Posted May 05 2011 - 07:54 PM
I had no problems with the brewery. I had no problems with pretty much everything in the film - I flat out loved it. And this coming from someone who fully expected the new movie to be terrible. Only twice in my life, as the lights have gone down in the theater, have a said a silent prayer to myself, "Please don't suck" -- before this movie, and before Episode III. I wasn't let down either time.
No, it's not TOS, but let's face it -- there's no way it could have been. Before this movie came out, I was saying to people, there's no way to remake this part of Star Trek because it's not as if there's a novel they can go back to and reinterpret. William Shatner is Kirk. Kirk is Shatner. Same for everyone else. I just didn't think it could be done in such a way that I could enjoy it. And then the first trailer came out, showing the building of the Enterprise, and I'm still thinking, "there's no way this could work, but it's a cool teaser." Then the second trailer comes out, and I'm thinking "this actually looks pretty cool". And then the third one comes out, the one where Pike says, "Your father was captain of a starship for 12 minutes; he saved 800 lives" -- and that line gave me goosebumps, made me think, "OK, this might actually work." Just the way that there was some emotion invested into the idea, not just a bunch of people in familiar looking outfits blowing shit up.
Ironically, after seeing the new Star Trek, I went home thinking, "OK, JJ Abrams, I have to stop making fun of you and at least give your other work a chance. I will now watch Fringe and Lost" - and I did, and I don't regret that either. But this Star Trek... I probably saw it about ten times in theaters, most of them in IMAX (I was lucky that I was living in Boston at the time, where the Aquarium, which has the biggest screen in New England, was showing it long after it disappeared from all other IMAX theaters.) It was bright, it was beautiful, it had effects that were completely convincing, characters that felt both familiar and new at the same time. By having Nimoy appear in it, it served as both a farewell to the classic Trek that I so loved as a child (and was a better send-off to the original crew members than Shatner's appearance in Generations) and opened another chapter. And frankly, after years of seeing Paramount spending as little money as possible to milk the most out of the Star Trek franchise, to see a movie that was given a huge budget where the filmmakers were allowed to dream, and dream big, that in and of itself was pretty awesome.
I can't claim to know a ton about quantum physics (or really anything at all.. about physics, that is!), but string theory seems to be at least somewhat accepted, and I can get behind the idea of alternate universes. I mean, if Nero and Spock Prime went through a black hole and came out in the past and their actions changed things... it seems at least somewhat possible that as events would have played out later in the 24th century, those characters might never have had opportunity to come back in time, and therefore, how could they have gotten there in the first place? It makes as much sense as anything else to me. And by doing it that way, this film felt both like a sequel and a prequel... that is, it took place in a time period before the original Star Trek but in a way seemed to come after everything else. It doesn't really matter that much -- I'm just kind glad about the idea that they don't have to do things in such a way where it somehow has to fit in with all the previous episodes and movies. I think it would be a much harder film to make, and a far less enjoyable one to watch, if it was predicated on being "filler" in the existing story as we know it. When Nero is destroyed at the end of the film and the Enterprise is trying to escape the grip of the black hole, at the moment I just said to myself, "please, don't let them get sucked into a black hole therefore somehow negating everything that happened in this film." And they didn't. Spock's emotional journey in the film was also pretty wide-ranging; by the end of the film he's come to terms with being a child of two worlds, something that arguably didn't happen in original Trek until the last of the original cast movies. It takes everything that happened before, acknowledges it, doesn't try to tell you it didn't happen, but says, "we're gonna do things a little differently now." I understand why that won't work for everyone, but it worked for me.