Critic Review - Chicago Sun-Times

The Gene Roddenberry years, when stories might play with questions of science, ideals or philosophy, have been replaced by stories reduced to loud and colorful action.

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Miguel Gonzales

Now this is a negative review I can hang my hat on. I had a feeling that this movie was replacing some of the great story telling with great action. But hey these days you gotta get the audiences attention somehow. It's more a reflection of our society than it is of bad movie making. I mean studios want to actually make money with these kinds of franchises so I can accept the change. I can also accept the negative reviews that are sure to be attached. Take the good with the bad I guess.

Nice review Ebert.

May 6 - 02:13 PM

Matthew D.

Matthew Dynda

Didn't seem that negative. I'm sad Ebert didn't like it as much as I thought he would, though.

May 6 - 02:17 PM


rory morrison

same with me

Feb 14 - 10:52 AM

Gabriel R.

Gabriel Rauch

Great icon.

Aug 11 - 10:21 PM


Phil McGroin

Drop dead already. I understand that cancer has made your outlook on life bleak but for christs sake do you have to **** on everything you see to make up for it?

Ebert is worthless...figures his fat *** would dump on this.

May 6 - 02:18 PM


Cosmo Nims

Did you read the review? You should yelling and accosting Armond. Ebert's is the first negative review with any legitimate claims.

May 6 - 02:20 PM


First Last

No he didn't read it. I doubt he CAN read.

Typical knee-jerk reaction from a moron.

May 6 - 04:22 PM

Daniel B.

Daniel Burke

2.5/4 is a fresh tomatoe right? This is just a problem with the RT database, unfortunately - no need to be so harsh to the man.

May 6 - 02:21 PM


Matt Atchity

Hey Daniel - 2.5 out of 4 varies from critic to critic, and one really needs to read a review in full to determine whether or not it's positive (as Roger himself will tell you). We actually read every review, and if there is any doubt, we try and contact the reviewer for clarification. In this case, we think Roger's review stands as ultimately negative.

May 6 - 02:50 PM

Mr. Positive

. .

Now this was a quality written negative review. Nevertheless, it made me sad that Ebert didn't love it.

May 6 - 03:09 PM

Josh G.

Josh Gillispie

I'm questioning how you come up with overall negative when he specifically says it's a fun movie. If I tell you a movie is fun do you get the idea "don't go see this?" There's your answer.

I wouldn't mind seeing some clarification from Mr. Ebert because my understanding from his review is a go see movie, just short on plot. (Which by the way is the same way I've described it to others)

May 6 - 03:35 PM

Josh G.

Josh Gillispie

I'm questioning how you come up with overall negative when he specifically says it's a fun movie. If I tell you a movie is fun do you get the idea "don't go see this?" There's your answer.

I wouldn't mind seeing some clarification from Mr. Ebert because my understanding from his review is a go see movie, just short on plot. (Which by the way is the same way I've described it to others)

May 6 - 03:37 PM


Matt Atchity

You raise a good point Josh, but fun doesn't necessarily mean something is good. I think the 1980 Flash Gordon is fun to watch, but it's by no means a quality film. Conversely, I think Schindler's List is a quality film, but I wouldn't call it "fun."

Roger's review seems to judge Star Trek in the context of a 43-year-old franchise (or at least a 30-year-old film series), and one that has had it's share of gravitas. His negative points definitely address valid shortcomings.

Our take is that he's holding a Star Trek picture to a higher standard than a film like The Mummy 3 or even the latest Indiana Jones film (and I get his point; the Trek franchise often seems to present itself as Serious Science Fiction). So while he'll admit that Star Trek is a fun film, he's saying that mere fun isn't enough.

May 6 - 04:26 PM

Chuck V.

Chuck Vulbis

It's odd because it is indeed a good review. It's like saying x is a great movie but he hated the brand of cars they drove. He's said before that his star ratings are relative and vary depending on the kind of movie or his expectations going in. Like a few have mentioned, he gave Knowing 4 stars. He is big on films being true to their internal logic. The man certainly has particular tastes in science fiction. I've still never loved Dark City -- and the man gives lectures on it.

