Star Trek: Original Motion Picture Collection [Blu-Ray]
Blu-ray ALL - America - Paramount Home Entertainment
Review written by and copyright: Jeremiah Chin (4th June 2009).
The Film

Long before the browncoats had done the impossible by resurrecting the cancelled sci-fi series “Firefly” (2002) into to the feature film epic “Serenity” (2005) (and hopefully with the rest of the ‘Big Damn Trilogy’ to follow), “Star Trek” fans brought the same kind of fanatical devotion to their cancelled series, showing that there was still money to be made out of their beloved product. Initially thought of as a renewed series, “Star Trek: Phase II,” Paramount decided to turn the pilot into the beginning of a “Star Trek” series of films that would follow the original crew of the enterprise through a new series of missions with bigger budgets, strange new life forms and new civilizations, and Kahn. Though never really challenging the “Star Wars” trilogy (1977-1983) in terms of their acceptability into mainstream, these 6 films kept the interest in “Trek” alive and well into the 80’s when a new series would be commissioned with an all new cast and crew.

Beginning with “Star Trek: The Motion Picture” (1979) and ending with “Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country” (1991) the films all run within the same continuity, though the largest interaction between the films come between “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn” (1982), “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock” (1984) and “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” (1986) which function as a miniature trilogy within the six (hexalogy? Sexalogy?) films. Each film had it’s own villains and missions to accomplish within the universe, though all would seemingly put everything at stake which is pretty impressive considering II through IV are supposed to happen within a month or so of each other. From V’Ger to Kahn (Ricardo Montalban) and through Captain Von Trapp General Chang (Christopher Plummer), the villains had their grand schemes foiled by Kirk (William Shatner), Spock (Leonard Nemoy), McCoy (Deforest Kelley), Scotty (James Doohan), Uhura (Nichelle Nichols), Sulu (George Takei) and Chekov (Walter Koenig).

Since I born in the 80’s, I never had the chance to watch the Original Series on TV, outside of some reruns that I only got interested in after seeing the movies. Coming from a primarily “Next Generation” (1987-1994) background, these movies grew on me through VHS and trips to my Grandmother’s house where she kept her tapes of all the movies in the box set that looked like the enterprise when you put them all in order next to each other. Each one has a unique charm and a unique voice to the movie, almost reflecting a string of episodes from any given series of “Star Trek.” “The Motion Picture” is the ironic twist episode, where something from our present day and time mysteriously interacts with the future to make for a larger metaphor. “Wrath of Kahn” is an all out fight while “Spock” is all about recovering from the cliffhanger at the end of that last episode and dealing with the aftermath. “Voyage Home” is the best example of banking on chemistry and well understood characters; there are no real fights, no space battles, just dialogue, a problem to be solved and time travel to be done. “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier” (1989) is the fifth one. “Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country” (1991) is the finale, a final sendoff to the original crew and wrapping up the long conflict with the Klingons.

Looking back on the major crewmembers who have died since the end of their run in the films, Deforest Kelley and James Doohan, their contributions are some of the most consistent throughout the series, bringing the charm they were known for along with memorable moments (especially in “Voyage Home” between transparent aluminum and the barbaric medicine). The entire cast knows their characters well and executes, but honestly I don’t know why I need to talk up this series since if you haven’t honestly seen any of the “Star Trek” films (not even the new one, which is amazing) what are you doing appreciating Blu-ray. Honestly. This set was designed for everyone who grew up with “Trek” touching their lives in some way and now brings it in to high definition with loads of special features to enjoy.

Video

Each film is presented in 1080p 24/fps high-definition with a 2.35:1 aspect ratio and are mastered in AVC MPEG-4 encoding, looking better than they ever have. Each film’s transfer looks good, managing to maintain the weight of film without overcorrecting, while still looking clean and bright when it needs to. Between my deep memories of the films on VHS and my more recent memories of the DVD's, I don’t see a better version visually coming along unless they opt to follow the path of the TV series by providing a new digital remastering of all the effects shots in the films, as sometimes you can spot the wires or matte lines simply because the image has been cleaned so well.

Audio

A little recognized aspect of the “Star Trek” film series is the quality scores that emerge in the different films and the new English Dolby TrueHD 7.1 track mixed at 48kHz/24-bit on each of the films. Each score seems to suit the movie perfectly, blending the effects, dialogue and music well into a great soundtrack for each film. Maybe the best is “Voyage Home” whose soundtrack I can remember listening to on CD and I can’t remember it sounding this good, I even heard a couple of instruments I don’t even remember being there. There are optional French Dolby Digital 2.0 surround or Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0 mono tracks along with English, English for the hearing impaired, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles.

Extras

Thankfully this set is loaded with more special features than any of the previous DVD's. Each film has at least one audio commentary track with a collection of featurettes (presented in HD) specific to each film as well as all the special features from their previous DVD releases, including a seventh bonus disc that’s worth the set.

DISC ONE: “Star Trek: The Motion Picture” (1979)

The sole audio commentary on this disc is by Michael and Denise Okuda, authors of the “Star Trek” Encyclopedia, Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, two major authors in the “Trek” Universe, and Daren Dochterman, the effects artist for “The Motion Picture.” The quintet do a good job of talking through the entire film and show off some large “Trek” knowledge, and making some comments about the film, bringing some stories about the film along with some interesting production insights and retrospectives from outsider and insider perspective, including catching on to every small detail.

There’s also the “Library Computer” interactive feature for profile 1.1 players or greater that runs with the play of the film, giving you access to a brief description of any given idea or concept displayed in the film, or character that show up on screen. An interesting feature, a miniature guide to the "Star Trek" universe on screen, though not terribly in-depth it’s good for a fast fact.

“The Longest Trek: Writing the Motion Picture” runs for 10 minutes and 44 seconds. This featurette is new to the Blu-ray edition and talks with Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens and Walter Koenig and others about putting together the Motion Picture. Going from screenplay ideas to teleplay ideas and screenplay ideas, the featurette does a great job of bringing together people who were around and deeply involved in the time, bringing an interesting making-of look.

