Sunday, May 17, 2009

Star Trek and Barsoom

The Saint and I actually had a "date" last night, with no children in sight. I drug her (only mildly kicking and screaming) to the local Barnes and Noble for a coffee and sandwich before we went to see the new Star Trek movie. I really enjoyed the movie, it was fun and full of action and had just the right balance of Star Trek old school links and allusions while throwing in enough new stuff for the series to "re-boot" as it were. I'd probably give it a 3.5 or even a 4 out of 5 stars if pressed to be a film critic, but I'm notoriously easy to please when it comes to movies. The quote “For those who like this sort of thing, this is the sort of thing they like.” seems particularly apt here, but I'm posting not so much to review the movie, but to point out that I saw some definite Pulp archetypes and themes in the movie, more so that I would have expected (long time Trekkies may not have been so surprised, but I don't consider myself any kind of expert in the ST universe).

The most Pulpish part of the movie to me was the sword fight on top of the platform high above Vulcan. I flashed back to Burroughs' Barsoom books during the scene, mentally substituting John Carter or Ulysses Paxton for Sulu or Kirk in this well done scene. Of course one could also make a reference to the early fight scene above the sand worm in "Return of the Jeddi" but since there's a link between Star Wars and Leigh Brackett back to Burroughs, I think the original master deserves the credit here.

At any rate, I thought the movie was good fun, and I recommend it, but afterwards I say go out and read some Edgar Rice Burroughs Martian books...

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