Star Trek: Generations (1994) - Illustrated Reference

Star Trek: Generations was directed by David Carson. It premiered on the 17th November 1994. Starring Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner, LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, Gates McFadden, Marina Sirtis, Malcolm McDowell, James Doohan, Walter Koenig and William Shatner. Screenplay by Ronald D. Moore and Brannon Braga. Music by Dennis McCarthy. 118mins.

The year 2371 Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise have to stop an El-Aurian named Soran from destroying a star system so he can enter the Nexus, a mysterious energy ribbon drifting through space.

Gene Roddenberry’s Star Trek: The Next Generation premiered on 28th September 1987 and was set in the 24th century, about 100 years after Captain Kirk’s five year mission on the original 60’s TV series. Starring Patrick Stewart as Captain Picard, the series was very popular and lasted seven seasons and 176 episodes.

After the original cast signed off in Star Trek VI The Undiscovered Country (1991) it was decided to bring the cast of Star Trek The Next Generation to cinema screens. The movie would be produced by Rick Berman who was also producer of the TV series and directed by David Carson who also directed episodes of ST-TNG and Deep Space Nine.

Patrick Stewart (1940-) / Captain Jean-Luc Picard

Captain of the USS Enterprise NCC 1701-D. Jean-Luc Picard was born in France in 2305, has a brother named Robert and in an alternate future timeline had married Dr. Beverly Crusher.

Born in Yorkshire, England, Patrick Stewart has played Captain Picard in 178 episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987-1994). His films include - Excalibur (1981), Dune (1984), Lifeforce (1985), The Doctor and the Devils (1985), Star Trek First Contact (1996), Conspiracy Theory (1997), Star Trek Insurrection (1998), Moby Dick (1998), The Prince of Egypt (1998), A Christmas Carol (1999), X-Men (2000), Star Trek Nemesis (2002), X-Men 2 (2003), The Lion in Winter (2003), X-Men 3 (2006), X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) and Gnomeo & Juliet (2011).

Jonathan Frakes (1952-) / Commander William T. Riker

Born in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, Jonathan Frakes has also directed films including - Star Trek First Contact (1996), Star Trek Insurrection (1998), Clockstoppers (2002) and Thunderbirds (2004).

Data: I would be happy to, sir. I just love scanning for life forms. You tiny little life forms! You precious little life forms! Where are you?

Brent Spiner (1949-) / Lt.Commander Data

Data is a sentient android created by Dr. Noonien Soong and was activated in 2338. Data is chief operations officer on the Enterprise. The creation of an “emotion chip” by Soong helped Data achieve his goal of experiencing various emotions and a better understanding of human behaviour.

Born in Houston, Texas, Brent Spiner's films include - Stardust Memories (1980), Shocker (1989), Phenomenon (1996), Star Trek First Contact (1996), Independence Day (1996), Star Trek Insurrection (1998), The Master of Disguise (2002), Star Trek Nemesis (2002), The Aviator (2004) and Superhero Movie (2008).

LeVar Burton (1957-) / Lt. Commander Geordi La Forge

La Forge is chief engineer on the Enterprise, he was born blind and wears a special Visor that interfaces directly to his brain and allows him to see through the electromagnetic spectrum.

Born in Landstuhl, Germany, LeVar Burton had appeared in the award-winning series Roots (1977) receiving an Emmy nomination for the role of Kunte Kinte. He has also directed episodes of ST-TNG, DS9, Voyager and Enterprise.

Michael Dorn (1952-) / Lt. Commander Worf

Graduating from Starfleet Academy in 2361 Worf was the first Klingon officer in Starfleet.

Born in Luling, Texas, Michael Dorn joined the cast of Deep Space Nine as Worf from the 4th season onwards after Star Trek The Next Generation ended its run. With 102 episodes of DS9 added to 178 episodes of ST-TNG Michael Dorn has logged more Star Trek hours than any other actor.

Gates McFadden (1949) / Dr. Beverly Crusher

Beverly Crusher is chief medical officer on board the Enterprise. She had a close relationship with Picard and in one alternate timeline marries him (ST-TNGAll Good Things”). She was married to Jack Crusher and has a son, Wesley Crusher, who was an ensign on the Enterprise and played by Wil Wheaton (1972-).

