Director: J.J. Abrams
Chris Pine as James T Kirk
Zachary Quinto as Spock
Zoe Saldana as Nyota Uhura
Karl Urban as Leonard (Bones) McCoy
Simon Pegg as Montgomery (Scotty) Scott
John Cho as Hikaru Sulu
Anton Yelchin as Pavel Chekov
Bruce Greenwood as Chris Pike
Leonard Nimoy as Spock
Some have said that J.J. Abrams has rewritten Star Trek history. As a long time fan (since T.O.S.) I don’t agree with this. Yes some things have changed, the star ships are bigger and slicker (bridge seats have restraints on them, something I always thought they should have), and Vulcan was destroyed, (Vulcan was destroyed by a villain from the future, this has changed things in this timeline) but the foundation of the Star Trek universe remains. What made Star Trek great was the people, and the people are true to character. Kirk is still a womanizing cowboy who only obeys the rules he thinks apply to him, while at the same time is fiercely loyal to his friends; Spock is infuriatingly logical and honest “Vulcans don’t lie”, but at times perversely illogical and is also fiercely loyal; Sulu is diabolically ruthless; Chekov is excitably cute aboard his ‘wessel’, with his Russian “We can do whatever we are asked to do”; Scott is a miracle engineer and Bones although a crusty old man has apparently learned faith-healing (see IMDB Goofs); and Uhura is well Uhura. Spock is different since this Spock witnessed the destruction of Vulcan and the death of his mother. There is a romance between Uhura and Spock, which was a little unexpected but not unwelcome, in fact I’m looking forward to a future Star Trek with brown skinned half-Vulcan kids running around. Children whose legs are longer than their bodies. Uhura is tall.
This film was a combination of technical wizardry and heart pumping action but every so often the pace slows and we watch the characters interact. When they are on the shuttle going to the planet and Spock is explaining he feels the need to control his emotions, his prose is lyrical and his voice is calm and measured and we sit there transfixed until, WHAM! FORGOT THERE WERE KLINGONS HERE! The plot moves along quickly, but not so quickly that the storyline was lost. The verbal sparring between the characters is priceless and reminds us that Kirk is a new captain, the others still view him as more of a buddy than their leader, while at the same time acknowledging that he is in charge.
I had fun looking for what was different, I kicked myself for not realizing who the villain was before he said his name (Hint: He appeared in TOS and a movie), and I cried, every Star Trek movie has made me cry. But I can’t tell you why *spoiler*. I am however left with a few concerns and questions, the biggest one being: If a Red Shirt changes his shirt on an away mission, does he still die?