Yeah. I like Star Trek. I admit it.
I’m mostly a fan of The Next Generation, far and away the
only of the four ST series with the slightest attachment of what might
loosely be termed a "cool factor" among the all-important age 18-24
demographic (damn, as of December 29th, I’m on the older side of that bracket,
at 21. Sigh). Anyway, while being a fan of TNG, I certainly watched the Original
Series on syndication. It wasn’t as cool as TNG, but it was okay. The movies
So what about Galaxy Quest? Galaxy Quest is a
movie based on the premise: what if the actors from the Star Trek
franchise were suddenly picked up by an alien race that believed only the
fictional crew of the television show could save their race? It’s an intriguing
premise, and it’s very obvious that the Galaxy Quest crew was based on
our friends at Paramount. Tim Allen plays Jason Nesmith, who, on the show Galaxy
Quest, is Commander Peter Quincy Taggart, the captain of the ship (got all
that?) He’s the Kirk figure. Then there’s Alan Rickman’s Alexander Dane, who, on
the show, is "Dr. Lazarus," some sort of hybrid between a Klingon and
Spock; and Sigourney Weaver plays the customary buxom female crewmember who
serves no useful purpose except repeating what the computer says to the captain
– and, of course, hanging half out of her uniform. Weaver actually looks good
with blonde hair – she’s sexier here than she was in Alien two decades
ago. Daryl Mitchell (of TV’s Veronica’s Closet) and Wings‘ Tony
Shalhoub round out the cast as the genius kid crewmember and the crack engineer,
Also a delight is Enrico Colantoni, the photographer on Just
Shoot Me, who plays the leader of the aliens who enlist Allen’s Nesmith and
the rest of the cast (whose show has been off the air for 18 years) to save them
from a mean group of lobster-like aliens.
The movie moves quickly from the wearying series of convention
appearances that are a regular part of the actors’ lives to outer space, where
the aliens have constructed an exact (functional) replica of the spaceship on
the original television show. It’s fun to watch the actors try to deal with
"real-life" alien combat and imagine William Shatner or Leonard Nimoy
calling the same shots.
One of the film’s most amusing moments arrives when Allen’s
Nesmith, needing to navigate through the bowels of the ship but unsure how,
contacts a rabid fan on Earth for directions.
In the end, Galaxy Quest neither indicts the occasionally
over-zealousness of the fans, nor does it indict the actors’ for mistreating
them. It gives us a fair, fun ride, and it’s an entertaining hour-and-a-half in
the movie theater. It has action, humor, and science fiction geekiness.
Recommended for any fan of Star Trek, no matter the series, and any fan
of science fiction television in general.