William Shatner Presents: Chaos on the Bridge (2014)
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Audience Reviews for William Shatner Presents: Chaos on the Bridge
William Shatner presents the behind-the-scene, true story about the making of Star Trek: The Next Generation in Chaos on the Bridge. Through interviews with various televisions executives, TNG cast members, and show-writers, Shatner explores how Star Trek: The Next Generation was conceived and brought to television, along with the struggles in the early seasons to develop a cohesive vision for the series. And they all speak quite candidly; especially about how problematic it was to work with Gene Roddenberry, who often butted heads with network execs over his level of involvement and evolved new vision of Star Trek. Helping to construct the narrative and transition between topics, are short animated sequences that have an interesting design style (but are accompanied by some really cheesy music). Boldly going where no Star Trek documentary has gone before, Chaos on the Bridge is a fascinating look at the rocky foundation that lead to one of the greatest franchise revivals in television history.
I'm not even a Star Trek fan, and I thought that this was a thoroughly entertaining documentary. Worth checking out.
William Shatner exec produces, writes, directs, and hosts this doc about the development of The Next Generation sequel series to the original Star Trek. Shatner also mixes metaphors suggesting that the power plays between Paramount studios, Gene Roddenberry, and the rest of the Star Trek staff was like playing poker and also like a Wild West showdown. These metaphors are repeatedly used in the animated/graphical inserts used to give us a view of historical events. This documentary is a bit unique in showing that different interview subjects have different memories for how certain events unfolded, and the comic book like animation often shows both perspectives rather than trying to uncover the truth. Many writers and cast members talk to Bill Shatner, but not everyone must have been on board for this project. Of course, the best case scenario is that scheduling conflicts simply prevented more participation. More of Roddenberry's personal life is unveiled, and even though The Next Generation was less than half way through its seven year run, Shatner's documentary takes its closing cue from Roddenberry's failing health and death. Roddenberry, a visionary and, at the same time, a man who didn't quite live up to his futuristic ideals, is celebrated and explored, not as divine, but in humanistic terms.
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