Born in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, Gates McFadden's films include - The Muppets Take Manhattan (1984), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Taking Care of Business (1990), Star Trek First Contacy (1996), Star Trek Insurrection (1998), Star Trek Nemesis (2002) and Dirty (2005).

Marina Sirtis (1955-) / Deanna Troi

Counselor Deanna Troi, half human half Betazoid, she has empathic and telepathic abilities. Her mother Lwaxana Troi is a Betazoid ambassador and was played in the series by Majel Barrett-Roddenberry (1932-2008). Deanna was in a close relationship with Will Riker, before moving on to Worf and than finally marrying Riker in 2379 (Star Trek Nemesis).

Born in London, England to Greek parents, Marina Sirtis films includes - The Wicked Lady (1983), Blind Date (1984), Death Wish 3 (1985), Waxwork II Lost in Time (1992), Star Trek First Contact (1996), Star Trek Insurrection (1998), Star Trek Nemesis (2002), Net Games (2003), Crash (2004), Fist of the Warrior (2007), InAlienable (2008) and The Grudge 3 (2009).

Whoopi Goldberg (1955-) / Guinan

A bartender in the lounge Ten Forward on the Enterprise. like Soran, Guinan is an El Aurian too, her race was scattered through the galaxy by the invading Borg.

In the movie Guinan gets caught in the Nexus but is pulled out by the Enterprise transporter. When Picard enters the Nexus he sees an “echo” of Guinan still inside, she gives him advice on how to defeat Soran, who is also an El Aurian.

Born in New York City, Whoopi Goldberg was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar for her role in the Steven Spielberg film The Color Purple (1985), she won Best Supporting Actress for the film Ghost (1990). A lifelong Star Trek fan, she joined the cast of ST-TNG in it’s second season.

Soran: You'll have to excuse me, Captain. I have an appointment with eternity and I don't want to be late.

Malcolm McDowell (1943-) / Tolian Soran

An El Aurian scientist. Soran was a survivor of a Borg attack on his homeworld, his wife and children were killed. After briefly experiencing life inside the mysterious Nexus (an extradimensional vortex in which desires and dreams become a reality), and being reunited with his wife and children, he becomes obsessed with finding and permanently re-entering the Nexus, at any cost.

Born in Yorkshire, England, Malcolm McDowell was nominated for a Best Actor Golden Globe for A Clockwork Orange. His films include - If… (1968), O Lucky Man (1973), Caligula (1979), Time After Time (1979), Cat People (1982), Britannia Hospital (1982), Blue Thunder (1983), Class of 1999 (1990), Halloween (2007), Doomsday (2008), The Book of El (2008) and The Artist (2011).

Picard: You're a Starfleet officer. You have a duty!
Kirk: I don't need to be lectured by you. I was out saving the galaxy when your grandfather was in diapers. Besides which, I think the galaxy owes me one.

William Shatner (1931-) / Captain James T. Kirk

Born in Quebec, Canada, William Shatner has starred as James Kirk in 7 Star Trek films, his other films include - The Brothers Karamazov (1958), Judgement at Nuremberg (1961), Big Bad Mama (1974), The Devil's Rain (1975), Kingdom of the Spiders (1977), Airplane II (1982), Loaded Weapon 1 (1993), Miss Congeniality (2000) and Dodgeball (2004).

James Doohan (1920-2005) / Cmdr. Montgomery Scott

Born in Vancouver, Canada, James Doohan has played Scotty in 7 Star Trek films, his other films include - Test Pilot (1957), The Wheeler Dealers (1963), The Satan Bug (1965), Pretty Maids all in a Row (1971), Loaded Weapon 1 (1993) and The Duke (1999).

Walter Koenig (1936-) / Lt. Pavel Chekov

Born in Chicago, Illinois, Walter Koenig has played Pavel Chekov in 7 Star Trek films, his other films include - Nightmare Honeymoon (1974), Moontrap (1989), Deadly Weapon (1989), Sworn to Justice (1996) and InAlienable (2008).

Alan Ruck (1956-) / Captain John Harriman

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Alan Ruck plays the Commander of the USS Enterprise-B, the actor is probably best known to movie fans as Ferris Bueller's best friend Cameron Frye in John Hughes comedy classic Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986).

