Star Trek Into Darkness & The Bechdel Test

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies: Kelvin Universe' started by Shaka Zulu, Jun 6, 2013.

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  1. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    She was still the less experienced officer and since Chekov was able to locate and fix the issue with the Enterprise warp core, I'd say he had the skill set he needed to be chief engineer.
     
  2. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    For starters, I thinks it's silly that Keenser is an officer, let alone the assistant chief purely because of he is portrayed and treated in the movies and comics. I suppose one could argue that he's the same as Morn, who allegedly never shut up off-screen... :rommie:

    I would probably have used a new female character (or a TOS character like Ann Mulhall, Charlene Masterson, etc) but give her just a few lines of dialogue, leaving her to get on with stuff in the background and assign Chekov to assist her. Chekov can deliver most of the same dialogue but he isn't in charge.
     
  3. Spock/Uhura Fan

    Spock/Uhura Fan Captain Captain

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    Lol. Well aren't you cute. Very wrong, but cute. :)

    -------

    To you.

    You can argue that, and I can argue that even many of the “positive” reviews I’ve read for this film are not that complementary outside of it being an action film, which even I’d give it a pass as. Their overseas marketing campaign seems to have worked, but domestically? Well, look that the numbers. Adjusting for inflation, this movie is behind the ’09 movie by several million, and that only gets worse if you adjust for IMAX 3D. It looks like less people are going to see this film domestically. I wonder why?

    Well, that’s changing it up. First it was we need to see the main cast and now we don’t. No one is saying anything about superior vs. inferior, just what’s preferable based on the premise that was laid out in the last film and for what someone might think a somewhat utopian future might entail. Obviously, you think it should be about 2-3 white men and no one else matters as much or perhaps even at all. I’ll have to disagree with that.

    If this was all a part of their plan then I’ll have to give them even less credit. Maybe you think Marcus was used well, but a lot of people don’t.

    She put McCoy in that situation when she told him to stick his hand in there, so , being a “weapon’s expert,” she owed it to him to not get them blown up. You could argue that as an “expert” that had unlimited access to these weapons and their designs, she should not have faced any problems at all. Her courage didn’t really amount to much, same with Uhura at the end of the day in my book, and she stood against her father for a few seconds until he quite easily beamed her over to his ship and moved along in facing “the real threat.”

    Like I said before, you won’t get me to disagree with you on the fact that they made choices. They definitely did that. I’m not sure that I’d call it art, though. But, that’s just me.

    You can have the last word on this part of this discussion because I think it has gone around in circles a few times.
     
  4. beamMe

    beamMe Commodore

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    I don't.
    But perhaps you wouldn't think him silly if he were a she.

    There is no need to bring in a new character - male or female - to take over for Scott.
     
  5. Ovation

    Ovation Vice Admiral Admiral

    Seeing how you conveniently edited out the one portion of my post (in bold, so it would be easy to notice) that also discredits your argument--can't see how he's wrong here.


    Wrong. To Trek. Kirk and Spock are by far the most important characters in all of Trek. That isn't opinion. It's fact.



    No change at all. Secondary characters are secondary and if they have little or no screen time, that's fine. But they are more important than tertiary characters (which is what a hypothetical character in engineering (female or male), to whom Chekov should report for the sake of "realism" :rolleyes:, would represent). IF there is a choice between a secondary or a tertiary character getting the limelight, secondary always wins. That is standard filmmaking.

    Even in an ensemble approach, Kirk and Spock would be the most important characters. Nice crack about "white men", by the way. :rolleyes: If Kirk and Spock were Latino and Asian women, respectively, I'd make the same argument. What matters most are the actual main characters. In Trek, that's Kirk and Spock. Tough shit for the other characters, but that's the way it is.

    Here's the part you oh so conveniently cut from the rest of the post: As it was, that scene acted as a further blow AGAINST Kirk's womanizing attitude. He's made to feel uncomfortable and that discomfort demonstrates A) his attitude is not all that acceptable and B) Marcus is confident enough to order him to "Turn around" rather than meekly stand there to be ogled at length. The scene does NOT suggest Kirk's behaviour deserves a frat boy "high five" or "fist bump". If it did, then I'd be the first to complain. (triple highlight now--in case you simply missed it last time)

    Except Marcus had already said earlier that these weapons were something to which she was DENIED ACCESS, which is why she snuck on board in the first place. As for Uhura's courage, what did she have to do? Take out the Klingon in single-handed combat? Only Khan managed that. Or are you still clinging to the ludicrous notion the filmmakers deliberately saddled her with an ineffectual weapon so she could just be a damsel in distress? Quite the compelling critique, that one. :rolleyes:

    It's a film? It's art. The quality of a thing does not alter the existence of a thing.
     
