I remember thoroughly enjoying the new Star Trek movie when it first came out. It has been a little bit since I had watched it so today I decided to take an opportunity to do so. Watching it again I am remembered how good that movie was. There could have been so much that went wrong with that movie because how do you reboot a franchise that is so beloved and already had so much story that was considered cannon? They really did keep the things that are loved about Star Trek, but put a new twist on the story. Now this is not to say that the movie is perfect, but it did start the new movies off on a strong foot.
Not a Reboot, but a Continuation
One of the reasons that I feel the new Star Trek movie works is because it is not actually changing any of the shows or movies that have come before. The problem with doing a reboot is that it erases everything that people have previously experienced and starts it anew. Now sometimes this can work well, but when those stories are as beloved as Star Trek I feel like people would resent if the new movie did not hold true to the old storylines. By using time travel to alter the timeline they essentially made it that all the old shows and movies happened that way and through time travel a new timeline is created where the actual events will be different. This means that the new movies are not really reboots, but continuations of the story.
Variation on a Familiar Theme
One of the other things that worked really well in favor of the new Star Trek movie is that they used the music to their advantage. The opening starts with the main theme for Star Trek and there is not much you have to hear of it to just feel all the feels. Then throughout the movie the music just feels so perfectly on tone for the scenes. In the final sequence the music just catches your breath with the impact of what is happening. It really is impressive when the very music in a movie just swells with emotion.
The most important piece of the movies is that they kept true to the characters. Even though it is new actors they really do embody the crew of the Enterprise. My personal favorites are Karl Urban as Dr McCoy and Simon Pegg as Scotty. Zachary Quinto and Chris Pine do a fantastic job as well, but there is something about Karl Urban and Simon Pegg’s performance that I love. Of course one of the best things about the first movie is how they incorporated Leonard Nimoy as older Spock. The ending with him doing the Star Trek opening is a little heart-wrenching since his passing and makes the moment all the more special.