“Special ‘Star Trek’ Reunion” featurette runs for 9 minutes and 37 seconds, William Shatner introduces a clip of a group of “Trek” fans who were extras in a scene of “The Motion Picture.” There are some great bits of information, mostly showing that fans and the nature of fandom hasn’t particularly changed, including talk of a ‘Save ‘Star Trek’’ campaign before “The Motion Picture,” while each fan gives their experiences, memories and connections to “Trek” and the film itself.

“Starfleet Academy SCISEC Breif 001: Mystery Behind V’Ger” featurette runs for 4 minutes and 24 seconds, this is the first in a set of fake Starfleet briefings about the events of any given film, featuring an unnamed actress summarizing the events of the film with a vaguely Australian accent; this time concerning the encounter with V’Ger.

Next are the deleted scenes, 11 in all, playable together for 8 minutes and 2 seconds, or separate as described below:

- “Sulu and Ilia 1” runs for 53 seconds, Sulu tries to show Ilia the ropes and flubs.
- “Sulu and Ilia 2”runs for 27 seconds, Sulu checks the heading while Ilia stares lustfully in the distance.
- “Kirk’s Quarters” runs for 21 seconds, Bones questions Kirk’s fitness.
- “Officer’s Lounge” runs for 11 seconds, Bones says “Jim.”
- “Attack on the Enterprise” runs for 1 minute and 5 seconds, the Enterprise is attacked and tries to send out friendship messages and communicate with Starfleet.
- “Intruder Transmission” runs for 33 seconds, Spock discovers V’Ger/Ilia’s communications.
- “A Huge Vessel” runs for 45 seconds, everyone remarks on how incredibly big V’Ger is.
- “Kirk Follows Spock” runs for 1 minute and 10 seconds, Kirk follows Spock into V’Ger.
- “Ilia’s Quarters 1” runs for 1 minute and 3 seconds, Chapel, Ilia, Bones and Decker go to Ilia’s quarters trying to jog her memory.
- “Ilia’s Quarters 2” runs for 1 minute and 17 seconds, Ilia asks why Kirk and Spock have entered V’Ger while Decker tries to jog her memory again.
- “Its Creator is a Machine” runs for 17 seconds, Bones guesses that V’Gers creator is a machine.

Next are the storyboard galleries, 3 in all:

- “Vulcan” contains 15 images.
- “Enterprise Departure” contains 30 images.
- “V’Ger Revealed” contains 39 images.

There are also 2 trailers, the teaser trailer runs 2 minutes and 18 seconds. The theatrical trailer runs 2 minutes and 29 seconds.

The 7 TV spots are playable together, running 3 minutes and 39 seconds, or separately:

- “Hardware” runs for 31 seconds.
- “Startle Your Senses” runs for 31 seconds.
- “Enterprise” runs for 31 seconds.
- “Cast/Human Adventure” 31 seconds.
- “Spiritual Search” runs for 32 seconds.
- “Spiritual/Startle Your Senses” runs for 31 seconds.
- “Spiritual/Human Adventure” 32 seconds.

Bonus trailers are included for:

- “Star Trek” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “Star Trek: The Original Series Season 1 Blu Ray” runs for 1 minute and 16 seconds.

Finally is a BD-Live feature for players with internet access, labeled on the packaging as a “Star Trek IQ” quiz.

DISC TWO: “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn” (1982)

This disc features 2 audio commentary tracks, first is with director Nicholas Meyer, where he discusses some of his own personal experience in writing and getting into film. Meyer has some bizarre perspectives about the film, talking about the meaning of “Star Trek” being in Spock’s pointy ear, but simultaneously some good discussion about how the script was built from 5 different screenplay concepts and built into the film now. There are some pauses and breaks in his commentary, but it’s overall fairly interesting.

The second audio commentary is again with director Nicholas Meyer along with Manny Coto. The addition of Coto to Meyer’s commentary helps to keep the conversation moving by getting him involved in commentating on different things, though there are some repetitions and comments that pop back up, but it’s understandable. The pauses pop back up still however, but the commentary makes up for that.

There’s also the “Library Computer” interactive feature that runs with the play of the film, giving you access to a brief description of any given idea or concept displayed in the film, or character that show up on screen. An interesting feature, a miniature guide to the "Star Trek" universe on screen, though not terribly in-depth it’s good for a fast fact.

“Captain’s Log” runs for 27 minutes and 21 seconds and this featurette discusses Gene Rodenberry’s movement to consultant, while Harve Bennett took over with the story credits on the film and came up with bringing back Kahn as the villain for the film. Shatner and Bennett discuss the problems in bringing in Nimoy to the film and the idea of creating the death scene for Spock. Though the video quality seems a bit off, the featurette itself is a great look at the production of the film from the perspective of 3 of the major players.

“Designing Kahn” runs for 23 minutes and 54 seconds. In this featurette, Joe Jennings, a production designer for the Original Series, Robert Fletcher, Costume Designer, and others discuss the style of "Star Trek" in attempting to create a futuristic look bounded by rules for believablitiy. They both talk about working with Nicholas Meyer, Meyer also appears and brings up some of the point’s he’s made in the commentaries about the importance of Horatio Hornblower for his vision of “Star Trek.”

“Original Interviews with William Shatner, Leonard Nemoy, Deforest Kelley and Ricardo Montalban” runs for 10 minutes and 56 seconds. If you haven’t guessed already this featurette is a collection of interviews with the major actors in “Wrath” all filmed on what looks like an 80’s talkshow set. It’s good to see interviews with all of them at the time of the film, including a great look at Ricardo Montalban’s perspective on Kahn.

“Where No Man Has Gone Before: The Visual Effects of ‘Star Trek II: Wrath of Kahn’” runs for 18 minutes and 14 seconds. This is the featurette that is designed for me, bringing a good look at all the model building and effects shots that ILM worked on in the backgrounds of the film. There are some great discussions of techniques and methods in putting together the models and shooting them for the sake of creating the nebula space battle sequences.

