I didn't realize this was fanedit legend BionicBob's first fanedit...it sure doesn't show it!
I have many thoughts on why this is very flawed as a film (here: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/film/star-trek-the-motion-picture/) but the question is if this edit fixes those issues? Well, not really. A great many of them are script-level and can't be changed, or there simply isn't alternative footage. What this edit does well is trim a lot of the scenes not featuring the holy ST trinity of Kirk/Spock/Bones, and pick up the pace a lot.
However, the framework didn't sell me on this being presented as a long TV episode. It was okay, but the thing still has the beats of a movie and doesn't feel like TV. There are also still long, boring stretches focusing on the dated effects and visuals. At this point, even the extraneous characters' scenes would be better to watch than a lot of that dead space, which didn't grab me or create "mood" at all. Also, while many of the cuts were good, some stuff was cut that helps to give the story a cohesive narrative and flesh out motivations. So it's a bit hit and miss.
Overall, this is still better to watch than any previous version of the film, so it's recommended over those. Chock one up in the Win column for BionicBob.
Star Trek The Motion Picture is not an easy film to watch. The concept is good and I still think the reveal of V'Ger identity is a really awesome idea but the pacing is painfully slow and the characters are not totaly themselves. When the director's edition came out, the movie became more watchable and the pacing was improved.
But now, I have found my go to version. BionicBob has crafted THE definitive edition! There is much to be liked in this. By the way, I have watched the second version of the edit.
First of all, the execution of the new introduction is really impressive and puts us right in the mood! The inclusion of the original series music mixed with the original score works really well. The move feels like a good two parter episode, including the classic fade out. The pacing is way much better and the edit waste no time, launching the enterprise directly into its mission. The pacing slows down a little bit when V'Ger reaches earth but it does not decrease the enjoyment. I must say that I really liked the Spock flashbacks during his mind meld with V'Ger.
I did experience just a little bit of problem with the sound mix during one scene. When Spock wakes up after his mind meld, the background music was great but a tad too strong since it was difficult to understand what Spock was saying.
The relation between Decker and Ilia has been trimmed for the better but it does remove a little bit of motivation in the end scene. Decker is not as present and it feels that the original series characters are now front and center, has it should be. The voyage to V'ger and inside V'Ger have been greatly reduced and because of this, the movie is much tighter and way more enjoyable. It really feels much more in the line with Star Trek!
I wont spoil the finale but it has been modified with two new effect shots which really adds something interesting to the Star Trek mythos.
In summary, this is a fantastic edit!!! If this version was the one shown in theater in 1979, it would have been much more welcomed by the critique and the viewer. Nice work BionicBob!! I look forward to watch your other TOS movies edit!
Having watched all six of Bob's TOS movie edits, I can definitely say that they're all recommended, and all of them make me WANT to say that they're my new go-too versions of the films they edit. With ST2, I'd say the original and Bob's version both have their merits. With ST3 through ST5, I'd say Bob's versions are slightly better (and when I say that, it's important to note that I liked the originals quite well), but I'd still recommend that people watch both from time to time.
This edit is actually the most troubling, because while it does almost everything it needs to do in order to make the film more tightly paced and more focused on the proper characters, I feel that it actually cuts too much. Everything about it makes me want it to be my preferred version, because in basically every way it is a massive improvement over the one TOS film that I never really liked that much. There's just one problem: Decker has been cut too much. His choice at the end makes no sense because we've only seen hints of his feelings for Ilia--or, for that matter, his feelings about anything other than wanting command of the Enterprise. All we know about him in this edit is that he had a thing with Ilia and he wants his ship back. In that context, his actions at the end make no sense.
Other than that, it's great. It's the film TMP should have been. Other than that.
I only watched Star Trek TMP once and I liked it but thought it was a little too boring for my tastes. I really dug Bob’s edit “The V’Ger Incident”. For me, the pacing was much better and I felt the story flowed really nicely.
There are some technical issues that other reviewers have brought up, such as the audio levels and the letterboxed picture. For me, these didn’t bother me too much, but still factors into it.
Overall Rating – 8/10