Star Trek

Sci-Fi Round Up: Star Trek 2 , Iron Man 2 and The Black Hole

War Machine
Image via Wikipedia

Star Trek

Iron Man 2

  • War Machine movie poster. (via /film)

The Black Hole

  • Disney started a project to Remake their 1979 classic “The Black Hole”. I barely remember the movie and am curious where it will go. Watch a trailer for The Black Hole below. (via /film)

DVD Releases: November 17, 2009

[reus name="Star Trek iFrame"]Out this week we have four DVDs to feature: Star Trek, Margaret Cho: Beautiful, Thirst, Vampire Party.  Do we Love It, Rent it, or Avoid Like Plague?



  • Thirst: A Korean horror movie about a priest who accidentally turns himself into a vampire in a failed experiment to cure a disease.  Thirst has received some interesting reviews and promises to be a good film for fans of horror.

Don't Care

  • Vampire Party: A Vampire spoof.  It looks like another bad Vampire movie, if only it had added a musical element to the horror comedy mix.  On the other hand it could be so bad it's good.

[reus id="11"]

Rebuilding a community

Leadership Lessons from Star Trek TNG
Image by Krypto via Flickr

Every group goes through 5 stages of group formation:

  1. Coming together
  2. Defining the Task
  3. Unrest
  4. Cohesion
  5. Interdependence

These stages do not always occur in the same order, and they often loop back on themselves, but the first 4 have to be completed for the community to enter the final stage: Interdependence.

1. Coming together

The first stage is the most difficult.  Starting from nothing, we have to find enough people who share a common interest in the project to make it possible.  When starting something new, there are few places to go to gather these people from.

This is why the first and the second stages form a symbiotic circle.

2. Defining the Task

As we discussed earlier, nothing brings people together like a shared dream.  The group leader needs to start defining tasks for the group to accomplish.  These tasks should be simple and doable.

The group cannot wait for members to rise up to accomplish these tasks.  The leader as well as the others who have already signed up for the task need to start work.  Nothing gathers a group like success.

3. Unrest

Unrest is natural.  I have had many people sign on the Project: Shadow Manifesto, start working with us, only to either become disillusioned by the magnitude of the tasks before us or get frustrated by my focus on what’s best for the community.

There is only one way to handle unrest when it inevitably comes.  Listen to the criticism, do your best to answer it and choose the best course of action moving forward.  If schism is inevitable, allow it to happen, but try to make appropriate compromises.

The well being of the community is more important than the ego of the leadership or existing group.  Be ready to apologize or stand your ground, which ever is the most necessary.

4. Cohesion

Cohesion is a worthy goal.  When the community sees the goal, and begins accomplish its goals, it will begin to move as a unit.  Individuals will start to see tasks that are not on the agenda, and working on their own to achieve the community’s goals.

This is the most dangerous stage of group development.  As new leaders emerge within the community, they will be tempted to set out on their own.  If the group does not understand that it is only through working together that their goals can be accomplished, it will fall apart.

5. Interdependence

If the group survives this stage, then they will begin to rely on one another, and success is within the communities grasp.  All they have to do it keep their eyes on the goal and values the group has established for itself, and keep moving forward.

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Star Trek Online Mission Play

Star Trek Online
Image via Wikipedia

Good news about the development of Star Trek Online and hope for game play.

Episodes within Star Trek: Online are meant to let the player feel as if they’re playing an episode of Star Trek itself. The writers and developers of the game went though over seven hundred Star Trek television episodes before sitting down and writing their own for the game.

First, I like that they are calling missions episodes.  That is very inspiring.  Secondly, requiring the writers and developers to watch and be familiar with the shows is a big plus too but did they get the spirit of the show?

Included in the episodes are themes, dialog and dramatic moments, all designed to “look, feel and play like Star Trek."

I really like that they are going to set up the game play more like an episode of Star Trek.  What they have to say about the use of drama and including 3 "seasons" each containing 14 episodes of play at the start is inspiring.  I still have some questions though.

  • Will each episode include in some moral, ethical question or social exploration of the human condition that was at the heart of all Star Trek?
  • Will the missions assignment have some means of randomness or include in random missions so that the game does not come across as playing through a linear storyline?