James Horner: Composing Genesis” runs for 9 minutes and 33 seconds. This featurette is a new addition for the Blu-ray and basically consists of single interview from Horner in how he came to composing and specifically how he got to the point of composing “Star Trek” for “Wrath of Kahn.” There’s an interesting discussion of the different themese that he created for different moments of the film and different characters.

“Collecting Star Trek’s Movie Relics” runs for 11 minutes and 5 seconds. Another new addition specific to the Blu-ray, this featurette features Alex Peters, the C.E.O. of Propworx and collector of “Star Trek” props and memorabilia going through the fan side of production design as Peters discusses the different props that he owns as well as the props that some other collectors own.

“A Novel Approach” runs for 28 minutes and 55 seconds. This featurette looks at “Star Trek” fans and novelists Greg Cox and Julia Ecklar who have put together novels based on “Star Trek.” Cox talks about how he tried to create the Eugenics Wars series to explain Kahn’s life story between what was established in “Star Trek” and what actually happened in the real world. Ecklar talks about her novelizations, including the work on the Kobayashi Maru novelization.

“Starfleet Academy SCISEC Breif 002: Mystery Behind Ceti Alpha VI” featurette runs for 3 minutes and 8 seconds. Continuing the series of Starfleet briefings, this one looks at Ceti Alpha V and Kahn’s arrival there along with the confusion that sets up the film.

Next are the set of storyboard galleries, 13 sections in all, described below:

- “Main Title Concept” contains 11 images
- “Kobayashi Maru” contains 13 images.
- “Ceti Alpha V” contains 5 images.
- “Regula I” contains 6 images.
- “Checkov and Terrell Find Kahn” contains 17 images.
- “Admiral’s Inspection” contains 8 images.
- “Kahn’s Revenge” contains 17 images.
- “Kirk Strikes Back” contains 19 images.
- “Finding the Genesis Cave” contains 8 images.
- “The Mutara Nebula” contains 51 images.
- “Sneak Attack” contains 19 images.
- “Genesis” contains 26 images.
- “Honored Dead” contains 16 images.

“A Tribute to Ricardo Montalban” runs for 4 minutes and 44 seconds. This brief featurette, another new addition to the Blu-ray, where Nicholas Meyer talks about Montalban’s career and his varied performances

The theatrical trailer runs for 2 minutes and 22 seconds.

Bonus trailers on the disc include:

- “Star Trek” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “Star Trek: The Original Series Season 1 Blu Ray” runs for 1 minute and 16 seconds.

Finally is a BD-Live feature for players with internet access, labeled on the packaging as a “Star Trek IQ” quiz.

DISC THREE: “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock” (1984)

This disc also comes with two audio commentaries, the first commentary is with director/actor Leonard Nemoy, screenwriter/producer Harve Bennett, director of photography Charles Correll and actor Robin Curtis. This commentary doesn’t play out with everyone in the same room as Nimoy begins the commentary talking about how the film came about and was brought together as a continuing story or ‘unintentional trilogy’ between II, III and IV. This sort of revolving door commentary gets a bit disorienting between the different stories and voices, especially for those whose voices aren’t instantly recognizable as Nimoy, but still it brings in a fairly consistent and interesting track.

Secondly is an audio commentary with Ronald D. Moore and Michael Taylor, two men who had no involvement with the film but have had staff experience on "Star Trek: The Next Generation" (1987-1994), "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" (1993-1999) and "Star Trek: Voyager" (1995-2001), and of course Moore is famous for his role on the revived “Battlestar Galactica” (2004-2009). I really enjoy on this set how they’ve brought in people with more secondary ties to the “Trek” films to talk about the impact of these movies, especially talking about their own experience in watching the movies, arguments had about 1 quarter impulse power in the writer’s room of "TNG", the beauty of Kirk and an overall solid commentary track from Moore and Taylor.

There’s also the “Library Computer” interactive feature that runs with the play of the film, giving you access to a brief description of any given idea or concept displayed in the film, or character that show up on screen. An interesting feature, a miniature guide to the "Star Trek" universe on screen, though not terribly in-depth it’s good for a fast fact.

“Captain’s Log” runs for 26 minutes and 13 seconds. This featurette acts as the making of for the film, building out of “Wrath of Kahn” and moving to how Nimoy got into the director’s chair for the film, told from the perspective of Nimoy, Shatner and the other major players in the production. Shatner comes off as incredibly pompus, talking about Nimoy as his directing acolyte, but it’s almost comical in turn. A nice production featurette that includes some good behind-the-scenes and set photos.

“Terraforming and the Prime Directive” runs for 25 minutes and 53 seconds. In this featurette, authors and scientists about the ideas behind terraforming and the genesis project in the film. A fun look at the science behind the fictional genesis project and the ethics of such a program, it almost feels like a History or Discovery Channel production that would occur if the movie were to come out today, but is still moderately interesting and a fun addition, though the author gets a bit annoying.

“Industrial Light & Magic: The Visual Effects of ‘Star Trek’” runs for 13 minutes and 50 seconds. Another Blu-ray specific featurette that works as a retrospective from some of the effects people at ILM, going through how they had to invent and create the different sort of effects from phaser hits on ships to the final nebula where the battle at the end of “Wrath of Kahn” takes place in talking about how they put certain shots together or made things happen and how much they enjoyed it.

“Spock: The Early Years” runs for 6 minutes and 22 seconds, and is another Blu-ray featurette, talking with Stephen Manley who played young Spock, or Spock at 17, interviewed today and looking back at how he got the role of young Spock and the pon farr experience. A fun featurette to look at the actor who played young Spock, though I would have liked to get a glimpse of the other young Spocks.

