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View Poll Results: Is Star Trek Generations more of a TNG film or TOS film?
TOS 0 0%
TNG 4 57.14%
TOS/TNG 2 28.57%
a mistake 1 14.29%
Voters: 7. You may not vote on this poll

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  #21  
Old 06-29-2014, 02:34 AM
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kevin kevin is offline
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Originally Posted by Roysten View Post
I also get the impression that most people here didn't mind the way that Kirk died either (I'm making a lot of assumptions and interpretations here, please correct me if I'm wrong!)


Assumptions wise, that seems fair enough I think.

As much as I don't particularly praise Nicholas Meyer above others who've worked on Trek over the years one thing he once apparently said is something I do agree with and it's about the killing off of characters. When Spock was being killed off in TWOK a lot of people said that couldn't be done and Meyer apparently replied along the lines of 'Yes you can, you just have to do it in the right way'.

That I agree with.

So, Kirk dying (not withstanding I wouldn't even have had him in the movie anyway if it was me) is not a problem. On one hand, it should have prevented one fanwank side effect of my opinion he should have been left to sail on into the sunset because there would have been a section of fandom would have found some way to make him immortal in some sense and they would all have very 'plausible' ideas about how he could still be alive in the time of Picard even if we never saw him. Unfortunately, Shatner did that himself with 'The Return'.

But I agree with Sam that the death carries less of an impact than some other death's we've seen. Considering Kirk is the Big Kahuna in 'Trek' and his death should be one of the bigger moments to be managed and played to the audience. The choice he makes within the Nexus isn't an issue (although I'm not saying it's the most satisfactory either, but if we're working within the Nexus being in the film then the only thing I'd say dramatically is that I have no earthly idea why anyone in the audience would ever believe Kirk would choose the Nexus over getting back into action anyway, so it's not really a choice with any serious weight to it - he does exactly what I think we would expect the character to do anyway with little doubt of another outcome) nor is trying to play it low key and not blaze of glory type stuff, but when he does die, there's no real connection between him and Picard at the end. When Spock dies, you have the weight of their relationship history bearing down on the scene. It's not that I think Spock's actions were any more or less heroic than Kirk, but the whole construction of the scene and the execution of the death is frankly superior to 'Generations' in every single way. Picard and Kirk are both 'Captains of the Enterprise' and that's about it, as if perhaps that somehow alone was supposed to be enough to give the scene pathos.

So in short for me...........deciding to kill him not the problem. Just a little bit lacking in how it was executed.
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Last edited by kevin : 06-29-2014 at 12:52 PM.
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  #22  
Old 06-29-2014, 12:02 PM
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I think it's safe to say that Kirk's death had less glory attached compared to Spock's and I admit that for me Spock's death carried a lot more emotional resonance, though that's probably in some ways because of the considerable buildup before Spock's actual last breath. In contrast Kirk's death was quicker and with much less fanfare, with his respective dialogue seeming to reflect that, so all in all quite fitting really.

For me the whole dying from the fall and being crushed under the metal bridge scaffolding was well done and the tone of how he got there and why he decided to help Picard was quite fitting. I do think though that the need to have Kirk there was feebly justified (if at all), the battling with Soren was anti-climatic and drab and as I've already said the way they each went about it wasn't exactly inkeeping with their characters.
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  #23  
Old 06-29-2014, 12:58 PM
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I seem to recall the very first idea was to have a scenario where Kirk and Picard and the two Enterprises would actually engage in battle against each other - wisely dropped when they couldn't figure out how to get to that point. But as soon as they locked down Kirk meeting Picard as the key moment in the film then everything else had to be manouvered to make that happen.
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  #24  
Old 06-29-2014, 02:12 PM
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I remember hearing something about that but I always assumed it was just a bad fanflick script! That would have been truly awful IMO. In some ways it was quite nice having it just being Picard and Kirk, the problem I think was that neither of them got to show what makes them individually good Captains.

The novel "Captain's Peril" (by Shatner if I remember) actually did this quite well, with Picard and Kirk having to solve problems and clashing with their respective styles. I think this could have made for some comedic and effective character scenes had it been done in Generations, instead once they got to Verdiain III there wasn't any time for their characters and frankly you could have put any two characters into those scenes and it would have panned out more or less the same.
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  #25  
Old 06-29-2014, 07:34 PM
samwiseb samwiseb is offline
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Nope. The Nexus is paradise with an exit option. Sounds like two things to me. Now of course the intermingling of paradise and reality, that you can wish to exit the Nexus at any moment and place, seems dubious but as Martok has already pointed out, there is a good way to read it, Kirk and Picard have tricked the Nexus. There is your intellectual Picard and you willpower Kirk moment.
So yeah, it does two things. If I said "black holes are not wormholes at the same time" about ST09 I would whine about sci-fi tricksery and say absolutely nothing, rien, nichts about the movie. It is like saying that the first fifteen pages of "The Time Machine" do not realistically depict time travel, you totally miss what the story is about. It is not even a technical complaint as it is precisely the point of sci-fi gadgets to do what the writers want them to do.
The Nexus collects any living thing it comes in contact with. It shreds everything else. It starts everybody off from the same point regardless of when it collected them because "time has no meaning here," despite the fact that everybody inside perceives time progressing forward from that point (So it's like the opposite of the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, which seems really kind of ridiculous). It lets you escape mortality because "time has no meaning here." It fills you with joy as if joy were something tangible like a blanket. It lets you create any fantasy you choose AND lets you fast-forward or rewind through said fantasy at your whim because "time has no meaning here" (I'm counting those two features as one just to be fair). AND it lets you exit anywhere you like because (wait for it) "time has no meaning here." It does all seven of these things because the scriptwriters need it to. And each is its own characteristic property apart from every other.

