I’ve never seen any of these but does jo even cut her hair off in any of them? has anyone even read the book?
katharine hepburn (1933)
sorry katharine, butthere’s just nothing redeeming here. I guess she’s leaning against the mantel? that’s a little butch.
1980 anime christmas special
pretty bad. the mom wears some kind of waistcoat thing in this so I don’t know why they put jo in this weird ruffled dress with that ugly brooch
susan day (1978)
wrong hair color, but they still got her mostly right. the plaid on plaid makes up for the bow. (she marries william shatner in this movie)
june allyson (1949)
this is a butch outfit. the colors are really masculine and I like the collar and that weird square pattern. they could have taken it a lot further, but a really good effort. also the first google image result was from afterellen, so I’m giving her points for that. I would probably marry this woman.
I don’t completely understand this photo but I love it. Bill Shatner miming being stabbed by De Kelley as Kirstie Alley and Merritt Butrick watch and enjoy some cake. Oh and a disco ball in the background.
It was likely (not certain) a birthday party for someone during filming of the Genesis cave scenes judging by the away mission jacket Alley is wearing. (Both Alley & Kelley had birthdays during filming.)
The Top Dogs: Director Nicholas Meyer, Executive Producer Leonard Nimoy, and lead William Shatner, filming Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. Nimoy’s turn as Executive Producer is the only time any cast member has ever held that particular position in all of Star Trek history.
Epic Movie (Re)Watch #155 - Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
Have I seen it before: Yes
Did I like it then: Yes.
Do I remember it: Yes.
Did I see it in theaters: Yes.
Was it a movie I saw since August 22nd, 2009: Yes. #429.
1) Before anything else, I will say this: you never need to see Star Trek: The Motion Picture unless you are a MAJOR fan of the series. Wrath of Khan is a much better first film for the series and just a much better film in general, and the original motion picture has no bearing on the plot of ANY of the sequels that I’m aware of. Spare yourself the boredom.
2) I don’t often talk about how great the opening credits of a film are, but the movement through the stars and James Horner’s grand score creates a rousing score which helps you get in the mood for the space adventure to come.
3) The Kobayashi-Maru.
The opening of the film is great largely because it plays with expectations vs reality. You EXPECT Kirk in the captain’s chair, and while it plays out like a standard scene from “Star Trek” but it ends with everyone dead. And even though it turns out to be a simulation, the image of watching almost all the series regulars die before you prepares you for the darkness to come. It is an incredibly great and memorable opening to a film which can be described as the same.
4) Kirstie Alley as Saavik.
Despite being Vulcan (and, depending on what you consider canon, half-Romulan) Saavik has more in common with Kirk than she does with Spock. She may have the appearance of being a logical and decisive creature, but she is stubborn and proud. And I love her for that. I think Saavik as at her best in this film when played by Alley (she would be replaced in Star Trek III and IV). Alley gives Saavik a unique flavor, making her more than just your typical Vulcan and holding her own with the original cast.
5) The scene where Bones and Kirk “celebrate” his birthday is great.
This is the introduction of Kirk’s key conflict and possibly the best analysis of it the film features.
Kirk: “Galloping around the cosmos is a game for the young, doctor.”
Bones [later]: “This is not about age and you know it.”
Kirk’s conflict here is not about aging, it is about aging INTO something. About being stuck behind a desk and bureaucracy. Of becoming obsolete. Age on it’s own does not result in that, but the choices we make as we age. It is in this film that Kirk will have to determine his future when faced with a threat from the past.
6) Carol Marcus and her son David.
Both Carol and David as individual characters are interesting, but by balancing out each other (with Carol being well reasoned and patient and David being more like Kirk with his stubbornness/rashness) they create an interesting dynamic that entertains in a way beyond their relationship with Kirk.
7) Ricardo Montalbán as Khan Noonien Singh.
Montalbán takes a memorable role from the original series and in this film turns it into not only one of the greatest villains cinema has ever featured but also a career defining performance. Khan is able to be both chillingly collected and show off fear-inducing anger. His intellect, physical strength, and progressing madness/drive is showed off brilliantly by Montalbán. There is a ruthlessness to this character established as soon as we meet him (specifically with his use of brain slugs) that let’s us know, “Oh shit, don’t mess with this guy.” He is totally frightening, with many of his decisions and scenes making your stomach turn. Only open my third (fourth?) viewing of this film did I realize just how long his intro scene is, but it doesn’t feel long. It is perfect, and Montalbán captures your attention for the entire time.