“Space Docks and Birds of Prey” runs for 27 minutes and 49 seconds. This featurette is another look at the production and effects side of the film, how the team at ILM crafted the space dock and proportionality between all the different elements of the film, along with talking to Nimoy and other crew on the film in how they decided to put all these different battles together. There’s a grea conversation on the philosophy or sense of how they decided to design the bird of prey for this film and some cool behind-the-scenes looks at how they put together the original effects shots for the film.

“Speaking Klingon” featurette runs for 21 minutes and 4 seconds. Here linguist Marc Okrand talks about creating the Klingon language for “Star Trek” in terms of building it from the random bits and sounds that were put together in the screenplays by character names in the original series and the handful of sounds that James Doohan made up in “The Motion Picture.” An interesting featurette but a little long for my taste, though still interesting to hear how Okrand basically pulled a language out of a couple of lines of dialogue.

“Klingon and Vulcan Costumes” runs for 12 minutes and 16 seconds. In this featurette, Robert Fletcher and others from the production staff on the “Trek” films talk about putting together the different costumes, jewelry, and props for the different cultures. It’s an interesting look behind-the-scenes, though not as exciting as the models and space battle production sides, it’s still incredibly important.

“Star Trek and the Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame” runs for 15 minutes and 52 seconds. This featurette looks at the museum in Seattle dedicated to science fiction, going through the museum with Harve Bennett and a Seattle pop culture newspaper writer. As they go through the museum, Bennet shares some stories and brings up some point he’s already made in other featurettes, but still a nice trip through the museum, though it’s more focused on Bennett and his stories, with some fun looks at the franchise.

“Starfleet Academy SCISEC Breif 003: The Vulcan Katra Transfer” runs for 2 miniutes and 42 seconds. The third briefing/featurette deals with the idea of the Katra transfer at the core of “Search for Spock.”

Next are 2 photo galleries for:

- “Production” contains 27 images.
- “The Movie” contains 28 images.

There are also 10 storyboard galleries for:

- “Main Titles” contains 12 images.
- “The Klingons Attack” contains 42 images.
- “Entering Spacedock” contains 11 images.
- “Search for Life” contains 18 images.
- “Finding Spock” contains 14 images.
- “The Destruction of the Grissom” contains 23 images.
- “Stealing the Enterprise” contains 40 images.
- “Self Destruct” contains 32 images.
- “Kirk fights Kruge” contains 31 images.
- “The Katra Ritual” contains 58 images.

The theatrical trailer runs 1 minute and 12 seconds.

Bonus trailers on the disc include:

- “Star Trek” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “Star Trek: The Original Series Season 1 Blu Ray” runs for 1 minute and 16 seconds.

Finally is a BD-Live feature for players with internet access, labeled on the packaging as a “Star Trek IQ” quiz.

DISC FOUR: “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” (1986)

The two audio commentaries on this disc are by a great set of duos, the first commentary is with director/actor Leonard Nimoy and actor William Shatner, who talk about the idea of the film confronting social issues and a bad situation moreso than a singular villain like the previous films. Though it’s great to hear from these two powerhouses of “Trek” there are a good deal of pauses where they will just sit back and watch the film rather than commentating on it. Shatner and Nimoy talk about experiences putting together the film, seeing Kelley on film after he’s died, though equally making fun of each other and joking around.

The next audio commentary is with Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, writers of the new “Star Trek” (2009) film and other fims. Kurtzman and Orci’s commentary sounds like a couple of fans just talking about how they interpret the movie, trying to one-up each other with facts and connections between the movies, as well as providing some great information on how they drew from IV to help build towards their “Star Trek” (2009). They bring a total screenwriter’s perspective to watching the film, with a few pauses and gaps in their commentary, but what’s there is very engaging from an outsider/fan perspective of two people who are deeply related to “Trek” but not to this specific set of movies.

There’s also the “Library Computer” interactive feature that runs with the play of the film, giving you access to a brief description of any given idea or concept displayed in the film, or character that show up on screen. An interesting feature, a miniature guide to the"Star Trek" universe on screen, though not terribly in-depth it’s good for a fast fact.

“Future’s Past: A Look Back” runs for 27 minutes and 32 seconds, this featurette serves as a general making of for the film, covering all the major players involved in cast and crew, with everyone having incredibly fond memories about it. There’s a great glance at Kirk Thatcher, an assistant producer and the punk on the bus in the film. A good look at all the details behind the film, between casting and writing the punk song that play son the bus, covering a bit of the same ground from the commentary with Nimoy and Shatner, but still a good making of.

“On Location” runs for 7 minutes and 26 seconds, this featurette deals with the idea of shooting a “Trek” film on location in 1980’s San Francisco, including dealing with extras on the set while Chekov and Uhura are looking for "nuclear wessils". There’s some good behind-the-scenes shots and photos of them shooting in San Francisco, overall a quality featurette.

“Dailies Deconstruction” featurette runs for 4 minutes and 13 seconds, showing some different shots and takes and cuts of the same scenes in the film, a fun look at the original production.

“Below-the-Line: Sound Design” runs for 11 minutes and 45 seconds, this featurette deals with the sound designers in the “Trek” universe, a good choice in placement considering the use of sound in the whale probe.

“Pavel Chekov’s Screen Moments” runs for 6 minutes and 9 seconds. In this Blu-ray featurette, Walter Koenig talks about getting extra screen time in this film, the joy in having his own musical theme and cues in the film. There’s coverage of the sequences, including the search for "nuclear wessils" in Alameda, good comments from Koenig who doesn’t get too much play in the rest of the set, but a perfect spot to talk with him about his larger role in this film.

“Time Travel: The Art of the Possible” runs for 11 minutes and 15 seconds. Much like the terraforming featurette on the previous disc, a bunch of Ph.D.’s, scientists and a bunch of other people with good portions of the alphabet sitting behind their name discuss the idea of time travel and the physics potential for time travel. A fun featurette with the animations athat look almost like a ‘duck and cover’ video, but otherwise interesting.

