Welcome to the Weekend Watch. Where we try to point you towards the best ways to spend your viewing time (or, at least, steer you clear of the garbage).
Star Trek Beyond
Loren: These trailers are god-awful, let’s just be clear about that. I will say, that for as much of a sci-fi geek as I am, I’ve never been a Trekkie (Trekker?). I watched a little bit of the Original Series and a fair amount of Next Generation, but never got into DS9 (maybe I’ll give it another shot), watched more Voyager than I care to admit, and worked on season 2 of Enterprise. None of that made me a huge fan. But, the 2009 film turned that around a little bit, not a lot, but a little bit. It was more my speed. I don’t even hate Into Darkness as much as most people. I am cautiously optimistic about this one.
RDT: I just don’t know. I thought the first one was ok…ish (admittedly, I had big nerd issues with it. But it is kind of a fun watch). The second is not good at all (I don’t care what Rotten Tomatoes says…). And the trailers for this made it look like more of the same, but with more motorbikes. But it’s currently at 92% on Rotten Tomatoes (see previous Rotten Tomatoes comment, though), and I do enjoy Justin Lin as a director. I mean, we’re talking about it this week on the podcast. So I’m definitely seeing it regardless. I’m just not sure I want to see it.
Rick: I have to echo everyone’s trepidation. The early trailers and talk of late reshoots had me concerned. Having seen the finished product, I have to say that those concerns were (mostly) unfounded. This is the most “Star Trek” of the new series. It’s not a Star Wars movie masking as a Trek tale. Apart from the opening scene (prepare yourselves. It’s bad.), I had a smile on my face the whole time. There’s an emphasis on relationships, exploration, and the unknown. We get a welcome and resourceful new character in Sofia Boutella’s Jayla, and the action sequences are pretty spectacular. The aforementioned reshoots add a small subplot that actually helps from a character standpoint. A rarity to be sure. The nods to the older series are tastefully done and not shoehorned in like Into Darkness (there’s even one for Enterprise fans). The only real demerits to hand out are for the Bourne-like coverage of the hand-to-hand combat, and the lack of screen time for the villain. The latter seems to be an epidemic among modern sci-fi/fantasy films. You cast a compelling actor (in this case, Idris Elba), cover them in makeup, then barely use them. I don’t get the logic. His story, at least, has a nice turn. I just wish he wasn’t given short shrift. Despite those quibbles, it’s worth watching. There’s no end credits tag, but stick around until the cast crawl starts. I got a little misty-eyed.
Jen: This trailer is certainly an improvement over the first couple they put out. I’ve always been into Trek and I did really enjoy the first movie in this new series. The second, meh. Simon Pegg is a highlight though, and he did co-write this one. I have hope. I’m actually more interested in the 4th one with the return of Christopher Hemsworth, now that I can get behind 100%.
Ice Age: Collision Course
Loren: What the actual f*ck. How are they on 5 of these? This one just looks like they’ve completely given up. Also, give that damn Saber-Tooth Squirrel his acorn for god’s sake. Pass.
RDT: Wait, they’re in space now???? How did this franchise get to space before The Fast and The Furious?!?!?!?
Rick: I’ve seen a couple of the movies in this series over the years. They’re okay and good for a few laughs. Frankly, the Scrat sections are my favorite. Very reminiscent of old Wile E. Coyote shorts. I won’t see this in theaters, but I’ll probably check it out down the line.
Jen: I have a toddler.