(via TrekToday)

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Metaphors are Important

The Space Shuttle Enterprise rolls out of the ...
Image via Wikipedia

Heinrich Zimmer once said, "The best things can’t be told; the second best are misunderstood; the third best have to do with history." Now, the vocabulary through which the best things are told as second best is the vocabulary of history, but it doesn’t refer to history; it refers through this to the transcendent. Deities have to become, as one great German scholar said, "transparent to the transcendent." The transcendent must show and shine through those deities. But it must shine through us, too, and through the spiritual things we are talking about. And as long as you keep pinning it down to concrete fact, and declare something isn’t true because it didn’t happen, you’re wrong. We don’t say that about fairy tales, and so we get the truth of them (Joseph Campbell, An Open Life).

I am quick to call upon the franchises I love for example of how life should be, or how we should act.  There is a reason:

Every story is a metaphor

Every episode, movie, book, and story we tell is a metaphor.  Once you learn to see that, everything will become clearer and richer.

Creative Writing “experts” like to think that the metaphors are create through proper execution of the craft.  What a load of bunk!

The truth is, nearly every sentence ever written or said is a metaphor.  There are layers of meaning hidden within them.  More often then not, these layers hide from originator of the sentence.  They are unconscious fears and desires manifesting themselves.

Every story has this secret in it.  Even really bad movies, episodes, and books reveal a lot about the fears and self-imposed limits the writer is coping with.

Find the music that moves you

Certain things resonate with us because they are speaking to us on an unconscious level.

  • Momma Mia! showed me that I need to stop looking for myself in my past, and learn to enjoy my present.
  • Were the World Mine taught me that we all need to learn how to see the world through the eyes of the people we don’t understand so we can find ways to relate to them.
  • I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Star Trek, but I would be here forever if I tried to recount everything it taught me.

You need to find the metaphors that resonate with you, and discover the secret they are trying to share.

What tells your story?

What book, episode, series, movie, or song shares your story?  What was it?  Someone else might need to hear it.

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Entertainment Designer

From Entertainment Design

The Hollywood Reporter has an article up about Will Wright's future as an Entertainment Designer.  While it was interesting, it got me thinking more about the future of creative works.

The Future of Fiction

I am reading What would Google by Jeff Jarvis do right now.  Well, actually, I am reading it over and over again, especially the chapter on books.  I love writing novels, but I feel a little limited by the format.

I love franchise fiction.  Delving into the worlds of Star Wars, Star Trek, the Dragons of Pern, or The Lord of the Rings, pulls me deeper into the world and characters than anything else I know.

What makes these work for me is the multimedia nature of these products.  I am just not sure how an independent creator like me can pull off anything like that easily.

Easy is the Key!

If we are going to movie forward in our attempt to re-envision creative works we need easy tools for content creators to make multimedia productions.  What kind of tools?


Simple mechanima maker.

  1. Character and setting creation as simple as the Sims.
  2. Good auto-lip-sync tool.
  3. No scripting required character animation and special effects.
  4. Easy unique setting creator for the 3D impaired people like me.
  5. Easy import of most if not all existing mesh and skin formats.
  6. Easy export into at least the most popular video formats.
  7. Low price point

Simple MMORPG Maker

  1. The same features as Mechanima maker.
  2. Easy story telling engine.
  3. Simple cut scene maker
  4. Setting time line that will allow players to decide what era they want to start in so they can play through the storyline in a dynamic and ever changing world.
  5. Certain setting elements are fixed over time as part of the over arcing plot, over setting elements would be dynamic and alterable by the players.
  6. The ability for players to move their characters easily from era to era through both play and choice.
  7. The software would allow users to visit any setting with 1 client and one monthly fee.
  8. Creators are paid for the amount of "player hours" their setting attains.

Hypertext Novels that relate to the text.

(I recently wrote more about this in my post: Making a Website an extension of Story)

  1. Web based and downloadable hypertext versions.
  2. The hypertext layer should be shown only by the reader's choice.
  3. Readers should be able to flow through stories via their chosen path, for example, when the reader discovers a new character they should be able to:
  4. pull up a biography of that character.
  5. see a list of other works containing that character and the size of their role in the story.
  6. navigate into those books/stories if they want to, then return to the previous place in the book and read on.
  7. This type of meta-book should be self updating and thus be treated as a service rather than a product.
  8. possibly as a subscription to the meta-book reader service, paying the author based on "reader hours."
  9. Books should be printable, sharable, linkable, and searchable.
  10. Authors should be able to add special features like outlines, setting notes, and general notes to the text.