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I have no idea what you do not understand. It is pretty simple and straightforward, Kirk gave up eternal bliss to fight once more for the common good.
Already covered in my last post (as well as Kevin's follow-up post, making my reply here somewhat redundant). Picard is ready to leave the Nexus before he even realizes he can undo what Soran did. Kirk jumps a ravine twice and decides the Nexus isn't real enough for him. He comes to this conclusion on his own. Their sacrifice was minimal because they didn't want to be there anymore. I never said I didn't understand.

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Nope, you missed the point of the scene. It is not a sentimental scene, it is not artistically heightened and not by accident but design. It is fairly mundane, Kirk dies on a planet in the middle of nowhere and nobody sheds a tear for him as all of his close friends are dead (respectively old Vulcans or stuck in a transporter buffer). So what, when heroes die in real life they rarely get a big round of applause either.
If you do it for the applause in the first place you are not much of a hero. The best example from fiction/religion/mythology is Judas Iscariot, he did his job (of leading Jesus down the path he wanted to) and accepted that his name will be synonymous with traitor for eternity (i.e. he also died a symbolic death as opposed to folks who die but know that their names will be praised).

So yeah, just because Kirk does not die like folks usually do in Hollywood movies does not mean that the scene is bad. It rather means that the audience has wrong expectations because all the crappy flicks out there confused them about what heroism is. George Kirk is not a hero because we the audience cry because of his stupid son and wife, he is a hero because he does his duty to the end. We don't cry when Robau dies although he did the same like Kirk, his duty until the bitter end. So whether a scene cracks you up or not is no indication of whether it is good. Every halfwitted soap opera maker can emotionally manipulate his audience.

Heroism it is not about the way you die, it is about the CHOICE you made before you die. Kirk forsake eternal happiness in order to save 230 millions.
I can recommend Kurosawas's Seven Samurai for everybody who still thinks that heroism and glory have to go hand in hand.
I didn't miss anything at all. I said right up front that I understood the writers were being unconventional, and I said right up front that I wasn't claiming Kirk should have died on the bridge of his ship. It has nothing to do with calling anyone's heroism into question, and comparing the deaths of minor characters with whom the audience has no prior investment is not applicable. Also the ability to actually, genuinely move your audience is not to be dismissed, scoffed at or pooh-pooed. I very strongly doubt that many half-witted soap operas manage to achieve this. And I'm not interested in the opinions of bitter skeptics who might feel inclined to intentionally mislabel a quality drama or genre program as being 'soap opera'. If you did not move your audience, it's usually not because you simply chose not to. That answer is greyed out, and only after proving yourself are you allowed to mouseclick on it. It's usually because you weren't able to.
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  #26  
Old 06-30-2014, 01:07 AM
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Nope. Sentimental scenes are most of the times utter crap. Scenes that makes you actually think and reflect usually leave you fairly cold while you watch the movie. I already mentioned the prime example, Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai". You see heroism and sacrifices in it but you do not shed one tear for anybody who dies.

I mean, gee, this is basic stuff. Cinema can work like classical drama but it does not have to ... and even classical drama does not necessarily "genuinely move" you. I'd be surprised if a reader or viewer of Hamlet really empathizes so deeply with the protagonist to actually care much about his death.


Quote:
If you did not move your audience, it's usually not because you simply chose not to.
Again totally wrong. The best German movies are those of the so called Berlin school: little is happening, characters do not talk that much, the audience does not empathize much with them, the camera perspective is fairly neutral ... in short, these movies are fairly Brechtian. One of the best German auteurs has been Fassbinder and he worked also like this. And of course I don't have to mention New Wave directors like Godard, Truffaut or Rohmer. I also recently watched some fine Turkish moviemakers like Nuri Bilge Ceylan and Semih Kaplanoglu and they also work in such a "dry" fashion.

So yeah, this claim is utterly ridiculous and it illustrates how some folks are unconsciously impacted by implicit Hollywood standards. Nothing against Casablanca but it is not the only way to do good movies.