  6. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think Keenser makes a poor officer because he is basically portrayed as a grease monkey and barely utters more than a handful of words and Scotty treats him like a pet. Gender makes no difference but if he was clearly defined as female it would indeed help the numbers.

    I think people keep conflating the issues just to play devil's advocate. I've stated repeatedly that the issue is equality.
     
  7. Keeper

    Keeper Commodore Commodore

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    So few will miss him after he gives his life to save Scott? (That's a theory I have about his future. ;))
     
  8. KittyDuran

    KittyDuran Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Now, now... :devil: I actually like him in STiD, seems to have a purpose (job) and doesn't seem to be an afterthought - lets just throw in a cute alien. We do see him at the end of ST09 in Engineering and in uniform but what's his job? STiD sort of answers that.
     
  9. mos6507

    mos6507 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    If the film tried to send an anti-chauvanism message, it's doing a pretty poor job of it since now it has spawned all these members with Alice Eve avatars.
     
  10. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    I've seen two and one has Janeway's head.

    Admittedly, I don't really pay attention to avatars.
     
  11. The Naughty List

    The Naughty List Working the Pole Moderator

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    "All these members" being the two I've seen so far, one of whom is a woman who copy pasted Janeway's face on to a body (in this case Alice Eve's), as she does with all of her recent avatars. So clearly, a groundswell of chauvinism there.

    Speaking of "pretty poor," that was a pretty poor attempt at an argument. He lays out a thoughtful analysis of the scene in question and all you can come back with is an exaggeration of the amount of avatars people are displaying? Seriously? How about rebutting his points instead of sidestepping the issue, which seems to be a recurring problem with certain people in this thread. If your argument is so solid and indisputable, why keep avoiding anything that challenges it?
     
  12. Ovation

    Ovation Vice Admiral Admiral

    Wouldn't be the first time such an attempt was not read as intended (though I turn off the avatars, so I was not aware of this set of avatars). From a much better (IMO) film than any Trek movie, Eastwood's Unforgiven, there is a scene that is intended to convey the effects of aging on a gunslinger. He sets up a target and tries to hit it with his revolver. He misses each time. He then goes into his house (more like a hut) and retrieves a double short-barreled gun and blasts the target (a bottle or can--it's been awhile). The scene is meant to convey a loss of skill and, in context, should not elicit any positive reaction. However, when I saw this at the cinema, a number of people in the audience erupted with shouts of "Yeah!", "Damn straight" and other such hollers. Totally out of sync with the intention.

    As for the Eve scene, there is clearly some intentional titillation. But that's not ALL there is to it. If it were, Kirk would not be made to feel uncomfortable about having looked at her. It is the discomfort that redeems the moment. Not all attempts to pass a message succeed and given all the commentary on it, it is clear that this attempt was not an unqualified success. Nevertheless, and this is the point I am trying to make, there is clearly an attempt at criticizing Kirk's attitude in this scene and, as such, it does not deserve to be dismissed as purely gratuitous.
     
  13. The Naughty List

    The Naughty List Working the Pole Moderator

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    Exactly. I had a post that touched on similar points as yours in yet another thread on this subject back when STiD premiered in the US:

     
  14. Keeper

    Keeper Commodore Commodore

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    Honestly, Ovation's thoughts on the matter should be required reading at the Academy. Spot. On. Accurate. Period.
     
  15. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Quoted for truth.
     
  16. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think it's a valid point that the most popular movies work on multiple levels. Unforgiven was a masterpiece but I do think that the deeper message might have been lost on those who just liked all the shooting. But if they enjoy the movie on a much more superficial level, good for them. Movies are there to entertain after all.

    The most infamous scene n Basic Instinct is important to establish how Catherine Tremmell blatantly manipulates people by targeting their weaknesses. We know from the earlier scene that she is wearing no underwear, we know from the other characters' reactions that they can see up her skirt. The full frontal was not necessary to the scene, it was there to shock and titillate and I have no doubt that the movie's takings went up because people wanted to see THAT scene.

