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Which is more important: Literary Content or Cinematic Spectacle ?

Solipso

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 37

Report this Oct. 01 2010, 3:16 pm

 


Star Trek had some good content, but it got carried away with spectacle (and comedy). And I have no faith that the sequel will be better.


 


I am a firm disbeliever in excessive spectacle (and gratuitous comedy). I am a firm believer in impressive literary content. With Star Trek, the franchise material itself will always provide enough spectacle to attract consumers. There's no need to become obsessed with spectacle, and spectacle alone will not assure future demand for Star Trek movies. If, however, a Star Trek story grabs the audiences's heart, the franchise will have a longer life.


 


Presently the best Star Trek movie is hidden in our imaginations. It has not been produced. With regard to the upcoming sequel, the more serious it is, the more dramatic it is, the better it will be.


 


But I'm afraid many Star Trek fans lack the faith in story that I have. Which is more important: literary content or cinematic spectacle?


 


The way to the stars is the way of the mind.

AtoZ2

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 1297

Report this Oct. 01 2010, 7:57 pm

I agree, after watching Generations, Insurrection and Nemesis some sort of intelligent literary spectacle was needed with just the right amount of action and humor to bring back the fans and draw in normal people.
Thank God we final got it with Star Trek.

Solipso

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 37

Report this Oct. 02 2010, 4:06 pm

 


Star Trek did not come close to a balance between literary content and spectacle. The teeter-tooter was planted firmly on the ground of spectacle. So much so that, together with its gratuitous insertions of comedy, I feel justified in labelling the movie as "juvenile." It is tawdry, sleazy, and vain. It exploits ignorance and sensation, and it scorns intellect.


 


In his preceding post, Vice_Admiral says, "...having the greatest literary content and no cinematic spectacle doesn't make for a good movie."


 


I disagree with that as much as black disagrees with white. If a movie is made with good production values (state-of-the-art directing, sound, acting, cinematography, effects, editing), all that a movie needs to be a good movie is a good story. Spectacle is like violence and comedy. None of these three things should be inserted just for their own sake. Violence for the sake of violence is wrong; comedy for the sake of comedy is wrong; spectacle for the sake of spectacle is wrong.


 


More often than not, though not always, at least one of these three elements is part of the story. Then the element should be in the movie. But none of these three element should ever be included gratuitously.


 


In Star Trek, the story did not require Kirk's traffic-speeding sequence, ending with the convertible plummeting into the canyon. Unforgettable, right? Yes, unforgettably silly. But spectacular. Spock's childhood sequence was much more effective than Kirk's.


 


In Star Trek, the monster-chase sequence preceding Kirk's meeting with the original Spock was not necessary for the story. But it was spectacular. And asinine.


 


The Star Trek story did not require Scotty's transport into the water system. But some viewers say it was funny and welcome. I thought it was annoying. I would never accept a sceenplay without deleting this kind of material. Nor, I hope, would Ridley Scott or Steven Soderbergh or Martin Scorsese.


 


I am unsure if I have seen any good movies without absolutely any spectacle. I will name some possibilities. But if they do have spectacle, I hope it was either unnecessary to make the movie good, or that it was inserted for the sake of the story, not just for the effect of spectacle:


 


Frost/Nixon


Milk


Michael Clayton


The Queen


Capote


Good Night, and Good Luck


Ray


Lost in Translation


The Hours


The Pianist


Chocolat


Erin Brockovich


The Cider House Rules


The Sixth Sense


 


I could list many other movies that I know have examples of cinematic spectacle in them, but which I feel the spectacle was necessary to tell the story and was not inserted for the sake of spectacle.


 


I hope that my list is sufficient to convince at least some viewers into agreeing with my disagreement of Vice_Admiral's assertion that "...the greatest literary content and no cinematic spectacle doesn't make for a good movie."


 


I am discouraged by the two replies I go to my initial post. I would have thought that Star Trek fans were more sophisticated. I usually don't mind the spectacular scenes in Star Trek productions. I usually welcome them. But the movie Star Trek overemphasized spectacle. As far as comedy goes, I despise gratuitous examples of it in any cinematic production.


