In fairness to no one other than myself, I do tend to keep an awful lot of my editorializing to myself. For example, when Fox TV announced that there would be more cases explored on The X-Files in 2016, I didn't think it boded well to have Chris Carter back at the helm. Yes, I realize "It's his baby," but I also realize he was largely responsible for raising the child poorly. The latest revisitation in prime time really only underscored to me how Mr. Carter might be better served to move along, let bygones be bygones, and maybe do like George Lucas has done in surrendering the keys to the kingdom to essentially "the next generation" for storytelling purposes.
Furthermore, I was one of the lone hold-outs saying that Walt Disney's selection of JJ Abrams to continue those adventures "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away" likewise didn't inspire confidence. As I've often said about JJ, he turns in some of the most interesting eye candy this side of Steven Spielberg (after anything done in the late 80's), but his stories are pure narrative garbage. Now, I'll admit I did have "fun" with Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (even now, I can't begin to tell you how much I despise the title!), but -- fun aside -- I today consider it little more than "a sterling bowl of puke." (Sorry, wifey, but I gotta call it the way I see it.)
... and that brings me to Justin Lin.
First, there's absolutely nothing wrong with his Fast and Furious franchise. Auto films have traditionally been some quality popcorn entertainment. For any number of reasons, flicks of that sort are packed with some terrific visceral thrills, and -- while I haven't seen all installments -- I can certainly understand why they've performed so well at the box office, especially given a mainstream's audience ability to stay focused only so long as there's pounding music, hot chicks, acceptable hunks, and fast fast cars.
Second, anyone familiar with that franchise knows that its stories and characters have been allowed to evolve (not so much in individual films but over the course of the franchise). New players have been brought in. The stakes have been raised. Bad guys morphed into good guys (or maybe that's really "bad boys morphed into even badder ones"). The formula has been tinkered with creatively, but -- at the end of the day -- the property respects what it wants to be and with great precision continues to be that.
Now ... I'm all for things being fast and furious ... but for the life of me I keep seeing this motorcycle, and that does not bode well.
I don't care that it's written by Simon Pegg. Yes, he's crafted some interesting stuff, but he's also crafted some not so interesting stuff. I 'get' that he's a Trek enthusiast (my term, not his), but I've yet really to see any 'respect' from him for the franchise. Instead, his approach tends to be much like JJ's: "I'm all for making a film I want to see, and maybe that isn't what the fan base wants."
Seriously, Paramount? Is this motorcycle so important to Star Trek, its legacy, and -- dare I say -- its future that it must continue to thumb its nose at diehard fans? I get that you don't like us. I get that you wish we'd go away. And, yes, I get that you'd rather see us in court (Google the whole Axanar issue) than with our butts in the seats ... but is that the message of inclusion you want to sell?
Apparently, CBS doesn't believe enough in televised Star Trek any more to even risk it on the boob tube as the next incarnation will only get a 'premiere' on the network but then will immediately switch over to a monthly pay service where you even have to sit through commercials for a price. How sad is that?
I'm all for going boldly in new directions, but -- if I'm required to take a motorbike -- maybe what Dr. McCoy said so long ago really is accurate:
"It's dead, Jim."