To begin with, let me give a word of caution. I am not a big Star Trek fan. I’ve only seen two episodes in my life. However, we’d heard so much about this movie that myself, my roommate, and another friend all decided that we should go see this one. I can definitely say that it was worth it. This is a movie I never had to look at my watch once. If you haven’t seen the movie and plan to, you might want to read this blog later. Also, if I misspell any references to Star Trek characters, the fault is all mine and I ask Trek fans to please have mercy. I in no way mean to denigrate the series.
So the story begins with a starship flying through space approaching a lightning storm, an odd occurrence, and out of that storm comes a mammoth-sized ship that their ship seems like a speck to. After a battle, the captain orders everyone to leave, including his wife who is about to give birth to their new son. One of the last things the husband says before he dies in giving a colission course with the enemy ship is to name him James.
So later on, we see James Tyberius Kirk who lives a hedonistic lifestyle, but is stellar in his knowledge. After a bar fight, he is told that he should join the starfleet because he should realize he was meant for something more.
This need for adventure, this is a Christian idea. Other adventurers of the past adventured for some goal or sought to have the adventure come to an end. The Christian is the one who goes on an adventure purely for the sake of the adventure. We can think to the medieval writer Petrarch who would have us say that we ought to climb the mountain because the mountain is there.
Through a series of mishaps, Kirk winds up on the enterprise and realizes that they are about to engage the same ship that was responsible for the death of his father years ago, that of the Romulans with their emperor Nero. (And they do refer to an empire one time in the movie.) Kirk is there to see the planet Vulcan destroyed where Spock is from.
Spock deserves to be spoken of. He is half-human, a race that most of us have some understanding of, but half-Vulcan. The Vulcans are a race that tend to be unemotional and extremely logical. Spock is offered a chance to join the high council of science on Vulcan and is congratulated on his acceptance despite the downside he faced. When he asks what that is, they tell him his human mother. With that, Spock says he declines to join.
Spock reminds us of an important aspect of being human. There are times some of us might want to not be emotional and live purely by logic. Seeing the Vulcans, we realize that might not be the best for us. We do realize emotions can take control of us, as the Vulcans do, but the way to respond is not to eliminate emotions but to learn to control them instead. In fact, numerous times in the film, it’s hard to not see emotion even in the Vulcan race.
Kirk and Spock have their exchanges, but in the end they work together. Of course, I’m leaving a lot out, but I don’t want to spoil a lot of it and if I went into more detail, I would. Kirk is more interested in doing the right thing despite regulations. He’s interested in not just logical right but moral right also. Moral theory, of course, will be something discussed in future blogs.
I definitely recommend seeing this one. If you’re not a Trekkie, worry not. You can follow along just fine, although I’m sure my fans who are Star Trek enthusiasts would have noticed a thousand things that I did not.
Also, there will not be a new blog tomorrow night. I will be taking a short vacation and Lord willing, I will be back Sunday night. Enjoy this one for two nights then or go back and look through the archives. They’re always there!