    FYI - it's a scene where the genders of the characters were necessary. If she'd been interviewed by Scott & Bailley or if Tremmell had been a man flashing his junk through his shorts, the scene would have been very different.

    The core of the underwear scene may have been to sow the seed of attraction for Kirk and show that Carol might be his match. The full frontal of Carol in her undies was there purely to titillate.

    I'm not overly bothered by it. It was obviously gratuitous but so are many other scenes in other shows and movies that are equally so. It was a running joke in Merlin that the male characters were running around topless every week for no particularly good reason. I'm fine with a bit of gratuitous nudity personally as long as that isn't all the characters are good for and indeed, for Carol, it isn't.
     
  17. The Naughty List

    The Naughty List Working the Pole Moderator

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    So, everything that was said about multiple levels to the scene was obviously wasted on you then.
     
  18. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    There was no need to age Chekov to shoe-horn him into the franchise early either. They made the choice to do so. I'm simply saying my preferred choice would have been for them to use a supporting character to avoid the sheer stupidity of promoting a junior, newly qualified officer to be chief engineer on a ship with over 400 crew.

    For what it's worth, I also think that using Bones in place of a weapons expert was stupid in STVI and it was stupid in STiD. My preference would have been to put together a proper landing party of qualified individuals: Carol the physicist, Chekov, the weapons technician (based on his background from TMP), Cupcake the weapons disposal expert, and McCoy in case they were biological weapons. Much of the scene can be engineered the same but the decision to spotlight lead actors feels less silly if they are not doing somebody else's job for no plausible reason. Cupcake could have been injured while opening the casing forcing McCoy to step up into a fish out of water scenario. It would feel better than sending the ship's surgeon down because of his steady hands when a bomb disposal expert has steady hands AND expertise.

    In ST09, I would have preferred a full landing party to go the Narada consisting of Kirk, Spock (mind meld, understands some Romulan), Uhura (fluent in Romulan), McCoy (Pike may need medical attention) and two security guards. It seemed stupid to send only 2 people when they had no idea what they were beaming into.

    In ST09 I would have tried to use Chekov's planetary science credentials (TWoK) to reveal more information about the destruction of Vulcan or big up his navigation skills to warp in close to the planet.

    I would probably have used Janice Rand in the transporter scene (TMP) and I'd have sent her as a security escort to Delta Vega, instead of wasting an escape pod, to test her loyalty to Pike or Kirk when Spock Prime reveals his story. In STiD I would have included her in the security team sent to Qo'Nos.

    In Trek09 I would have recruited Chapel from Life Sciences when the medical team is injured. In STiD I would have featured Chapel carrying out the research on Harrison's blood.

    Sulu is the character that they seem to be using organically so far, albeit his role is still quite small.

    I personally like to see them use the skills the characters have traditionally displayed. If you are going to give them the same name but with different skill sets and different personalities, it isn't really the same character. In Chekov's case, this is literally true, obviously.

    I deliberately look only to tweak the scenes that we already got (although I would have used a shape-shifting Garth instead of Khan, personally and I would have featured Kirk sending one of the main characters to their death instead of going himself - it was a lesson Troi had to learn and I think it would have been a good lesson for him at this point in his career. Bye bye Keenser...). No, my choices were not 'necessary' but they are little tweaks that that would have increased my enjoyment. Other people are perfectly entitled to say that they enjoyed the movies exactly as they were and both opinions are valid but it's nice to debate views on what changes people would have liked to see to improve the movie in their eyes.
     
  19. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Sort of. I have no particular interest in seeing Alice Eve in her undies. :vulcan: The other levels I got just fine.

    But I digress - I apologise if I wasn't clear - they didn't have to show her body fully on screen to achieve the same effect. The scene with Marion in Raiders of the Lost Ark is constructed similarly, but Karen Allen didn't flash her boobs because it wasn't actually needed to make the scene work. Subtlelty would have worked, it just would not have titillated as much.
     
  20. M'Sharak

    M'Sharak Definitely Herbert. Maybe. Moderator

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    There might have been another. I recall two Alice Eve/bikini underwear avs appearing promptly after that trailer was released. The Janeway version went up a bit later, and both of the "originals" have since been replaced with different images.

    If there were ever more than those three avs, they must have belonged to people who don't post here much. (There was, however, a non-av image which had been rendered wholly inoffensive by way of depicting Carol covered head-to-toe in a black burqa.)
     
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