Nicholas Meyer's Interpretation of Star Trek

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by Clark Terrell, Mar 17, 2014.

  1. Clark Terrell

    Clark Terrell Lieutenant Commander

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    I don't think the film was meant to be logical. That's my point. Not everything that happens in life makes sense or may be dealt with based on a person's past experiences--the exact point Meyer was trying to make with the film in the first place. That some people don't understand that should in no way diminish the quality of the film.
     
  2. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    This is like saying, "We could have done better, but we chose not to."

    C'mon. All it would have taken was a little common sense to fix most of the problems and still deliver the drama wnated. All your argument does is support lazy and ignorant (if not outright stupid) writing.

    Look, love the film if you want, but it has indefensible logic flaws.
     
  3. Clark Terrell

    Clark Terrell Lieutenant Commander

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    As does every other Star Trek film. No movie is perfect. Singling out The Wrath of Khan when there are worse films out there doesn't make sense. As I said when I started this thread, there are things about Meyer's depiction of the franchise that I don't like and would do differently in his place, but that doesn't prevent me from enjoying what he helped make.
     
  4. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    re Scotty, I'd just have had Kirk "Let's see how badly we've been hurt," into the turbolift and cut to the the turbolift doors opening on the engineering deck and THERE we see Scotty holding Preston, trying to get him to sickbay, and a line of the injured behind him.

    Easy.
     
  5. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    There you go.
     
  6. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

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    TMP had its moments--mainly surrounding the reunion scenes for Trekkers longing for that moment, but TWOK had the biggest task of all: make Star Trek...Star Trek.

    Despite TMP's story often compared to "The Changeling," it was in framework only, which is why the film received near universal criticism that the heart, soul, adventure and danger made so famous in TOS was nowhere to be found. Bennett, et al, were wise to screen TOS again, and zero in on a story where the crew functioned & faced a danger together, in a way that screamed classic TOS.

    They could not go wrong, and the results proved their every decision to be correct--in spades.

    The old villain returning to drop destruction on the heads of older heroes (particularly one doubting his relevance as an older man) touched the audience. It provided a stronger continuity with TOS--that the devil-may-care, boldly going 5-year mission days--were gone, but the irony of a terror from that period would be the very thing to bring out the vintage crew in the leads, thus shattering the "old" problem, and setting ST up for guaranteed future film adventures.

    That is why TWOK--or the vision delivered by Meyer, Bennet, et al, inspired innumerable TOS fans to yell in joy, "Star Trek is back!"
     
  7. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    ^^ Not all fans. If I see a bunch of people running off a cliff I'm not necessarily going to automatically follow them.
     
  8. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    You haven't seen the awesomeness that is Empire Strikes Back, then.;)

    As nitpicky as I am, being a guy who looks to make films for a living...I can't find anything wrong with that film. I'm sure there are some flaws, but they're very, very, very, very hard to pinpoint.
     
  9. trevanian

    trevanian Rear Admiral

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    Not only that, but you could have shoehorned it into the existing schedule since Nimoy had his death scene in engineering. Except for bringing Eisenman back, it wouldn't have impacted anything at all.
     
  10. Victory Is Life

    Victory Is Life Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Sorry, but Star Wars is so popular because it combines fantasy with whizz-bang, a winning formula for the dullards at large. I see no appeal in Star Wars. It is not thinking man's sci-fi. I like to be stimulated when I watch a motion picture...From Kirk's ennui with his age and his stagnant career in WOK, to his teary goodbye and questions about his command decisions in TSFS, to an awkward reunion with his comrade at arms in TVH, (skip ahead to TUC), where a tense political, cold war-esque, environment deftly mirrors Chernobyl and our own cold war, plays it out beautifully on another stage, at another time, and still pull it off talking about 'in-alienable human rights'. Genius, and too much of a load for the everyman. All of this heroism leads to an undeniably depressing and shakespearean conclusion for Kirk & co, generally forgotten, and it is left unsaid, and understood by all Trek fans, that their sacrifice, camaraderie led to bigger things, the Federation thriving. It works if you watch and listen. Star Wars delivers its message in such a way that philosophy, moral dilemmas, and our penultimate humanity is avoided. How anyone could compare the two franchises is unimaginable, it's like comparing the works of Bach to John Williams. Your argument is not valid.
     
