Monday, 27 June 2011

Star Trek: Insurrection

It was always going to be hard to beat Star Trek: First Contact. I think pretty much everyone loved that film and to try and do another dark, action-packed adventure would have been a mistake. Doing something completely different in tone seemed, in principle at least, a jolly good idea.

Didn't completely work though, did it?

I don't think anyone hated Star Trek: Insurrection. It was just kind of 'okay'. Nothing special, but a pleasant enough way to spend a couple of hours. I mean, compared to Nemesis it's brilliant.  It's just a couple of things that really ruin it for me.  A couple of minor fixes and I'd have like Insurrection a whole lot more.

1. The title.

'Insurrection' isn't too bad, I suppose - it's far better than 'First Contact' which was rather lacking. My issue is that while there is an insurrection, the title doesn't really describe the film as a whole all that much. It leads you to believe the film is going to be another First Contact action-filled epic, which it isn't (the same mistake was made on all the marketing, which is what led to a number of people to be disappointed when they left the cinema).

2. The joystick.

Stupid, stupid idea. You don't control a giant ship like the Enterprise with a little stick. It just looks silly.

3. Not showing the warp core ejecting.

From what I recall they filmed this and then cut it for some reason. I don't understand why. It would've looked fantastic to see the core disappearing through the floor of engineering. Instead we just get a tiny, tiny shot of it in space before it explodes. We then get a view of engineering with an empty space where the core was, but it isn't really that obvious that it's gone.

4. Data's emotion chip.

Backwards character development? Is that really a good idea? Okay, even if the emotion chip was really that much of a problem, couldn't they have thought of a better way to get rid of it other than 'he decided to take it out of his head that day'? How about it being damaged when he was attacked at the beginning?

5. The Admiral's motivation.

To put it bluntly, he doesn't have any and this is the single biggest problem with Insurrection. Why is Admiral  Dougherty continuing the mission? What problem is it for him to wait a couple of days for Picard to get clarification from the Federation? Without giving us any answers to these questions Dougherty is not in way way likeable as a character. He's a Federation officer - he's supposed to be a good guy, if a little lost.

What would have been better - and something I've been saying since it came out - is if Dougherty had been given a sick son/wife/father/anything! Something that motivated him to take desperate actions. As it is, Dougherty is just out to save 'billions' of people the audience doesn't know. A face needs putting on one of those 'billions' to make the audience care.

Which is interesting, considering this is exactly what Picard says needs to be done in the film.

Later this week we'll probably be watching Nemesis. There are so many things wrong with that film I don't know where to begin so don't expect a similar post about that one.

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