The Official Star Trek Movie Forum

The Official Star Trek Movie Forum > Star Trek > General Star Trek Discussions > Films > Movies (I - X) > Star Trek The Motion Picture bad or good
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #11  
Old 01-23-2011, 08:01 AM
NCC-73515's Avatar
NCC-73515 NCC-73515 is offline
Fleet Admiral
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Heidelberg, Germany
Posts: 7,229
Default

Interesting that your perception is reversed to mine
When I was younger I did not understand the implications of Spock's development in this movie. "I should have known"
__________________


"English! I thought I dreamed hearing it!"?
Khan, Space Seed (TOS)

Brought to you in living color by NCC.
-= first fan member =-

Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-24-2011, 02:55 AM
samwiseb samwiseb is offline
Commander
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,208
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by kevin View Post
It's probably more bad than good really.

These days I consider it the first Trek reboot (one that failed and had to be corrected by Bennet and Co later) thanks to the ground up redesign and rebuild of everything visually from TOS and also the abandonment of anything that remotely made TOS what it was apart from the central characters. Not that reboots are bad, but this one simply wasn't well done and what annoys the most is that it was botched by the show's own creator.

Flat, ponderous, probably with a touch of unwarranted self-importance over what is essentially a paper thin plot (itself recycled from TOS anyway) the strongest thing going for it is the superlative effects and for actually having the feel of a major movie. But good as they are, there's not much else to really get excited about.

But, on the other hand, it was successful enough at the time to warrant Paramount giving it a second chance..........where some of the damage was successfully reversed in TWOK.

At the end of the day, without TMP, we wouldn't have any of the rest!
Regarding how Roddenberry himself could've botched the movie, I've never had a clear picture of how much of classic TOS -particularly in regards to the chemistry of its characters- was really his to begin with. Certainly he created the characters; I take nothing away from that. But people like Gene L Coon, DC Fontana and others are usually credited for helping to flesh them out... beyond what Roddenberry alone might have intended. He strikes me as more of a 'conceptual' writer anyway... better with ideas than with characters or nuance. Even TNG, arguably the 'truest' incarnation of "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry," shows this pattern as it moves into its middle years and other people start to take over the show.

I have heard Roddenberry was once interviewed saying that he thought TMP was still the best of the five films (VI might have been going into production by that point; I don't know). He acknowledged it was a 'slow' film, and that it could have come out a lot better, but presumably gave no indication that he ever thought anything was missing from it character-wise. Whereas things he 'objected' to in the sequels (beyond their overall militaristic tonality) seemed largely incidental... such as Kirk phasering the eel after it comes out of Chekov's ear.

To me TMP is very much "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry," in the same vein as 'The Cage' and TNG (particularly in its first two seasons). I also see it as being the polar opposite of ST09 in this regard, to the point that maybe I finally understand some of the derision toward the latter.

ST09
I see as being almost 'pure' TOS... much moreso than any of the STI-VI films prior. The negative side of this (so far) is that the elements that make it pure TOS, are the very elements that prevent it from being a STII or a STIV (the two films that I consider to have surpassed their episodic TV roots -at least thematically- without sacrificing the familiar Kirk/Spock/McCoy chemistry). But ST09 also couldn't be "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry" in the sense that 'The Cage', TMP and TNG were. And it doesn't earn enough intellectual points to qualify as the 'compromise' between 'STcbGR' and NBC that classic TOS tried to be (I expect this will change with the next film).

I personally love TMP, but more as proto-TNG than as TOS. And most of the things that I love about it, are things that would not have applied had it remained a pilot to the aborted Phase II. I love the Enterprise, the Klingon ships, the space stations, and all those visual elements of the rebooted universe they continued to build upon until ENT ended in 2005. I love how awesomely huge the ship seems, moreso than any film afterward (even Khan, despite using a lot of the same footage), and how drastically the exterior lighting changes after leaving the inner planets (most sci-fi films never get this right, and certainly no other ST has).

