantly threatened, you have to strive and fight for it the entire time. Not just out there but also, to use TUC and FC as examples, in yourself. You think you are a nice guy and before you can say Kobayashi Maru you are on record as a racist. But you straighten yourself out before it is too late. Trek can be utterly dark but never cynical.
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Old April 22 2013, 12:38 AM   #146
Greg Cox
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

horatio83 wrote: View Post
But TWOK ended quite optimistically. I really like this aspect of Meyer's work, he seem so militaristic and dark on the first glance but there is always a bright ending and you realize that the guy is not really somebody who is antithetical to Roddenberry. He does the same stuff but, as you said, first everybody has to go through hell.
This usage of contrasts leads to a much more refined notion of paradise and utopia. It is feasible but constantly threatened, you have to strive and fight for it the entire time. Not just out there but also, to use TUC and FC as examples, in yourself. You think you are a nice guy and before you can say Kobayashi Maru you are on record as a racist. But you straighten yourself out before it is too late. Trek can be utterly dark but never cynical.
And what makes you think that the new movie isn't going to end on an upbeat note, like KHAN or TUC or the last movie for that matter? I seem to recall that the 2009 movie ended with Kirk taking command of the ship, the crew working smoothly together, and the Enterprise warping off into space . . . just like the endings of TMP, TUC, etc. Nothing new or cynical about that.

Just because Earth is attacked in the trailer doesn't mean the movie is darker and more cynical than, say, the time the Gorn massacred that colony on Cestus Something. Heck, even the whale probe and V'Ger menaced Earth.

And, personally, I've never thought Trek was supposed to be about "paradise" or "utopia." Things are better in the future, sure, but they aren't perfect and life isn't always easy--especially out on the Final Frontier.

"Risk is our business," remember? And Kirk is many things, but he is not a Boy Scout--or a saint.
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Old April 22 2013, 12:47 AM   #147
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

Danger Ace wrote: View Post
My Name Is Legion wrote:
How can people criticize the writing of the Abrams movies in comparison to the old trek movies? I mean, seriously?
In terms of variety of stories that were told the old Trek looks to be superior to what Abrams is giving us.
No. What you call "variety" is not congruent with quality.
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Old April 22 2013, 12:53 AM   #148
horatio83
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
horatio83 wrote: View Post
But TWOK ended quite optimistically. I really like this aspect of Meyer's work, he seem so militaristic and dark on the first glance but there is always a bright ending and you realize that the guy is not really somebody who is antithetical to Roddenberry. He does the same stuff but, as you said, first everybody has to go through hell.
This usage of contrasts leads to a much more refined notion of paradise and utopia. It is feasible but constantly threatened, you have to strive and fight for it the entire time. Not just out there but also, to use TUC and FC as examples, in yourself. You think you are a nice guy and before you can say Kobayashi Maru you are on record as a racist. But you straighten yourself out before it is too late. Trek can be utterly dark but never cynical.
And what makes you think that the new movie isn't going to end on an upbeat note, like KHAN or TUC or the last movie for that matter? I seem to recall that the 2009 movie ended with Kirk taking command of the ship, the crew working smoothly together, and the Enterprise warping off into space . . . just like the endings of TMP, TUC, etc. Nothing new or cynical about that.

Just because Earth is attacked in the trailer doesn't mean the movie is darker and more cynical than, say, the time the Gorn massacred that colony on Cestus Something. Heck, even the whale probe and V'Ger menaced Earth.

And, personally, I've never thought Trek was supposed to be about "paradise" or "utopia." Things are better in the future, sure, but they aren't perfect and life isn't always easy--especially out on the Final Frontier.

"Risk is our business," remember? And Kirk is many things, but he is not a Boy Scout--or a saint.
I talked about Trek in general, not about ST09. But if you wanna know, yes, ST09 did have an untolerable and inexcusable cynical moment; when Spock basically said that he wanted revenge for mummy. Orci took so mnay ingredients from TWOK but missed the key idea about the futility or rather self-harming nature of revenge.

Trek is most definitely an utopia. That is its key defining feature. As I just described, utopia has nothing to do with a static paradise or a naive vision and more to do with the everyday struggle to improve and it doesn't exclude what you called 'going through hell'.
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Old April 22 2013, 12:53 AM   #149
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

I always thought Trek was about entertainment that also made you think.

As for Into Darkness, while I don't like everything about the reboot, I have a very simple plan: I'm going to watch the movie and then decide if it's any good. I expect it will be, but I won't know if I like it until I see it.

On the flip side, I won't know if I hate it until I see at least some of it, either.
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Old April 22 2013, 01:06 AM   #150
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Is J.J. Abams "Star Trek" Sustainable?

horatio83 wrote: View Post
...utopia has nothing to do with a static paradise or a naive vision...
In fact, that's exactly what Utopia is.

TOS was not utopian.
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