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From a TV series that barely lasted three seasons in the 1960s, "Star Trek" has grown into a multibillion-dollar industry involving several spin-off series, numerous movies, and countless merchandise items. This phenomenon is due to the show's legions of rabidly devoted fans, popularly known as "Trekkies." "Star Trek" actress Denise Crosby provides an affectionate and humorous look at some of these people, who demonstrate how "Star Trek" has affected and even shaped their lives. Several members of the show's cast and creative team also describe what the series and its fans mean to them. Written by
Trekkies IS a very funny movie, whether you are a Star Trek fan or not. It shows a wide variety of fans in a variety of situations, and there are no voice-overs to tell you how to feel about the characters presented.
I notice that one prominent review is as horrified by Trekkies as one might be if one found a dead prostitute in their father's closet. The filmmakers may have been laughing at the people on the screen, but they weren't making fun of them. They were merely filming them. If I get in front of a camera and walk blindly into traffic, is it the fault of the person behind the camera if I get run over? No, because I would have been fully aware of my actions. So are the fans presented in Star Trek.
Trekkies won't make a non-fan like ST, nor will it make a rabid fan feel as though they've wasted their lives. This is a slice-of-life documentary. If you feel, like some people who have "tsk-tsked" this movie, that the filmmakers should be ashamed of themselves, I would contend that you protest too much; could it be that you pity the fans on the screen, yet find yourself compelled to laugh at them? Such a conflict may well cause you to feel shame, and you would naturally project that outrage onto the film itself. But documentaries, by definition, can only "tell" you so much. It's up to the viewer to evaluate the material; blaming the filmmakers for a poor interpretation is ridiculous.
These people ARE laughable. But so am I, sometimes. It's okay, because I don't take myself too seriously. And these fans take their hobby very seriously, but many, like the dentists, are aware that ST is a very geeky hobby. And no matter how many times I see James Doohan describe his encounters with the woman who wrote him those fan letters, I break down completely. How is that bad? How have the filmmakers presented him in a bad light?
I can't say for sure, but I believe the filmmakers ARE fans of ST, and I believe that they're aware of the absurd lengths to which some ST fans will go (paying $1500 for a piece of latex, drinking a sick man's water). So what? It's entertainment. And if you can't laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at?
(But that smarmy 14-year-old with the mullet still needs to be slapped....)
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