And I love the 'darker' moments of Goldsmith's score... the low, dissonant foreboding strings that convey the empty menace of outer space, beginning from just before Spock shows up en route to V'ger. I think only Ron Jones, during the earliest years of TNG, has ever since managed to lend ST that same eerie, it's-dark-in-deep-space menacing vibe. Even though he is no Jerry Goldsmith or James Horner.

Mostly I love it as an experience in sights and sounds... and that it uses visuals rather than words to realize Roddenbery's future utopia for the audience (lucky thing too, since Patrick Stewart was not on hand). The main complaints against the movie... that it feels stiff, wooden, often lacking in character, etc, I would have to say I think also very much apply to 'The Cage' and a lot of early TNG, including the pilot. And socially Asperger-ish dialogue like "my oath of celibacy is on record, Captain" easily ranks up there with "offspring as in... he's Adam. Is that it?"


I really don't like the pastels either. Bathe the Enterprise interiors in them warmer TWOK 'battle alert' reds any day.

Quote:
But, on the other hand, it was successful enough at the time to warrant Paramount giving it a second chance..........where some of the damage was successfully reversed in TWOK.

At the end of the day, without TMP, we wouldn't have any of the rest!
And perhaps that's why I can be more forgiving of 'The Cage', TMP, or even early TNG than I am, say, of Voyager. In the case of TMP, it took what might otherwise have been a sterile follow-up TV series, compressed it into a single movie, blew it up into something cinematically and poetically epic, and solidified Paramont's need to get rid of Roddenberry all in one blow. TOS had evolved into something more organic and iconic than I think he could manage without some old help, and I don't think there was Ever Any Way that a new TV or movie series would have flourished with those characters under his helmsmanship. He was better off rebuilding 'his' ST from scratch with TNG, and neo-TOS did better off without him.
__________________


Last edited by samwiseb : 01-24-2011 at 03:14 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-24-2011, 10:28 AM
kevin's Avatar
kevin kevin is offline
Federation Councillor
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: East Kilbride, Glasgow, UK
Posts: 21,078
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by samwiseb View Post
Regarding how Roddenberry himself could've botched the movie, I've never had a clear picture of how much of classic TOS -particularly in regards to the chemistry of its characters- was really his to begin with. Certainly he created the characters; I take nothing away from that. But people like Gene L Coon, DC Fontana and others are usually credited for helping to flesh them out... beyond what Roddenberry alone might have intended. He strikes me as more of a 'conceptual' writer anyway... better with ideas than with characters or nuance. Even TNG, arguably the 'truest' incarnation of "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry," shows this pattern as it moves into its middle years and other people start to take over the show.
Yep, I can see where it is you are coming from and you're totally right that TOS was the product of more people (and perhaps in some ways more talented people) than Gene Roddenberry was because I think you're quite correct that GR was the 'ideas' man.

He did have problems when it came to detailing or fleshing out those ideas. And the people you mentioned then came to the fore. This is something that's raised many a question in my head that will never, ever be answered nowadays.

Quote:
I have heard Roddenberry was once interviewed saying that he thought TMP was still the best of the five films (VI might have been going into production by that point; I don't know). He acknowledged it was a 'slow' film, and that it could have come out a lot better, but presumably gave no indication that he ever thought anything was missing from it character-wise. Whereas things he 'objected' to in the sequels (beyond their overall militaristic tonality) seemed largely incidental... such as Kirk phasering the eel after it comes out of Chekov's ear.

To me TMP is very much "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry," in the same vein as 'The Cage' and TNG (particularly in its first two seasons). I also see it as being the polar opposite of ST09 in this regard, to the point that maybe I finally understand some of the derision toward the latter.
I've never heard that quote myself but I can completely where your argument comes from around it.

