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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies I-X

Star Trek Movies I-X Discuss the first ten big screen outings in this forum!

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Old November 11 2013, 04:59 PM   #211
Christopher
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

2takesfrakes wrote: View Post
I love how in the extended version, Paramount in its wisdom, decided to restore the deleted thruster suit sequence and reveal to us all the scaffolding supporting the partially completed Saucer Section Setpiece. I mean, just how brilliant do you have to be? That one shot is like a turd in a punchbowl and they had to know what they were doing, even including that ... no one could've "missed" it, it's far too blatant.
I'm embarrassed to admit that I did, in fact, miss seeing the scaffolding the first several times I saw the TV version of the film. But then, my family only had a small black-and-white TV at the time.
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Old November 11 2013, 06:07 PM   #212
Jeyl
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Yes, but IIRC was presented as part of the "final film" in the 1983 extended TV version.
The "Final Film" is the Director's Edition, not the 1983 extended TV version. While the new scenes shown in the theatrical version are interesting, they're very crude in form. The audio, with the exception of some minor sound additions, is very raw. You can hear the set pieces like chairs and footsteps more often and the actors sound more natural since there is no ADR. One of my favorite instances is when Spock talks about the ship's forcefield.

Kirk: Evaluation, Mr. Spock?
Spock: Fascinating. That vessel is generating a force field greater than the radiation of Earth's sun.

If you listen closely when Spock is talking, you can actually hear the projectors running in the background. This is because the displays on the stations had to be projected with really loud motorized projectors behind the set since using TV screens weren't common yet. As a result, almost all the audio recorded on the bridge scenes had to be scrubbed and redone with ADR to eliminate the noise. It also explains why certain stations have light visors since the screens themselves were so sensitive to light that even the regular set light would diminish the effect. Gah, I miss those trivia tracks.
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Old November 11 2013, 06:29 PM   #213
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Timewalker wrote: View Post
I enjoyed Stephen Collins in Tales of the Gold Monkey, but he played one of the blandest ST characters ever.
I don't know that he was bland so much as he just wasn't fleshed out well because he appeared only in a single film. Putting Decker on Voyager may actually have opened up some interesting possibilities for the character. Gene Roddenberry's TMP novelization depicts Decker as being part of a movement towards embracing group collectives and shared consciousness. Certainly, this is something that could have been explored further during Borg episodes. Thinking about it now, I wonder how Decker would've gotten along with Seven of Nine.

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Old November 11 2013, 08:04 PM   #214
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Having read several drafts of In Thy Image and TMP it's pretty obvious they didn't know what Decker was about. He's all over the map in those drafts, so much so that it's not much of a surprise he doesn't come across all that well in the finished film.
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Old November 11 2013, 08:21 PM   #215
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Maurice wrote: View Post
Having read several drafts of In Thy Image and TMP it's pretty obvious they didn't know what Decker was about. He's all over the map in those drafts, so much so that it's not much of a surprise he doesn't come across all that well in the finished film.
Which sort of speaks to what I was saying earlier. I think his character could've been fleshed out more had he appeared in more than just TMP. Things may have been different had he been the lead-actor for the film rather than Shatner, as it's difficult to properly flesh-out a character who's around to fill a prominent role but not one that necessarily requires a great deal of exposition or background.

Basically, all we know about Decker's character (for sure) is that he was stationed on Delta IV and that he rose to the rank of captain at a young age (if we're to believe he's the same age as Collins was in '79). He oversaw the Enterprise refit and would have commended the vessel permanently had Kirk not returned for the V'Ger mission. The rest is up in the air and isn't much to work with in terms of giving his character life.

Collins has gone on record as saying that he wasn't happy with his portrayal of the character, but that may have been due in part to the lack of a proper template with which to work. It seems like it would be easier to play a character who's been clearly defined. As it were, Decker came across as a glorified place-holder for other characters (mainly Kirk but also somewhat for Spock while serving as science officer) more so than a character with his own personality and motivations. To me, that more than anything else made it hard to understand his desire to merge with V'Ger at the film's conclusion.

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Old November 11 2013, 09:29 PM   #216
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

I guess the reason I never had a problem with Decker -- or many other things from the film -- is that I read the novelization well before I actually saw the movie, so I had all the background fleshed out for me in advance.
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Old November 11 2013, 09:42 PM   #217
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Christopher wrote: View Post
I guess the reason I never had a problem with Decker -- or many other things from the film -- is that I read the novelization well before I actually saw the movie, so I had all the background fleshed out for me in advance.
I've actually never the read the novel but have always liked Decker's character in spite of there being little known about him. TMP was my first exposure to Star Trek beyond watching a few minutes of "Who Mourns for Adonis?" as a five-year-old. My mom had been a fan of TOS while in high school and decided to buy TMP soon after that because I kept asking questions about what Star Trek was.

I had a vague idea of who James Kirk was and knew he was important. But as I hadn't watched more than those few minutes of TOS before seeing TMP, I thought Decker was supposed to be just as important as Kirk given that he was captain of the Enterprise (I didn't understand that Kirk holding the rank of admiral trumped being captain) and was actually angry that Kirk bumped him from the captain's chair (because I didn't yet understand that it had actually been Kirk and not Decker who had the job during the TV series).

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Old November 11 2013, 10:32 PM   #218
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

The thing is, when we met Decker, he was in command. He was getting his hands dirty, so to speak, helping Scotty in engineering. He seemed positive and peppy...for all of two minutes, then Kirk booted him out of the command chair.

