Movie Club: Star Trek IV: The Voyage HOme

Discussion in 'Introductions & Off Topic' started by LiamABC, Nov 26, 2017.

  1. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    A big thanks to everyone that are joining us through all of this.

    After we did the original Star Wars trilogy in the summer, it's now the turn of Star Trek to get some Movie Club focus, and there were three films that led into each other as a trilogy, so the choice was simple, we're doing those.

    This means that this week we're concluding the trilogy with Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.

    Remember any ideas for films to discuss are most welcome, and should be made on the Movie Club Introduction thread (the sticky one), and anyone is welcome to add their thoughts about movies already discussed on their respective threads.

    Just a friendly reminder to everyone that, whilst fans are obviously welcome to passionately discuss and give their views on these movies, please remember to keep things on a friendly footing and respect your fellow posters.
    Also, please do not post where or how to find the full movie online. And do not post asking others to PM it to you. You are however allowed to watch the movie in whatever manner you want.
  2. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    Very mixed feelings on this movie.
    I liked the scenes with them in 80's San Francisco but I would have preferred to have seen them on an alien world or on the present Earth of their time.
    Generally I hate time travel stories as it's usually just lazy writing and a way to do a new story then have everything back to normal however at least with this they did not do that.
    The plot of the movie is very silly and boring.
    A giant probe messes up electric signals and the weather and can only communicate with they go back in time to bring back two whales to the present to communicate with the probe.
    I think Leonard Nimoy and the writers were more interested in getting there eco friendly message across instead of having a good plot.
    Even the novel Probe that explains its origin seems very silly.

    Of the three movies discussed here I would say I liked this the least in terms of plot but I found this a bit more exciting than the they didn't spend the majority of the movie walking around and talking on the bridge of the Enterprise.
    I wish The Wrath Of Khan and The Search For Spock had been a bit more exciting and I wish the Voyage Home had a better plot.

    Overall I will say The Voyage Home was bland. It was okay in parts thanks to having a bit more action and comic scenes with the crew but that cannot make up for the tedious, dull and ridiculous plot.

    I tried to watch the Star Trek movies growing up. I actually recalling seeing some of The Voyage Home on TV. But every time I tried to watch them I ended up just being far to bored.
    However I am glad I have watched these movies. I would be quite interested in watching some of the other movies and perhaps watching Star Trek the Next Generation. I recall liking what I seen of that show on TV.
  3. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    I hadn't seen this film in years. When Leonard Nimoy died, I watched Wrath Of Khan in tribute, and I remember watching Search For Spock as well (or I might have watched them both again later) but for whatever reason I didn't get round to this one. Not quite sure why. But I've seen it again now, and it's been too long.

    Firstly - this movie is fun! After the very heavy sombre tone of the previous two, it was a conscious decision by Harve Bennett and Leonard Nimoy to make the atmosphere a little lighter. Also they wanted to make the movie more accessible to people who had never seen Star Trek before. Hence bringing them back in time to the then-present day.

    Story-wise, this actually follows on very nicely from the previous two films. Spock's mind is still not quite back to normal. Kirk and the others are in trouble for their actions in the previous film. They had to think of some way of getting the characters off the hook, and what better way then saving the world? The travelling back in time to get members of a now extinct species actually worked very well. The story holds up. If you can suspend your disbelief in the whole time travel element, then the rest makes sense.

    Having to recrystalise the dilithium using contemporary means is very much like repairing the DeLorean in Back To The Future from the previous year. That's not the only parallel between contemporary or recent movies. Catherine Hicks' character, Dr Gillian Taylor, is not dissimilar to Ally Sheedy's character in Short Circuit, and her sense of belonging reminded me of Flight Of The Navigator - both these movies were from the same year as this one. Also, the character of Dr Taylor was originally envisioned quite differently - specifically, as a vehicle for Eddie Murphy, who again pulled out, as he did with Ghostbusters a couple of years earlier.

    The thing that really struck me though were the visual effects for the cloaked ship. Even now, they still hold up. The dustbin getting invisibly flattened, the dent in the grass, the helicopter lowering the crate into something that's not there, half of Scotty sticking out, the door opening - it's still brilliant.

    It was also nice to see both of Spock's parents in this movie - Mark Lenard and Jane Wyatt had both appeared in the original series episode "Journey To Babel", and of course Lenard had appeared as Sarek in the previous film, and would do so again in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. But this was the only time in the movie franchise Jane Wyatt appeared as Amanda, Spock's human mother.