Back to Trek, I fail to see why Kirk's death is inferior to Spock's or George Kirk's just because the audience does not cry. The scenes makes a point, Kirk dies basically alone in the middle of nowhere. Nobody will visit his grave as his Starfleet family is long gone and in the Nexus he has chosen against starting a normal family during retirement.
I prefer such quiet notes over blunt emotional manipulation anyday.
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  #27  
Old 06-30-2014, 01:49 AM
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I think because ultimately looking at the scene we were supposed to feel something. I don't really concur with the idea they were going for anything less than wanting the audience to feel the death of Kirk. So, other types and philosophies of cinema are great and work in their terms, but I don't think they apply to 'Generations'.
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  #28  
Old 06-30-2014, 02:00 AM
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In my opinion GEN is a bad movie because it feels so discentered. Some open threads from TNG are continued or closed and combined with the Ent-B and Kirk but it never congeals to a coherent whole (and on a side-note, I am seemingly in the minority concerning the lightning of the D which I find far too extreme)
But I feel like defending ST09, a movie which I consider to be bad as well, back in the days against stupid accusations like the Delta Vega nonsense. Gee, that was one of the best sequences of the movie and it is not bad because of plot holes or whatever.

Same with the Nexus and Kirk's death in GEN, this was the best part of the movie and accusations of plot holes, sci-fi gimmicks doing what they are supposed to do or Kirk's death not being a tear-jerker (despite obviously never being written to be one, as I just pointed out the scenes had its subtle points) miss the point.
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  #29  
Old 06-30-2014, 11:42 AM
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I agree with the argument that the death of a character doesn't have to be sentimental or crack up its audience to be a good scene, but I don't personally feel that a scene that happens to be sentimental is going to be necessarily crap, one example that comes to mind is the death of K'ehleyr, I think that seen is done very well and does a lot for its characters without doing much in the scene nor having much dialogue.

The death of Data on the other hand was pretty crap, it attempts to pull all the sentimental heart strings in the aftermath and ends up being hokey and coming across pretty flat for me, even though Data is one of my favourite characters.

With regards to the lighting in GEN, I liked that they had more ambient light coming through windows like the scenes in 10-forward, but I did think it was way to dark in most places. I think there was a middle ground screaming to get out that would have been best of both worlds.
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  #30  
Old 06-30-2014, 10:12 PM
samwiseb samwiseb is offline
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Originally Posted by horatio View Post
Nope. Sentimental scenes are most of the times utter crap. Scenes that makes you actually think and reflect usually leave you fairly cold while you watch the movie. I already mentioned the prime example, Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai". You see heroism and sacrifices in it but you do not shed one tear for anybody who dies.

I mean, gee, this is basic stuff. Cinema can work like classical drama but it does not have to ... and even classical drama does not necessarily "genuinely move" you. I'd be surprised if a reader or viewer of Hamlet really empathizes so deeply with the protagonist to actually care much about his death.

Again totally wrong. The best German movies are those of the so called Berlin school: little is happening, characters do not talk that much, the audience does not empathize much with them, the camera perspective is fairly neutral ... in short, these movies are fairly Brechtian. One of the best German auteurs has been Fassbinder and he worked also like this. And of course I don't have to mention New Wave directors like Godard, Truffaut or Rohmer. I also recently watched some fine Turkish moviemakers like Nuri Bilge Ceylan and Semih Kaplanoglu and they also work in such a "dry" fashion.

So yeah, this claim is utterly ridiculous and it illustrates how some folks are unconsciously impacted by implicit Hollywood standards. Nothing against Casablanca but it is not the only way to do good movies.

Back to Trek, I fail to see why Kirk's death is inferior to Spock's or George Kirk's just because the audience does not cry. The scenes makes a point, Kirk dies basically alone in the middle of nowhere. Nobody will visit his grave as his Starfleet family is long gone and in the Nexus he has chosen against starting a normal family during retirement.
I prefer such quiet notes over blunt emotional manipulation anyday.
At the risk of possibly sticking my foot in my mouth (which you've got me wanting to do by now anyway), ST isn't some artsy-fartsy pretentious experimental foreign flick.

Is The Wrath of Khan sentimental? Is it mawkish? Is it blunt? Is it utter crap?

Because at the very most that is how much emotional impact that was ever realistically expected of Kirk's death scene in Generations. Meaning, it could have been considerably less and still moved people. Kirk's a less popular character than Spock anyway. But the audience did have a 30-year relationship with him.

"Such quiet notes"... I didn't get that from the death scene that we got. It was practically textureless. Speaking of notes, Dennis McCarthy can't score for the big screen anyway. Certainly not for a scene as important as this.

I'm really not saying anything more here than what I think Kevin and Roysten have also said on the subject, unless I misunderstand them. I never said it had to be "sentimental". I don't know why I'm forced to put up with all this abrasively condescending-@$$ pseudo-intellectual crap.
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