Quote:
ST09 I see as being almost 'pure' TOS... much moreso than any of the STI-VI films prior. The negative side of this (so far) is that the elements that make it pure TOS, are the very elements that prevent it from being a STII or a STIV (the two films that I consider to have surpassed their episodic TV roots -at least thematically- without sacrificing the familiar Kirk/Spock/McCoy chemistry). But ST09 also couldn't be "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry" in the sense that 'The Cage', TMP and TNG were. And it doesn't earn enough intellectual points to qualify as the 'compromise' between 'STcbGR' and NBC that classic TOS tried to be (I expect this will change with the next film).

I personally love TMP, but more as proto-TNG than as TOS. And most of the things that I love about it, are things that would not have applied had it remained a pilot to the aborted Phase II. I love the Enterprise, the Klingon ships, the space stations, and all those visual elements of the rebooted universe they continued to build upon until ENT ended in 2005. I love how awesomely huge the ship seems, moreso than any film afterward (even Khan, despite using a lot of the same footage), and how drastically the exterior lighting changes after leaving the inner planets (most sci-fi films never get this right, and certainly no other ST has).

And I love the 'darker' moments of Goldsmith's score... the low, dissonant foreboding strings that convey the empty menace of outer space, beginning from just before Spock shows up en route to V'ger. I think only Ron Jones, during the earliest years of TNG, has ever since managed to lend ST that same eerie, it's-dark-in-deep-space menacing vibe. Even though he is no Jerry Goldsmith or James Horner.

Mostly I love it as an experience in sights and sounds... and that it uses visuals rather than words to realize Roddenbery's future utopia for the audience (lucky thing too, since Patrick Stewart was not on hand). The main complaints against the movie... that it feels stiff, wooden, often lacking in character, etc, I would have to say I think also very much apply to 'The Cage' and a lot of early TNG, including the pilot. And socially Asperger-ish dialogue like "my oath of celibacy is on record, Captain" easily ranks up there with "offspring as in... he's Adam. Is that it?"


I really don't like the pastels either. Bathe the Enterprise interiors in them warmer TWOK 'battle alert' reds any day.

And perhaps that's why I can be more forgiving of 'The Cage', TMP, or even early TNG than I am, say, of Voyager. In the case of TMP, it took what might otherwise have been a sterile follow-up TV series, compressed it into a single movie, blew it up into something cinematically and poetically epic, and solidified Paramont's need to get rid of Roddenberry all in one blow. TOS had evolved into something more organic and iconic than I think he could manage without some old help, and I don't think there was Ever Any Way that a new TV or movie series would have flourished with those characters under his helmsmanship. He was better off rebuilding 'his' ST from scratch with TNG, and neo-TOS did better off without him.
__________________
'If the Apocalypse starts, beep me!' - Buffy Summers
'The sky's the limit.....' Jean-Luc Picard, 'All Good Things'


courtesy of Saquist
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-24-2011, 10:35 AM
Captain Tom Coughlin's Avatar
Captain Tom Coughlin Captain Tom Coughlin is offline
Fleet Admiral
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USS Meadowlands
Posts: 10,990
Default

When you think about it, TMP was really just Nomad with a lot of special effects. It's just a rehashed version of a story we already saw. Only instead of talking it to death, they added the old all it needs is a little humanity trick.
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-24-2011, 11:13 AM
horatio's Avatar
horatio horatio is offline
Fleet Admiral
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 9,282
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by samwiseb View Post
Regarding how Roddenberry himself could've botched the movie, I've never had a clear picture of how much of classic TOS -particularly in regards to the chemistry of its characters- was really his to begin with. Certainly he created the characters; I take nothing away from that. But people like Gene L Coon, DC Fontana and others are usually credited for helping to flesh them out... beyond what Roddenberry alone might have intended. He strikes me as more of a 'conceptual' writer anyway... better with ideas than with characters or nuance. Even TNG, arguably the 'truest' incarnation of "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry," shows this pattern as it moves into its middle years and other people start to take over the show.

