31 May 2009

Star Trek

Yes, mom, if you haven't seen it yet, do so. My wife and I, and our youngest son, enjoyed it.

I don't know if the rest of you will like it. But I and my mother have been watching Star Trek, on TV and in movies, since the start of its run on television (yes, I'm over 40 years old). So I know her tastes. If you're towards our end of the viewing spectrum, you'll enjoy it.

Our end is an enjoyment of the at times absurd but enthusiastic exploration that was central to the original series. The current movie regains a lot of that. If you liked, say, the Alice in Wonderland episode, you're set. The 'red matter' is, scientifically, piffle. But no matter. There are some adventure to be had, challenges to be met, some personalities to deal with. And it gets there with some humor. Not stand up comic humor, or pratfall (at least so much). But people (even if some are Vulcans or other things) have their foibles and you live with them. It's aimed at an older audience, in some senses (namely how much clothing some of the women have on) than the original TV series (which, by today's standards, may well get a 'G').

There are also some nice references to the originals, plus the original Spock appearing (Leonard Nimoy, though if I need to tell you that, just go see the movie and have fun with some space opera). If you insist on rigorous self-consistency and sensibility within the movie and with respect to the original series ... I understand Boole wrote a lovely book on Mathematical Logic, and you might enjoy Chandrasekhar's Ellipsoidal Figures of Equilibrium.

And yes, my mother is one of my readers. Where do you think I got the interest in the universe from? Who gave it a pretty free rein when I was growing up? But parenting kids to understand and appreciate science (and writing, and music, and ...) is a different post. I've tried to pass it on, which is a different matter than trying to make my kids become scientists.


Robert Grumbine said...

I expect it's supposed to be bad form to comment on your own blog post, but after my laughter at PZ Myeerssss's* summary, I figure I'll break proper form and suggest you read his write up too.

While I enjoyed the movie, I agree that it did require a certain degree of setting the brain in neutral.

*Back in his days in talk.origins, a particular anti-scientist made a practice of never spelling Paul's last name right. Some of the regulars took up the practice and extended it to absurd degrees.

Hank Roberts said...

And you should now read this.
And look at the pictures.
Right away.