 


As long as Star Trek tells good science fiction stories, I will be a fan.


 


 


 


The way to the stars is the way of the mind.

2takesfrakes

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 3683

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 6:13 pm

Which is more IMPORTANT, Spectacle or
Literary Content?

Let's just say I despise being preached
to by a movie! That's always such a treat,
isn't it? And those innumerable STAR TREK
episodes where the future of humanity gets
told off by everyone from the Talosians to Q
for being too "primative" and "war-like" a
species to be dealt with! What a lame message ...

Oh, and save all those Shakespeare quotes for
the Renaissance Fair, I'm sick of it, man!

Spectacle, that's the ticket, laddy!
Save your "deep" insights for bathroom stalls,
I want to be entertained, do you hear?! ENTERTAINED!!!

MichaelRiker

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 66

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 6:41 pm

Quote: AtoZ2 @ Oct. 01 2010, 7:57 pm

>I agree, after watching Generations, Insurrection and Nemesis some sort of intelligent literary spectacle was needed with just the right amount of action and humor to bring back the fans and draw in normal people. Thank God we final got it with Star Trek.
You left out "First Contact"...LOL All that "phasering" the enemy and such, you mist have loved...

MichaelRiker

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 66

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 6:45 pm

Quote: 2takesfrakes @ Oct. 11 2010, 6:13 pm

Which is more IMPORTANT, Spectacle or Literary Content? Let's just say I despise being preached to by a movie! That's always such a treat, isn't it? And those innumerable STAR TREK episodes where the future of humanity gets told off by everyone from the Talosians to Q for being too "primative" and "war-like" a species to be dealt with! What a lame message ... Oh, and save all those Shakespeare quotes for the Renaissance Fair, I'm sick of it, man! Spectacle, that's the ticket, laddy! Save your "deep" insights for bathroom stalls, I want to be entertained, do you hear?! ENTERTAINED!!!

I hear you, But THAT is not what the "idea" is about.....It, I believe, is about the "evolution" of humankind to see what has happened and remedy, through countless times the best possible solution. DEFINITELY NOT some shoot 'em up action pic.

MichaelRiker

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 66

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 6:49 pm

Decided to use my wife's computer which is a vista and I am looking like your posts Twotakes...Like I hit the "enter" key!!!!   GOTTA love the new boards!

KLINGONDOG

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 533

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 7:13 pm

A good plot and lots of action is all I ask for, so yes why not both.

bortaS bIr jablu'DI' reH QaQqu' nay'.

2takesfrakes

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 3683

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 7:17 pm

"...looking like [my] posts,"
and just what's wrong with my posts?
I like them neat and tidy. That's all.

MichaelRiker

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 66

Report this Oct. 11 2010, 7:35 pm

Quote: 2takesfrakes @ Oct. 11 2010, 7:17 pm

>"...looking like [my] posts," and just what's wrong with my posts? I like them neat and tidy. That's all.
It looks like I hit the "enter" key on my screen after I posted...that is all almost like yours looks like.


** Now I am seeing the posts as they should be, now that I am on mine.**


Now, where I left off:






Which is more IMPORTANT, Spectacle or Literary Content? Let's just say I despise being preached to by a movie! That's always such a treat, isn't it? And those innumerable STAR TREK episodes where the future of humanity gets told off by everyone from the Talosians to Q for being too "primative" and "war-like" a species to be dealt with! What a lame message ... Oh, and save all those Shakespeare quotes for the Renaissance Fair, I'm sick of it, man! Spectacle, that's the ticket, laddy! Save your "deep" insights for bathroom stalls, I want to be entertained, do you hear?! ENTERTAINED!!!






I hear you, But THAT is not what the "idea" is about.....It, I believe, is about the "evolution" of humankind to see what has happened and remedy, through countless times the best possible solution. DEFINITELY NOT some shoot 'em up action pic.

drellan

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 163

Report this Oct. 13 2010, 3:06 pm

I agree with Sinistar.  You hit it on the nail.

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