Last Thursday night, Elijah and I took the Big Apple by storm (and by that I mean we proceeded in an orderly fashion) to a screening of “Best of Both Worlds” on the big screen. The AMC Empire 25 in Times Square had 2 theaters reserved for the 7pm showing and both were entirely sold out. We saw Star Trek fans – young and old, zealous and newbie – come together to celebrate what is arguably the best story ever done in the history of TNG.
The presentation itself was almost impeccable. We were treated to an opening behind the scenes short which went into great detail about the production of BBW. Some of the most interesting topics covered were the makeup and production designs – creating both the Borg costumes and the interior of the Borg cube, as well as how the story was broke. For instance, an anecdote was told about how Michael Piller wrote part 1 knowing that he was leaving the show at the end of the season. He wrote the Enterprise crew into an impossible corner for the purpose of storytelling with no idea of how they would escape their conundrum. It was interesting to hear that they don’t look on the episode with rose-colored glasses; it was noted that part 1 being conceived without a resolution has a lot to do with why part 2 isn’t as effective as its predecessor.
Regardless of the fall-flatitude of the conclusion, seeing the nearly 2-hour event put together in a movie like format was brilliant. I did personally feel as though they made a mistake in not slamming to the “to-be-continued” at the end of part 1. Instead it was edited to roll directly into part 2. While I would have preferred the original ending, the editing itself was done seamlessly. I don’t believe that a first time viewer, or even some casual viewers, would be able to tell where the episode itself was originally supposed to end.
The hi-def itself was pretty extraordinary. The wreckage at Wolf 359, the Borg Cube interior, and the firefights all looked stunning. There was one moment where it seemed as though a shot was still in standard definition, solidified further when the dialogue looping was off by a couple of frames. Those slight technical issues however were not enough to deter from the sheer enjoyment of the presentation.
And then there is, of course, the thrill of watching something you love in a theater filled with other fans. Scenes were laughed at easier and with more fervor, clapping was continuous throughout, and we had a few entertaining cat-callers. There was a great moment where Commander Shelby stands up for herself and an audience member yelled “Tell him, girl!” As much as I love Riker, I clapped with the rest of the crowd in response. It was a well-placed riff.
After the feature presentation we were treated to a preview of Season 4 on Blu-ray due out sometime this summer. You can watch the trailer embedded below.
Any guesses as to what the season 4 launch event will choose for its showcasing episodes? While they could do as they did here and show the season 4 finale “Redemption” with its conclusion, I’m hoping they don’t. Season 4 has incredibly strong stand alone stories. I personally would love to see “Family” or “The Drumhead” on the big screen, but neither has much in the way of effects to show off the new HD cut.
Lastly we got what is maybe worth all the bars of gold-pressed latinum in the world: the blooper reel. I can neither confirm nor deny that I was in tears by the end of it. But your guess is probably the right one.
Did you attend a screening in your area? Let us know what you thought! And if you missed out on the event you can still grab the Blu-ray. Season 3 will be available on Tuesday, April 30, on the same day you can also purchase a Blu-ray edition of “Best of Both Worlds” as a standalone.
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