“The Language of Whales” runs for 5 minutes and 46 seconds. This featurette covers the use of whalesong in the film and the actuality of whalesong in nature, including some glimpses at the Monterey Bay aquarium where the whales were stored in “Voyage Home.” Much of the featurette is a discussion with one of the aquarium’s curators who discusses whales, their lifecycles, learning, song and whale related topics.

“A Vulcan Primer” runs for 7 minutes and 50 secods. This featurette focuses on the role of Vulcans and the connection with Vulcans in terms of their actions and deeds. Talking mostly with “Star Trek” author Margaret Wander Bonanno and her specific fascination with Vulcans, logic, rituals and all the strange things they are interested in.

“Kirk’s Women” runs for 8 minutes and 19 seconds, this featurette features Catherine Hicks, Katherine Browne, and other women who became involved with Kirk/Shatner through the course of the series. All of the women talk about the different ways they would describe Kirk and how they were attracted to him, though it seems everyone seems to say Kirk and Shatner have become fused together into one person. It’s fun to see clips from the original series where Kirk would get romantic with all different women who have now gotten older and talk about the experiences.

“‘Star Trek:’ The Three-Picture Saga” runs for 10 minutes and 12 seconds, a Blu-ray featurette talking with Ralph Winter, Harve Bennett, and other major players in this trilogy of films, along with outsiders like Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, talking about how the trilogy came together out of just a set of connected films rather than a pre-set and developed in advance trilogy. Nicholas Meyer and Koenig talk about the consistency of the films and the series, Koenig is candid and willing to joke around about his involvement, talking about how he ignored the inconsistencies for the sake of a bigger role.

“Star Trek for a Cause” runs 5 minutes and 40 seconds. This newer featurette talks with members of Greenpeace, talking about the history of whaling and their involvement in the protest of it. They talk about the role of the “Voyage Home” in showing off whaling, as well as a message against whaling and the facts about whale’s extinction.

“Starfleet Academy SCISEC Breif 004: The Whale Probe” runs for 3 minutes and 42 seconds, the fourth in the series of Blu-ray featurettes, this featurette deals with the whale probe and the encounter that drives the narrative of the film.

“From Outer Space to the Ocean” runs for 14 minutes and 43 seconds, this featurette looks a bit more at the idea of time travel and shooting the effects underwater along with creating and shooting fake whales for the film. It’s a fun look at the different designs of the many sequences, talking with Nimoy and the major effects producers and players of the time, going through even the time travel visual effects sequence and the whale probe.

“The Bird of Prey” runs for 2 minutes and 48 seconds, this featurette looks briefly at the layout and design of a Klingon bird of prey, showing blueprints and some quick interviews with Nimoy.

Next are a set of 3 original interviews with Bones, Kirk and Spock at the time and on set of the film:

- “William Shatner” runs 14 minutes and 33 seconds. Shatner discusses the plot of “Voyage Home,” his contributions to Kirk, and generally about the franchise.
- “Leonard Nemoy” runs for 15 minutes and 40 seconds, and answers just about the same questions of the plot of the film, talking about Kirk/Shatner, Bones/Kelley and Spock.
- “Deforest Kelley” runs for 13 minutes and 2 seconds. Kelley is interviewed from the interior set of the Bird of Prey, talks a bit about the plot, which apparently all 3 are trying to keep secret, his character development and changes in the crew, films and franchise.

The “Roddenberry Scrapbook” featurette runs for 8 minutes and 17 seconds, functioning as a tribute to Gene Roddenberry, talking about his father as a father and the “Trek” producer. Much of his legacy is talked about in this interview, sharing memories of Roddenberry in terms of the franchise and how he viewed him, but just plain memories of Roddenberry being a father.

“Featured Artist: Mark Lenard” runs for 12 minutes and 44 seconds, this featurette is a tribute to actor Mark Lenard, who played Sarek, a Klingon and various other roles on “Trek.” Showing some old photos of him and talking with his family about his ability to act as Sarek in the films and as a romulan in “Balance of Terror” and Sarek again in “TNG.”

“Production Gallery” featurette runs for 3 minutes and 55 seconds, showing off a bunch of behind-the-scenes footage of "Star Trek", including the entire cast posing for a photo, supplemented with pictures from the production itself, set to select pieces of the score from the film.

Next are the storyboard galleries, 8 in all:

- “Encounter With the Saratoga” contains 15 images.
- “The Probe Approaches Earth” contains 32 images.
- “Time Warp” contains 27 images.
- “Mind Meld” contains 6 images.
- “The Whaling Ship” contains 20 images.
- “Return to the 23rd Century” contains 18 images.
- “Communication” contains 39 images.
- “NCC-1701-A” contains 22 images.

The theatrical trailer runs for 2 minutes and 24 seconds.

Bonus trailers on the disc include:

- “Star Trek” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “Star Trek: The Original Series Season 1 Blu Ray” runs for 1 minute and 16 seconds.

Finally is a BD-Live feature for players with internet access, labeled on the packaging as a “Star Trek IQ” quiz.

DISC FIVE: “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier” (1989)

This disc also contains two audio commentary tracks, first is with director/actor William Shatner with his daughter Liz Shatner. The two talk about the fondess for the characters and actors in the film, as well as Shatner’s attempts to stick horses everywhere in the film so that way he would be able to ride one on the job. There are a bunch of long pauses, but it’s interesting to hear from Shatner and his Daughter, who apparently helped to catalogue the events on set while he was directing. Though many of his comments boil down to a simple one line comment like, wonderful language, it’s not terrible to listen to and not a bad commentary overall.

The second audio commentary features Michael and Denise Okuda, authors of the “Star Trek” Encyclopedia, Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, two major authors in the “Trek” Universe, and Daren Dochterman. Initially referring to it as the ‘challenge’ “Star Trek” based on the elements that just didn’t come together for the film. They do a good job of talking through the entire film, continuing the same sort of jokes and banter that they had in their earlier commentary. There are some good comments that help to keep the movie a bit more interesting than it already is, though they also have their pauses and quite moments as well and not all of their jokes hit, but hearing more of the fan or outsider perspective is always good.

