Nemesis: Alternate Ideas

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by M.A.C.O., Feb 28, 2022.

  1. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I rarely agree with Lindelof but I see his point. Trying to draw people in, especially non Trek fans, would mean having a touchstone for them to grab on to. In this case, Earth. Not saying it isn't possible to use other draws, but his larger point is one I can agree with. Especially since the TOS films did the same thing.
     
  2. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    Do Star Trek movies need to draw in non-Trek fans? Have they every done research on how many people who pay to see a Star Trek movie were already fans and how many aren't/weren't?

    Asking because this seems to have been a long-running assumption: that Star Trek movies, and to a lesser degree the series as well, need to appeal to a broader audience than "just" Trek fans. That has lead to things like Nemesis. But what if there are actually plenty of Star Trek fans in the world to make a "made for the fans" production financially worthwhile?
     
  3. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yes. Because the franchise needs to grow, not just from a financial standpoint, but to invite more people to be a part of this supposedly positive, optimistic, view of the future that is super welcoming*


    *most of the time.

    My familiarity with the BTS of Nemesis is sketchy, but I did not see the outside appeal of that film. The elements that felt out of place, buggy scene, Scorpion scene, were because of Patrick Stewart's insistence, not broad appeal.
     
  4. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    That's a fair point.

    I still feel the recent movies, starting with Nemesis, have tried too hard to be crowdpleasers, though, with lots of action at the expense of plot.

    Surely it must be possible to create new Star Trek fans with movies and series that are designed for Star Trek fans.
     
  5. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Depends on the film. 09 did great. Nemesis certainly did not.
    Maybe. But there has to be that hook, something that feels less intimating than the weight of Trek's history. I think 09 did well enough because well, my mom watched it and she hates SF. Obviously some fine tuning would be helpful but I put that on the writer's strike than anything else.
     
  6. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    I do agree you need to be able to enjoy a movie on its own merits. You shouldn't have to know the whole history of Star Trek in order to see a film.

    But the first nine movies, to my mind, demonstrated that it's possible to do that while still creating something for longtime fans.
     
  7. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    How so? Because few people I knew were inclined towards the first nine, aside from Star Trek IV, if they didn't have any familiarity with Star Trek (TOS, TNG or otherwise). Like, the awareness was coming from friends of mine who were fans. I would be curious if there was that broad appeal outside of maybe three films.
     
  8. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    Earth was not a 'smashing ground' in the TOS films. At best it was just a backdrop for establishing the plot or part of a high-stakes scenario. Even Star Trek VI was smart enough to not have the climax of the film take place at Earth.

    What Lindelof is talking about here is having Earth be a major setting of their movies where a lot of important stuff happens. That may make the movies relatable, but is that really compliments the overall setting of Star Trek? You know, space?! It's difficult to convey the Enterprise's mission statement of 'To Boldly go where no one has gone before" when most of it is set on the one place that's as far from the unknown as you can get.
     
  9. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    In my opinion, yes.
     
  10. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    I should have phrased that differently. There are really two aspects to this:

    One is if you can understand a movie (the plot, the characters, the setting) without having seen any Star Trek before. I think any movie needs to do that.

    Whether or not non-fans will enjoy the movie is a second question.

    I think all the movies met that first test. Maybe with the exception of 3, since it's a direct sequel, but then they did provide a brief recap in the beginning, and you really only need to know Spock sacrificed himself to save his comrades in order to understand the rest of the third movie.

    As to the second point (will non-fans like it?), I think all movies up to Nemesis were made more for fans than the general movie audience - and were successful. Nemesis, to me, felt like an attempt to appeal to a broader audience, and the reboot movies after it too. I think they've been less appreciated by fans as a result, since they traded some of their "Star Trekkiness" for action and visual effects.
     
  11. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Trek movies are action, visual effects or some combination of the two. If you're saying earlier films could appeal to both then both TWOK and FC both used action and effects. TMP is renown as a visual effects spectacle.

    Not sure how Nemesis ticks these boxes more.
     
  12. FederationHistorian

    FederationHistorian Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Pretty sure that the touchstones are supposed to be Kirk, Spock, & the USS Enterprise due to being mainstream characters. followed by the setting, since it suggests that Kirk, Spock & the Enterprise are in the background.

