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Re-watched the Force Awakens twice yesterday....The more I go back to this film, the less I am impressed with it. Each scene is very nostalgia heavy, and the film does a terrific job paying tribute to what Star Wars is about all in image. One could write a book demonstrating it scene by scene what the film is calling back to in the classic movies.
However, as beautiful as a film is, it don't make up for lack of storytelling. Essentially it's a New Hope 2.0 in it's framework and Abrams and company played this VERY safe. Why does the Empire still exist 40 years ago blowing up the death star and killing Vader and the Emperor? Why do the rebels still act (and look) like a rag tag team of partisans opposing the bigger established system? If anything, the rebels should be the ones in power now and whatever is left of the Empire should be scattered and weak.
After further thought on this, I wish they would have went with more original EU material to make up a story. Timothy Zahn's book and the character of Thrawn alone, could have inspired a much better film.
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Star Trek is far more technical and complicated than Star Wars ever could be.
Most Sci Fi material tends to be a bit complicated since a lot of the writers tend to focus on sociological factors besides science.
Star Wars really is just fantasy with a coat of space paint over it. All the stories and the characters have their parallels to various mythologies and it's not a coincidence why you see biblical sounding names in Star Wars, and stuff that looks like it's from mythologies. Since a lot of mythologies and old tales have meanings that are easy to relate to, the same goes for what is in Star Wars' context with a lot of the characters.
Star Trek is really complicated and is kinda hard to get into at first, and it's far more politically thought out than Star Wars ever was. In Star Wars, you have good and evil. Star Trek is a lot more branched out besides simple black and white good/evil themes. To put it simple; had the Empire or the Sith been in Star Trek, it would have been far more thought out and explained what their ideology and goals are, besides THEY'RE EVIL BAD GUYS.
Another big Sci Fi series but I have not sat down with it is Battlestar Galactica. Not as complex as Star Trek but still complex. I almost began watching this recently after I realized that Edward James Olmos gets to play Lt. Castillo in space, and managed to get some Emmy nominations.
I do agree that JJ Abrams deserves considerable credit for paying homage to the original trilogies saga [the folklore mystique of the original 1977 classic] while at the same time promoting a new female heroine to pull in a greater number of women fans to give this version of Star Wars a twist with some new teeth or fangs to it.
The difference between Star Wars & Star Trek as feature film franchises regarding the most contemporary versions recently released as trilogies is this: Star Wars appeals to pirates, smugglers, pilots, & a Messiah myth thru the Force to reinforce the notion a poverty stricken individual or rebellious person who came from nothing can achieve greatness courtesy of an innate gift.
Star Trek, on the other hand, canters to scientists & military families in a space aged Air Force built on tradition, reputation, repetition, following orders in the interest of structure for the greater good i.e. 'the Borg' beehive mentality; & honoring your family name thru yrs of service for your country or StarFleet. Freelance behavior is frowned upon because this desire for independence or self recognition runs counterproductive to 'the needs of the many, the few, or the one.' No one is born with a special power to hone & harness here. The only to survive & achieve success is to accomplish tasks as a group or trusted unit operating on all cylinders especially during a moment of crisis or impending calamity.
Star Trek is more jargon based too as opposed to Star Wars which revolves around a supernatural energy called 'the Force' that only a chosen few possess like a magical strand of DNA. Star Trek is all about structure, heirarchy, chain of command, & no defiance vs Star Wars which perpetuates controlling your emotions & feelings by almost becoming a deity or larger than life invincible leader yourself.