May 6 - 11:37 PM

Grizzled Cowboy G.

Grizzled Cowboy Grizzled Cowboy

I disagree that his review is negative. While he nitpicks certain aspects, and pines for something more narratively-speaking, ultimately he liked this movie. He even provided the "don't get me wrong, this is good" disclaimer, and then finishes by saying "If you want a space opera, you got it."

I fail to see how his review ultimately stands as negative.

May 7 - 06:10 AM

John R.

John Ratnaswamy

I have very carefully read Mr. Ebert's review more than once. I think RT has made a clear mistake in categorizing the totality (the bottom line) of the review as negative.

May 8 - 09:18 PM

noobimus prime

Mark Zammit

er....for an ebert review this is actually positive....did you bother asking ebert wether or not to list it under negative? i bet you didn't, i don't think he hates the movie he's just a critical old man who can complain about anything.

May 10 - 01:30 PM

Michael C.

Michael Cox

I really think that the review is overall positive. He calls the movie "fun" describes scenes as "effective" and praises the special effects. It is obviously not a slam-dunk positive review, but it definitely is not negative

May 11 - 10:19 AM

Spammy U.

Spammy Ubastards

To say Ebert's review is ultimately negative focuses on his criticisms without seeing the point of the overall review.
As Ebert himself says, midway through his review, "Don%u2019t get me wrong. This is fun." And his final sentence, to paraphrase, "you want space opera, you got it."
I think his point in criticising the film is that they went for action and effects, and spent less attention on a deep and compelling story. In other words, I read his review as saying this is a good 'popcorn' flick - not a bad film.

May 18 - 10:13 AM

Greg Dinskisk

Greg Dinskisk

To those who are confused: THIS IS A NEGATIVE REVIEW! 2.5's from Ebert are negative. HOWEVER, he has said he liked this movie. He has done this before, and has actually recommended films that were rotten from him over ones that he gave were positive.

He said it was fun, but he did say he didn't think it was too good. There IS a difference.

Mar 26 - 06:49 PM

Dead Account

Dead Account

What a fanboy tool you are. Ebert's opinion is worth more than your career times 10. I may not agree with him from time to time, but that doesn't invalidate his opinion. Good negative review. I'm going to see the movie anyway. 94% is an incredible RT rating.

May 6 - 02:54 PM


Phil McGroin

News flash Einstein...his opinion is worth no more than the average person of the street. I'd say after this review its worth even less than that.

May 6 - 03:15 PM

Brian T.

Brian Turnbull

New flash loser...his opinion is worth more than your futile existence. Anyone who wins the Pulitzer Prize is more accomplished than your pathetic life will ever be.

Now go back to your miserable existence fanboy. You suck.

May 6 - 08:57 PM


Rose Murphy

For Schnoogs, not necessary to bash someone like that. It wasn't even that bad of a review.

May 6 - 07:28 PM

Steven D.

Steven Domeracki

Schnoogs, You are a real Jasck as s. I hope you get cancer, so you will know whats its like. The man is entitled to his opinion. Its a movie review for god sakes. Your a real piece of work.

May 6 - 10:08 PM

Zack K.

Zack Kaplan

fuck u...just cause he doesn't like a movie you do means you should wish death upon him? you sick fucking bastard, i feel sorry for you and i hope you go to hell

May 3 - 05:56 PM

Josh G.

Josh Gillispie

I've been waiting for Ebert's review for awhile. I've been impressed with some of his other recent reviews.

I think he missed the point of this movie though. This franchise had to be reinvigorated. Characters had to be reintroduced, the plot and differences from prior Star Treks explained. A philosophical movie at this point would have made this movie extremely long and convoluted.

Now that this movie is out and the foundation is laid, the next movie can focus on the heart of Star Trek.

May 6 - 02:21 PM

Jake S.

Jake Smith

What's wrong with a little action? If Paramount were to push out another movie like Nemesis the Star Trek series would be finished for good.

