I've watched all of BionicBob's Star Trek TOS film edits in order, and I have to say that sadly, this was the one that worked least for me. I see that most of the other reviews here are quite positive, so I'll explain what my issues were and let potential viewers make up their own minds.
Firstly, I should say that I don't like the original film much to start with. It's my 2nd least favorite Star Trek film, and a lot of the issues are just script-deep, nothing that can be changed without radical restructuring of the film. (Full review here: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/film/star-trek-vi-the-undiscovered-country/) This is not that edit, though it does improve on the story in some areas.
I liked all the cuts and trims, they were very welcome. Many more would have been, especially where the film contradicts other films or series (which it does a lot). The non-stop Shakespeare references could've been trimmed way back, as well as Spock's line about being related to a fictional character (is this meta now? We the audience know that Spock knows he's fictional???) Perhaps the traitor falling for such a stupid ruse could've been trimmed back, and perhaps Spock's mind-rape could've as well. But anyway, I'll stop with my wishlist and focus on what's here...
The additions and alterations are my main issue with this edit. While I thought BB hit a sweet spot on how to finetune the commercial cutaways and the TV tone with his previous edit (STV), this one is a big step down. Fades are overlong, music often doesn't fit the scene, and the music and sound effects frequently stomp on the dialogue, particularly when cutting to commercial. The effects added in here at a key point look pretty bad and scream fanedit, I'm sorry to say. And the bookends are overlong and send the same message. They really have very little to do with what's onscreen and attempt to reframe the whole film with explanatory title cards. It's the classic case of Telling rather than Showing, a mis-step that faneditors often try to fix when a director does it. For me, writing a bunch of text that explains what was really happening in a movie just doesn't work as a fanedit, and it's also at odds with the supposedly "TV series" presentation of the whole rest of BB's Star Trek series.
There may be some big Star Trek Enterprise fans that love this film connecting to that series. I've never seen it and don't think I should have to in order to enjoy this edit. It's supposed to be for fans of TOS, so all the connections to a massive Enterprise storyline just felt really forced to me. I'd appreciate another version of this that simply tries to fix the original film, but I suppose this is an alternative for superfans who feel differently.
All respect to BionicBob, I appreciate the hard work on this series. The other ones all worked better for me, so you can chock this up to my personal taste.
I've watched all of Bionic Bob's TOS Star Trek edits now, in order, and more or less in a marathon!
Every single one of them, for me, was probably better than the original. This one was no exception.
I have left more detailed reviews for some of Bionic Bob's other edits, but for this I will just say: Anyone who loves/loved the original Star Trek series NEEDS to watch these movie edits. Anyone who loved or hated the original Star Trek films NEEDS to watch these because they improve upon the originals pretty much across the board (okay, Wrath of Khan needed a few minutes with Spock sacrificing himself--but the concept of that edit was to see everything through Kirk's eyes and so it was a success from that point of view.)
So I def recommend this and the previous 5 :-)
Star Trek VI is one of those Trek movies I can't get enough of, Shakesperian Klingons, the Kirk vs Shape-Shifter Kirk fight, Spock playing Sherlock Holmes and solving a rather ellaborate mystery...as I've aged, I find coming back to it a more enriching experiance than the last. Bob's edit, I'm glad to say, not only heightens the experiance further, but completly reinvents the wheel. Playing out like a tv episode, and not just relying on seemless transistions to evoke the feel of watching one, but also incorporating elements from the Star Trek tv series canon, rewriting visual and narrative histories with reletive ease. By viewing this edit, you discover a whole new country. The only negative I have to give it is the write-up at the end talking about the fates of the crew...it feels too tacked on and has a whiff of fanfilm to it, I don't have a problem with that sort of thing, but it's such a stark difference from the professional job and visual quality that preceeded it.
A neat and tidy Trek trim with some unique surprises. I am as always inspired by Bob's output
Great edit. But for basically two things, this would be my go-too version of the film. My only issues are basically differences of taste. You said from the outset that you wanted this to be a kitchen-sink fanboy edit, and it's those choices that bugged me. Future Guy was actually pretty well integrated, and while I wouldn't personally have put him in, I totally get what you're going for. The changeling, on the other hand, I didn't think was well executed and I'd like to see a copy of this edit with that sliced out. Plus, if I'm to believe that the Dominion was behind the entire plot, shouldn't I see changelings at the very beginning, when Praxis is bombed?
I also would have liked to see, in the postscript, a little more of an explanation on the role played by the Enterprise crew in the temporal war, what Future Guy was trying to accomplish by getting involved with this whole thing, why the Dominion's plans and Future Guy's plans dovetailed so nicely, and whether or not--as hinted--Nero, the destruction of Romulus, and the alternate timeline movies have anything to do with all of this.