So, Bionic Bob's "Star Trek: This Other Eden" was fantastic. It fixed nearly all of the problems I had with Star Trek V. All of the bad humor was removed, while still leaving in some fitting whimsical moments. All of the bad special effects were either replaced or trimmed. Some light flashbacks and flashfowards were added to give just a bit more depth at times. Of course, the final act was still too quick and lacking, but it was easier to forgive it. Everything that could've been improved was improved. I wasn't huge on commercial breaks and location cards, but it is what it is. Other than that the editing was fantastic, and every cut was done so skillfully and unnoticeably. I didn't think it would be possible to cut out everything about the Enterprise being in bad shape and nothing working, but he managed to without feeling like anything was missing.
This may not be peak Star Trek, but it's plenty enjoyable. I will definitely revisit this edit in the future.
AV Quality: 7, it's standard DVD quality, not especially good, not bad.
Visual editing: 10, the fixes to the poor special effects really helped, and the cuts were seamless.
Audio Editing: 8, music changes and cuts were perfect, but I found myself constantly adjusting the volume.
Narrative: 10, the narrative is greatly improved, leagues better than the original cut. It's still Star Trek 5, but any left over flaws in the plot were ones that couldn't be fixed, so I don't fault the editor.
Enjoyment: 10, I think this is the most enjoyment anyone could possibly get from Star Trek 5.
Just saying the name conjures up all sorts of things: good (in some cases, great) and bad (in some cases, very bad).
His Captain Kirk in the original series was for the most part wonderful - and of course has been long part of pop culture.
His performances in the films hit or miss.
So it goes without saying that as actor, writer and director he would bring himself -- the good and the bad (as do we all) to that enterprise (bad pun unfortunately intended...).
"Star Trek V" is still maligned to this day. It's a frustrating view, even for (perhaps mostly for) Trek: the original series fans of which I'm one - because there's a great TREK movie here, hidden amongst some of the woefully clumsy acting, overwrought/clunky direction, hammy acting and mostly - the completely misfired 'comedy' elements.
Bionic Bob, in his iconic 'TV style' editing has turned an off-putting TREK movie into a highly enjoyable TV movie - every original series TREK fan should see what Bob has done here. There are some GREAT surprises for fans of the show.
And after watching Bob's version, you're left scratching your head on why the Paramount suits or Shatner didn't include some of what Bob adds into the film. I never would've thought of these, but upon seeing Bob's version, they are highly pertinent moments that belong in the official version of the film.
Why Bob even makes sense out of the abbreviated, daffy Klingon scenes! Now THAT takes some imagination.
If you love the original series, make time to watch Bob's take here. Great stuff!
At this point my reviews of BionicBob's Star Trek edits are borderline embarrassing, but once again, I enjoyed the heck out of this.
I can't imagine anyone is going to start with this edit instead of watching them in order, so I will just direct you to my previous 4 reviews---they are all great. These are fantastic edits of flawed movies and, in every single case, BionicBob's edit lessens the flaws and makes the movie more enjoyable.
Anyone who is/was a fan of TOS on TV or of TOS of movies will NEED to watch these. I've nothing negative to say, and I have already gushed enough in my previous reviews.
These are awesome; I wish I could share them with every trekkie out there. :-)
I notice that several of the weaker reviews here are from viewers who watched this in isolation and not as part of BionicBob's series. I think they may not have fully grasped what he was going for, and of course it's nearly always better to watch earlier films in a series first (unless you have seen them recently enough to remember well.) Well, I had the opposite experience: watching these in order, in a short span... and this edit fares VERY well in that context.
As much as I appreciated what BB was going for in editing these films to be similar to ST: TOS episodes, this was the first one where I felt he really NAILED it. And it's fitting, too. STIV wraps up the "Spock Trilogy" and sees the crew all back in place with a new ship and a new commission. So here when we get a new, better-looking intro and new, better-sounding theme music, it's perfect. And as much as I liked the old intro, the style of this one is much better for the "TV series" feel. This is also the best yet of BB's edits in terms of the commercial breaks being evenly-timed throughout the film, the fades out and establishing shots back in having the perfect feel, and the music not being too jarringly grand and filmic. More so than any of his other edits, this one is the best realization of his idea of making the movies feel like double episodes. I've also been rewatching ST: TNG and this could easily fit alongside one of their grander 2-parters from season 4 or 5.
In terms of shoring up the weaknesses of the original film, I also think BB does the best job yet on this edit. Whereas he wanted to trim a lot of the goofy humor from STIV, I still found that film grating and dumb. But here he actually does manage to excise all the worst offenses and stupidest, most out-of-character moments. There is a little bit of humor still left, but it wasn't over-the-top for me, and I see that some other reviewers really liked it. I also haven't seen the theatrical cut recently enough to remember how bad the FX shots were, but here they didn't stand out to me at all. In fact, I was thinking how much better they looked than in the previous ST edits! BB has clearly done great work replacing them, and I did not notice any A/V issues that others have mentioned. It was all smooth sailing for me. The one weak point may be that the subtitle banner style is a bit large and off-putting. It would've been ideal to simply remove them from the original and find a way to type new ones in or add a sub file, but if this was what was required to rewrite the Klingon dialogue and other bits: it's worth it.
Unfortunately, there's only so much BB could do about the overall story and ending. Saibok is still poorly explained, the ending is messy and rushed, and Kirk overacts about half his scenes. But there's a lot of good here with all the worst bits cut out. (My review of the theatrical film on its own is here: https://letterboxd.com/film/star-trek-v-the-final-frontier/) So far, I think this is BB's most successful ST edit, and it makes the biggest improvements over the original film. I'd highly recommend this, not only for the TV conceit, but just as a replacement for the theatrical version.
This review is based on my opinions and my viewing experience. Nothing is meant as an attack. Spoiler warning.
I really liked the freeze frame fade outs this time! Nicely done.
The new title sequence you put together was great (though im gonna miss the old ones).
I like how you set up the planet that kirk, bones and spock are camping on. Top knotch!
I was confused as to why we see the enterprise in orbit and it says “u.s.s. enterprise in orbit…” because it had me thinking that we are going to have a scene on the enterprise but instead it goes to the campfire scene?
The new Klingon subtitles work great, i really like those!
You did an excelent job with the klingon torpedo shot as the enterprise goes to warp, nice trick
The way you handled Kirk’s pain was great, i love it!
Many other clever edits throughout.
There were a few shots where the camera shake was added that didn’t work too well as the black bars of the AR shake too.
There were some volume issues that stood out to me as i live in a quiet apartment But they didn’t ruin the experience.
All in all, i was entertained, i really like this one!
I give it a 9/10 overall!
SIDE NOTES: Another awesome trek tv cut from Bionicbob, check it out!