    Exactly. And it’s a slippery slope to be on, considering how many movies use NYC as a backdrop. Yes, he cites MCU (even though the Infinity Saga itself technically spans the universe, so even when using it as an example Lindelof misses the point), but he may as well acknowledge that he wants to see a disaster movie/monster movie in the Trek universe, since that's the direction it fells like he's leaning in.

    There are a number of scenarios involving NYC Lindelof could borrow from for his Earth-centric Star Trek vision.
    • Aliens come to Earth and destroy NYC and other cities looking for resources, which we more or less had with ST’09 (Independence Day)
    • Meteor from causes a megatsunami that strikes the Eastern seaboard and ends up reaching the Midwest, as well as Europe and Africa (Deep Impact)
    • A meteor shower in NYC results in sending Bruce Willis to space to blow up an incoming asteroid (Armageddon)
    • Godzilla ’98 aka GINO crosses the Pacific Ocean to Manhattan and has GINO babies (Godzilla)
    • NYC and entire planet end up in a new Ice Age (The Day After Tomorrow)
    • Someone records a monster ravaging NYC with a group of friends (Cloverfield)
    • Mutants inhabiting the deserted ruins of NYC (I Am Legend)
    • An over-the-top end of the world scenario (2012)
    • The aforementioned Infinity Saga (MCU)

    If all of these plots were used one movie after another for Earth-centric plots, instead of using other worlds or even Earth colonies, it would get pretty exhausting as a moviegoer at some point.

    If something important is happening every movie, then nothing's important. Even the MCU took detours away from NYC to other locales on Earth to make NYC be a bigger deal, with no detriment to the overall story.
     
  13. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    Longer (space) battles, less substance.

    TWOK was also a movie about aging, about regret, about learning to live with the choices we make. First Contact was about trauma and how to deal with it. Both were about personal growth. At the end of both movies, Kirk and Picard respectively are better men.

    I didn't see something in Nemesis.
     
  14. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Well, the something in Nemesis was a lukewarm retread of TWOK that unfortunately made little sense.

    But, again, I don't see it the same way as you. In my opinion ST 09 is the perfect example of appealing to general audiences, and having substance. TWOK, by far, was the largest jump because while it was about something, it was a completely different style from TMP. Nemesis wasn't about too much and had more input from people who were familiar with Trek, like Stewart and Spiner, in terms of content.

    So, I think it comes down purpose behind the story choices and not just visual effects and action. Largely because TOS started out as an action/adventure show.
     
  15. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    You're right TWOK was bigger leap from TMP than Nemesis was from the earlier three TNG films.

    Of course it comes down to personal preference, too.

    I actually like Insurrection a lot. Not the best of the 10, but I don't get why some rank it very low. To me it's a good combination of action and adventure, character, and the sort of story only Star Trek could tell.
     
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  16. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    Someone made a point that finally made me realize why I never liked Insurrection.

    The Baku have no say in the discussion.

    By that I mean no one asks them what they think about the planet's rings being used to advance medical science that would help billions. And there are only two outcomes that would come out of asking them that question.

    1. If they agree that the rings should be collected and studied for the galaxy's benefit, then there's no movie.
    2. If they don't want to move and keep the power of the planet's rings to themselves, they are now a bunch of selfish a-holes.

    And that is why I think this film ranks so low on so many lists. It cheats its way out of telling a dramatic story.
     
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  17. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I agree it comes down to personal preference, which is why Insurrection is a film that I felt didn't tell it's story well. Instead of playing with a wide variety of points of view, it creates a very arbitrary black and white dilemma rather than encouraging different points of view, and in so doing, makes the stakes a little less. It actually feels like it is not interested in the questions it creates.

    I think the story as it was could have been interesting, but I found things like Stargate SG-1 exploring similar themes across a couple of different stories in the series. So, even with this Trek story, it isn't that unique.
     
  18. Summer Solstice

    Summer Solstice Captain Captain

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    INS and TVH are my favourites. TVH because it's fun. I'm not sure why I like INS so much - on paper the story isn't great - perhaps I like it because all the TNG characters actually get to do stuff. Yes, it feels like an extended episode and that probably wasn't the intention, but the straight-to-dvd Stargate movies were good so there's nothing wrong with that if that's what you are going for.

