Christopher Lloyd

Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

Year: 1984
Directed By: Leonard Nimoy
Written By: Harve Bennett, Gene Roddenberry (Star Trek)

RYAN’S REVIEW

I have always felt this third movie fell into the odd and even theory of Star Trek films but only because there are significant problems with the story. This movie is deeply tied into Star Trek roots being made by one of the cast members and there is plenty to like about it. Nevertheless, watching this movie is simply waiting for the inevitable to happen. You know it’s only a matter of time before Kirk is back in the captain’s chair and it’s only a matter of time before Spock returns. The Klingons are the wild card in the film and they do keep things interesting. It’s a totally OK movie but it is far from great.

This movie got back to the basics and used the Klingons as the villains, and I think that was awesome. I thought Christopher Lloyd‘s performance was a little over the top, but these Klingons are ruthless. It’s totally lame when Doc Brown chokes that snakelike thing to death but when he gives the order to kill one of the hostages he’s just cold blooded. I do like that Kruge and Kirk have a fight to the death as the planet destroys itself around them. I also love the last Klingon that is really disappointed that he isn’t going to be killed. The Klingon would rather be put to death than face defeat. You just can’t go wrong with Kingons as the villains in a Star Trek film.

This is the first appearance of the Klingon Bird of Prey ship and it is by far the coolest ship to date. It really sucks that Kirk has to destroy the Enterprise but at least he got a bitchin new ship in the process. This movie is the middle of a three film arc and they get to fly around in the Bird of Prey for the fourth film too.

Star Trek is better with Spock and what this whole movie boils down to is a Star Trek movie with practically no Spock. You have Spock’s dad but what a poor substitute. I thought Leonard Nimoy did a good job behind camera and had an obvious influence on the very Star Trekkie feel to certain parts of the movie. The scenes on Earth when McCoy goes to the bar and sees a wide variety of aliens, including those fur ball things I can’t remember the name of, specifically come to mind as an example of what I’m talking about.

William Shatner really tries to pull out the acting big guns when his son is killed. Falling to his knees and getting choked up as he screams at the Klingon bastard. I think that moment in the film could have been much more dramatic. When Doc Brown gives the order to kill one of the prisoners, he doesn’t care which one, the scene wasn’t drawn out enough. You have Saavik, David, or Spock to choose from and one of these important characters is going to be killed. While Saavik is the one chosen David steps up to defend her with a really weak fight before getting stabbed to death. It’s interesting that Kirk’s sacrifice of his son and his ship counter balances the sacrifice of Spock in the preceding film.

There is a lot to like about this movie but nothing that really sets it apart from the others. I think the story is the main problem because it is all a build up to the return of Spock and we all know that one way or another he will return and be alright. This movie works for the Trekkies but I don’t think the average person would ever sit down to this film and enjoy it.

If you’re a Trekkie you don’t need my opinion about this film because you out rank me in fandom. However, if you aren’t a Star Trek fan then frankly I’m shocked you’d still be reading this. This is a good enough Star Trek film but it’s not going to make any new fans. I’d say it’s easily worth the time of Trekkies everywhere but not for anybody who isn’t into it.

NEXT MOVIE: Star Trek III: The Voyage Home (1986)

Back to the Future Part II

Year: 1989
Directed By: Robert Zemeckis
Written By: Robert Zemeckis

RYAN’S REVIEW

I really enjoyed this movie as a kid, I thought this silly vision of the future was cool, the hoverboards got me.  However, watching it now makes it feel a little too ridiculous.  I can’t believe that these ideas about life in 2015 were supposed to be taken seriously. Flying cars, no lawyers, and the DeLorean is fueled by garbage. The ideas about style were also very interesting. Our shoes still have laces today, people have yet to start wearing two ties at once, and when Doc picks up Marty he is literally wearing a transparent single tie.  What I find funny is the fact that between now and the time this movie has come out life has changed so dramatically in so many ways.  Yet this movie shows a future that changes in all the wrong and most ridiculous ways.  I still love this movie though, because it is ridiculous.  It’s a movie that you can watch with your kids, even though by the time our kids are old enough to watch this it will actually be 2015 and it really won’t make any sense to them then.

