Today, I saw Star Trek with my longtime friends Bill Boyd and Lars Frykman at matinee showing at the Grand Lake Theater in Oakland, thus following through on a plan we formed almost a month ago and I wrote about a few days ago. It was a cool reunion as I’d not seen Lars for just over 30 years and Bill and I get together for lunch maybe twice a year. Regardless of how little you see of each other, there’s something about the friends you had when you were a teenager, especially when they last as long as ours has. Star Trek was always a rallying point for us, so today’s meetup was a perfect way for the originators of the Bret Harte Star Trek Club to reconnect.
We’re all fans of the original series, and consider ourselves experts on it. What we liked about J.J. Abrams version was the attention to detail in referencing certain episodes and music themes.
The scene where Kirk and Spock (Nimoy) enter the outpost on Delta Vega has music that recalls entering the hatchery of the Horta in “The Devil in The Dark” or the discovery of the real “Balok” in “The Corbomite Manuever”. And as in the series Captain Pike was alive and bound to a wheel chair before being disfigured in a reactor accident. To kill him would have not been according to Star Trek history.
In fact, that’s where we were confused in the loss of Spock’s mother. She didn’t pass on in the series, so her death here was not understood by us. Also the Enterprise was constructed in Hunter’s Point Naval Shipyards in San Francisco, not Riverside, Iowa as in the movie.
The matter of the shipyards leads us to the Enterprise. What a terrific job Industrial Light and Magic did in making the ship look real, especially the daylight scene where Kirk reports for duty. That’s the first time we see the giant vessel as if it were really in drydock on Earth. An excellent achievement.
Bill made the observation that because we’re from an older generation this movie didn’t have enough dialog. I agree but I don’t say the movie wasn’t well done. Still we’re concerned that a society that wants stimulus over substance can be easily duped in a number of ways and this problem is something I will explore more of.
But even with that issue of style, Star Trek was a good, tight, entertaining film. Did it live up to our Trekker seal of approval?