Cross platform integration

  1. All of these platforms should be integrated one with the other.
  2. If someone playing the MMORPG wants to pull up the text, video, or audio relating to the era they are playing in.
  3. Locations in the MMORPG should be able to pull up context about characters, items, and locations from the other media.
  4. Readers should be able to switch between the text, video, audio, and game versions of the content at whim on multiple devises which are kept in sync one with the other.
  5. Fanfiction and Fanfilm should be integrated into the platforms.
  6. Fanworks should be community and creator curated.
  7. Fanworks should be community and creator rated.
  8. Fanworks should be promotable to cannon by the creator, and revenue sharing engaged at that point.
  9. Content should be importable and exportable from one platform to another.
  10. Content should take advantage of and if necessary create open standards.


The Creative Suite we need!

This is the creative suite we need, and that I am personally hoping for.  With state of technology, most (if not all) of these features exists in separate non-compatible applications.  What I want to see is for all of these features to exist in one comprehensive and affordable creative suite.  Once we move authors and other content creators into mixed platforms like this, we will see the birth of real entertainment designers, and I think we will see much more compelling content.

return to Entertainment Design

Star Wars: Galaxies: Death Troopers

deathtroopersThis is something I have wanted to see for a long time (sort of). I have advocated for a decade now that franchise owners should run their MMO plots in tandem with their franchise fiction.  It would provide:

  • a better immersion into the setting
  • more content for the game
  • cross-promotional opportunities to pull players into the franchise, and readers into the game.

This is not what I had in mind though...

Worse idea since the Christmas Special?

Death Troopers is probably the stupidest idea to hit a franchise since Star Trek Voyager.  Simply, it is zombies in Star Wars, and not even an original or setting consistent attempt to capitalize on the zombie Crazy.

To make matters worse, they are implementing it in Star Wars Galaxies, the game Sony Online Entertainment is seeing how many time they can ruin it before it just dies.

I miss Galaxies

It is no secret that I am a huge Star Wars fan.  In fact, I have the posters for Episodes 4, 5, and 6 hanging in my living room over my coach.  I used to play Star Wars Galaxies... a lot.

I left the game twice after major recodes of the game that made it simply unplayable in any fashion that could be described as fun.  They have offered me several free trials to try to lure me back, and I always update my client (which I still haven't uninstalled).  The hope returns that the game will be fun again, but that is quickly crushed.

Is there hope?

In the lead up to the release of Death Troopers SOE has plans to overhaul some of the core systems again.

  • Update 13 will add in Star Wars Chronicles.  A system for players to make their own missions (PvE and PvP)
  • Update 15 will overhaul the Galactic Civil War system

Updates 14 and 15 will be the Death Troopers additions.

O, the pain of it all

Yet again, I am torn whether or not to dust off my old account and give Galaxies another try.  If you are still playing, let me know how the gameplay is now

(via Club Jade.)

Brian's Top 10 Movies

It's very hard to pick only 10 movies so I went with the top 10 but at the moment that I would pick:

  1. star-wars-yoda-lightsaberStar Wars all of them:  Big fan of the setting, story, and myth.
  2. The Matrix Collection: The great way this series gets one to give a second look at the systems that they exist in, how to bend the rules and evolve.
  3. Transformers: (80's animated and the live action one)  Giant Robots Fun
  4. Harry Potter films:  what a wonderful story arc, the books are better
  5. Star Trek in particular Star Trek 2 The Wrath of Khan
  6. The Day the Earth Stood Still
  7. Serenity
  8. V for Vendetta:  the political exploration and the exploration of the power of symbolism and symbols.
  9. Planet of the Apes: the 1968 version it's a great social exploration.
  10. Frank Herbert's Dune: kind of a fudge because it aired on TV but I watch all of them as a long movie

What are your top 10 movies at this moment?