This movie just rides the coattails of its successful predecessor but I think it still has value.  It’s vision of the future makes it interesting and worth seeing. This movie, and the franchise in general are practically artifacts from the 80s, that strange and unusual decade. While this movie does some of the same old same old it does have an interesting storyline. It’s a fun movie and I think you will enjoy it. I wouldn’t go out of my way to see it, the first one is the most important of these films, but I wouldn’t hesitate if you had the chance to see it.

AMBER’S REVIEW

As a kid I thought that the future would be just like this. I was so looking forward to hoverboards…where the hell are our hoverboards? I still love this movie, I think it is really interesting that they went back through the first one to fix it. That was a really tricky thing to do, having already made the first one. This one was another one that my dad introduced me to and for that reason I will always love this film. This movie is a fun one that you don’t have to think too hard at and you can just sit back and enjoy the ride…in a flying car!

NEXT MOVIE: Back to the Future Part III (1990)

Back to the Future

Year: 1985
Directed By: Robert Zemeckis
Written By: Robert Zemeckis

RYAN’S REVIEW

This film is the very definition of classic film.  It was a really cool idea and everybody loved it.  It was immensely popular when it came out, so much so that it was even quoted by Ronald Reagan in his 1986 State of the Union Address.  More recently it was actually used in a parody done by James Franco and Anne Hathaway during the 83rd Academy Awards show, so I would stay the film remains popular even until today.  I have also recently seen the film referenced in both NBC’s Community and The Office as well. The movie was well made, well performed, and will probably remain popular for another 25 years.  Let us all hope that nobody makes the mistake of trying to remake this film, too many classic 80s films are being remade lately.  When these classic movie are remade successfully the originals are ruined for the younger generations.  For example, what’s today’s 13 year old kid going to think of Ralph Macchio’s Karate Kid after seeing Jaden Smith’s version? I haven’t seen the remake and I’m not saying it’s a bad movie, in fact I heard great things about it. I think that the remake was made at a faster pace to suit today’s faster paced lifestyle, but it will inevitably make the original seem slow and boring. I think the remake’s success destroys the original movie to an extent, it makes it much harder to live on in the future.

Back to the Future was directed and written by Robert Zemeckis, with Steven Spielberg serving as Executive Producer.  Michael J Fox made his break through into movies with this role, and it was his best, more than anything else he is remembered for playing Marty McFly.  Crispin Glover and Lea Thompson play his parents who he runs into as teenagers in 1955.  Christopher Lloyd also gives the performance of his career in this movie, and he is fantastic as Doc Brown. When I was a kid I thought the skateboarding scene in 1955 was one of the coolest things I had ever seen. I loved this movie then as I do now, it’s such a simple story yet so original. Time Travel is an idea that always works well in movies and especially comedies.  People love seeing people out of place in different time periods, it is a popular comedy scenario.

While it may be disappointing that 25 years later we still have no time travelling DeLoreans, in fact almost nobody at all has DeLoreans and haven’t in as much time. In fact we have none of the ideas that this franchise proposed we would see in the future i.e. hover boards, flying car, flux capacitors.  Science has never been my strongest subject but occasionally I read some theories.  As I understand it the whole concept of time is merely an illusion, I can’t explain it, but it’s something I’ve picked up along the way. Long story short time travel isn’t possible because time doesn’t actually exist, but I could be really wrong about this.  Nevertheless time travel makes for a good story and Back to the Future is an awesome movie about it.  This movie is a classic all the way and it is worth your time to see it.

AMBER’S REVIEW

This movie always takes me back to my dad. He is the one I first watched it with and it was his idea. Which is saying something since he doesn’t watch a lot of movies. I love this movie and it will always hold a special place in my heart. I love the actors in the film, I love the story and overall I just love this movie. I never get tired of watching it. It is sad to me that so many people younger than myself has never and will never see it. I think it is a tragedy. They probably wouldn’t get the humor anyway, but still this film is one that I think everyone should see. How else would you get “Great Scott!” and “McFlllllyyyyy.”

NEXT MOVIE: Back to the Future II (1989)