Okay, I went and saw it today and... It sucked. One star.
Star Trek 11 has been billed as a prequel. It is not a prequel. It is, in fact, a spinoff that takes place in a parallel universe to all of the other Star Trek stories and is connected to them by only the baldest contrivance. It contains the same characters, but they have all new origin stories and they live in a universe that is completely different. Accordingly, I will refer to the movie as "Ultimate Star Trek."
Ultimate Star Trek has possibly the thinnest plot of any science fiction movie ever. None of the characters has any apparent motivation, especially the villain, Nero, who wants to destroy the Earth because... (wait for it!) ...he's crazy. Yes, crazy. Gone are the days when Trek villains wanted to absorb the Earth into their collectives, purify it for the use of machine life or feast on the bioelectric energy of its citizens. The Ultimate baddies are just plain nuts.
It seems that, in the future, the Federation fails to stop Nero's planet from being destroyed by a natural disaster. They try, but they just don't make it in time. You'd think Nero would be grateful that they tried to save his home, but no, he's pissed. When, through a bald contrivance, Nero is transported back in time, he decides to take out his rage by destroying the Federation. (I mean, like, what else would he do? Take the opportunity to save his planet before the disaster strikes?) Apparently, Nero thinks that if he can destroy the Federation, then they won't be late with their rescue and his planet will be saved. Like, I'll go back in time and kill all the firemen so they won't be able to not rescue my family. Does that make any sense? Why no, not a bit. Like I said: He's crazy. Unfortunately, he's also the deepest and most sympathetic character in the story.
It's not a good story.
Without going into needless detail, I can sum up the plot by saying it is a mess of shallow contrivances, none of which is particularly interesting. In Ultimate Star Trek, things happen for one reason and one reason only: To advance the story to the next action scene. This is also the motivation for all the heros: Advance to the next action scene. Conversations generally turn into fist fights for no apparent reason. Black holes will either kill you or throw you back in time as the plot requires. The Enterprise has a bout 100 yards of giant water pipes that run in loops through engineering. Why does a starship have water mains? Why, so that a character can get sucked through them in a comic-relief moment, of course. Starships are built with comic relief in mind. Etc. There is no logic or sense to anything in the movie: Everything is a contrivance. Nothing is plausible. There is no explanation for any event that takes place in the movie other than the screenwriter needed some way to get to the next scene. The story makes "The Mummy" seem deep.
Even the cinematography is bad. The whole movie is ugly, from the poorly-updated costumes to the overused lens flare effects to the cheap-looking sets. Even the starships aren't cool. Starships are supposed to be BIG, but the terrible overuse of tight shots and shaky camera makes them all seem like tiny models (ironic, since the starships looked less like models in the older movies, when they really were models).
And I'll just stop there, because there really isn't much else to say. I could detail the myriad scientific errors (apparently the filmmakers do not understand the meaning of the word "orbit") but it would be pointless, because you wouldn't expect scientific accuracy from a movie that is not concerned with accuracy of any kind. I could list all plot holes, but why bother doing that to a story that consists completely of plot holes? It would be like giving names to all the empty spaces out in space.
Ultimate Star Trek sucks. Avoid. Pop in the DVD of Star Trek 6 or 7 and make some microwave popcorn. It will be a much better use of your time.
Advertise in this space!