8) Hey that’s…that’s Tony from the Witch Mountain movies!
I would not have noticed that if I didn’t watch the Witch Mountain movies in March for the (Re)Watch.
9) So usually at this point in the (Re)Watch I talk about the writing and performances of the main cast of a film. I find it nearly impossible to do that for Wrath of Khan howeveras the cast from the original series are such mainstays of cinema and pop culture I’ve no idea what to say. What on earth could I possible say Kirk, Bones, Spock, Uhura, Scotty, Sulu, and Chekov that hasn’t been said before? In my analysis of the 2009 film I probably will, but right now I think I’ll just say they’re great and leave it at that.
10) I love how Kirk is freaking out when Spock lets Saavik pull the Enterprise out of dock.
11) I love Saavik and Kirk in the elevator. It speaks not only to how rash she is (which I love on it’s own) but will later show how similar they really are. She doesn’t really believe in a no-win scenario and as we’ll learn later neither does Kirk.
12) I love when Spock hands the ship over to Kirk. There is no bruised ego (as he himself says), there are no hard feelings, it’s not an issue of power or anything. He knows Kirk is the best guy to take the wheel. He trusts Kirk and Kirk trusts Spock back and they can just cut through the bullshit and do what’s best for everyone. I’m a sucker for good friendships like that.
13) Damn, Spock.
Kirk: “I would not presume to debate you.”
Spock: “That would be wise.”
14) There is one scene early-to-mid picture which is recalled HEAVILY later on and I always think it is best when the ending of the movie ties into something at the beginning of the film. You want it to feel like one picture, you don’t want to be sitting at the end going, “Oh right, that part early on was the same movie.” Spock’s speaking of how…
And how he has been and always shall be Kirk’s friend tie together at the end in very heartbreaking ways.
15) I was always impressed with the Genesis visual, keeping in mind this was 1982 and CGI was hardly in its prime.
16) The very first encounter with the ship Khan has taken over - Reliant - before they know it is Khan is incredibly tense and Hitchcockian. Because we as the audience KNOW it’s Khan. Pacing is derived not from faster pacing but from slower pacing. The uneasiness simmers in our bones as Kirk unknowingly wanders into a trap, even though everyone seems to suspect something is up. And it features one of the best quotes in the film:
Khan: “Do you know the Klingon proverb that tells us revenge is a dish best served cold? It is very cold in space.”
17) And then Khan and Kirk finally encounter one another.
Montalbán and Shatner never share any scenes as Montalbán was making “Fantasy Island” at the time, but that does not undermine just how equally matched these adversaries are. Their very first encounter in particular feels like a chess game. It is not so much a battle of strengths as it is a battle of wits, yet still very interesting. And we as the audience really have no idea who is going to come out on top. Each is able to surprise and throw the other off balance, only to come back and deal another blow. It makes for great conflict. We know Kirk’s disadvantage: Khan is genetically engineered to be better than him. But in this scene we see a weakness of Khan’s which will become greater later on: his ego. He cannot see his own weaknesses and shortcomings. He is hundreds of years old comparatively speaking, so obviously some ways of thinking are foreign to him. But he can’t get past the fact he’s a genetically engineered super being to work on this. I love bad guys with flaws.
18) Oh no! Tony dies!
Preston [Ike Eisenmann’s character, after Kirk arrives]: “Is the word given, admiral?”
Kirk: “The word is given. Warp speed.”
Scotty [obviously torn up]: “He stayed at his post when the trainees ran!”
The fact that this death of a character we spent all of thirty seconds with packs such an intense punch speaks greatly to the craft with which this film was made.
19) The scene with Kirk, Bones, and Saavik on the scientist space station feels very Alien and I love it. For just a few minutes we are in a horror film, in an enclosed space where obviously SOMETHING is wrong and some sort of danger lurks. It is pulled off wonderfully well.
20) Part of the tension comes from the fact that we TRUST Chekov. He’s original series cast and he seems to have shaken the alien slug Khan was using on him. Why WOULDN’T we trust Chekov? Making the fact that he and his captain are still controlled later on all the more powerful.
21) This. Freaking. Scene.