I just think it's too damn hard to please Mr. Ebert...

May 6 - 02:21 PM


Matt Welch

Eh, this is why Ebert is hit and miss in my opinion. Half the time he's jumping on a bandwagon, the other half he's trying to seem like the only critic who knows their stuff, and both times it feels a little like he's lost touch with both critics and audiences a bit in his later years. I respect Ebert a lot, but I've never ever based my desire to see a movie on a positive or negative review from him, I usually find out what he has to say well after I've seen and decided my opinion on the movie as it is. His tastes just don't seem to swing towards quality, they're too random these days.

May 6 - 02:22 PM


Tyler Vlz

May 6 - 02:24 PM


Miguel Gonzales

Guys guys guys. More negative reviews are sure to come. Negative reviews always come. You didn't think we a "Citizen Kane" on our hands did you? Might as well nominate the damn thing for the Oscar right now.

Some of the other negatives seem contrived and just plain stupid. This one seemed valid (to me at least).

May 6 - 02:25 PM

Josh G.

Josh Gillispie

It seems most of the "negative" reviews are actually 2.5/4 and for the most part positive.

As Ebert says: "Don%u2019t get me wrong. This is fun."

If you go to movies to be entertained, you will like this a lot.

May 6 - 02:28 PM


Miguel Gonzales

I will say this though. He does admit that this movie is fun despite his critisms. However he gave "Mummy Tomb of The Dragon Emporer" a positive review for those very same reasons.

" Now why did I like this movie? It was just plain dumb fun, is why. It is absurd and preposterous, and proud of it." %u2014 Chicago Sun-Times on Mummy3

Posted Jul 31, 2008

Hmmmmmm. Makes you think.

May 6 - 02:34 PM

Jon H.

Jon Huff

It's not a bad review. Though I like his blog better than his reviews. My personal opinion rarely matches with his these days as he often praises movies I can't believe he would go for. But that's a reviewer for you. :) I'm surprised it came up rotten though.

May 6 - 02:43 PM


First Last

Well said.

May 6 - 04:23 PM


Angel Shadowflare

From what I can gather, his gripes are the following:

-The science of this Star Trek movie is laughable and there are inconsistencies.
-The story isn't subtle enough to his liking.
-More action than storytelling.

But from what I can tell, he never said this isn't an entertaining film and he seemed to like the characters even if commented on how young they all are.

Seems nitpicky. But I guess this just amounts to personal taste rather than the movie being 'bad'. I can live with that.

May 6 - 02:27 PM

Greg Dinskisk

Greg Dinskisk

He's incredibly nitpicky when it comes to science fiction- it's one of his favorite genres.

He's a very interesting reviewer...

Mar 26 - 06:52 PM


Clay Garland

I think Roger's problem is that he's expecting a film from a different era. And while storytelling may have held an audiences attention thirty years ago, the bottom line is that films are about making money, and in order to do that, you have to keep the attention of modern audiences, and unfortunately, a great story isn't going to do it. I think roger is lambasting the film for not martyring itself.

May 6 - 02:31 PM

Kirk M.

Kirk M

spuy767 is obviously most ready to just lay down and let the corporate movie studios turn us all into a bunch of drooling drones who moan everytime theres an explosion or a car chase in a movie...that way they dont have to satisfy people who have half a brain in their head. I mean look its already happening..within a couple of months recently we had Bev. Hills Chihuahua, Hotel for Dogs, Dogs in Space and friggin ME AND MARLEY! Although on the other hand Im a big fan of JJ Abrams and I am a little ticked off at Ebert's review but then again the guy's reviews arent gospel. Especially when almost all the other critics liked this film tremendously (Even the guy from the Boston Globe and hes so anal its not funny!)

May 6 - 04:49 PM


Alicia Norman

Now THIS is what I call an insightful, negative review. And as another poster here said, I am afraid they will take the pulse out of Star Trek to pander to a new generation of MTV watchers whose deepest thoughts revolve around who Axel Rose is dating....

