Star Trek Generations at 20 (November 18, 1994)

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by cooleddie74, Nov 18, 2014.

  1. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Star Trek Generations premiered in North American theaters 20 years ago today on Nov. 18, 1994, becoming the "passing of the torch" film from the classic TOS cast and characters to the Next Gen actors and stories after fifteen years of Kirk and Company helming all of the franchise's big screen adventures. It opened to decidedly mixed fan and critic reviews even though it did very good box office for a Star Trek film of the time and its overall success led to three more TNG-era movies being filmed and released over the next eight years.

    What are your memories of the debut of Generations 20 years ago this week? Did you go the first week or even on opening day? How many times did you pay to see the movie? What are your favorite memories of the film? It's hard to believe that a whole two decades have now elapsed since the movie premiered and so much has happened to the franchise both on the big and small screens since the fall of 1994.

    "What we leave behind is not as important as how we lived. After all, Number One....we're only mortal."

    "Speak for yourself, Sir. I plan to live forever."

    "I always thought I'd get a shot at this chair someday."

    "Perhaps you still will....somehow I doubt this will be the last ship to carry the name Enterprise."


    [yt]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyseECuMCv4[/yt]
     
  2. Smellmet

    Smellmet Commodore Commodore

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    Saw it four times at the cinema. The things that stuck in my head at the time are stellar cartography and the saucer crash - that was (and still is) a great bit of effects work. Other than that I remember being very disappointed with the last act of the film - basically as soon as Picard goes into the Nexus.

    Today not much has changed for me - I still think the first three quarters of the movie are very entertaining with great FX, and a good balance of action and intrigue, and as I've got older I find I have a new found appreciation for the cinematography, which I think is excellent, and way better that the films that followed.

    As soon as Jean-Luc goes into the ribbon though the film falls apart on the spot for me, and it's a great shame, because up to that point I think the movie holds its own against most of the movie franchise. The ending hobbles it to such a degree that I can only rank it as 'OK'
     
  3. Trek Survivor

    Trek Survivor Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Well, it was released in Feb 1995 here in the UK, but I'll chime in with my memories anyway...

    This was a wonderful era to be a Trek fan, pure and simple. The period '94-'96 was probably Trek at its biggest, in terms of public attention, popularity, saturation etc.

    We had the end of TNG, Star Trek: Generations, start of Voyager, DS9 continuing, the 30th anniversary, First Contact, the start of Star Trek Monthly (in the UK; now nearly 20 years old itself)... just a great time.

    Back to Generations: Merchandise was everywhere, Trek was on the cover of all sorts of magazines, there was a real 'mass appeal' feel to it. I went to see the movie not quite on opening day, but pretty close, with some friends. Got the bus over to the nearest town with a cinema and enjoyed. I knew the broad strokes of the plot, but hadn't read the novel or a detailed synopsis.

    It was fun! I came out of the cinema satisfied. It LOOKED good, every character got a little something, it was great to see Kirk and Picard together etc. I was a happy fan.

    Looking back... I can see the problems with the film more easily than I could back then. But I still can't bring myself to not like it; maybe it's too intrinsically linked to that whole period of my Trek fandom (and the resulting nostalgia), but I still enjoy watching the movie.

    In my mind, its the closest TNG movie that still "feels" like the TNG TV show - that earns it plenty of kudos in my book.
     
  4. RandyS

    RandyS Vice Admiral Admiral

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    My best friend and I saw it in our neighborhood theater on opening day. The place was packed to the rafters. We ended up sitting at the end of the far left isle somewhere down front, which meant we also had to look up, an uncomfortable position to be in for 2 hours. On top of that, Because the room was full, I stayed in my wheelchair (I usually transfer seats at the movies), which meant that for me, the picture was even more seen from the side.

    Two weeks later, I went again with my mom, brother, and stepdad, to another packed showing at the same theater, and this time was up in the balcony, back when our theaters had balconies (again, staying in my wheelchair), but got a better view of the movie.
     
