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|Index||264 reviews in total|
Probably my favourite film of all time. The thing about First Contact
is that it's not just about Star Trek. If you don't like Star Trek but
can live through the first 20 minutes you'll find a gem of a movie
which is as much about the future of humanity & an invention so
wonderful as it is about Yet More Star Trek Plot.
Warp Speed - they've been saying that since Captain Kirk. But how did it happen? and why might it all not happen, our future could be in ruins and one flight of one makeshift spacecraft some time after world war III will make all the difference.
The on-screen relationship between Picard & Lily is totally magic, as is the relationship between the Enterprise crew members - you get a sense of team, of family.
First Contact is one film I enjoy watching again & again. The flight of the Phoenix is one scene I totally love, along with the end scenes.
The only sad thing about the movie is that you come away and deep down you know there is no Cochrain, no FTL engine around the corner. Well, not yet!
"I envy you, the world you're going to" "I envy you, taking these first steps"
This is one of the two best Star Trek movies ever made (the other being
"Wrath of Khan"). Everything about this film is superb.... acting, set
design, special effects, plot, and action. The story progresses at a
breathtaking pace, and from the first 10 minutes when the Enterprise is
locked in a life-and-death struggle with one of the best villains in all of
sci-fi history (the Borg), to a perfect ending; there isn't a wasted or
redundant moment. This is a film that both trekkers and non-trekkers can
enjoy because the film explains enough about the back-story to get non-fans
up to speed, and does it in a way that will keep the fans interest (check
out the excellent opening sequence that introduces Picard's first encounter
with the Borg and explains much of his implacable and obsessive attitude
towards them throughout the film).
In addition to fine performances from the crew (highlighted as always by Patrick Stewart as Captain Picard), the supporting cast is more than equal to the task. Its too bad that the crew didn't bring Alfre Woodward back home with them........ she's one of the very few actors/actresses in Star Trek history who have been able to match Patrick Stewart's personality, acting skills, and histrionics. Also, I thought I detected a touch of romance between the two that could have been further developed at another time.
James Cromwell makes a perfect Zefrem Cochrane. It was a humorous touch to portray him as somewhat of an anti-hero, in contrast to the god-like reverence with which the characters in the film viewed him from a distance of 300 years.
The protagonists in the film, the Borg, have never looked more dangerous. I'm glad that this film returned them to their "roots", unlike their last few appearances in the television series in which they were becoming a little too domesticated.
This is a film to savor for any science fiction fan. 9.5/10.0 !
Star Trek: First Contact represents, at least to me, the pinnacle of the
Star Trek movie franchise. This film was, in my opinion, -by far- the
of the "next generation" outings, and perhaps the finest from the entire
collection of silver-screen Treks.
The Borg, a futuristic race of half-man, half-machine cyborgs from the other side of the galaxy, try once again to conquer the Federation, by attacking it at it's very core, our beloved Earth. This time, however, the Borg have a "plan B" up their sleeve. After the destruction of their main vessel, they send a small group of Borg back in time to 2063, a time when Earth is vulnerable after suffering massive casualties due to World War III. Once there they intend to prevent "first contact", an event that dramatically changes the course of human history, when friendly aliens discover humankind has learned how to travel faster-than-light, and make contact with the inventor of the warp drive, Dr Zefram Cochrane.
Of course the Enterprise crew must once again save humanity from certain destruction, by "following them back and repairing whatever damage they've done". When they reach the 21st century, however, the Borg find resistance is not so futile, and begin to take over the crippled Enterprise, deck by deck. Directing every move is the evil Borg Queen, played excellently by Alice Krige.
Patrick Stewart is, as always, fantastic as Captain Jean-Luc Picard. Stewart's background in the dramatic arts shines as he convincingly portrays a somewhat troubled and vengeful Picard, determined to destroy the insidious Borg once and for all.
The direction of Jonathan Frakes is flawless considering this film was his first attempt at directing on the big screen. In a few scenes I get the feeling that Frakes was committed to squeezing the absolute best out of Stewart, and this he did, apparently with ease (earning him the nickname "Two-Takes Frakes" from production members).
This film has it all. A well-conceived, intricate and dramatic plot, excellent acting, fantastic special effects, and real emotion on-screen. Picard's chilling "the line must be drawn here" monologue to Lily represents a scene with such dramatic quality that is rarely seen in science-fiction films. You can completely suspend disbelief and feel the anger, the pain, the sheer hunger for revenge in this broken man. You are there with him, the future of humanity is on the line, and not for a second will you think otherwise.
Whether you are a "Trekkie" or not, this is a film you will enjoy, and while there are references to previous Trek happenings in the film (such as when Picard was captured and assimilated by the Borg several years earlier), non-Trekkie's should definitely be able to follow what's going on.