There’s also the “Library Computer” interactive feature that runs with the play of the film, giving you access to a brief description of any given idea or concept displayed in the film, or character that show up on screen. An interesting feature, a miniature guide to the "Star Trek" universe on screen, though not terribly in-depth it’s good for a fast fact.

Harve Bennett’s Pitch to Sales Team” runs for 1 minute and 42 seconds. This short featurette is a salute to the sales team, where he promises that “Final Frontier” will be just as good as “Voyage Home.”

“The Journey: A behind the Scenes Documentary” runs for 28 minutes and 55 seconds, a bit short for a documentary and more like a making of featurette, but still hits all the correct points of building the film, pulling in Shatner as the director and how he wanted to create a God and “Star Trek” movie, how Roddenberry said it wouldn’t work and many people said it probably wouldn’t work, but it still went through. There’s the origins of the fan dance, the great barrier and everything else.

“Makeup Tests” runs for 9 minutes and 50 seconds, this featurette is simply a collection of preliminary screen tests for makeup and hair, for God, Sybok, General Korrd, Catlin Dar and others. Including sme concept art along with some shots of the aliens in the film and principal characters, a nice addition to the set and showing the full process.

“Pre-Visualization Models” runs for 1 minute and 31 seconds, another pre-production featurette that just tests out how the models could look against certain backgrounds, at times even just using action figures and very small scale tests to see how things work.

“Rockman in the Raw” runs for 5 minutes and 37 seconds. This featurette is based on an early idea of a more elaborate climactic scene, that would feature Krik fighting against ten Rockman creatures that emerged from the planets core but production was only able to afford one and they wound up just cutting it all together, which is a shame since the costume is pretty cool looking and almost feels like something out of “Return to Oz” (1985).

“Star Trek V Press Conference” featurette runs for 13 minutes and 42 seconds, showing footage from a press conference for the film featuring all of the major actors in the film, using the original footage from the press conference. Apparently there was an idea to have the press conference in character, but that was thrown out, but it’s still a fun featurette to look at, as Harve Bennett and others try to tell some jokes and warm up the audience for the press conference to no avail and you get to see the cast get together and talk.

Herman Zimmerman: A Tribute” runs for 19 minutes and 9 seconds. This featurette talks with production designer Herman Zimmerman looking at his role as art director and designer on set for the film, moving into his work in the next generation and other films. His body of work, just within “Star Trek” is incredibly impressive considering the ranging impact of everything he’s touched on the film and in the various series.

“Original Interview: William Shatnerfeaturette runs for 14 minutes and 37 seconds, Shatner talks with the interviewers about filming in Yosemite, being the director on a “Star Trek” film and his involvement with the series, his fear of heights and a variety of other topics.

“Cosmic Thoughts” featurette runs for 13 minutes and 5 seconds, plays with the idea of science fiction, god, science and the connections that get touched on in “Final Frontier” in talking with pastors, scientists and authors. Unlike the earlier featurettes this one tries too hard to inspire a sense of wonder, moreso than the idea of terraforming or time travel presented in previous discs.

“That Klingon Couple” runs for 13 minutes and 5 seconds. In this featurette the people who played the Klingon couple in the film, Klaa (Todd Bryant) and Vixis (Spice Williams-Crosby), who attempt to hunt down Kirk and kill him in the film. It’s a fun look at two of the more side characters from the film series, especially from this film, and they have a tendancy to goof around, but talk about their characters and their motivations for their characters.

“A Green Future?” runs for 9 minutes and 24 seconds. This featurette deals with the campfire scene at Yosemite in the film, and how they got their approval to use Yosemite National Park as a location based on the idea that the park would still be in a similar condition in 400 years. It’s a nice featurette to look at how “Trek” looks at preservation fairly subtly in the film, speaking with park rangers, scientists and others closely associated with the park.

“Star Trek Honors NASA” is a new featurette for the Blu-ray and runs 9 minutes and 57 seconds, talking about the varied people that have been inspired by “Trek” both scientists, astronauts, and basically everyone involved in NASA’s work has been inspired by “Star Trek.” A nice featurette that looks at NASA and what they’re working on because of “Trek.”

“Hollywood Walk of Fame: James Doohanfeaturette runs for 3 minutes and 10 seconds, shows James Doohan getting his spot on the Hollywood walk of fame nearing the end of his career and life, joined by some major members of the "Star Trek" franchise, notably Koenig, Nichols and Takei.

“Starfleet Academy SCISEC Breifing 005: Nimbus III” featurette runs for 3 minutes and 2 seconds. The second to last briefing looks at the idea of Paradise City on Nimbus III based on a combined Human, Romulan and Klingon effort.

Next are the deleted scenes, 4 in all, playable together for 4 minutes and 17 seconds or separately:

- “Mount Rushmore” runs for 17 seconds, Sulu and Chekov visit Mt. Rushmore.
- “Insults” runs for 2 minutes and 5 seconds, the human and klingon ambassadors welcome the new romulan ambassador and have a brief dialogue.
- “Behold Paradise” runs for 52 seconds, Sybok’s forces invade Paradise City.
- “Spock’s Pain” runs for 1 minute and 3 seconds, Spock learns that his pain hasn’t fully been healed.

“Production Gallery” featurette runs for 4 minutes and 5 seconds, featuring a variety of production images documenting the creation of the film set to some of the film’s score.

Next are the storyboard galleries, 3 in all:

- “Sha’Ka’Ree” contains 53 images.
- “The Face of God” contains 61 images.
- “Escape” contains 74 images.

The first theatrical trailer runs for 2 minutes and 42 seconds and the second theatrical trailer runs for 1 minute and 34 seconds.