See John The Rogue Demon Hunter’s top 10 picks here

Review: Star Trek

startrekfanposter1I was a little afraid to see the new Star Trek Movie.  All of the materials they sent me to hype the movie either bored or annoyed me.  I started getting a little excited about the movie after the early screenings started returning good reviews. Sitting in the theater as boring trailers, my anticipation ramped up as film crept ever closer.  I love Star Trek.  It is probably my favorite franchise.  I really hoped they wouldn't mess it up.

It took me a while to write this review, because I wanted to make sure I got past my fanboy response to the movie and was able to talk about the movie with a bit more distance and clarity.

What should Star Trek be?

Gene Roddenberry's concept of Star Trek was a simple formula:

  • Action
  • Adventure
  • Basic wants and needs

But it should also tackle all of the most important issues of the day.  (You can read more about this in my post: More Proof J. J. Abrams Doesn’t Get Star Trek).  The early publicity left me with many concerns.

Addressing early concerns

Prequel/Sequel/Reboot [reus name="Star Trek iFrame"]

I was really confused about the nature of the film when they started calling is a prequel/sequel/reboot.

That is a strange thing to say, and alone, a statement that doesn't make sense, but for this film it works.

  • Sequel
    • Spock starts on Romulus like he is in the Next Generation
    • The first Federation uniforms we see are right out of Star Trek Enterprise.
    • Time travel story
  • Prequel
    • Young versions of the characters
  • Reboot
    • Establishes an alternate timeline for Star Trek

I am not sure I like the classification of this movie as a reboot.  Battlestar Galactica was a reboot, this was more of a return to the core of what made Star Trek great in the original series.  If this is a reboot so was:

  • The Animated Series (added more exotic alien races)
  • The Motion Picture (changed the Kligons forever)
  • Wrath of Khan (Brought back the Action/Adventure quality of the series.
  • Voyage Home (The crew of the Enterprise mess with the timeline)
  • The Next Generation (updated the series for a new generation of fans)
  • Deep Space Nine (Star Trek without exploration but with more military elements)
  • Generations (Kirk is ripped from the timeline)
  • Voyager (Star Trek without the Federation)
  • First Contact (The Borg and the crew of the Enterprise mess with the timeline)
  • Insurrection (The Federation is not perfect)
  • Enterprise (Star Trek before the Federation without superior technology)

If you would count each of these major revisions of the setting as a reboot, than this movie is a reboot.  To me, this sequel/prequel.

Turning Star Trek into Star Wars?

trek-newlogo-lg.jpgAbrams, Kurtzman anf Orci all said they wanted to turn bring more Star Wars into Star Trek, but I don't think they got there.  I love both series, and I am familiar with the main qualities of both, and I don't think they brought much if anything from one to the other.

I was afraid that is was going to be more of a Lethal Weapon in Space, Speed: Warp 10, Star Wars: The Vulcan Chronicles, or Cloverfield 2: The Future of the Beast (WTF Star Trek Super Bowl Ad!?!).  There is not a scene in this film that I could see easily fitting in one of the earlier films or the original television series.

Maybe they originally thought of Nero's ship as a sort of Death Star, but it is no more than Probe from The Voyage Home, V'ger from the Motion Picture, or the Son'a ships from Insurrection.  Other than that, I just don't get it.

Uhura in her off hours

I was excited when I saw the clip of Uhura telling Kirk off in the bar.  I hoped Kirk would get his butt kicked and he so did.  I was concerned about the stripping clips of Uhura in the trailers but I love the way the dealt with her.

----------Spoiler Alert!!----------

I loved the relationship between Uhura and Spock.  It made sence, and it served to dehumanize Spock in an interesting way.  The juxtaposition of her emotions and his total lack of emotions really hilighted the difference between humans and vulcans.

I know there are a lot of people who didn't like her depiction in this movie, but Uhura was always a more laid back member of the crew.

Addressing new concerns after seeing the movie

Kirk's Vaccine reaction

I loved the adverse reaction that Kirk had to the Vaccine that McCoy gave him.  It was a flashback to the kind of humor the original series thrived on.  It was silly, light hearted and interfered with the characters ability to do what they needed to do.

The Engine Room of Doom!

WTF were they thinking when they designed the engine room.  It was funny, but I agree with Gwen DeMarco regarding the fate of the writer who came up with the idea for these scenes...