    Everyone gets their moment in this movie. Chekov especially gets all the comic sequences. Nuclear Wessels indeed! Although arguably when Kirk assigns them into teams, he perhaps doesn't play to everyone's strengths. Uhura had been locating the whales, and yet she's detailed to go with Chekov to the naval vessel (the Enterprise!). She and Spock might have been better off switching jobs. Although of course only Spock could mind meld with Gracie. McCoy also seems to be a little out of place at times, until they have to rescue Chekov from the hospital. Sulu is somewhat in the background here, although his job is still as a pilot in some way. Scotty of course has plenty to do on all fronts, and I've said before that James Doohan deserved a higher credit than he got in the series as a whole.

    Another fun moment was when Kirk beams Gillian on board the ship, and he basically turns into Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka, showing her around.

    And of course this is the movie where "Admiral" Kirk finally gets demoted back to Captain at the end. And the new Enterprise makes its appearance at the end, ready for the next movie . . .

    Last edited: Nov 29, 2017
    Mark M likes this.
  4. PKELL

    PKELL Barbarian

    By all rights, this film should be completely terrible and one of the worst Trek films ever made.

    It has a "save the whales" plot, which is almost a guarantee to be overly preachy and it has a time traveling element, which basically takes us out of the world of Star Trek for most of the movie, and there's no real villain to speak of.

    I don't know how they did it exactly, but I feel like the movie works. I think its because of how funny the film is. It is successfully comedic and this movie showcases just how good the classic characters are as you can put them in this situation and their reactions to everything is enough to entertain throughout the whole film. I could watch Spock and Kirk in present day Earth all day long and it always gets a laugh out of me.

    I can see why some people don't like this one as much, but for me personally, I think its one of the better films in the Trek franchise, and one that stands out as truly unique and somewhat daring. I mean could you imagine a studio daring to make a Trek film that barely has the Enterprise in it, barely has any screen time in the time period of ST, and doesn't involve running, punching, and shooting? I'm always a proponent of trying new things and seeing what creativity can come out of limiting yourself, and this movie succeeds by bringing charm and humor out of making the classic characters fish out of water in time period that is strange to them.
    LiamABC likes this.
  5. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    Welcome aboard PKELL!

    I know what you mean. The tone of this movie is very different compared to the previous two, and could easily have alienated the fans. As I mentioned above, the decision to bring the characters back to the present was done to create an environment where non-Trek-fans would feel more able to dip a toe into the Star Trek universe. Which is always a tricky balancing act. You want to reach out to new fans but you don't want to alienate your existing fanbase.

    Agreed that Spock's cluelessness in the 20th century is very entertaining. Especially the whole "do you like Italian?" "No." "Yes." issue, almost like something out of Abbott & Costello. It actually works very well with his general cluelessness about human emotions since his resurrection. This is explained of course at the start of the movie anyway. Spock has the brains but he doesn't have or understand human emotions and instincts. He's struggling enough with his shipmates in the 23rd century, and then to suddenly go back three hundred years, it's quite an eye-opener!

    Couple of other tidbits of trivia. Firstly, when Saavik leaves them at the start of the movie, it was originally scripted that she was carrying Spock's child after the pon-farr incident in the previous movie.

    Secondly, if you look closely at Dr Nichols (the man Scotty gives the formula for transparent aluminium to), you'll notice that he's wearing a badge that says "I quit smoking" - now I don't know whether the actor had or not, but Leonard Nimoy, who directed the film, had done just that in between the previous movie and this one. And one other little point about Dr Nichols, another thing in the original script was that his name was going to come up as the inventor of transparent aluminium as one of the questions Spock answers at the start of the movie!
  6. The Drifter

    The Drifter Berbill

    I saw all of the '80's Star Trek films in the theater when they were released. Star Trek IV is an interesting film in that it's the first movie since Spock's "Death" in II where the crew is back together again for the whole film. I thought it was nice how it took place right after III, and so Spock continued to wear the ceremonial white outfit - even when they went back in time.

    This actually worked out well, since Spock's odd choice of clothing wasn't seen as strange in '80's S.F.....or most other large U.S. cities - either then or now ;)

    My favorite scene in the movie is when Kirk & Spock get on the bus & that obnoxious punk rocker is playing his loud music, much to the irritation of his fellow passengers. Spock then gives him the "vulcan nerve pinch", thereby incapacitating him & causing the radio to turn off. And, then the whole bus cheers - LOL. I can relate to this to a great extent, since I take public transport on a regular basis where I live, and though it's very convenient - you sometimes get these obnoxious jerks on there who act like they own the train. I also can relate to the punk rock aspect, since I grew up in the '80's (I was in high school when this film came out) and would sometimes see kids with mohawks, etc. in school.

    Here's the scene - very funny ;)

    Last edited: Apr 1, 2018
    LiamABC likes this.
  7. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    Actually that punk on the bus was played by Kirk Thatcher, associate producer for the film, and the music was his own band!
    The Drifter likes this.
  8. The Drifter

    The Drifter Berbill

    Good to know. This actually makes the scene even funnier - LOL.
    LiamABC likes this.

Share This Page