Next are 7 TV spots, playable together for 3 minutes and 14 seconds, or separately:

- “Vacation is Over” runs for 32 seconds.
- “Renegade” runs for 32 seconds.
- “Challenge of Rebellion” runs for 32 seconds.
- “Brothers” runs for 32 seconds.
- “Beyond” runs for 32 seconds.
- “Adventure” runs for 17 seconds.
- “Warp Speed Now” runs for 17 seconds.

Bonus trailers on the disc include:

- “Star Trek” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “Star Trek: The Original Series Season 1 Blu Ray” runs for 1 minute and 16 seconds.

Finally is a BD-Live feature for players with internet access, labeled on the packaging as a “Star Trek IQ” quiz.

DISC SIX: “Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country” (1991)

This disc contains two audio commentary tracks, first is with director/co-writer Nicholas Meyer and co-writer Denny Martin Flinn. These two have a slower conversation, talking about the time and place of the film itself, how different generations view the future, set and production stories along with a whole slew of topics in addition, though their sound quality sounds oddly different. There are a few pauses and breaks in the discussion of the film, but it’s an interesting commentary that deals with the creation of the film, going through a few stories that have been spread around, though it’s still more interesting to hear it from their persective rather than simply seeing it on a Wikipedia page.

The second audio commentary is with Larry Nemecek and Ira Steven Behr, two people not involved with the Original Series though involved deeply with the future generations of “Star Trek” fandom through writings about and for “The Next Generation” and “Deep Space Nine.” It’s another good commentary from an outsider perspective, bringing in their own stories about their touches with the film and talking about how the film and the Original Series looks at the universe in contrast with the following series of the show, along with stories about the other show’s that they’ve been involved with.

There’s also the “Library Computer” interactive feature that runs with the play of the film, giving you access to a brief description of any given idea or concept displayed in the film, or character that show up on screen. An interesting feature, a miniature guide to the "Star Trek" universe on screen, though not terribly in-depth its good for a fast fact.

The first featurette is “The Perils of Peacemaking,” which runs for 26 minutes and 33 seconds, Nicholas Meyer and Leonard Nimoy discuss the building of the politics of “Star Trek” in tandem with the building of the movie, the Russians as Klingons, as well as disagreeing on who came up with the different lines and the different stories involved with the film. At the same time some professors are brought in to talk about the ongoing Cold War situation that acts in tandem with the progressions in the “Star Trek” universe, a good featurette for those who may be too young to remember or never paid attention in history class.

“Stories from Star Trek VI” is a collection of 6 featurettes, playable together for 57 minutes and 9 seconds or separate, described individually below, functioning as a larger making-of for the film:

- “It Started With A Story” runs for 9 minutes and 46 seconds. This section talks about the failure of “Final Frontier” and the resurrection of the film series through the sixth film, as well as some other projects that were discussed before delving into the sixth film. Nimoy’s involvement is discussed, and they get to how the film was thought up and put together.
- “Prejudice” runs for 5 minutes and 3 seconds. This section deals with the idea of prejudice and racism within the “Undiscovered Country” in terms of Humans versus Klingons, dealing with Kirk’s hatred of Klingons over the death of his son, as well as the cast conflicts with Meyer’s interpretations of the “Trek” universe and some of the actor’s distain for some of the lines they were given based on their background. An interesting discussion, though I would have liked to have heard Nichol’s side of the story.
- “Director Nicholas Meyer” runs for 5 minutes and 57 seconds. Here cast and crewmembers discuss Meyer as a director, much of it huge compliments and discussions of his talent and acting ability.
- “Shakespeare & General Chang” runs for 5 minutes and 54 seconds. Christopher Plummer discusses his role as the villain General Chang, while the rest of the cast and crew talk about bringing him to the role. More discussion is made of Chang’s love of Shakespeare.
- “Bring it to Life” runs for 23 minutes and 25 seconds. Michael Okuda, cinematographer Hiro Narita and others discuss the set and production design on the film and creating the look of the film itself. There’s some fun discussion of all of the background instructions, the different foods and sets used for the dining scene and generally the film itself.
- “Farewell & Goodbye” runs for 7 minutes and 4 seconds, and deals with wrapping up the film and saying goodbye to all of the different actors as well as the different crew members involved with the production of the film. Some good behind-the-scenes footage of the cast enjoying some champagne with the film wrapping.

“Conversations with Nicholas Meyer” runs for 9 minutes and 33 seconds. This featurette is just a conversation with Nicholas Meyer, dealing with imagination and a lot of his philosophy behind directing. Based on the quality and backgrounds, it looks like a bunch of cut pieces of conversation from the “Stories from Star Trek VI.” Not a bad piece discussing his perspectives on everything, including actors and his thoughts about “Trek” characters, including some good behind-the-scenes photos and footage.

“Klingons: Conjuring the Legend” runs for 20 minutes and 46 seconds. This featurette runs through a history of the Klingons from a production perspective, including interviews with those involved in special effects on both the original series, the film series and the next generation. Michael Dorn’s appearance is great and well deserved, good to see him outside of the makeup, bringing a good actor’s perspective to their performances and the changes in the Klingon look and style. A great look at production design for Klingons, including some good behind-the-scenes footage of Klingon designs and interviews with the Klingon language institute founder.

“Federation Operatives” runs for 4 minutes and 53 seconds, and has a featurette acting as a fake briefing from Starfleet, tracing the actors connections between this film and the other “Star Trek” movies and series.

“Penny’s Toy Box” runs for 6 minutes and 6 seconds. This featurette goes into a locked room featuring many of the props that have been kept on the studio lot from different “Star Trek” movies and shows, a fun featurette going through all kinds of random props from the film.

“Together Again” runs for 4 minutes and 56 seconds, Christopher Plummer and William Shatner talk about their relationship and growing up as actors in Montreal in this featurette. An interesting conversation on the connections between these two men, considering their backgrounds and prior connections in their lives, their time on radio, and growing into their future famous selves.