  5. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I also saw it four times in the theater, the most I've ever gone to see any Trek film during its original theatrical run. Even realizing some of the movie's inherent flaws at the time I first saw it, it was still a very fun experience to view on the big screen with the cutting-edge CGI and model effects of the time (the Nexus Ribbon and the Enterprise-D approaching the Amargosa Observatory with both bathed in brilliant orange sunlight from the nearby Amargosa star) just wowing me, and the cinematography of the overall film was just a step above most of the sets and visual environments of the TV series.

    Getting to see the Enterprise-B for the first time outside of a technical manual, published book or the 1701-D's observation lounge wall sculptures was also a treat and it quickly became one of my all-time favorite Enterprises even though we haven't seen it in any other movie or TV episode since except for the updated, more detailed display case and wall-mounted sculptures aboard the Enterprise-E in the following films.
     
  6. DWF

    DWF Admiral Admiral

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    I saw it on the preview night the Thursday before it opened and I loved then and I love it now. It was a huge movie with big storyline, it looked great and the first time I saw the crash scene I stopped breathing. It was the true to TNG and it really felt like a movie not a big TV storyline. I haven't gotten tired of rewatching it yet.
     
  7. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Also, Dennis McCarthy's amazing and frequently underrated soundtrack for the film. One of the truly great Star Trek movie soundtracks and one that contains some of the best and most memorable moments in the musical history of the franchise.

    [yt]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1jCCqj7gps[/yt]

    [yt]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8K6aPsN-tc[/yt]

    [yt]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxoAjjeXb_M[/yt]
     
  8. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Fleet Admiral Premium Member

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    I know a lot of people don't like this movie, but I do. There is a lot of stuff here that made this movie worth while such as:

    1) All the quotes regarding time, like "Time is like a predator...It's stocking you"

    2) The horse riding scene

    3) The musical score, especially during the Horse riding scene

    4) Data and Picard in Steller Cartography

    5) And just for laughs, Data during the Enterprise Crash scene

    It's not my favorite trek film, but it's middle of the pack, and McDowell made a good villain. I grew up on Star Trek, and man 1990-2000 was a very good decade. I think 1994-1996 might have been Trek at it's Peak, with TNG ending, Generations, DS9 entering it's highest point with Seasons 4-6, and then I think Star Trek: First Contact ended 1996. If we ever have something like that again, maybe not an over-saturation levels but somewhere close, I will be really happy.
     
  9. c0rnedfr0g

    c0rnedfr0g Commodore Commodore

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    I was just a kid at the time (9 yrs old), but I'd argue that what is most surprising is how so little has happened to the franchise since then. I mean, in 1994, we essentially had buzz circling 4 groups of Trek actors (TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY), and at the time, my childlike brain thought things would only get bigger. To my disappointment, since 1994 the only new canon Trek we didn't know about were ENT and the new JJ-verse crew.
     
  10. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Fleet Admiral Premium Member

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    You know, I'm listening to the main theme to Generations right now, and they don't make the music as majestic anymore. I don't remember much from the scores of Insurrection to now (First Contact had a pretty majestic theme) and nothing really stands out.
     
  11. bbailey861

    bbailey861 Admiral Premium Member

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    The wife and I went on opening night and what I remember most vividly about this movie, all these years later, are the tears that welled up when Kirk died. Despite overall liking the film and have a great many good memories of it, I still cannot get myself to accept the way that Kirk was killed - and I just rewatched the movie a couple of weeks ago. It was like nobody could find a way to properly send him off. I think even Mcdowell even commented on how both the original shoot and the re-shooting of the death scenes were not a proper send-off of such an iconic character. Boy, was I glad when the Shatner and Reeve-Stevens' book, "The Return" came out. Despite all that, there was a lot of good in that movie. If not for the end death scene it would have been, for me, magnificent.
     