I have heard Roddenberry was once interviewed saying that he thought TMP was still the best of the five films (VI might have been going into production by that point; I don't know). He acknowledged it was a 'slow' film, and that it could have come out a lot better, but presumably gave no indication that he ever thought anything was missing from it character-wise. Whereas things he 'objected' to in the sequels (beyond their overall militaristic tonality) seemed largely incidental... such as Kirk phasering the eel after it comes out of Chekov's ear.

To me TMP is very much "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry," in the same vein as 'The Cage' and TNG (particularly in its first two seasons). I also see it as being the polar opposite of ST09 in this regard, to the point that maybe I finally understand some of the derision toward the latter.

ST09
I see as being almost 'pure' TOS... much moreso than any of the STI-VI films prior. The negative side of this (so far) is that the elements that make it pure TOS, are the very elements that prevent it from being a STII or a STIV (the two films that I consider to have surpassed their episodic TV roots -at least thematically- without sacrificing the familiar Kirk/Spock/McCoy chemistry). But ST09 also couldn't be "Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry" in the sense that 'The Cage', TMP and TNG were. And it doesn't earn enough intellectual points to qualify as the 'compromise' between 'STcbGR' and NBC that classic TOS tried to be (I expect this will change with the next film).

I personally love TMP, but more as proto-TNG than as TOS. And most of the things that I love about it, are things that would not have applied had it remained a pilot to the aborted Phase II. I love the Enterprise, the Klingon ships, the space stations, and all those visual elements of the rebooted universe they continued to build upon until ENT ended in 2005. I love how awesomely huge the ship seems, moreso than any film afterward (even Khan, despite using a lot of the same footage), and how drastically the exterior lighting changes after leaving the inner planets (most sci-fi films never get this right, and certainly no other ST has).

And I love the 'darker' moments of Goldsmith's score... the low, dissonant foreboding strings that convey the empty menace of outer space, beginning from just before Spock shows up en route to V'ger. I think only Ron Jones, during the earliest years of TNG, has ever since managed to lend ST that same eerie, it's-dark-in-deep-space menacing vibe. Even though he is no Jerry Goldsmith or James Horner.

Mostly I love it as an experience in sights and sounds... and that it uses visuals rather than words to realize Roddenbery's future utopia for the audience (lucky thing too, since Patrick Stewart was not on hand). The main complaints against the movie... that it feels stiff, wooden, often lacking in character, etc, I would have to say I think also very much apply to 'The Cage' and a lot of early TNG, including the pilot. And socially Asperger-ish dialogue like "my oath of celibacy is on record, Captain" easily ranks up there with "offspring as in... he's Adam. Is that it?"


I really don't like the pastels either. Bathe the Enterprise interiors in them warmer TWOK 'battle alert' reds any day.

And perhaps that's why I can be more forgiving of 'The Cage', TMP, or even early TNG than I am, say, of Voyager. In the case of TMP, it took what might otherwise have been a sterile follow-up TV series, compressed it into a single movie, blew it up into something cinematically and poetically epic, and solidified Paramont's need to get rid of Roddenberry all in one blow. TOS had evolved into something more organic and iconic than I think he could manage without some old help, and I don't think there was Ever Any Way that a new TV or movie series would have flourished with those characters under his helmsmanship. He was better off rebuilding 'his' ST from scratch with TNG, and neo-TOS did better off without him.
Nice analysis. While I absolutely agree with your point that The Cage, TMP and early TNG is pure RoddenberryTrek with its typical slightly dry, rational and sterile atmosphere contrasted by the wonders and magnificence of space there are differences.
The Cage works for example much better than TMP, not because its characters are fleshed out better (Pike etc. feel very "scripty" which is only partly natural for a pilot) but because they are an integral part of the story. It's a story about human desires whereas TMP only features a few nice but unconnected character moments.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 01-24-2011, 11:38 AM
starwarsrcks's Avatar
starwarsrcks starwarsrcks is offline
Vice Admiral
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Northern Ireland
Posts: 3,062
Default

it is basically Nomad again Star Trek The Motion Picture don't you think it is similar to The Changeling.
__________________



Space is disease and dangerous wrapped in darkness and silence-Leonard Bones McCoy
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 01-24-2011, 09:03 PM
samwiseb samwiseb is offline
Commander
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,208
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by horatio View Post
While I absolutely agree with your point that The Cage, TMP and early TNG is pure RoddenberryTrek with its typical slightly dry, rational and sterile atmosphere contrasted by the wonders and magnificence of space there are differences.