Tom Morga: Alien Stuntman” runs for 4 minutes and 57 seconds, this featurette is new to the Blu-ray edition of the film and talks with Tom Morga who has acted as a random background stuntman throughout all of “Star Trek.” A fun look at a man who has been in just about everything “Trek” related without ever really being known, including some interesting, if brief, discussions of what kind of work he did and all of the costuming and makeup involved.

“To Be or Not to Be: Klingons and Shakespeare” runs for 23 minutes and 4 seconds. Similar to the earlier Klingons featurette, this new Blu-ray featurette deals with the impact of the Shakespearian lines in “Undiscovered Country” and a theatre group in St. Paul putting together a full stage production of Hamlet in Klingon. Bringing together footage of the production itself along with some of the production crew and actors talking about the play itself, an amazing, if awkward, display of fan dedication and affection.

“Starfleet Academy SCISEC Breif 006: Praxis” runs for 2 minutes and 37 seconds. Rounding out the line of Academy featurettes, this one covers the explosion of Praxis and it’s role in the film and the “Trek” universe.

“Farewell: Deforest Kelley: A Tribute” runs for 13 minutes and 19 seconds. This featurette talks with everyone involved in this sixth film in praising the late Kelley, maybe the most consistent of all the characters in the films and series. There’s some great pictures of a young Kelley and some of his earlier work in Westerns. A great retrospective featurette with some fun footage of his other work and lots of praise from those who knew him on this film.

Next are a series of original interviews, 8 in all, with the main cast of the film, apparently on set of the film as you can hear some shuffling around in the background and many are wearing their costumes, they include:

- “William Shatner” runs for 5 minutes and 5 seconds, Shatner talks about the interracial kiss in the series between himself and Nichols, saying goodbye to the film series and the crew, and general questions that he talks about in the other featurettes, though interesting to hear from him at the time when he’s a bit younger and slimmer.
- “Leonard Nemoy” runs for 6 minutes and 26 seconds, Nimoy wears some funny looking glasses, talks about prejudice, the films versus the ‘classic tradition’ of “Star Trek,” and feelings about the end of the “Original Series” franchise.
- “Deforest Kelley” runs for 5 minutes and 3 seconds, a great addition of Kelley’s presence that is missing from the rest of the featurettes, dealing with the relationship between Bones, Kirk and Spock, fan fascination with “Trek,” and feelings about the end.
- “James Doohan” runs for 5 minutes and 33 seconds, another missing voice, fun to hear Scotty without the accent and he talks about first getting involved with "Trek," it’s legacy and his role, Scotty’s impact on engineers, experiences with the franchise, and saying goodbye.
- “Nichelle Nichols” runs for 5 minutes and 39 seconds, another missing presence Nichols candidly talks about the interracial kiss in the series and saying goodbye to the original cast.
- “George Takei” runs for 5 minutes and 28 seconds, Takei talks the character progression of Sulu, the progression of the franchise from television to film, and of course saying goodbye as an original castmember.
- “Walter Koenig” runs for 5 minutes and 31 seconds, Koenig talks about the fan reaction to Chekov, fandom itself, character dymnamics, fond memories and saying goodbye to the cast.
- “Iman” runs for 5 minutes and 7 seconds, Iman talks about her role in the film, special effects involving her character and the eye prosthetics, the message of “Undiscovered Country,” and “Trek” itself.

The “Production Gallery” runs for 3 minutes and 24 seconds, which sounds like a photo gallery but really is a featurette, with behind-the-scenes footage on the Rura Penthe prison colony along with some behind-the-scenes footage of extras in makeup.

“Storyboards” is a collection of storyboard/photo galleries based around different scenes:

- “Praxis” contains 18 images.
- “Assassins” contains 37 images.
- “Rura Penthe” contains 37 images.
- “Leaving Spacedock (Omitted)” contains 28 images.

The final section is “Promotional Material” which contains 2 trailers and 1 convention presentation:

- Teaser trailer runs 1 minute and 28 seconds.
- Theatrical trailer runs 2 minutes and 23 seconds.
- “1991 Convention Presentation by Nicholas Meyer” runs 4 minutes and 49 seconds, this was a sneak peek at the film screened at a "Star Trek" Convention in 1991, Meyer smokes a cigar and thanks the fans while introducing and showing some behind-the-scenes footage.

Bonus trailers on the disc include:

- “Star Trek” runs for 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
- “Star Trek: The Original Series Season 1 Blu Ray” runs for 1 minute and 16 seconds.

Finally is a BD-Live feature for players with internet access, labeled on the packaging as a “Star Trek IQ” quiz.

DISC SEVEN:

Rounding out this megaset is the bonus Blu-ray “The Captain’s Summit” discussion feature which runs all together for 1 hour 11 minutes and 12 seconds; or in three parts running 23 minutes 26 seconds, 23 minutes 39 seconds, and 24 minutes and 7 seconds respectively. First off there’s a brief introduction by Whoopi Goldberg discussing the four participants: Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Leonard Nemoy and William Shatner, creating this summit of the four actors. Stewart is sporting an amazing looking mustache, but the best thing seen before the summit is the brief shot of “Star Trek: First Contact” (1996) that looks amazing and needs it’s own Blu-ray release. But of course the summit itself is fantastic, there’s some great conversations between the four, and Goldberg shares her own stories and does a good job of keeping things going, including a discussion of Data (Brent Spiner) being ‘fully functional’ and Frakes doing an impression of Data’s sex speeds. They go through some conversations about fandom, but the chemistry between Frakes and Stewart shows more of a lasting friendship, while Nimoy and Shatner seem a bit more distant. A great mini-documentary/panel for any fan or anyone who’s just interested in hearing Patrick Stewart talking about some dirty subjects, but I would have loved to see a get together between the Captains from the major series of "Trek," or at least the inclusion of Avery Brooks.

Packaging

These discs are each packaged in a slim Blu-ray case, housed together in a cardboard carton with clear plastic slipcover.

Overall

The Film: A Video: A Audio: A Extras: A+ Overall: A