This is when both are pushed to their furthest. Khan believes he has killed Kirk only to immediately learn he hasn’t, and Kirk is beyond pissed with Khan for all the death and destruction he has caused. This is where Khan accepts that he has defeated Kirk if only because it has become so difficult to kill him and it is where Kirk hates Khan the most (uttering the film’s famous line, “Khaaaaaan!”). But even through his hate Kirk is trying to play Khan. He is trying to get Khan in the same room with him so he can fight him face to face. But Khan is too smart for that and works against Kirk, leading to that yell. This is one of the best scenes in the film and it is because the conflict plays out so wonderfully.
22) The fact that David is Kirk’s son not only gives Kirk some personal stakes, but it ties into the idea of the choices Kirk must make in life. He is now dealing with two choices which are coming back to haunt him: how he handled Khan and not being a part of his son’s life. And that will directly influence the choices he makes in the future. Because life is too short.
23) This is so indicative of Kirk’s character.
Saavik: “Admiral, may I ask you a question?”
Kirk: “What’s on your mind, Lieutenant?”
Saavik: “The Kobayashi Maru, sir.”
Kirk: “Are you asking me if we’re playing out that scenario now?”
Saavik: “On the test, sir… will you tell me what you did? I would really like to know.”
Bones: “Lieutenant, you are looking at the only Starfleet cadet who ever beat the no-win scenario.”
Kirk: “I reprogrammed the simulation so it was possible to rescue the ship.”
David: “He cheated.”
Kirk: “I changed the conditions of the test; got a commendation for original thinking. I don’t like to lose.”
Saavik: “Then you never faced that situation… faced death.”
Kirk: “I don’t believe in the no-win scenario.”
24) The climactic chase through the nebula ties into Khan’s biggest weakness: his ego preventing him from admitting his flaws.
Spock: “He’s intelligent but not experienced. His pattern suggest two-dimensional thinking.”
I think this is the past scene to showcase space as a three-dimensional space. Ever watch a space film where characters encounter an asteroid field and think, “Why can’t they just go above or below it?” That’s what this film does. Like the initial Kirk/Khan mental face-off, the time in the nebula greats great tension from slowing down pacing while never being boring. There are surprises, there are twists, and they are on truly equal footing. And Khan, well he’s at his breaking point. How mad must this person be if even his crew - who were established to live and die by his word at the beginning of the film - are questioning his judgment? And what exactly will it lead him to?
That final visual of Khan’s face is also a great presentation of how he is on the inside. He is torn up and burned to a crisp with vengeance, and now he will die that way.
25) Spock’s ultimate fate.
First of all, he KNOWS what he’s about to do. You can see it on his face before he goes to the reactor room to save the ship: he is fully aware that this will lead to his death and it does nothing to change his decision. And even though Khan has died, he has succeeded in his goal to, “keep on hurting,” Kirk from beyond the grave by killing his best friend.
Kirk [trying to get to Spock]: “He’ll die!”
Scotty: “He’s dead already.”
There is this intense feeling of sorrow and helplessness as we watch one of the greatest - if not the greatest - characters to come out of the original series die, tying into the conversation he and Kirk had earlier.
Spock: “The needs of the many…”
Kirk: “Outweigh the needs of the few.”
Spock: “Or the one.”
26) David and Kirk unfortunately don’t get too many moment together, just the two of them. But he did help Kirk through this tough time in his life.
David: “Lieutenant Saavik was right. You never have faced death.”
Kirk: “Not like this.”
David: “You knew enough to tell Saavik that how we face death is at least as important as how we face life.”
Kirk: “Just words.”
David: “But good words. That’s where ideas begin. Maybe you should listen to them. I was wrong about you. And I’m sorry.”
Kirk: “Is that what you came here to say?”
David: “Mainly. And also that I’m proud - very proud - to be your son.”
27) But of course, this is a sci-fi movie…
Death is not as permanent as we like to think.
The Wrath of Khan is quite possibly the best film in the entire Star Trek canon. It balances high-stakes action and adventure with the intelligence, philosophy, and thought expected from the series. Ricardo Montalbán is freaking fantastic as Khan, with the rest of the cast delivering standout performances as well. The direction and writing blend together beautifully and it is just an incredibly fun and well done film. If you haven’t seen any Star Trek and you want to, Wrath of Khan is a very good film to start on.