Where No Man has Gone Before

One of the amazing Star Trek movie posters

Sci-Fi movies are always better the second time for me.  The first time, I’m wrapped in the special effects and cimematography.  The second time, I get to appreciate the story and the actor’s depiction of the characters.  There are also the subtleties.

Today, Chris and I went to see Star Trek – for me, it was the second time.  I noticed several interesting things, perhaps not intentional in the writing, but our generational character attributes to much of our being.

Out with the old, and in with the new
Once on the Enterprise, the young cadets took over for the older officers one by one.  Each letting their talents and knowledge manifest in front of the elders.  This to me spoke clearly as I see this struggle of young professionals, who are well trained in their career, to gain respect of the elders, who possess seniority.  There is typically a power struggle involved; however, in this instance, there was not – not with Uhura.  Not with Chekov.  Not with Scottie.  Not with Kirk, except a power struggle with those of his own age group/experience level.

Intergalactic Relations
The depiction of interracial relationships is much more prevalent and accepted in this Star Trek film.  First Spock’s parents, then the sexual interaction with Kirk and Uhura’s roommate, and then Spock and Uhura.  The only relationships we see in this film that are not of mixed origins are Kirk’s parents and the relationship with Nero and his Romulan wife.  Both of these “traditional” relationships were in the past (25 years before present time) and Spock’s parents’ relationship was the only non-traditional relationship set in the past.

On Thursday evening, in a very empty theater, I heard one woman say to her husband, “He just kissed a black girl!”, in response to Spock and Uhura kissing in the elevator.  (fyi, not all people with “tinted” skin are ‘black’, as in the actress who plays Uhura is not African American)  Today, in a much denser theater, I didn’t hear a whisper – mind you, I live in a former “southern state”.  Caring about color should be much behind us.  It is amazing that the Civil War occurred nearly 150 years ago and we, united as a nation, cannot seem to accept African Americans as part of our community.

Besides looking at the film as a social commentary, I did thoroughly enjoy the film both times and would recommend to anyone to see it a second time to appreciate the cinematography and character development.