1998; Rated PG; 104 Minutes
Patrick Stewart: Jean-Luc Picard
Jonathan Frakes: William T. Riker
Brent Spiner: Data
Levar Burton: Geordi LaForge
Michael Dorn: Worf
Produced by Rick
Berman, Morty Hornstein, Peter Lauritson and Patrick Stewart;
Directed by Jonathan Frakes; Screenwritten by
by DAVID KEYES
I was, sitting in a room packed with science fiction fans,
watching the ninth "Star Trek" movie: "Insurrection." Even
before it started, I had chills going down my spine, pretty
sure that I was going to see another flop for the never-ending
franchise. It seems to attract attention no matter how many
movies are made, and the series may just very well continue
its voyage into unknown universes throughout the 21st century.
Even while the "Star Wars: Episode 1" trailer still ran
on the screen, I was beginning to wonder, "why? Why do I
even bother going to these things? Its obvious that all
of these movies are like two-hour television shows, so why
as the movie began, I sat back and tried to free my mind
of the franchise's messy past. The movie opens wonderfully
with rich landscapes as children and adults frolic together
freely through gardens and hilltops, with large, breathtaking
mountains in the distance. The place is like a garden of
Eden, sort of: peaceful, happy, vibrant, and filled with
have to admit, these first scenes surprised me, because
your standard epic space movie almost always takes place
entirely in outer space: the void which seems to give off
murky and depressing colorization with the special effects
and set design. As the children and the adults moved graciously
and happily through the gardens of this beautiful place,
I was like "wow! I can't believe this! For once, a 'Star
Trek' movie is actually good to look at." That, notion,
of course, was something that lasted throughout the movie,
but aside from its visually appealing style, the movie is
no better than any of the other "Star Trek" films that have
already passed on. "Insurrection," like its predecessors,
has a mediocre premise, a situation between alien races
that doesn't make sense, and a story you can't quite care
about. It's a movie that gets two stars--quite better than
the average franchise film, but that's still not saying
much. This is a series that does not appeal to me to much
of the extent. I wouldn't care if they discontinued it or
continued extending it. After "Insurrection," it wouldn't
make a difference: I'd likely not see anymore anyway.
story involves this alien race (sort of) that lives on an
Earth-like planet with rings surrounding it. The rings on
this planet seem to give off all sorts of different vibes
which prevent the advancement of the aging process for the
people. And no wonder: they are over 300 years old, though
the vibes they've been exposed to on the planet have made
them look like they're in their 30s. This is the alien race
which is seen in the first shots of the film: the 'habitat'
for these people to "live long and prosper," as Spock would
have said. The only problem is, however, another alien race
wants them moved off of the planet so they can take advantage
of the age-decreasing effects given off by the planet's
Picard and his crew aboard the Starship Enterprise get wind
of this situation when one of the Federation Chiefs accompanies
the alien race in their quest to remove the others from
the planet. Little do we realize, though, that the deformed
alien race is actually the same race as the people who currently
inhabit the planet, only they are aged, and greedy for the
planet's gift to the aging process.
are a lot of holes and problems in the story, but the most
frustrating one is the fact that there's no real explanation
to how the aliens got to the planet. Where did they come
from? How did they get there? Why did they leave their other
planet? Better yet, did all of them look like they had wash
cloths glued to their face before the rings took effect
on their aging process?
though the members of Picard's crew seem to be stiffer than
normal, Data has all the best scenes. He's the Enterprise
Android (as you should know), and half the time, his limited
robotic mind can't quite grasp some things, and it makes
for some very funny moments.
this scene, for example: As the Enterprise crew transports
the entire alien race to the caves in the mountains for
protection from their antagonists, one of the crew members
says to a fellow crew member, "have you noticed that your
boobs have firmed up? It must be the rings." Of course,
Data is machine, and probably doesn't have the word 'boobs'
in his vocabulary. As he approaches Worf, he uses that line
on him as well.
the only character in the whole confederation that seems
to stand out in a series like this. Think, for a moment,
if they decided to make a movie entirely about him. No doubt,
audiences would love it better than any film in the "Star
though there IS some things to like about the film (most
notably the fiery colors from the solar system's nebula),
the really great "Star Trek" movie has not been made yet.
"Insurrection" may be a prelude of great things to come,
but even so, I may not stick around long enough to see them.
You can only play a piano so many times before it finally
goes out of tune.
1998, David Keyes, Cinemaphile.org.
Please e-mail the author here
if the above review contains any spelling or grammar mistakes.