The reviews are mixed for the latest Star Trek Beyond, likely because of something that happened back in 2002 with Star Trek Nemesis called “franchise fatigue.”
Well, that and perhaps the fact that the Star Trek Nemesis director didn’t know or even care much for the universe to put more effort into the picture, according to Marina Sirtis (Troi), Levar Burton (Geordie) and Jonathan Frakes (Riker).
In comparison with the first Star Trek movie, under director J.J. Abrams — who also didn’t have much love for it either — he did a much better job in trying, perhaps to the point where he ended up enjoying it.
The news about the new Star Trek television series coming to CBS is exciting for the simple fact that the franchise must be given more than a big screen chance of survival.
In the ’90s, the Star Trek universe dominated television with various spin-off series from The Next Generation, from which Nemesis was sprung. And for those actors, to continue to play a part on the big screen as they did the small is as good a run as a working actor can expect from a career.
It’s worth taking another look at Star Trek Nemesis as the last shot for The Next Generation crew, in that coming out from under that franchise fatigue, the movie is different and worthy of any film from the series.
For one, that a high-caliber actor such as Tom Hardy took the role as Shinzon so seriously says a lot about his dedication and his exchange with another great actor, Patrick Stewart. Both have survived the series, one from being typecast and another from possibly never working again after the movie received terrible reviews.
The movie was made for an estimated $60 million, only to finally tap-out at $67 million which in today’s market, would be a complete and almost unsalvageable disaster.
Den Of Geek has an article on Nemesis from the recent past — that being this month — that’s about as even-handed on the film as you’re going to get, acknowledging the production issues played too much of a part in wrangling the script in the wrong direction, perhaps with Rick Berman micro-managing some of the back story.
“The direction is good. The plotting is good. The editing is good. But each is aiming to achieve different things. Writer John Logan, it seemed, was reigned in by both franchise head Rick Berman and director Stuart Baird on what back story he was allowed to include (and much was edited out anyway), the cast were keen on including more of themselves (Spiner it seems won in that regard), and Berman didn’t have a clear vision for who should win. The resulting film is a compromise, aiming to please everybody just enough. At these mediocre aims it succeeds. Perhaps we should be grateful that we got something coherent at all.”
Anyone who remembers the Star Trek spin-offs will recognize the name Rick Berman, who many fans of the franchise felt he had hijacked it from Gene Roddenberry, as if he were sent from a higher power.
Sir Patrick and Bryan Singer. How much better can it get? pic.twitter.com/S9Fh7wQSby
— Rick Berman (@berman_rick) April 15, 2016
Plus, the mention of Stuart Baird — who hasn’t directed a movie since — but played a major part behind the scenes of the Daniel Craig Bond films, should provide a hint as to why Star Trek Nemesis was off the mark.
The article goes into more depth about the story line but it was the last movie Berman would be involved with toward the end of the entire franchise, ending with Enterprise which ran from 2001 – 2005.
Perhaps there’s room now to bring back that cast/crew for the rumored follow-up to Star Trek Nemesis with all of these revamps taking place? There’s no way that could be a problem now, with the overwhelming amount of talented hands in the mix.
[Image via Paramount Pictures]