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9.0 12 10
FanFix August 14, 2012 3579
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I have never trucked with the idea that all the even-numbered ST films are "the good ones", and a big reason for that was this film. Even as a kid, the last thing I wanted from a ST movie was a hammy contemporary comedy, so this edit falls firmly in the FanFIX territory for me. The question on my mind was: could BionicBob make me into a fan of STIV?

Well, not really. My thoughts on the film itself are here: so I will focus instead on the fanedit changes. Firstly and blessedly, Bob opts to cut 20 minutes out. The original cut was a nearly 2 hour long goofy "fish out of water" (almost literally) comedy, and those should never be that long. He then added in 5 minutes, which still places this at probably 10-15 minutes too long for me. His stated aim was to cut a lot of the over-the-top humor, but there's still a lot here in my opinion. And honestly, I think a lot of people who like this film like it BECAUSE of that. So I'm not sure if cutting that stuff actually improves it or not. It's just a story weakness...there's not much to replace it with, no big villain or big action piece. Without the humor, there's not much to focus on.

I agree very much with what Dwight-Fry said in his previous review. The execution of the "TV Series" concept carries on here, and you'll know by now if that works for you or not. I found that some of the fades were too slow by a second or two, though they were evenly placed throughout, and at suitably dramatic moments. The reworking of the audio is a bit hit and miss, and I really didn't care for the recurring off-kilter musical theme that was played for many of the comedic moments.

The actual editing of the story has pluses and minuses for me. On the one hand, I did really appreciate the flash-forwards put into the first time-travel trip, and I interpreted it as their perception of time simply becoming a flat plane...though perceiving past moments would've helped with that idea. On the other hand, there's no comparable sequence in the second time-travel trip, leaving that feeling flat and anti-climatic, especially since the story sets it up to be riskier than the first one. The flash forwards probably would've been better placed there, as if they were questing around for the exact right future moment. Perhaps a series of flashBACKS would then be a good bookend during the first trip.

Also, while I appreciated the trimming of many scenes, it ended up causing some small narrative problems, mostly for Gillian (the marine biologist/tour guide). As we get none of her talking to her boss earlier, it now kind of comes out of nowhere when she yells at him and angrily slaps him for moving the whales. You're just like, "Hey, who's that, her boss? Oh snap! Is she fired now?!" Also, there's no conversation where she weighs the option of going with the whales or not. In this edit, Kirk just decides for her (and the entire Federation, time travel rules be damned) that she is.

Basically, this is the kind of '80s movie where a guy from 300 years in the future can sit at a Mac, start tapping on the qwertys all willie-nillie, and suddenly complex graphs and charts are coming up one after another. Yeah, that kind of logic. Is there any way to make this into an enjoyable, straight movie? Probably not. BionicBob gives it a good shot, but it couldn't quite reel me in (my original Enjoyment would probably be a 1 or 2, so the score here is a big improvement.) I suspect fans of the original will miss a lot of the goofy bits, so it'll be kind of a fine line to find someone who enjoys this take the best.

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