  12. Indysolo

    Indysolo Commodore Commodore

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    I saw this one 8 times in the theater, starting with the Thursday night preview. The theater I saw it at was only a few months old, and had the best sound system in the area. It was THX certified and they ran the film in DTS. The space battles and the crash sounded amazing. I kept going back for that.

    Seeing the film opening night with Trekkies was different than seeing it opening weekend with casual fans. Both showings were sold out, but when Data is laughing at the joke and says, "During the Farpoint mission..." the Trekkie audience laughed, but the casual audience didn't. They didn't laugh until Geordi's line about it being seven years ago.

    Neil
     
  13. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It sucked 20 years ago, and it still sucks today. I went with a couple of friends on opening night. The first theater we went to had the projection break down shortly into the movie, so we drove to another theater to catch a later showing there. MASSIVELY disappointing, and I remember getting into an argument with one of my friends on the drive back home. He liked it, I hated it. :lol:

    The TNG crew deserved a better big-screen debut, and Kirk deserved a MUCH better send-off.
     
  14. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    I didn't see it for a week or two IIRC, but I thought it sucked and have never seen it again. I thought it had a complacent, self-satisfied feel without delivering much to back it up. It felt like an extended TNG episode whose big budget showed mostly on inconsequential suff like the holodeck sailing ship and the cartography scenes. The main motivation came from what seemed like a Special Guest Villain. Kirk's end, which had been hyped as a passing-the-torch big deal, was underwhelming to say the least. I couldn't believe I had once thought it would be a good idea to move TNG into movies. The last Trek movie I bothered to see in the theater.
     
  15. Admiral Bear

    Admiral Bear Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It took a good years and repeated viewings for Generations to grow on me. There's a lot of good in it, but also too much bad that's just. . .really bad.

    Alan Ruck.. .met him. .lovely guy. . but Harriman's the limpest lettuce leaf of a Starfleet captain ever to be given a command. There was just no need for his character to have been written like that. If it was to make Kirk appear more macho and "take charge", it failed. We all know Kirk has those attributes.

    The whole execrable Data emotion chip sub plot which was just a deux ex machina for the dull La Forge kidnapping/torture/walking around the Enterprise while Lursa and Betor mug to camera while saying "Human females are so ugly" scenes, which were in themselves were just another deux ex machina to destroy the Enterprise.

    Loved the lighting of the Ent-D Bridge.

    Loved the Nexus Christmas scene.

    Quite liked the big TNG crew entrance scene at sea, although it probably took up far too much of what would've been a fairly modest budget, and served little purpose.

    Liked the horse riding scene and the musical score.

    Still to this day really dislike how Kirk's character was changed. He doesn't care about much at all while he's in the Nexus until Picard shows up. Having to be lectured by Picard about being a Starfleet officer and about it being his duty to help, was just embarrassing. The Kirk we all knew would never have needed to have had those things said to him. He would've been saying them to everyone else.

    Kirk's death scene. Just nasty.

    Like the lighting on the destroyed Ent-D Bridge during the end scene with Picard looking for his photo album amongst the debris, Riker's "I always thought I'd get a shot at this chair one day" line which both looks back at the past and forward to the future with Picard's "Perhaps you still will".

    The end main theme.

    I think I finally realised I quite liked the film when I watched it on laserdisc late on Christmas Eve in to Christmas Day morning during the late 90s.
     
  16. enterprisecvn65

    enterprisecvn65 Captain Captain

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    Jesus......has it been that long. Well thanks for my "At this rate I'm going to be dead in no time" moment for the day.;)

    Well my thoughts from the time.

    1. Overall very disappointing to me.

    2. Musical score is excellent and extremely underrated. I got to hear the theme song preformed live by Erich Kunzel (RIP) and the Cincinatti Pops when they were on a sci-fi tour and he said it was one of his personal favorites. Gave me goosebumps when they played it.

    3. Think it tried to capture the dramatic and shocking themes from TWOK and TSFS but failed miserably.

    * Kirk's actions leading to him dying, didn't have nearly the drama or emotion of Spock's sacrifice and death.