The Cage works for example much better than TMP, not because its characters are fleshed out better (Pike etc. feel very "scripty" which is only partly natural for a pilot) but because they are an integral part of the story. It's a story about human desires whereas TMP only features a few nice but unconnected character moments.
I can sorta see that. I don't think the character moments are unconnected; in fact I think TMP for all its flaws is one of the few ST films to involve a thematic arc for its characters (in this case Kirk/Spock/Decker/V'ger... Ilia really kinda gets screwed over). But the moments are definitely fewer and further between than the other cited examples... I can't deny TMP is the coldest of all the STs. I still prefer it to 'Encounter at Farpoint' and probably half the other eps of TNG S1, and I could state my reasons, but in the end it would still be just a matter of personal preference.

I could just have a soft spot for the flawed movies that could have been. TMP is David Lynch's adaptation of Dune, it's Zack Snyder's take on Watchmen, and Alien 3 all in one. It's (presumed) contempt for Star Wars may have been a huge factor in the direction it chose. But I also can't help admire it for being an old-school sci-fi film, in the tradition of 2001, Forbidden Planet (which feels very proto-ST to me) or The Day the Earth Stood Still. And yet I can't call it great. Maybe parts of it can be 'almost' great if one disassociates the parts of it that are Star Trek.
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 01-24-2011, 09:48 PM
horatio's Avatar
horatio horatio is offline
Fleet Admiral
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 9,282
Default

TMP definitely feels like 2001 but it also feels like it is merely going through the moves. 2001 is soaked in its themes whereas TMP's great Frankenstein theme ("you are my creator but I am your master") with a nicer, synthetic ending than the novel comes up in the end as a kind of punchline. It's kinda like INS, there is a great idea but it is not really interwoven with the movie.
Despite all its abysmal-ness the other problem TOS movie, TFF, presents its theme much more harmoniously.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 01-25-2011, 12:36 AM
samwiseb samwiseb is offline
Commander
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,208
Default

Oh, it's definitely a mess. When your producer and scriptwriter are re-writing each other's work up until almost the last day of shooting, you know it can't be good for your movie. In fact, just on the script level, I actually think Insurrection -despite its disappointingly shallow execution- has the edge over TMP and TFF put together. If only the designing, production and post-production of INS didn't come across looking like an overbudgeted TV episode. And the story went much, much deeper.

For a time I rated TMP lowest of all, just because I felt that everyone's constant bagging on TFF had become passe (this would've been before the TNG films started going downhill, mind). But TFF has only ever worked for me on a spiritual/metaphorical level --and I happen to be agnostic. Taken as a sci-fi story, it completely falls apart for me. As a 2nd grader would say, I don't 'get' it. They jumped to the galactic core, did not get sucked into a supermassive black hole or fried by a thousand suns, found an alien pretending to be 'god', blasted it with photon torpedoes and drank a toast. They found nothing. And I don't get it.
__________________


Last edited by samwiseb : 01-25-2011 at 12:40 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 01-25-2011, 09:17 AM
MagaditH MagaditH is offline
Lieutenant Commander
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: San Diego
Posts: 780
Default

I think I'm the only one that likes it. I grew up on it as a kid. The visuals of the big E. The score.

I think one of the reasons why its not a favorite is the storyline. Think about to pre production. This project was seesawing from new tv series to movie and back and forth. That kind of hurt it in a way.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:38 AM.


Forum theme courtesy of Mark Lambert
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright © 2009 by Paramount Pictures. STAR TREK and all related
marks and logos are trademarks of CBS Studios Inc. All Rights Reserved.