I could go off on a long string blue words, but I will let the others who have already done that do it.  I just thought this was a blemish on an otherwise great film.

Nero's ship armament

Brian and I argued about this fro a long time after the movie.  Personally, I think Nero was just a MacGuffin to give an excuse for the story to happen.  Neither he nor his crew are intgral to the plot and could have been replaced by anyone else with any other motive using any other means.  Nero is not important. They obviously didn't give his subplot any thought, and frankly, the movie would have been better without the distraction.

I wish the film would have had a real 3 dimensional villain, but I honestly didn't expect one from a J. J. Abrams movie.  He has never done villains well.  Every movie and show that he has ever touch has had a weak, impotent, or flat villain.  A better director would have insisted on a better antagonist, but the story didn't matter, the action did.


Kirk's Exile from the Enterprise

Some people have complained about Spock having Kirk put in a life pod and jettisoned from the ship.  If I really wanted to defend the movie here I would say that this was a symptom of Spock's frustration that Kirk should not be on the ship at all.  I think that could be argued.

Once more, this is another symptom of Abrams' half-assed directing style.  He needed to have Kirk on the planet to meet Spock and this was the quickest and most "visually exciting" way to do it.  Let's be honest, this was an excuse to have Kirk chased by a Cloverfield reject so he could talk to Spock in a cave.  It was not thought out.

Nero's Motives


Nero's motive for attacking Vulcan are nothing less than laughable.  He was a stupid man on a stupid ship with the horridly named "Red Matter" who wants to destroy Vulcan rather than save his homeworld.

Maybe he thought he could do both.  Rid the Empire of the threat of the Federation and save his homeworld.  I think the reallity is a lot simpler.

Like most of the annoying things in this film it just wasn't well thought out.  It was a flimsy excuse for a Nero to be a villain and commit a terrorist act without having to think about whether or not he has a good (or at least understandable) reason or not.

Nero is a flat, empty character and I can tell you why.  This movie is nothing more than:

Wrath of Khan, take 2

This story follows the plot of Wrath of Khan beat by beat with several notable exceptions:

  • Nero is not as scary as Khan.
  • Nero does not have a motive for revenge.
  • "Red Matter" is not as scary as the Genesis Device.
  • Wrath of Khan had better writers and director.

This movie is to Wrath of Khan what the Next Generation episode "Naked Now" is to the Original Series episode "Naked Time."  It is a good remake, but it is not as good as the original.

Is this Star Trek?

Let's measure it against Gene's definition

√ Action √ Adventure √ Basic wants and needs √ Tackle all of the most important issues of the day.

That last check might be a little controversial, but I thought the show dealt with the random nature of terrorism and the emotional cost it has on people.

Star Trek's New Phase

I am glad to say that Star Trek has been reborn, much as it was when Wrath of Khan came out.  I loved the movie.


  • Canon Uniforms
  • Spock's relationship with the Romulans
  • Characters were perfect
  • Not just an action film
  • great FX
  • sense of humor


  • The Engine room
  • Lack of a serious villain
  • Nero's Ship
  • "Red Matter"
  • The Alien Monster
  • Kirk's marooning

Rating = 10

The Future of Star Trek

Orci and Kurtzmen have already signed on to write the next movie in the series, but that are not sure if it will be a Prequel, Sequel, or Reboot to this movie.  They said they are waiting to see what the reaction to this film is.  And there is one more thing:

Kurtzman: The very last scene when Spock and Spock meet each other, finally. And elder Spock is convincing young Spock that he couldn't interfere, because it would have diverted [Kirk and Spock] away from their friendship. And that their friendship is the key to the whole sort of shebang.

Orci: He gave him a recorded message from Kirk.

Kurtzman: He [elder Spock] said, "Don't take my word for it." And he handed him [younger Spock] a little holographic device and it projected Shatner. It was basically a Happy Birthday wish knowing that Spock was going to go off to Romulus, and Kirk would probably be dead by the time... (Topless Robots)

That could be the set up for the next movie.  Personally, I don't want another movie.  I want a TV series.

Star Trek: Julia Ecklar - Born Again Trek

This is one of the only songs I have ever heard that captures my love of Star Trek!  Julie Ecklar always delivers her trademaek brilliant performance.