  11. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    I don't think that scene with Scotty was meant to be part of the overall theme of the picture. If it was, it was handled pretty poorly. We don't see the circumstances that led him to pick the boy up and carry him, the last we hear from Scott he's busy trying to restore power, and then all of a sudden he's at the bridge with a dying cadet in his arms. No set-up of a win/no win situation. In the theatrical version there wasn't even mention of Preston being Scotty's nephew, making his behavior even more inexplicable.

    It was just a way to inject some classic-movie-inspired drama into the scene, to make things serious again after the brief triumph of blasting Reliant and forcing her to break off. It reminds everyone that Kirk's screw-up in the initial action had real human consequences.

    Even if Scotty's action was meant to be on par thematically with that of the other characters, he certainly got the short end of the stick character-wise. Kirk: Battles back from defeat, wins, loses his best friend and comes to terms with his mortality. Spock: Makes the ultimate sacrifice for his comrades. Terrell: Takes his own life rather than betray his fellows and dies honorably. Scotty: Loses his head, leaves his post and delays medical attention for an injured man.

    I still like the film, a lot. I don't like absolutely everything in it, though.
     
  12. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Regarding Scotty "leaving" his post, why assume he didn't arrange for there to be adequate coverage? Perhaps he went to check on some damage first-hand (as we know he would) and then found his nephew, not realizing that it was his nephew who'd stayed at his post while the other trainees fled.
     
  13. Crisp Crinkle

    Crisp Crinkle Admiral Admiral

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    For Scotty's bringing of Preston to the bridge to literally make no sense, it has to be devoid of reasonable, even if not wholly flattering, subtext for why Scotty would deliberately do such a thing, and I don't believe that it is.

    On the contrary, there are certain things strongly suggested, if not implied, by Scotty's actions, that do make sense. One, he knows that Peter is a goner. He's taken a look at his radiation badge, or he saw the events that overdosed Peter with his own eyes. The scene wouldn't make sense if Scotty were delaying medical attention, so we can rule that out. Two, Scotty's emotionally devastated, and he's passed his limit for what he can take. Three, and this is perhaps the most important, Scotty's angry at Kirk. He wants to make sure that Kirk sees first hand what underestimating the situation has cost. With the ship still in danger, that's not a spurious, vain, or self-serving end, even if it is out of line. Their lives are still all in jeopardy, and Kirk had better wise up, if they are going to get out of it. Scotty surely knows exactly what happened with the shields, and how Kirk had bungled the situation by ignoring danger. Perhaps Scotty thought he was going to read Kirk the riot act when he got in the elevator, perhaps Peter himself mumbled Kirk's name, which screwed up Scotty's courage to take the elevator straight to the bridge, but obviously any urge to say something had passed by the time the doors opened.

    An alternative to going to the bridge being Scotty's idea alone is that perhaps Peter asked Scotty if he could speak to Kirk one more time before he died. Perhaps all Peter wanted to say is that he doesn't blame Kirk.

    Are there other ways that these character beats could have been made, without doing that? Sure. Could any of the alternatives have worked better? Possibly. But that's not my point. My point is that the idea that it makes literally no sense, and that it exemplifies implausible behavior or behavior that's out of character, is overstating the problem; in fact, it's doing the opposite, by defining character, even if it's in ways that make Scotty look bad. Also, accusing Scotty of leaving his post is an utterly unsupportable accusation.

    For an example of something that makes much less sense, refer to Kirk and Rand holding each other as the Romulan plasma weapon closes in, in "Balance of Terror".
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2014
  14. 2takesfrakes

    2takesfrakes Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The Empire Strikes Back is a collassal bore! Especially - but not exclusively - on Dagobah. It's just there to eat up time. It felt like they had no movie. Just stretching scenes out until the 2 hour mark was reached. Yoda isn't even telling Luke (or us) anything nobody didn't already know. Even Luke complains, "... what am I doing here? We're just wasting our time!" And it's true!

