Galaxy Quest

Trekkers (or Trekkies) beware! Galaxy Quest, the new movie from Dreamworks SKG gently mocks everything Star Trek from fan conventions and characters to storylines and special effects. The ship even resembles the old USS Enterprise from the original television series. Galaxy Quest is the name of a short lived fictional sci-fi television series from the late seventies/early eighties. The series is long gone, but the fans live on. Now, the stars travel the convention circuit, attempting to relive the glory days of their fame.

Commander Peter Quincy Taggert, played by Jason Nesmith (Tim Allen, Toy Story 2, For Richer or Poorer), the charismatic captain of the crew. He is the most eager to attend the conventions and participate in the nostalgia, and the most arrogant. Lately, he is trying to secure his own gigs, separate from the rest of the crew. Lt. Tawny Madison, played by Gwen DeMarco (Sigourney Weaver, The Ice Storm, A Map of the World) acts as the sex appeal element of the show. Her role is limited to baring as much bust as possible. The rest of the crew consists of Alexander Dane as Dr. Lazarus (Alan Rickman, Dogma, Blow Dry), Fred Kwan as Tech Sergeant Chen (Tony Shaloub, A Civil Action, The Seige), and Tommy Weber as Laredo (Daryl Mitchell, Home Fries, 10 Things I Hate About You). Dane is the bitterest of the group. He was a Shakespearean actor, but is now reduced to saying the same line over and over again for rabid fans.

The lives of the make believe crew change when real aliens ask for their help. The Thermians believe the Galaxy Quest television series is historical, so they come to Earth and recruit the help of the Galaxy Quest crew in order to aid them in their negotiations with the alien Sarris. The crew is unwittingly drawn into a conflict way over their heads, and must pull together in order to succeed.

The script by David Howard and Robert Gordon leaves no doubt as to the outcome of the film. The movie is extremely predictable, treading no new ground in terms of its story. The amusing parts deal with the crew trying to deal with the reality they are facing, and poking fun at many aspects of the Star Trek phenomenon. The chemistry between the characters is somewhat difficult to believe. At the beginning of the movie, everyone despises Nesmith, and the change from mutinous crew to loyal friends is not done well. The only good performances are Rickman (who plays essentially the same character he played in Dogma), who provides plenty of sarcastic one liners, and Shaloub, who is delightfully out of it for the majority of the movie. Special effects by Stan Winston and Industrial Light and Magic are nice, but not stunning. Many of the CGI ships look painfully fake. Director Dean Parisot (Home Fries) pulls everything together in a barely appealing way. Although the movie is amusing at times, the majority of Galaxy Quest falls flat.

Haro Rates It: Okay.
1 hour, 42 minutes, Rated PG for some action violence, mild language, and sensuality.

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