Then we see him as first officer...for all of maybe ten minutes. Then Spock comes aboard, and Decker gets booted out of his first officer chair, too!. At this point, he literally and figuratively had no chair at all. He was lucky the rest of the crew was in place already, otherwise it seemed he'd get booted down again and again as they arrived! Any command presence he may have had was effectively neutralized by this mission.
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Old November 11 2013, 10:42 PM   #219
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

The key to understanding Decker, IMHO, is to understand that even though he was Captain during the refit, he was still new to the officers and crew he was working with, and as Scotty stated, he was "Untried".

Kirk taking command, then clashing with Decker at almost every turn, left him feeling even more of an outsider.

Then he was placed in conflict when Ilia, the love of his life, was "killed", and yet in a way still present.

He had no real future with the Enterprise, and was desperate to get back the relationship that meant the most to him: Ilia.

That's why he wanted to enter the codes into the ground test computer in the third act, and this is in the dialog: "As much as you wanted the Enterprise, I ... want ... this."

The character is very straightforward to understand, IMHO.
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Old November 11 2013, 10:58 PM   #220
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

LMFAOschwarz wrote: View Post
Then we see him as first officer...for all of maybe ten minutes. Then Spock comes aboard, and Decker gets booted out of his first officer chair, too!
Actually, that's not correct. Decker was still first-officer after Spock came aboard, as the latter took only the position of science-officer. Although Spock had been Kirk's first-officer for the five-year mission, Decker outranked him by virtue of having the official rank of captain to Spock's commander. Decker's grade-reduction was to be only for the duration of the V'Ger mission.

OneBuckFilms wrote: View Post
The key to understanding Decker, IMHO, is to understand that even though he was Captain during the refit, he was still new to the officers and crew he was working with, and as Scotty stated, he was "Untried".
I wouldn't say he was new to the crew. Decker hand-picked most of the Enterprise personnel himself and worked closely with both Scotty and Uhura throughout the refit. It's not clear how well he knew Sulu, Chekov, or Chapel as their statuses during and after the refit weren't clear. They were aboard by the time Kirk showed up, but they may have been there at his request.

You're right that he was new to the captain's chair, but if we're to use the enthusiasm and energy with which he was involved in the refit as an example, he was clearly dedicated to his job. TMP/Phase II source materials indicate he was first-officer of the USS Boston for four years, so he had some command experience from that assignment.

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Old November 11 2013, 11:09 PM   #221
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Sran wrote: View Post
Actually, that's not correct. Decker was still first-officer after Spock came aboard, as the latter took only the position of science-officer. Although Spock had been Kirk's first-officer for the five-year mission, Decker outranked him by virtue of having the official rank of captain to Spock's commander. Decker's grade-reduction was to be only for the duration of the V'Ger mission.
Right you are; after I'd posted, I recalled the "I'm afraid you're going to have to double as Science Officer." line of Kirk's.
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Old November 11 2013, 11:27 PM   #222
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Sran wrote: View Post
Timewalker wrote: View Post
I enjoyed Stephen Collins in Tales of the Gold Monkey, but he played one of the blandest ST characters ever.
I don't know that he was bland so much as he just wasn't fleshed out well because he appeared only in a single film. Putting Decker on Voyager may actually have opened up some interesting possibilities for the character. Gene Roddenberry's TMP novelization depicts Decker as being part of a movement towards embracing group collectives and shared consciousness. Certainly, this is something that could have been explored further during Borg episodes. Thinking about it now, I wonder how Decker would've gotten along with Seven of Nine.

--Sran
Oh, cripes, he would have gone running to the Borg Queen, ready to be her "king."

He might have interesting as a guest character, but not as a regular.
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Old November 11 2013, 11:37 PM   #223
Sran
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

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Oh, cripes, he would have gone running to the Borg Queen, ready to be her "king."
It worked for Picard. Though having Decker of Borg might have confused some fans as to whether Shatner's ideas about V'Ger and the Borg being related were true.

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Old November 12 2013, 12:31 AM   #224
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Gotham Central wrote: View Post
I have a question about the 8' model used in the movie.

TMP remains the only occasion where we actually saw any of the hero ships depicted with open hatches (other than the shuttle bays). Indeed the refit Enterprise seems to be unique in that it was covered in surface details that indicated hatchways though most were never used.

I am, however, curious as to what was supposed to be under those hatches. We know one was an airlock (which always struck me as an odd place for one). What were the other 2?

Was the model actually built with these openings?
Christopher wrote: View Post
Well, some of the openings we saw in the drydock scenes weren't hatches, but hull plates that hadn't been attached yet. The only hatches on the saucer that are indicated in the published plans are the two airlock hatches on the forward underside of the saucer, the small personnel lift hatch on top near the front of the ship (where the leads egressed to walk to V'Ger's core), and the main gangway hatch on the port rim of the saucer (which had a gangway connecting it to the drydock frame while it was in dock).
On the 1979 official plans there are what appears to be six additional hatches (four forward and two aft) on the saucer underside inboard of the rectangular structures labeled "landing pad", but there's no indication of their function (or if it's because of what Christopher said and were supposed to represent an aspect of "under construction", and ended up on the blueprints as they were cutouts on the model and the draftsman interpreted them as hatches).

I've seen some fan-produced blueprints where the forward hatches access a primary hull cargo bay.
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Old November 12 2013, 12:48 AM   #225
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Re: Star Trek: TMP questions and observations

Sran wrote: View Post
Timewalker wrote: View Post
Oh, cripes, he would have gone running to the Borg Queen, ready to be her "king."
It worked for Picard. Though having Decker of Borg might have confused some fans as to whether Shatner's ideas about V'Ger and the Borg being related were true.

--Sran
But Decker would do it because he really wanted to, not because of being kidnapped and forced, or because he was trying to save his crew.
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