Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2

TOPIC: bOrgCast 8.M- Generations

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 5 months ago #12560

  • org
  • org's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Podcaster
  • Podcaster
  • The Vicar
  • Posts: 268
  • Thank you received: 47
Let the hate flow through you, or embrace an unloved gem- the choice is yours.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Religion is a bit like knitting; basically good but responsible for some very bad things.
Milton Jones

Visit the bOrgCast Tumblr site: borgcast.tumblr.com/

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12897

Star Trek: Generations or my full comments will be delivered on next Tuesday or ominous lines as personal philosophies.

"OH SHIT"

When Star Trek: Generations was released in late 1994, Star Trek was at the height of its popularity. The Next Generation had wrapped its television run the previous May, still very highly rated. Deep Space Nine was on the air. Voyager was in production, less than two months from premiering. Trek was even on the cover of Time magazine. It was the pop-cultural apex of Star Trek, and Generations was the punctuation mark for that moment

One thing you're forced to face with the opening sequence aboard the Enterprise-B is that bringing back original crew members — after a perfectly satisfactory sendoff at the end of Star Trek VI in the wrong roles was a bad idea.

The Enterprise-B was the only one of the Enterprises we hadn't seen in a story leading up to Generations, so it seems natural to bridge that Trek-history gap in a film that, in essence, is all about bridging generation gaps. Yes, Generations is without a doubt the literal torch-passing affair that it promised to be. It's just that it's not an especially satisfying experience on the whole. It's a bit of a mishmash.

A crisis forces the Enterprise-B, commanded by Captain Cameron Frye — I'm sorry, I mean Captain Harriman who like most of the ship will have his backbone delivered on tuesday
but hang on And they're in the Sol system the heart of both the fedaration and starfleet, but there is "no other ship within range" to make the rescue? it Not exactly leaving Earth very well protected, is it


We Jump to TNG where Worf is being promoted in the holodeck of the Enterprise-D. The setting is a sailboat at sea — named Enterprise, of course — Interestingly, one of the inherent drawbacks of essentially relaunching the show as a film series is that the screenwriters have to bring non-followers up to speed. Consider the scene after Worf falls into the water, where Data expresses his confusion to Geordi about what is and isn't funny. This scene would not have to be explained to us on the TV series, and here seems forced upon the characters, as if to say, "Okay, now we're going to bring all you unfamiliar audience members up to speed!"


One thing Generations gets right is the scope of its storytelling. Unlike Insurrection, for example, which felt like just another routine TNG episode, the events of Generations take on much more significance than you would see in a typical TV episode. Promoting Worf, giving Data emotions, killing Picard's brother and nephew, killing the Duras sisters, blowing up and crashing the Enterprise, wiping out entire solar systems — these are the kinds of bigger things that should happen in a movie adapted from a TV series.

Picard's arc is in theory a good one , touching on the whole aging/mortality theme that was made so memorable in Star Trek II. In practice, however, here it's not all that great. I wasn't much moved by the deaths of Picard's brother Robert and nephew Rene, and while Picard has every reason to grieve, I've never been a fan of the crying scene where Picard breaks down. (Indeed, it's a scene that I have mocked in the past.) Patrick Stewart is a fine actor, no doubt, but there's something about this scene that just doesn't work. I think, in a way, we simply don't want to see the captain of the Enterprise sitting in the dark, crying.

The movie's villain, Dr. Tolian Soran who not one of the Trek films' best villains, but he's also not one of the worst eather they are yet to come. He's not evil so much as obsessed and unbending in his goals (even if it means destroying entire planets and their populations as a side effect, which I guess qualifies as an evil byproduct). McDowell is good at dispensing ominous lines as personal philosophies, such as, "They say time is the fire in which we burn," which points toward his quest against his mortality. Later, on the planet surface, Picard and Soran will share some worthwhile dialog about mortality. "If there's one constant in the universe," Soran says, "it's death."

From an action standpoint, the film tops out with the Enterprise's evacuation to the saucer section and the separation of the ship — the eye-popping destruction of the beloved Enterprise-D half of which explodes... and the outher half crashes , and the other half crashing on the planet's surface. During the evacuation, I always laugh and shake my head at the shot of the girl who loses her teddy bear... oh, come on. (It's further evidence that TNG's concept of civilians on starships that routinely go into battle is dare we say slightly silly or fucking sutpid.) But the crash sequence is long, loud, intense, and exciting. If you're going to blow up and crash a starship, this is the way to do it. On top of that is the destruction of the planet itself, which is a chilling image. This is some pretty good stuff, and signifies the film's visceral high point.