    Then everybody on the FALCON sitting around, doing nothing inside the asteroid sock puppet. Then it's watching Luke wander the halls of Cloud City endlessly, with Vader showing up occassionally, briefly, until he cuts off his boy's hand. ESB looks very beautiful (Carrie Fisher, even more so). The soundtrack is John Williams' best. But it just drags on and takes so long to unwind ... needlessly!
     
  15. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    It is obvious that the best way to get prompt medical attention is not to carry an injured person somewhere other than sickbay, so there is no question about the delay. In fact, it's probably best to keep him where he is, since we see in that very movie that medical aid parties go to where the injured are, including engineering. Whatever it was, the exact procedure for what to do with injured people would have already been established and reinforced by countless drills.

    And in fact they do take Preston to sickbay, where the senior surgeon himself works on him. Which, if his death was already certain, would be against the principles of triage and would be taking medical attention away from someone who could be saved.

    If all that were true, it still says to me: Scotty lost it. A real-world officer who did something as bizarre in a naval battle would find himself relieved of duty, at least until his mental fitness could be established. Again, I find that contrary to the character as established in TOS.

    I don't know if it's utterly unsupportable. The crew was at battle stations, you don't leave your battle station until the ship has secured from general quarters or you are ordered to do so. The Condition Red lights were still on when Scott came to the bridge, so they had not secured. It also undermines Scotty's previously-undisputed position as miracle-worker of the engine room, who can make the ship do things nobody else can, and who gets the job done. Unless we suppose that engineering was completely set to rights in the few minutes between Scotty's last report and Reliant's retreat.

    Anyway, it seems like a lot of contortions to justify a brief dramatic scene in a picture that Nicholas Meyer has said was aimed at a juvenile level. The fact that it can be debated so strongly indicates to me that it is seriously flawed, but as I said the fact that it doesn't hold up to strong scrutiny is not a deal-breaker for me and I still love the movie.
     
  16. ATimson

    ATimson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The cast was only three years older than in TMP, but TMP had them artificially young; they had aged ten years between TOS and TMP, but TMP was only 3 years later.

    They were able to cheat the aging in TMP with camera tricks; instead, Meyer and Bennett decided to embrace the aging, letting the actors act their age and tell a story around that.

    Really? He never left the ship; that was always Riker's job. He did effectively park himself in a rocking chair, it just happened to be on the bridge.
     
  17. Lance

    Lance Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Except in the movies, where he's bounding around opening up cans of whup-ass on his enemies like he thinks he's some kind of septuagenarian Bruce Willis or something. :rolleyes:
     
  18. Crisp Crinkle

    Crisp Crinkle Admiral Admiral

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    Exactly my point, or rather the point. See my point #2. Kirk and Spock are growing beyond their TOS limitations, why does Scotty have to be a flat character too? Isn't he allowed to break down? Or, is his function limited to being just a prop for Kirk to call on when he needs more engine power?

    Again, I'm not saying that it was the best way of handling things. I'm just saying that this is a far cry from a "Spock's Brain" moment of making absolutely no sense. I'm saying that what it does is to show a member of the crew acting less than perfectly. What I'm hearing is that it makes no sense for the crew to be shown acting less than perfectly, and I'm saying that that makes no sense.
     
  19. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, can't please everyone.:p
     
  20. 2takesfrakes

    2takesfrakes Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    At least STAR WARS has that Title Card in the very beginning of all the movies that pronounces itself a fairy tale. Making its case almost water-tight! Which all but defangs - and declaws - any and all criticism, because "Anything Goes" in the land of make-believe. Whereas STAR TREK has this tradition of being so concerned with credibility - particularly with the various television series. But it is something, how Nicholas Meyers lifted quotes and whole pages right out of Mobey Dick - so nakedly, I might add - and to such adulation. Yet, the adulation of his admirers is, perhaps, no less capricious than the disparagement of his detractors in the light of WRATH of KHAN's influence and success - despite being possessed of a plethora of shortcomings ...