All-in-all this is one of my favourite films of all time, and one that I can watch over and over and never get tired of. If you haven't seen it, why not grab a copy and check it out? I give it a well-deserved 9 out of 10.
Star Trek's successor to Gene Roddenberry, Rick Berman, never allowed
the poor reviews for STAR TREK: GENERATIONS to upset him; he had been
given an 'obligation' to provide a transition film between the original
cast's series, and his own 'Next Generation' films, and 'killing' James
Kirk freed him to focus on the film he REALLY wanted to make, STAR
TREK: FIRST CONTACT. And he created a classic, a film that for many
fans has become the 'definitive' STAR TREK movie.
From the opening scenes, which re-introduce the 'Next Generation's' greatest villains, the Borg, finally achieving their long-time goal of attacking Earth, and literally tearing Starfleet to shreds, as Picard and the Enterprise are ordered to stand down (Picard had been 'assimilated' once by the cyborgs, and the success of his 'deprogramming' was in question), there was an intensity that 'Trek' films hadn't shown since THE WRATH OF KHAN. When Picard decides to disobey orders and go 'in Harm's Way', you nearly want to cheer! Turning the battle around, the Enterprise sees victory at hand...until they discover that the 'core' of the Borg mother ship has plunged into Earth's atmosphere, and gone back in time. As the crew glimpses a 'changed' Earth, with humanity totally assimilated by the Borg, they plunge after the mother ship, to prevent history from being rewritten.
Quite an opening scene!
The film breaks into two stories, each entertaining. In an era two hundred years earlier, with Earth reeling from internal wars that have devastated much of the planet, Picard realizes that the Borg is attempting to prevent warp drive creator Dr. Zefram Cochrane from ever completing his prototype spaceship, thus denying the galaxy to the human race, and leaving them defenseless against the Borg. As First Officer Riker and most of the series' regulars protect the feisty engineer (first introduced in the original 'Trek' TV series by hunky Glenn Corbett; in FIRST CONTACT, the role is played by James Cromwell, hawk-nosed, antisocial, and hooked on ancient Rock n' Roll music), Data and Picard must deal with the growing Borg infiltration and assimilation of the Enterprise, and the imperious Borg Queen (lovely Alice Krige), who seduces Data with a chance to become 'human'.
Jonathan Frakes proves an excellent director, balancing the action, comic, and dramatic elements with sensitivity and skill. While most of the series' regulars have little to do (a problem that would never be resolved in the 'Next Generation' films), Frakes still manages to give each a bit of on-screen time to at least remind fans that they are present, and he even manages to provide a brief but funny cameo by semi-regular fan favorite Dwight Schultz, as the terminally shy Lt. Reggie Barclay.
FIRST CONTACT has so many memorable moments that it is nearly impossible to pick a single favorite one out. Cochrane's use of Steppenwolf's 'Magic Carpet Ride' as launch music for his guided missile/spaceship...Alfre Woodard's Lily Sloane, hiding in terror from the Borg, but still able to lecture Picard on doing the 'right thing'...'Star Trek: Voyager' regular Robert Picardo in a cameo as his medical hologram character, at a key moment...Data delivering the famous Borg 'tag line'...the Vulcan science party (led, although unmentioned, by Sarek, Spock's father), bemused at meeting the 'new kids on the block' for the first time...this movie has it all!
There is only one major continuity error; the Borg, as cyborgs, depend on their human 'host' bodies to survive (a key factor in the film's climax), yet in one whole sequence they operate in the vacuum of space WITHOUT spacesuits! I cringe each time I see the scene, but I STILL love the movie!
One other key element of the film cannot be praised enough; Jerry Goldsmith's score is one of his finest, combining the best elements of the STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE theme with a sweeping inspirational hymn for Cochrane, and eerie, discordant music for the Borg. The score is so profoundly moving that it could stand alone, as a symphonic work.
Sadly, Berman and company never achieved the same heights with either of the subsequent 'Trek' films, but at least we have FIRST CONTACT, to show that a 'Next Generation' feature could be done 'right'.
Star Trek:First Contact is the best Star Trek film in my opinion. Far better
than the average Star Trek:Generations or any of the films featuring the
I won't go into the plot too much because I hate spoiling it for fans and it is easy sometimes to give away too much. Let's just say that the cast of The Next Generation take on the inhuman Borg, one of the best race of Star Trek villains ever.
There are no slow spots in this film. It is one big long action fest and every character is utilized. There are some terrific scenes and there is quite a bit of tension between the crew, particularly Worf and Picard. Picard has some harsh words for Worf at one point in the film and it really does look as though Worf will hit Picard. You could cut the tension in this film with a knife.