But then this is where things start to misfire. Picard is pulled into the Nexus, leading to the film's most tedious sequence, in which everything about the plot is explained to us — often in ways we're unwilling to believe. In the overly idyllic Christmas setting with all those cloying kids. I see what they were going for here, but on an entertainment level, but this is the sort of scene that the chapter skip on a DVD player was invented for.

The thing that irked me was the fact that it physically took a lot of energy to get into the nexus ( like blowing up stars, flying ships through it, having it come to you etc....). Yet, when the two captains decide to leave, they ride out on horseback!!?? I just never liked that bit of stupidity.


Kirk's death scene is terrible and unnecessary. "It's been fun?!" well that's a not a good last line to go out on.


The special edition DVD contains a commentary track by screenwriters Ronald D. Moore and Brannon Braga. It must be one the best commentary tracks yet recorded on a Star Trek DVD. Moore and Braga's comments lend great insight to the strengths and weaknesses of the storyline, in detail and with surprising forthrightness.

Picard says at the end, "What we leave behind is not as important as how we've lived." Honestly, I'm not sure what that's really supposed to mean; it's one of those vague philosophical lines that would be more enlightening if the thematic content of the movie were stronger overall. But the film itself doesn't have much to say; it's more about itself and what happens. On those terms, it's an okay movie.
The following user(s) said Thank You: org

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12898

I was nosing through the script for Generations and read this part of Worf's promotion scene that never made it to screen:



Troi gets thrown to the Lions in ancient Rome? That would have livened up season 7 no end.

EDIT:

Oh yeah, and is it just me or does Picard's fantasy son look a lot like a young David Mitchell?

The following user(s) said Thank You: org, PieMan70, Raveen

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Last Edit: by Fat Bones Smith.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12900

Picking up a point from my feedback because I get that not everyone knows random things about astrophysics :)

How stars work and why Generations doesn't.

Warning, contains physics.

A star is a big ball of stuff. That stuff is mostly Hydrogen because that's most of what everything is. As we know from Newton, gravity makes stuff fall down. On the Earth this is simple but when you just have a big pile of gas it's more complicated. Basically every bit of gas is pulling every other bit of gas together and they're all pulling each other into a big ball.

So far so boring. Now, in the ball the gravity keeps working and pulling each atom of gas (mostly Hydrogen remember, so 1 proton and 1 electron, not that that's important particularly) into every other bit of gas. The Atoms don't want to squeeze too tightly but the pull is so strong that in the middle you get the nuclei of the atoms being forced into each other (so that's two protons being jammed together until they join up). This makes Helium and is called Fusion.

Now, if you were to weight the Hydrogen at the start and then weight the Helium after Fusion has taken place you'll find that the two weights are different. The Hydrogen weighs a little bit more than the Helium. Where did the extra mass go?

The most famous equation of the 20th Century is where. E = MC^2 - The lost mass is turned into energy and is essentially an explosion in the middle of what we can now call a star.

So there are two forces acting here. The gravity pulling all the stuff in and squeezing it together and the resulting fusion explosions. These find a balance which determines the radius of the star, how big it is and generally everything else about it.

So knowing all the above let's think about Dr Soren Lorensen's "Fusion Inhibitor". Trilithium presumably stops the fusion reaction somehow. I'm fine with that as technobabble, it'll make the star stop reacting and the balance will be disrupted allowing gravity to win and the star to contract and go cold (although the cooling will take a while, stars are really hot and really big). All the mass of the star is still acting on the rest of the universe though and in exactly the same way.so the Nexus ribbon will continue on it's way and Captain Frasier won't need to steer.

So could this be fixed? Sure! Make trilithium a Gravitational Disruptor and the star will explode, scattering hot star matter across the system, and allowing for the local gravitational field to change. Job done and all with technobabble that suits the plot.
The following user(s) said Thank You: org, PieMan70, Fat Bones Smith

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12903

Could you say that instead of a fusion inhibitor, trilithium is a fusion accelerator, increasing the rate of fusion inside the star and thereby increasing the outward pressure so much it overcomes the inward gravitational pressure and blows the star apart?

EDIT: This would mean that Worf and Riker use completely the wrong terms when describing trilithium and how it works, and are idiots — which fits in with the rest of Generations.
The following user(s) said Thank You: PieMan70, Raveen

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Last Edit: by Fat Bones Smith.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12904

My extremely shaky grasp of stellar dynamics (I have a geology degree, I'm mostly good for hitting things and seeing what colour they are) means i don't know. But the fact that it's Riker and Worf stating what the stuff is and what it does is well worth questioning :)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12905

There are a couple of other things that may be worth mentioning as regards destroying stars, the first of which is that we already have a model of what happens when nuclear fusion inside a star breaks down -- particularly a sun-like star which both Amargosa and Veridian seem to be (although saying that, Amargosa is a little on the yellow side for a star like the sun, which may be why there's an observatory studying it).