Pray it isn't so...

May 6 - 02:33 PM


Jared Dawe

"I am afraid they will take the pulse out of Star Trek to pander to a new generation of MTV watchers whose deepest thoughts revolve around who Axel Rose is dating...."

If you think the 'MTV generation" is concerned with who Axel Rose is dating YOU SIR are severely out of tune with the entire world...

...also the 'MTV generation' are in their 30's and 40's now...get with the fu

May 6 - 05:42 PM

Derek M.

Derek Muller

Star Treks Pulse was non - exestient, not even the Trekkers came out to see Nemesis! So I say we enjoy the popcorn flick and praise JJ for giving us 2 or 3 more movies.

May 12 - 04:35 PM

Therese W.

Therese Walker

I agree.

Nov 19 - 01:04 PM

Greg Dinskisk

Greg Dinskisk

It's just laying the groundwork for the rest of the series JJ will make. He had to introduce the characters for this new generation of viewers who are not already knowledgeable about the subject.

Mar 26 - 06:54 PM

Bruce L.

Bruce Lee

I have yet to see this, but I have a feeling this movie insists that it will not be about story, or sci-fi technology science, but it's main focus would be on character. Something movies rarely do.

May 6 - 02:33 PM


meagan wheeler

Mr. Ebert is my favorite movie critic to date. However, I have noticed that on several occasions we have had differing opinions. I feel that his review was legitimate, yes, but also somewhat harsh. This isn't meant to be compared to the olden times, where movies were "quieter". This movie's goal was to be the exact opposite. The makers of this film set out to make it younger, hipper, fresher. To make a more modern Star Trek that would appeal to a new generation. And I think, having seen it, it does just that.
I believe that once Mr. Ebert watches this film again he will have a different viewpoint. Most critics are like that.

May 6 - 02:34 PM


Bradley Goran

While I understand where Ebert is coming from, this is exactly what he railed against in his review against Nemesis. He said he was "done" with Trek, and it's boring style. It seems as though this movie was a response to exactly why Ebert railed against the last one.

May 6 - 02:43 PM


Chris Bratcher

Coming from someone who gave The Phantom Menace 3.5 stars. It's hard to take seriously his dissection of science and logic in Sci-fi movies after his glowing review of one of the worst movies Sci-fi has to offer. I suppose there were not enough flaccid, banal, and astronomically failed attempts at kiddie-comedy (read:Jar Jar Binks) to satisfy Ebert in his older years. Sad.

May 6 - 02:51 PM

Greg Dinskisk

Greg Dinskisk

Star Wars (at least most of that series) isn't science fiction...

Mar 26 - 06:56 PM


Erik Van Norman

Let me just point out that this review is Ebert's opinion. I think i will enjoy this movie because i love these characters and i will enjoy seeing them without girdles topees and depend adult under garments. Ebert's review is a 2 1/2 star review meaning he did not hate this movie. His review is not snarky he makes some legit points. I think it looks cool and cant wait to see it. now quit freaking out, there is no need to be a jackass about a movie you havent seen getting a midling review.

May 6 - 03:07 PM

Gabriel H.

Gabriel Hernandez

I'm a little surpised that Ebert didn't favor the film, but I've always valued his critiques. Even if our opinions on films differ, I find that Ebert's thoughtful approach to a review makes for a welcome read.

Plus, he seems to be one of the few critics who'll say, "Film 'X' was terrible ... and I loved every minute of it."

Honesty is quite valuable.

May 6 - 03:12 PM

Jeremy I.

Jeremy Indiana

i had a feeling at least one review would say something like this from what i saw from the trailers and commercials. i haven't seen it, but i wouldn't be surprised if he was right.

May 6 - 03:14 PM


J Ward

heartbreaking that he didn't like it...

May 6 - 03:17 PM


Jason Root

Didn't seem like a negative review to me. Rotten tomato? hmmmmm... RT needs to formulate a neutral tomato. A not quite ripe tomato.

May 6 - 03:28 PM

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