I'd also like to mention the great job done by the beautiful Alice Krige as the Borg Queen. Again, there is not a wasted moment in this film and Krige does a brilliant job as the Borg Queen.
I strongly recommend Star Trek:First Contact-it is the type of film which you finish watching and feel as though you have spent your money well.
Star Trek VIII: First Contact - Stardate: 50893.5
Finally, after the dismal Generations outing, they got it right with this one! First Contact indeed is on par with the very best of the Star Trek films - The Wrath of Khan and The Undiscovered Country. Unfortunately, they won't get it right again to the present day (with the above average but still not as good Insurrection and awful Nemesis). The script is very solid, the acting above par (with kudos going to Alice Krige as the seductive Borg Queen and Alfre Woodard as the trusting Lily Sloane), and the score by Jerry Goldsmith again another hit. All of that combined with visual effects that service the story and not is the story makes this outing a spectacular success - a solid 9 out of 10!
Many of the Star Trek Films have relied heavily on character interaction,
dialogue, and suggested events to tell the story. Star Trek: First Contact
breaks from this tradition by producing a sharp, fast paced action film that
never relents from beginning to end. There are moments of reflection for
the characters, but the movie has an inertia that makes the other entries in
the franchise seem as if they plod along at five miles an hour. The result
is one of the most satisfying films in the series.
Part of the appeal of Star Trek: First Contact, is that the central enemy is the Borg Collective, which has surpassed all other villainous races in the Star Trek universe in popularity. The central villain in this chapter is the Borg Queen, played by the chilly yet seductive Alice Krige. Krige is confident, convincing, and absolutely threatening in her performance, and seems to almost border on a character from a horror film. She lends an edge that is unique from other villains in the series, and is perfectly suited to the nature of the Borg. The design for both the Queen and the rest of the Borg is unsettling, and the story line and history of this race serves to illicit an emotional continuity between the events in the television show and the films.
Star Trek: First Contact probably has the widest appeal of all of the episodes, in much the same way as Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home did in 1986. It is action packed, filled with decent visual effects, clearly plotted, and supplies a threatening villain. This is definitely the best Next Generation film to date, and one of the strongest movies in the entire series.
When the Borg launch an attack on Earth, the Enterprise is sent to the
neutral zone due to the Admiralty's mistrust of Picard's abilities as he
been assimilated in the past. The Enterprise however, disobeys and
to help destroy the Borg ship. However a smaller ship escapes and travels
back in time, causing the assimilation of Earth in the future. The
Enterprise follow the ship back in time and have to undo the damage the
did on the surface to an experimental warp drive unit that will led Earth
it's first contact with alien life. Meanwhile, on the Enterprise,
of the Borg ship begin to assimilate decks within the ship
The trend of the `even good, odd bad' continues in Star Trek with this good entry in the series. Linking to previous story lines, the film starts immediately and continues at a good pace. Where the previous time travel excursion for the crew was more funny than anything else, this film goes down a more dramatic route with the main plot not turning out to be on the ground (as I first thought it would be) but on the ship where the crew struggle to contain the Borg's advances. This aspect works well - it is not edge of the seat stuff, but it is dramatic and involving.
In contrast the stuff on the surface is more a side issue that is used well to contrast with the pace on the Enterprise itself. There aren't many laughs but it does have a nice little bit of self mocking humour that raises it's head occasionally. The cast (crew?) all do good work, but it is Stewart's film and his Borg past help to enrich his character well. Frakes does an able enough job as director but as an actor he has little to do, as indeed do most of those on the Earth aside from a cameo from Cromwell who adds humour. Woodard is OK in her role but not as good as I've seen her be in other things.
Overall this is a solid Star Trek film, which although not excelling in any one area, has a strong backbone of drama and action aboard the ship that works well with the lighter stuff on the earth.
The next generation crew of the Enterprise star in their best movie.
Picard and his crew hitch a ride back in time to save the Galaxy from
being infested with Borg, by saving the drunkard who invented Warp
Drive from being killed by the Borg. This Star Trek movie is nuanced
enough for the 'trekkies' to get into, while still being very
accessible to the rest of the cinema going public. Johnathon Frakes,
for all of his smarmy, cocky demeanor, still I have to admit that he
hits a home-run in this initial outing (now his "Insurection" is a
whole nother story, one for a different day) This film is
action-packed, features good performances, and is just plain fun. All
those aforementioned traits easily puts it among the top echelon of
My Grade: B+
DVD Extras: Disc 1) Commentary with director/actor Jonathan Frakes; Second commentary with writers Brannon Braga and Ronald Moore; Text Commentary with Michael and Denise Okuda Disc 2) 12 featurettes (Making 'First Contact', The Art Of 'First Contact', "The Story, The Missile Silo, The Deflector Dish,From 'A' to 'E', Jerry Goldsmith: A Tribute, The Legacy Of Zefram Cochrane, 'First Contact': The Possibilities, Unimatrix One, The Queen, and Design Matrix); 3 Scene Deconstruction;Storyboards, Photo Gallery; Teaser & Theatrical Trailers; and Trailer for the Borg Invasion Hilton show in Vegas
3 Easter Eggs: In the Main Menu, click on the sun for a list of all the alternative titles considered; In the Star Trek Universe menu highlight a circle for an interview with Ethan Philips; In The Borg Collective menu highlight a circle for an interview with Alex Jaeger
STAR TREK: FIRST CONTACT is the 8th movie in a series that has so far
produced 11 movies.
