Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)

ROBERT WISE

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5

USA, 1979, Century Associates.  Story by , Screenplay by , based on the television series Star Trek created by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Academy Awards 1979Golden Globe Awards 1979.

Fans of the original television series (that was shamefully aborted in 1969) were thrilled to find out that a resurrection was occurring on the big screen when this film originally came out in 1979. Sadly, they would have to wait a few more years before a really good Star Trek movie would be available, but that doesn’t render this one completely worthless. Essentially it’s a well-paced, beautifully designed adventure film that suffers from a lack of character depth and the occasional sparks of humour that made the original series so endearing. Captain Kirk ( in all his delightful, overacting glory) is recruited back into the service of the U.S.S. Enterprise when a mysterious force field in outer space has been discovered and is responsible for the destruction of many of Starfleet’s vessels. Taking command of the ship from its former captain (), Kirk and his trusty crew travel across the galaxy to discover the nature of this entity that identifies itself only as ‘V-Ger’ and is approaching the earth with annihilation in mind. The pacing is dull and the costumes all painfully bland (what happened to the carnivalesque colour scheme of the show?), a real disappointment considering that director Robert Wise is responsible for the great science-fiction classic The Day The Earth Stood Still.

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