Saw Star Trek: Nemesis last night and, like a lot of people, found
myself torn. This might have been a good movie, even if it was basically
a rehash of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. I mean, if you're going to
copy a Trek movie, you might as well copy the best one. But while ST2
remained true to Trek, Nemesis did not. (Avast, ye mateys, there
be spoilers ahead!)
There were several moments throughout the movie that made me sit,
gaping in my chair, wondering out loud, "Did the writers even watch
Star Trek: The Next Generation?" When a Data-like android was found on an
alien planet (using the Enterprise's magic Plot Device to detect the
android's energy signature), no one, not once, bothered to mention Lore --
the precursor to Data, the android that was just a bit too human
for comfort. Everyone was all amazed... "Oh my, another Data! Wow, it
looks just like you!" For crying out loud, it's not like this never
happened before. The fact that the chaotic Lore existed at all should
have given them pause before reassembling their newly discovered
Data-double. But no, not only do they proceed to put it back together,
they also dump all of Data's memories into it! This is, of course, allows
the writers to do something rather drastic at the end of the movie and
still end up with everything copacetic in the end. Pretty convenient, I'd
I'd also like to say that the scene where they discover Data's second
sibling was rather baffling. All of the sudden, strange aliens appear,
driving dune buggies complete with machine guns shooting up the place...
and no explanation as to why.
Are we supposed to believe that the Romulans, arrogant beyond belief
and so assured of their own superiority, would make a human clone
the leader of their entire empire? Not only a human clone, but one that
was raised on Remus and brought with him hordes of Remans as his trusted
guards and advisers. A coup by the Romulan military I can believe. A
military coup that places a human on the throne is hard to swallow.
I almost never notice music in movies. It's just something I don't
pick up on, as long as it's decent. There are a very few occasions when I
realize that a movie has good music. There are also those movies, like
Nemesis, where I can't help but notice the bad. On the planet where they
discover the android B4, we are subjected to a terrible discordant score
so close to being palatable that I couldn't for the life of me figure out
if it was some kind of problem with the audio recording. I mean, it was
just plain bad. Of course, during that entire segment, the lighting was
washed out and yellow, so I can only assume the the effect was
intentional. However, I simply chalk it up to another poor decision.
Where is Data's emotion chip? Seemingly forgotten. It is quite clear
in this movie that it is not in use ("I feel nothing," he says on one
occasion), nor is any mention of it ever made. Now that I think of it,
mind you, I think they pretty much did the same thing in Insurrection.
However, this is not an excuse, considering how prevalent it was in
Generations, and it was featured in First Contact.
And they start out the movie with The Silliness. Come on, people.
TNG has always had its sense of humor, but what's with the fucking
singing? I can't remember anyone singing show tunes in any of the TNG
episodes, and yet we have 2 movies where characters belt out songs at a
whim. Enough already!
Oh, and just for the record, Picard used to have hair. It didn't
bother me that his clone had none... It did bother me that the (SF
Academy?) photo of Picard had none. Don't believe me? Watch the TNG
episode "Tapestry" in which he dies and Q shows Picard what his life would
have been like had he not been so reckless in his youth. Yeah, he used to
have hair. Most bald people did.
This isn't to say the movie is all bad. It has plenty of action,
though none of the space combat really had the edge-of-your-seat
nail-biting suspense of either Wrath of Khan or Undiscovered Country. And
at least the main bad guy isn't a god or sorry cookie-cutter Klingon. Tom
Hardy does well in the role he was given, doing a fine job of expressing
his pain, anger, and longing. It's just a shame he wasn't given something
better to work with.