Saturday, May 28, 2011

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn (1982)

I'm a trekie, my first experience was a VH1 documentary called When Star Trek Ruled the World and I saw Oprah along with millions of unnamed women being empowered along with this unquestionable equality of races within the show, while Starwars seemed to only really influence smart white guys. Luke Skywalker and Hans Solo were incomplete compared to the well rounded- bad ass that was Captain Kirk, or the logically awesome Spock; these besties had a much more meaningful relationship because they didn't need each other, they choose each other. Also, not that it’s a huge deal or anything, but without the original space western’s success, "the wars" wouldn't exist.

(Actual dialog from this movie)

This film, credited with saving the Star Trek franchise after the initial lack of critical success for the first movie, is about Kirk’s midlife crisis. He was promoted to a position that no longer involved exploring the space frontier and it took a toll on his friendly drinking habits. He joins Spock on a test mission for upper level Star Fleet Cadet Trainees, including the future captain hopeful Lieutenant Saavik (Kristi Alley’s first role was a sexy Vulcan). There is a project genesis and Kahn commandeers another Star Fleet ship to try and steal it tries to get a hold of it. Kahn is successful and detonates the matter rearranging life bomb. The enterprise gets out of genesis’ range just in time. Add a few awesome fight scenes between Kirk and Kahn plus one really upsetting death of an original enterprise member and you have The Wrath of Kahn.

Now for the updates: Star fleet is wearing a rust colored jumpsuit with different colored turtle necks to show rank. I preferred the obvious colored shirts and will miss the random red shirt jokes (random off white collar is just not the same). The insides of the ships are a light blue and cream. The updates are certainly not as effective as J.J. Abrams Apple store version and actually date the movie more than the show’s original style. Luckily, staying true to every other Star Trek scientist previously, the genesis project is run by a beautiful blonde scientist. Kirk’s new perm definitely adds to the space porno feeling.

I liked the film, the addition of Saavik definitely implies Star Trek’s later female captains and there full competency at more than just linguistics (especially since this becomes obsolete in later seasons thanks to a universal translator). The movie really sets up some of the later technological advances through project genesis, and its interesting to see that the concept didn’t really have to update its ethics for the 80’s; the standards already in place were fine.

Kirk’s perm can take Kahn’s grey hat head any day!

1 comment:

Vladigogo said...

Depending on your point of view, this was either a great thing as it brought on a slew of more Star Trek movies or a bad thing as it brought on a slew of my Star Trek movies.