    I watched GEN, FC and INS back-to-back recently. GEN and FC don't use the whole of the cast that well. It makes sense that everyone is in GEN because they are still on the Ent-D but it doesn't make sense that no one except Worf has been promoted or reassigned by the time FC happens. FC could start with Riker being promoted to Captain and then not being in the rest of the film (Frakes directed so he'd still be involved). It was odd that Data went to Earth because he looks like an alien to a 21st century human - I think he should have stayed on the Enterprise and then Dr Crusher could have had the lines that Lily had (I liked the character of Lily but the conversation she has with Picard is the kind of conversation Dr Crusher has with Picard in the show). So much happened in FC that I'm not sure it needed the scenes with the Borg Queen. At the end of the film, one of the other characters could move to a new assignment and then they, Worf and Riker happen to be on holiday on the Enterprise during INS.

    When I saw NEM, I forgot that Riker and Troi got back together at the end of INS. I was confused that they were getting married because Riker spent the whole of TNG being involved with most of the women he met except for Troi.
     
  19. Ottens

    Ottens Commander Red Shirt

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    A good point! I guess in the beginning, when they thought the Ba'ku were a primitive, pre-warp civilization, they couldn't ask them without violating the Prime Directive. But as soon as they learned the Ba'ku were actually an advanced species, they could have put the proposition to them.
     
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  20. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I've long felt that Insurrection would've worked better more tied to the Dominion War or putting a Dominion War TNG film in its place. As for the pushback that the average audience wouldn't understand what was going on if plopped in the middle of a Dominion War film, I think there have been many war films about battles and not the war itself. Either in dialogue or written at the beginning of the film could set it up what was happening. If this focus is just on one battle, one planet (thinking like the novel The Battle of Betazed) then I think the audience for the most part can grasp what's going on, if nothing else the personal stakes of the characters, if not the wider galactic stakes. Further that might funnel new fans to look at DS9 to see what happens with the Dominion War after the film. (I recall the X-Files movie, Fight the Future. It did well, from what I recall, without anticipating that everyone who looked at it was steeped in that series' alien mythology). As others alluded to, how big was the 90s filmgoing audience for Trek anyway? First Contact did gangbusters at that time, but that would be relatively peanuts today, so the audience was somewhat limited already. Further I think the goodwill First Contact had engendered perhaps could've gotten whatever new or casual fans that liked First Contact to give a more inside baseball Trek movie a chance or be patient with it.

    A few other things about the Dominion War TNG movie...for any Trek film there are going to be bad guys, so why not use established bad guys? And using the Dominion while DS9 was on builds up the whole franchise, makes the experience all the richer. When I look over other Trek movies, didn't seem people were too put off by the return of the Klingons (without real explanation for who they were and what they meant on TOS) and most definitely Khan (who had been in one episode almost 20 years before TWOK). The writing, acting, special effects, and direction got audiences into TWOK without a primer. I believe a Dominion War TNG movie (looking at a story like Battle of Betazed or the TNG Dominion War novels) could've done it. Battle of Betazed makes the stakes personal for Troi and also allows for a return of Troi's mother, and the TNG Dominion War novels is just one big mission inside of the war, but one that would have stakes for that particular film but also DS9. It would've been great as well if they had also been able to have Ro in a film.

    For the original poster, the idea of Shinzon being a Changeling is inspired. However, I do think that undercuts the philosophizing about nature versus nurture because a Changeling Picard is just another being impersonating Picard versus a younger clone of him who is struggling to establish his own identity. I also don't see the need to have the Remans be another genetically engineered species, unless they are changed to an improved version of Jem' Hadar. But still the changes made would make putting Earth in peril make a lot more sense than it did in the actual movie.

    For a good while, on various threads about Nemesis, I've posted that it would've been better to have Romulus in peril and that the Enterprise-E risks all to save the Romulan homeworld. I think the creators sought to emulate the wrong TOS film for Nemesis. They were looking for another Wrath of Khan when The Undiscovered Country would've been a better way to go. And I would've preferred they brought back Sela and Tomalak in some way, even if in cameos.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2022