What you have to remember about this song is, at the time their was a growing rift between Star Wars and Star Trek fans.  I tried to remain neutral, but songs like this and the Klingon Fight Song, made it nearly impossible to remain so.

Theater or Renter: May 2009

Theater or Renter: May includes eight SF movies:  X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Battle for Terra, Star Trek, Angels & Demons, Terminator: Salvation, Night at the Museum 2: Battle of the Smithsonian, Up, Drag Me to Hell.  Will we watch? Will we rent? or do we even care? Rules of the Game: Watch the trailers. Rate the Trailer. Then share with us your comments: does the movie, it’s trailer and buzz make you want to watch it in the theater, rent it, or not interested at all, and why?

X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Release Date: MAY 1st

Listed as: Action, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Thriller

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Director: Gavin Hood

Produced by: Hugh Jackman, Lauren Shuler Donner, Ralph Winter, John Palermo

Written by: David Benioff, Skip Woods

Stars: Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Danny Huston, Dominic Monaghan, and Ryan Reynolds

The Plot / Story: The first chapter in the X-Men Saga, unites Wolverine with several other legends of the X-Men universe, in an epic revolution that pits the mutants against powerful forces determined to eliminate them.  Are you concerned that there is no story in that description... I am. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

for more read: A video look at X-Men Origins: Wolverine, And here.

Battle for Terra

Release Date: MAY 1st

Listed as: Animation, Adventure

Studio: Lionsgate, Roadside Attractions, MeniThings Productions

Director: Aristomenis Tsirbas

Produced by: Ryan Colucci, Keith Calder

Written by: Evan Spiliotopoulos, Story: Aristomenis Tsirbas

Stars: Brian Cox, James Garner, Evan Rachel Wood, Justin Long, Dennis Quaid, Danny Glover, Amanda Peet

The Plot / Story: When the peace-loving inhabitants of the beautiful planet Terra come under attack from the last surviving members of humanity adrift in an aging spaceship, the stage is set for an all-out war between the two races for control of the planet.  But will an unlikely friendship between a rebellious young Terrian and an injured human piolt somehow convince their leaders that war is not the answer? (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

Star Trek (2009)

Release Date:  MAY 8th (May 7th in some theaters)

Listed as: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

Studio: Paramount Pictures, Spyglass Entertainment, Bad Robot Productions

Director: J. J. Abrams

Produced by: J. J. Abrams, Damon Lindelof

Written by: Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman

Stars: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Leonard Nimoy, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldana, Simon Pegg, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Eric Bana

The Plot / Story: The origin story of Captain James T. Kirk, Spock and the crew of the USS Enterprise before they had boldly gone where no man had gone before. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

For more articles on Star Trek read here

Angels & Demons

Release Date:  MAY 15th

Listed as: Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Studio: Imagine Entertainment

Director: Ron Howard

Produced by: Brian Grazer, John Calley

Written by: David Koepp, Akiva Goldsman

Stars: Tom Hanks, Ayelet Zurer, Ewan McGregor

The Plot / Story: Based on the book Angels & Demons by Dan Brown.  Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon finds himself in Rome, where he has to race against time to prevent the Illuminati, a secret society, from putting in motion a terrorist act that could destroy the Vatican. He's aided in his quest by the beautiful Italian scientist Vittoria Vetri (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

For more on Angels and Demons read:  Trailer: Angels & Demons TV spot

Terminator: Salvation

Release Date: MAY 22nd

Listed as: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller

Studio: Warner Bros.

Director: McG

Produced by: Derek Anderson, Victor Kubicek, Jeffrey Silver, Moritz Borman

Written by: Screenplay: John D. Brancato, Michael Ferris, Uncredited: Jonathan Nolan, Anthony E. Zuiker, Shawn Ryan, Paul Haggis, David C. Wilson, Characters: James Cameron, Gale Anne Hurd

Stars: Christian Bale, Sam Worthington, Anton Yelchin, Moon Bloodgood, Bryce Dallas Howard, Common, Jane Alexander, Helena Bonham Carter

The Plot / Story: John Connor is joined in his attempt to defeat Skynet and its army of Terminators by Marcus Wright, a man who apparently has been rescued from the past, though Connor wonders if instead he's been sent from the future as a foil to his plan. As Connor and Wright push deep into the heart of Skynet, they get closer and closer to learning the secret behind the organization's mission to wipe humankind off the planet.  (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