Kirk: I take it the odds are against us in a situation this grim.
Picard: You could say that.
Kirk: You know, if Spock were here, he'd say that I was an irrational, illogical human being by taking on a mission like that. Sounds like fun!

Star Trek: Generations featured two major events in the Trek universe, the team up between the two most famous starship captains and the death of James T. Kirk. The sci-fi icon dies while helping Picard defeat Soran, his last words are “Oh my..”.

Kirk was originally shot in the back by Soran but preview audiences weren’t happy with it, and they had to go back and film a more heroic death for Kirk. Still not a great end for Kirk in my opinion but shot in the back? What were they thinking?

William Shatner later regretted agreeing to have Kirk be killed off. He resurrected the captain in a series of Star Trek novels. In one book “The Return” he helps Picard defeat the Borg before seemingly being killed off again. Kirk would be back in action in the next novel.

The first scene featuring the Next Gen cast is set on board a full scale replica of the Lady Washington, an 18th century sailing ship, which turns out to be the Enterprise Holodeck. The Stellar Cartography room is seen for the first time in this film.

In a spectacular sequence the Enterprise-D blows up after a battle with a Klingon Bird of Prey, commanded by the Duras sisters Lursa and B’etor. The Enterprise saucer section with Deanna Troi at the helm crashes into the planet Veridian III. A 12 foot saucer section was built for the film.

Footage of the destruction of the Klingon Bird of Prey from Star Trek VI was used again for the explosion of the Klingon ship in this movie.

Geordi LaForge’s "VISOR" is an acronym for Visual Instrument and Sensory Organ Replacement

Sulu’s daughter Demora was written into the script after George Takei declined to appear. Leonard Nimoy wasn’t happy with the lines he was given and said no to returning as Spock. DeForest Kelly was in declining health and couldn't get insurance to appear.

Tim Russ who played the Vulcan Tuvok in Star Trek Voyager can be spotted without the Vulcan ears as one of the crew on the Enterprise-B.

Soran: They say time is the fire in which we burn. Right now, Captain, my time is running out. We leave so many things unfinished in our lives.

Star Trek Generations was the first movie to have a website promoting it. The movie cost $35m to produce and grossed $118m worldwide, $75m in the US. The 7th Star Trek movie was successful and Picard and the crew would return in Star Trek: First Contact (1996).

The Critics Wrote –

"It's easy to remember which Star Trek movies are any good. The even-numbered ones are fun (VI is the best of the lot); the odd-numbered ones are ponderous, pretentious piffle. This one - though officially the first of a new series featuring Captain Picard (Patrick Stewart) - is really Star Trek VII, and continues the pattern." (Chris Tookey)

"Captain Kirk may be a little creaky, but that proud chest is puffed out like a spinnaker. And while it now takes a tractor beam to hoist Scotty aboard the Enterprise, no other engineer has generated such passion for the starship's complex viscera. I've poked a lot of fun at these aging swashbucklers in the past six outings, but I'd rather ship out with them than with the wonks of the next generation any day. Captain Kirk would never have an empath on board unless he planned to sleep with her." (Washington Post)

"It may not "boldly go where no one has gone before," but "Star Trek Generations" has enough verve, imagination and familiarity to satisfy three decades' worth of Trekkers raised on several incarnations of the television skein. " (Variety)

"At least Scotty gets to say, one last time: 'I don't know how much longer I can hold it together' although here he might have been referring to the plot." (Quinlan)

"The Star Trek saga has always had a weakness for getting distracted by itself, and Star Trek: Generations is undone by its narcissism. Here is a movie so concerned with in-jokes and updates for Trekkers that it can barely tear itself away long enough to tell a story. I will not be giving away any secrets if I reveal that Capt.Kirk dies in the course of the movie. Leave it to Kirk to be discontent with just one death scene, however. Kirk's first death is a very long silence, but he has dialogue for his second one. Oh, my, yes he does. And slips away so subtly I was waiting for more. I, for one, will miss him." (Roger Ebert)

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Comments 7 comments

Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 5 years ago from Virginia

Hey Steve....you have produced a very detailed hub....I am not sure if I have seen this whole movie. I know I have seen the Kirk scenes but the rest of the movie does not seem very familiar. I will have to check this one out...I love when McDowell plays the villian.

