After a week of anticipation, I finally got to watch the new Star Trek movie on Friday in IMAX.
I was a little bummed that I had arrived at the theater late (my girlfriend’s classmate foolishly chose not to take the cab with us and got lost trying to find the theater), forcing us to sit in the front (which doubly sucks when you’re watching a movie in massive IMAX). But those “issues” were quickly laid to rest.
Long story short – I think the movie was very good and well worth seeing (even for the IMAX premium). There was plenty for old-time fans (e.g. Leonard Nimoy’s reprisal of his role as Spock, many references to the “Original Series” characters and accomplishments, the Spock/Kirk dynamic, etc.) showing that the creators at least tried to re-boot the continuity with respect/deference to what had come before.
There was also plenty for newcomers and casual fans. On the most basic level, there was plenty of special effects and sci-fi eye candy (e.g. a new visual and tactical take on torpedo’s). And, on a character level, the series was a good primer on the legendary Captain James T. Kirk and his “merry” crew (Spock, McCoy, Uhura, Sulu, Chekhov, and Scotty).
But, what I found most astonishing was that JJ Abrams was able to do all of this – stay true to the original and still be able to bring in new/casual fans – without taking itself too seriously or resorting to too much camp. For a movie to be able to do this with a space opera (with all of the sci-fi and philosophical trappings) with a decades-long backstory is impressive, and defies all the expectations I had.
And, all I can say is, when is the sequel?