For more articles on Terminator read here

Night at the Museum 2: Battle of the Smithsonian

Release Date:  MAY 22nd

Listed as: Action, Comedy

Studio: 21 Laps Entertainment

Director: Shawn Levy

Produced by: Shawn Levy, Chris Columbus, Michael Barnathan

Written by: Screenplay: Thomas Lennon  Story: Robert Ben Garant

Stars: Ben Stiller, Amy Adams, Owen Wilson, Hank Azaria, Christopher Guest, Alain Chabat, and Robin Williams

The Plot / Story: Security guard Larry Daley infiltrates the Smithsonian Institute in order to rescue Jedediah and Octavius, who have been shipped to the museum by mistake. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)


Release Date: MAY 29th

Listed as: Animation, Action, Adventure, Comedy, Family

Studio: Pixar Animation Studios

Director: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson

Produced by: Jonas Rivera

Written by: Bob Peterson, Ronnie del Carmen, Thomas McCarthy

Stars: Edward Asner, Christopher Plummer, John Ratzenberger, Jordan Nagai

The Plot / Story: By tying thousands of balloon to his home, 78-year-old Carl Fredricksen sets out to fulfill his lifelong dream to see the wilds of South America. Right after lifting off, however, he learns he isn't alone on his journey, since Russell, a wilderness explorer 70 years his junior, has inadvertently become a stowaway on the trip. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

Drag Me to Hell

Release Date: MAY 29th

Listed as: Horror, Thriller

Studio: Ghost House Pictures

Director: Sam Raimi

Produced by: Grant Curtis, Joshua Donen, Joseph Drake, Nathan Kahane, Sam Raimi, Robert G. Tapert

Written by: Ivan Raimi, Sam Raimi

Stars: Alison Lohman, Justin Long, Lorna Raver, David Paymer

The Plot / Story: A loan officer ordered to evict an old woman from her home finds herself the recipient of a supernatural curse which turns her life into a living nightmare. Desperate, she turns to a seer for help, and learns she only has a short period of time before she is literally ushered into Hell. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

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I Trekked Myself and it scares me

The Star Trek people release of of the weirdest apps I have seen in a long time. It is called Trek Yourself. All you have to do is upload a picture of yourself, and it will turn you into a Federation officer, a Vulcan or a Romulan.  So I had to Give it a try.



The one of me as a Federation female looks like a cover for Mad Magazine!  I do look good as a Romulan though.

New Star Trek Clip: Uhura has a brain, Kirk is an Ass

MTV just added a clip from the new Star Trek Movie called Shot Of Love:

This clip is a little unusual for a Star Trek movie, but it does feel good to see Kirk get insulted.  I can only hope he gets his butt kicked next, but I know that it too much to ask for.

Check out my Star Trek Review.

New Star Trek Clip: Bones is afraid to fly!

st_vegas_mccoy_72dpiYahoo! Movies. added a short clip from the J. J. Abrams Star Trek Movie titled Disease and Danger, and I can't believe how much it makes me laugh. The scene depicts McCoy being ushered to his seat next to Kirk while loudly complaining about his fear of flying and all of the ways they could die either on their short flight or once they get into space.

I have to admit, the slip is funny, and it reminded me of something a young Bones would say and do.  I almost hate to say it, but I think they might be bringing me around.  Dare I consider the possibility that the film might actually be good?

Watch it here

Check out my Star Trek Review.

Star Trek is not a reboot?

startrekfanposter1After pushing the new Star Trek movie as a reboot of the franchise, writers Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman are starting to push back. It's clear that most people are not interested in yet another reboot, and even less are interested in a reboot of Star Trek.  It is interesting to see how they are changing the context of the film from a reboot to a prequel/sequel.

From Reboot to Prequel/Sequel

Orci said, "We couldn't imagine not having this movie somehow fall within some degree of continuity. We don't accept the word reboot. Reboot does not actually describe the fact that this movie would not be possible without the 10 movies that came prior to it. The very events of the movie themselves are caused by Leonard Nimoy as Mr. Spock and his story, which picks up essentially after the last movie, Star Trek 10 [Nemesis]. ... So our movie is both a prequel and a sequel. It's a sequel if you're a fan, and a prequel if you're not (SCI FI Wire)."