As for Kirk's death....Shatner is still fighting that battle as they prepare for the next Star Trek movie....Shatner wants Kirk to have a role the size of the one Spock got in the first one. But they are having a hard time figuring out how to get Kirk to travel back in time if he is already dead.

Awesome photos for the hub...very impressive...I will check back in when I watch the movie again.


FloraBreenRobison profile image

FloraBreenRobison 5 years ago

I've only seen Kirk's scenes here-similar to Cogerson's comments, except that I know for sure I haven't seen the whole film. I have seen various non-TOS Trek when original Trek members have joined the cast in a major way, but that is all. See, I'm not a science fiction fan. I'm a classic television fan. That makes all the difference. Thus, this is the final Trek movie where I've seen anything beyond the trailer.

Most of the ST:TNG cast was totally unfamiliar to me. Levaar burton I knew from Roots; Whoopi Goldberg is quite famous for lots of roles. Patrick stewart is Shakespearean actor so I'm aware of him in his non-Trek roles as well.

The villain, of course, has had a varied career.

Regarding Alan Ruck: He is also well known among TV and Michael J. Fox fans for being on Spin City.


Steve Lensman profile image

Steve Lensman 5 years ago from London, England Author

Cogerson, Flora, thanks for the comments, always appreciated as you know.

Cogers, I'd love to see Shatner one last time in a new Star Trek movie. He is getting on a bit, 80 years old but not as wrinkly as Nimoy. What they should have done in the reboot is have Shatner speak the words "Space the final frontier..." before the end credits instead of Nimoy that would have been a real crowd pleaser.

Flora, I have to admit to never seeing Spin City, I know it was popular and I think Charlie Sheen took over from Fox or am I thinking of something else?

I think this might be my biggest hub so far, picture and text-wise, totally unexpected.


FloraBreenRobison profile image

FloraBreenRobison 5 years ago

Yes, Charlie Sheen took over for Fox, although Fox remained one of the executive producers.


Steve Lensman profile image

Steve Lensman 5 years ago from London, England Author

Thanks for clarifying Flora.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

Hi Steve; The highly anticipated team-up between Kirk and Picard turned out to be a bit underwhelming. The movie as a whole was mediocre. It should have been more impressive, considering the historic classic Trek/ST:TNG cross-over.

One big problem with the film was that it was filled with easily-avoidable plot holes. For instance, Soran's plan was to change the gravity of the galaxy (?) to change the course of "the ribbon" so it would hit a planet, and he could return to The Nexus. Why not just use a ship? His reasoning for this was that no one could get into the Nexus using a ship. That's a big PLOT HOLE. How did Soran get into the Nexus the first time? In a ship. How did Kirk get into the Nexus? In a ship. How did Guinan get in? In a ship. So the whole premise of the plot was flawed.

Also, what kind of a name is "the ribbon"? Whatever happened to the cool names they used to use like "the Doomsday Machine" or "the Guardian of forver". A name like "the ribbon" isn't exactly striking shock and awe into anyone.

Watching this film, I was amazed at how easily Bill Shatner stole the film from Patrick Stewart (Whose a far better actor). Shatner wore the Kirk character like an old suit and just blew Stewart out of the water in every scene they were in together. I'd heard there were a lot of expectation of fireworks on the set when Shatner and Stewart were set to meet, but apparantly, the two of them got along fine. Shatner even gave Stewart tips on horseback riding. (Shatner is an experienced horseman and raises horses.)

As for Kirk's anti-climactic death, the best that can be said about it was that it was better than what they originally had planned. But it was very disappointing. The great Captain Kirk dies trying to retrieve a gadget that looks like a TV remote control.

A so-so film that should have been much better. Not a great bow-out for Shatner, and not the best debut for the Next Generation cast.

Fun hub. Another good Trek down Trek lane.

Rob


Steve Lensman profile image

Steve Lensman 5 years ago from London, England Author

Hey thanks for the review Rob. I agree about the disappointing death of Kirk.

They do refer to the energy ribbon as the Nexus throughout the film. I watched the film again a couple of days ago. And the reason they give for Soran not piloting a ship into the Nexus is that it destroys ships it comes in contact with. Maybe Soran wasn't sure he would survive another ship collision with the "energy ribbon".

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