This is my second favourite of the Star Trek movies, second only to STAR TREK: THE WRATH OF KHAN. Like STAR TREK: THE WRATH OF KHAN, this movie can also be enjoyed by both those familiar to the Star Trek franchise and those new to it. Reading through the comments, I have noted comments from people who enjoyed it as a sci-fi action movie in its own right.
I will sum up the plot with those unfamiliar with Star Trek in mind - an alien race known as the Borg apathetic to individuality go back more than 300 years in time to attack Earth, colonise it and absorb its inhabitants into its collective. Captain Picard of the USS Enterprise follows the Borg back to Earth to stop their plans.
This very simple plot line brings an energetic story filled with virtually non-stop shoot-em-up action. Unlike most action movies, however, the antagonist is far more menacing. The Borg have no concept of individuality. It cannot be reasoned with. Killing one Borg barely has the impact of, say, removing one blood cell from a human body. The Borg in this movie are far more menacing than they were in the TV series.
For those familiar with the Star Trek franchise, I can confirm that all the familiar faces from the crew in the THE NEXT GENERATION series all appear here - Picard, Riker, Data, Geordi, Worf, Dr Crusher and Troi.
The movie represents a massive transformation from its predecessor, STAR TREK: GENERATIONS. For the first time we witness many members of the TNG crew behave or tempted to behave out-of-character due to the scale of the situation they find themselves in. Without giving away spoilers, I can state that characters in this movie face the prospect of having to turn against one another.
The acting across the board is top-notch. The actors' performances are so captivating that they genuinely invite the audience to share the feelings of their characters.
Patrick Stewart deserves special mention because he faces the greatest acting challenge - reprising his role as a character he played for 7 years in the TV series and a prior movie - now having to play the said character, Captain Picard, in a very different manner. The Captain Picard of this movie is not the calm diplomat from the TV series, he is someone with anger-fuelled determination to get revenge on the Borg, who once altered his biology so that he became part of their collective for a short time. His performance has to be seen to be believed and is enough to silence critics who claim he is unable to play a hero.
Alice Krige gives what is perhaps the best performance of her career as the Borg Queen. Her performance provides a perfect distraction from the major plothole - the existence of a head of the Borg collective. The Borg collective communicates as one voice with each drone being the same. So it could not feasibly have a single leader. When you see Alice Krige in action, however, you will find it easy to suspend your disbelief.
James Cromwell has fun playing Zephram Cochrane, the inventor of the warp drive referenced all through the franchise. For those unfamiliar with Star Trek, the warp drive is a component able to make starship engines travel at hyper speeds. I found the Zephram Cochrane in this movie much more exciting to watch than the bland version played by Glenn Corbett in an episode of the original series.
The real drawback with regards to the acting is Alfre Woodard. She was not a convincing lover or protégé for Picard and I couldn't help but wonder if she was drafted in as a replacement for Whoopi Goldberg. For those unfamiliar with the franchise, Whoopi Goldberg played a character named Guinan in the TNG series. She acted as a protégé ready to give wise words of advice to many crew members on the ship, including Picard.
Jonathan Frakes shows that he is just as good behind the camera as he is in front of it. His direction brings a great science-fiction story to life that is genuinely thought-provoking, emotionally moving and highly entertaining. In my opinion, he should have been nominated for an Oscar for Best Direction for his work on this movie.
The new starship Enterprise-E seems very dark and claustrophobic compared to the seemingly vast, bright and colourful Enterprise-D from the TV series and the previous movie. However, the Enterprise-E provides a perfect backdrop for the action to take place since its feel fits the tone of the movie perfectly. A wise decision was made to keep the bulk of the action on the ship rather than on Earth. Having said that, the events depicted on Earth help to offset the tension and allowing the audience to take a quick breath before being thrust back in again. The mix of light and dark works like a charm.
To summarise, STAR TREK: FIRST CONTACT is a first-rate entry into the Star Trek series of movies that can be enjoyed by Star Trek fans and newcomers to Star Trek alike. I highly recommend this for anyone who enjoys sci-fi action movies.
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