    * Cacked the Enterprise-D like the 1701 in TSFS, but the 1701 death was an excellent scene filled with emotion and intensity and it had a practical purpose too (Taking out half of Kruge's crew). While the Enterprise-D bought it basically because the entire bridge crew became stupid and allowed it to get its ass kicked by an out of date BOP leading to the explosion of the stardrive section (which we saw for all of about 3 seconds) and the crash of the saucer probably because Deanna, who may have spent all of 2 hours qualifiying at helm couldn't keep the ship in orbit when Riker (The best pilot in Starfleet as was mentioned several times in TNG) might have been able to save it. The crash was pretty well done I thought, except for all the windows breaking like they were plate glass.

    * Tried to have a villian totally obsessed with something and would stop at nothing to get it: Khan-Revenge and Soran-Immortality. Yet Soran was bland and uninteresting, and I think McDowell is a great actor.

    4. Really kicked off the whole crossover theme, just for the hell of it, into high gear and it's so old now. Yes they had McCoy briefly on the first TNG, but he was just a small cameo. Unification was well done and I liked. Then they had to throw in Scotty in an episode which was lame, then we had to have 3 TOS cast members make appearances to "ease" the transition. Plus Sulu's daughter was at the Ent B's helm, now Nimoy has been in the Abrahams ones (Man for a guy who bitched about hating Spock for years, he sure has held on to that roll as long as possible), Shatner is going to be in the next one and he's dead. LaForge was on an episode of Voyager. Picard was on the 1st DS9, so was Frakes later on (though not as Will) Worf became a regular on DS9. And others I'm sure I've missed Enough with the crossover crap already, just make a new movie or show and let it be it's own thing.

    It is possible to just start a new series without always referring to characters in the old ones. Sean Connery didn't have some death scene where he passes the title 007 to Roger Moore or appear in some Moore films as some expert consultant or something.

    4. Pound for pound I think the sequence from when the Enterprise-D arrives at Veridian III to Kirk's death may have been the most poorly written sequence of events in any ST film and not just of little nit picky things.......But I'll explore that another time. Yeah things from TFF were probably worse on a straight scale of crappiness, but considering who directed that film I was kind of expecting those moments.

    5. I do remember at the end laughing hysterically when Picard and Riker are in the ready room and Picard finds part of the Kurlinescar and casually tosses it away like a random piece of debris. This was probably Picard's most cherished possession, never in any episode of TNG did we see him react so emotionally to an object when his professor gave it to him and yet when he finds the top, apparently intact he just kind of throws it down.:lol::lol::lol:

    Made it even funnier when Plinkett Reviews noticed the exact same thing.

    All in all it was a compromise film and came off as one the first time I saw it. Should have just done away with the "transition" theme and gone full bore TNG. Of course that doesn't mean that it would have been a good film necessarily, the well seemed to be running dry by that time (cough,cough Rick Berman).
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2014
  17. Smellmet

    Smellmet Commodore Commodore

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    I've got some vague memory of when LaForge was captured in it, it was stated that they tortured him by doing something to his heart, even Soran says 'his heart wasn't in it' but there's no mention of it on my DVD. Can anyone else shed any light on it or am a just going senile?
     
  18. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^
    The cardial probe torture scene was actually filmed and exists, but was deleted from the final cut of the movie. Here's a rough copy of the footage:

    [yt]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kI3U18GnwT8[/yt]
     
  19. Indysolo

    Indysolo Commodore Commodore

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    The torture sequence was cut out. Soran stopped Geordi's heart. It's in the script and maybe deleted scenes section, but it was never in the movie.

    Prior to the release of the film I'd read the script, so I knew about the scene, and I got Soran's reference.

    Neil
     
  20. Smellmet

    Smellmet Commodore Commodore

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    Thats strange - I don't recall ever watching any deleted scenes or documentaries about the movie, yet I know about this.