Who’s in this?
Outside of the regular Enterprise cast we have…
Laurence Luckinbill as Sybok, Spock’s long haired, smiling, God-seeking half-brother. He worked in TV and made for TV movies quite a bit in the 70’s and 80’s.
Out of the rest cast I’d say the ones that deserve being mentioned most are these.
David Warner as St. John Talbot the Federation representitive who gets pulled in by Sybok. Warner was a very accomplished British character actor even by this time. He was in the Omen, the Titanic, From beyond the grave, tons of cartoon voices and he would be back as different character in Star Trek 6 and in STTNG.
Rex Hollman as J’onn the bald, messed up teeth dude who followed Sybok and is in the opening sequence. He was Morgan Earp in the Spectre of the gun episode of the original series. That was no stretch and he was in various episodes of numerous 60’s westerns. He actually clocked in over 100 credits with this one because the last one listed at IMDB.
The Klingon couple Todd Bryant as Klaa and Spice Williams as Vixis had both some experience as stunt people by the time of this film. Both have continued in that field and had steady work as stunt people in films and are both still in that line today.
Maybe if we shove Shatner out and leave him here he’ll never direct another film.
What’s this about? So check this out. Spock has a half-brother and he wants to go look for God because he thinks God is hanging out on this planet far, far away. The Enterprise is in crap shape and Kirk is wearing a silly t-shirt, but they are still sent to stop Spock’s half brother. Yet they instead let the Enterprise get taken after Uhura lures guys in by being naked, Spock neck pinches a horse creature and Kirk wrestles a cat woman. Oh and there’s this Klingon captain who looks like he’s into weight lifting and 80’s hair metal and like he’s out to make a name for himself by going after Kirk as well. There’s some parts with the big three around a campfire and Kirk saying he knows that when he dies he’ll alone and that theme is sort of throughout the film somewhere between all the crap bits jammed into this thing. Spock’s half brother Sybok can take pain from others and that’s mainly how he gets followers. He’s kind of a rebel for a Vulcan and shows emotions so we can all laugh at Spock acting stiff as he cringes at people knowing about his hippie brother. Eventually Kirk is pretty much always right in this one as he wins out over the fake God, Sybok’s quest and the pretty boy Klingon gunner/Captain. Roll the credits and put your face in your hands.
I could shoot you, but maybe I should shoot that Shatner guy for making this movie.
The negatives-The main problem here is the story. It’s kind of like The way to Eden from the sereies which is a bottom five episode with elements of the first Trek movie too. It’s maybe worse here as Sybok’s character seems to get everything going but he’s taken in by what he eventually finds even though we all see it coming a mile aways. The Enterprise crew all seem to fumble more than they ever have and it’s not to all to blame on the troubles the ship is having. In the end this all comes across as a rather cheap, flimsy attempt to fit into the Trek universe. The effects are sub-par too. I saw this opening weekend in 1989 and walked out thinking oh man they just made something worse than “Spock’s Brain”.
The positives-I kind of like the campfire scenes even if they are a bit too silly. They have Sulu and Checkov hiking which results in another silly joke, but it was nice to see them doing something as friends. It’s also implied that Scotty and Uhura were doing things maybe as friends or maybe as more than friends-either way I liked that it was mentioned. most of this is early on and after this anything positive for the the supporting crew is gone. The parts with Spock coming to terms with Sybok are okay, but don’t totally fit and they fail add a whole to Spock’s character.
This is a terrible film overall, the worst of all the Trek films. Someone needed to take a better look at that script and point out lame it was and how did so much damage the good that previous films had done for these characters. It was a joke and a bad one. The concept of looking for a higher power had been done in Trek and it could have been done here in a better way had they limited the humor, not made Kirk being the only being correct and have the concept of finding God be not so physical. Finding a floating being on an isolated planet seemed really limp and made Sybok look even sillier. Thinking about this film makes me want to quote a character from another scifi show…”oh, the pain, the pain”. Sybok should have taken away the pain I had after I saw this movie.
Star Trek week continues on Tuesday with a much more upbeat topic-my history with Star Trek although it may only interest me.