The thing is, the core of the sun where fusion is actually going on is quite small, about a tenth of the sun's diameter, and that's where all the sun's fuel is to be found, in that small portion right in the middle -- it's lasted the last nearly five billion years and will last another five billion or so. All the stuff around it, everything between the core and the surface of the sun doesn't get involved in fusion at all -- the radiation pressure from the core pushes it all away while the gravitational pressure it exerts inwards basically confines the core to a small volume, and there's hardly any exchange of gas between the two. So you have a very hot core that contains enough hydrogen to last ten billion years surrounded by an enormous shell of hot plasma.

When that core runs out of fuel it will collapse in on itself. When that happens, all the stuff that surrounds it falls inwards and gets hotter as it does so, eventually getting hot enough to start fusing. So now you have instead of a spheroidal core fusing hydrogen, a hollow shell of fusing hydrogen that surrounds the core -- which given all the stuff that has just fallen on top of it has now become hot enough to start fusing helium. This shell takes up more space than the core did so it emits more heat, pushing away and expanding the layers of gas above it, and that's when the sun swells into a red giant.

If Soran is able to stop nuclear reactions in the centre of a sun-like star, this is the process that will be triggered -- not the exploding of the star but the movement of the star along the main sequence, accelerating it from middle age to old age. And this won't be a particularly quick process. Very massive stars collapse very quickly (within minutes, even), but the sun's transition to a red giant will be much more gradual, taking millions of years -- longer than even a long-lived El-Aurian can afford to wait.

The second thing is, let's say Soran's weapon works as advertised and blows up stars and affects the local gravity. Gravitational influence is not instant, it propagates at the speed of light -- which means that the Nexus has to be extremely close to the stars in order to be affected by their destruction. It's sometimes said that if the sun were to disappear it would take eight minutes for it to get dark because it would take eight minutes for the last of the sun's light to reach us; similarly if the sun were to disappear the Earth would still orbit where the sun was for the next eight minutes before suddenly -- at the same it went dark -- pinging off into the universe.

Argyle Smurf's comment about the timing of the explosions is correct. If Generations takes place over the course of, let's say, a couple of days, then the Nexus has to pass at most within a couple of light-days of, firstly and most crucially, the Amargosa star at the time Soran launches the weapon. If the Nexus is a light-week away, a light-month away, a light-year away, then the information of the alteration in gravity won't reach it in time to change its course before it comes through again 39 years later. Veridian's destruction has a nearer effect as the Nexus is within the Veridian system when it happens, and the change in gravity can propagate as the change in light does (the movie shows this happening incredibly quickly, within seconds, which isn't possible no matter how you play with the variables of mass and distance of the star and planets in the system, but I guess you can't wait 5-10 minutes for the villian's dastardly plan to take effect).

But then this is a movie about a time travel energy ribbon that destroys spaceships while not destroying people, instead giving them their hearts' desires. If there's any scientific literacy or accuracy in there at all -- especially given it was co-written by the guy who wrote Genesis and Threshold -- it's entirely by accident. ;)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Raveen

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Last Edit: by Fat Bones Smith.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 4 months ago #12908

What do we think about Lursa and B'Etor? Where they a good choice of antagonist for TNG's first movie, and could they have been effective as a TNG movie's sole villains without Soran (Picard and the Enterprise vs Lursa and B'Etor)?

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 3 months ago #12909

  • org
  • org's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Podcaster
  • Podcaster
  • The Vicar
  • Posts: 268
  • Thank you received: 47
It would have meant changing the plot somewhat, but I would much rather have seen Lursa and B'Etor as the principle villains of the peace, maybe with Soran as a secondary scientific advisor type character. When Generations comes alive is basically whenever the Sisters are on screen.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Religion is a bit like knitting; basically good but responsible for some very bad things.
Milton Jones

Visit the bOrgCast Tumblr site: borgcast.tumblr.com/

bOrgCast 8.M- Generations 1 year 3 months ago #12912

I tend to agree; I think Lursa and B'Etor could have carried a movie on their own as the villains. They've got the history with the franchise to appeal to fans (which could easily have been tapped into for the story); and to non-fans they're Klingons, who are the quintessential Trek enemy. Plus, I think they've good charisma and chemistry as a duo and I agree the screen does come alive when they're on screen.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Last Edit: by Fat Bones Smith.
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2
Moderators: orgAMO
Time to create page: 0.311 seconds
Powered by Kunena Forum