First Contact; Best Star Trek Movie?
The Other Night
My local station aired First Contact the other night.
If I'd known, I'd have been ready for it.
Out of the blue, there it was.
First Contact is probably the best translation of television Trek to Movie Trek.
It begins as a virtual episode of Star Trek; The Next Generation.
Picard is dreaming (or visioning) the past when he was Borged. An alert from Star Fleet that the Borg are moving towards Earth snaps him to now.
The Enterprise is ordered not to join the defense, but go into the neutral zone, for
Command is a bit unsure of how Picard will react when re-exposed to the Borg.
Our Favourite Villians
Trekkies like the Borg.
The Borg is a mix of Zombie (who doesn't like zombies?) and Machine, (who doesn't hate machines which can defeat people?) The whole Yin/Yang thing is served in bite sized pieces.
The Borg gave us lots of cool references and phrases; (who hasn't had, at least for a short time, that image of Bill Gates Borged for a screen saver?)
And Time Travel!
Who doesn't like Time Travel? Trekkies love Time Travel, have loved it from TOS. In fact, every Trek has a few Time Travel epis.
So we got the Borg, we got Time Travel, and then we toss in Worf. Who doesn't love Worf?
So we've got a movie with TNG cast, going toe to box with the Borg, in a Time Travel epi, with everyone playing true to character...
It is that Almost which ads the final cherry on top of the sauce over the whip cream on top of the ice cream.
For the dialogue in this Trek is exactly what we want to hear.
Data advocates "To Hell with Orders", and they go off to the Earth Sector where Worf's ship has been attacked and he guesses, "Today must be a good day to die."
Travelling back in time they arrive on the day before Zefram Cochrane hits warp speed, which will attract Vulcans and hence, the First Contact.'
Zefram Cochrane was a great hero in Trek time, in Real Life, he was one of those stand up guys who gets drunk and wants to opt out. This 'feet of clay' to the neck is a clever way of removing the pedestal many heroes are stood upon.
Among the 'throw away' other reference lines, is Riker stunning Cochrane saying, "I don't have time for this..." Worf blowing up some Borgs with; "Assimilate This", and Cochrane saying, "What are you on some kind of star trek?"
Borg Queen, Drunk Deanna, and Data's Hesitation
The Borg queen was creepy enough and gave a face to the hive mind. Data's interaction, his almost orgasmic response to the feel of 'real skin' on his arm was part of the constant events which would be epis in their own right.
Picard telling Worf he is a coward, then doing a 180o, Deanna getting drunk with Cochrane, Riker being the most levelheaded, Geordie with artificial eyes, the Holodeck sequence, the very real feeling extra vehicular spacewalk, are just some of the aspects which made this a 'must see' Trek.
The only discordance is the Third World War.
It is doubtful that such an event would occur, and if occurring would push backspace exploration a century or so.
Other than that, it was the kind of Trek you enjoy; the characters, the action, the humour...