Honestly, I don't know what to think about this.  I am not sure if it is:

  • the writers starting to revolt against what they feel is an unfair characterization of this movie
  • a new marketing push to rebrand a movie that is not gaining much traction

I want to be hopeful, and believe they are telling the truth, but the good feeling doesn't last long.

Star Trek "fan" PosterTime Travel and Canon

Why is the time-travel element necessary?

Orci: I don't think that fits into the classic definition of a reboot. So it was necessary for that. And it's also necessary in order to both connect the world to the original Star Trek, but then also to then give us the dramatic license and the dramatic stakes of having an unknown future in the movie.

Kurtzman: Yeah, the biggest thing I think we all hiccuped on, just conceptually, when Trek was presented to us was, "Well, we know how they all died. We know what happened to them." And when you know that, it's very difficult to put them in jeopardy in a way that feels fresh or original. How do you ever have real stakes to your characters?


This also conveniently allows you to violate canon, such as it is, if necessary.

Orci: Well, again, it's a continuation of canon. If words have precise meaning, it's not technically a canon violation (SCI FI Wire).

They are going out of their way to try to keep this movie in the prequel/sequel category.

I find it hilarious to see any Star Trek writer talk about cannon.  Every fan knows that ever since Gene Roddenberry died, continuity has not exactly been a preoccupation of the continuity.  Whenever it was convenient, they have abandoned canon.  Kurtzman does make a good point that by adding an element of time travel, it does mean that no one is safe.

Star Wars in Star Trek

I have already gone into detail about my fears that they are going to make the new Star Trek film too much like Star Wars (see it here), so I won't repeat myself, but Orci and Kurtzman have given me more to chew on:

Orci: Well, my short quick answer on that up front is Star Wars had a little bit more of an archetypal, mythological structure. That differentiated it from Star Trek to a certain degree in that Star Trek was a little bit more classical science fiction. Star Wars is fantasy, really.

So, as a result of it being fantasy, the story, I think, was a little bit more mythologically drawn.

Kurtzman: I think what we know is that ... Star Trek is about naval battles, and, at its best, is always about out-thinking your opponent. ... But there's a reality to the way that people watch movies today. ... Which is that you cannot honestly expect ... a 12-year-old boy to walk into a theater and to go sit through two hours of very slow naval battle. It's just not going to work.

... There has to be an updating there. And yet you have to stay entirely true to the spirit of Trek. So the challenge then becomes "How do you marry those two things?" And ... the way that we put it is that there's plenty of naval battles in a way that's familiar and a way that seems very Trek. But ... the difference between Star Trek and Star Wars is that Star Wars has always been about speed. ... It's dogfights versus slow ship fights (SCI FI Wire).

Ok, I am not sure what to make out of this.  I really want to remind them of the space battles from the Dominion War in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, or in Voyager, or Enterprise.  You don't have to look outside the franchise to find fast paced action.

I also have a problem with the invocation of the 12 year old boy.  They have been dumbing down entertainment for so long, that they now feel that they have to cater to the short attention spans they created.

I suppose I should be comforted that their contribution to the franchise will be to remove what little science fiction remains.

Forget everything you know

So remember:

  • It's not a reboot
  • It's a prequel/sequel
  • It will be fast paced
  • It will not by Science Fiction or Scifi
  • It was made just for 12 year old boys, not for general audiences
  • It is true to cannon

Wait?? What?? Forget everything I know?  Ok, I will.  I will expect:

  • wooden 2 dimensional characters
  • no plot
  • nothing thought provoking
  • lots of shaky cam
  • lots of explosions
  • fantasy creatures around every corner

I didn't expect the sequel to Lord of the Rings to be a Star Trek film but game on...

PS: J. J. Abrams' "Creativity" and "Imagination"

Facepalm left a great comment on the original post on SCI FI Wire.

The History of J.J. Abrams:

Lost: It's time travel across dimensions Fringe: It's time travel across dimensions Star Trek: It's time travel across dimensions.

Can't wait for his version of Romeo and Juliet.

Most of the comment were negative against the film..

Check out my Star Trek Review.