ST09 Trailer Countdown: Taking A Look At STV: The Final Frontier’s Trailer

A week from tonight millions of film goers across North America will be seeing the first theatrical trailer for JJ Abrams new Star Trek movie, and some might even stay for the new James Bond movie Quantum of Solace. To bide our time we continue our trailer countdown, today looking at the trailer for William Shatner’s 1989 film Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.


If you ask me — and you haven’t — I think this is a terrible idea…
Theatrical trailer for Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.

Star Trek V was always marketed as an action film, which is no surprise considering it has a story by and is directed by William Shatner. The teaser poster promised that seat belts were being installed in theaters because of all the action. The film needed to compete with Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade (trivia alert: Sean Connery was asked to play Sybok, but couldn’t because of Indy, and the planet Sha Ka Ree is named after the Bond actor). The trailer is also all about adventure, as it is edited in an incredibly fast pace (for the late 1980s) and is action oriented. The trailer utilizes James Horner’s battle music from Star Trek II (which is a favorite choice in many Star Trek trailers) and features the tagline "The greatest Enterprise of all is adventure!" After the success of the light hearted Star Trek IV, the trailer really pushed the more humorous side of the film. The style of editing in the trailer with the scene where Kirk makes his distress call which is intercepted by the Klingons is very exciting to this day. Regardless of what you think of the film, the trailer itself is pretty good.

From the mind of a madman
The shorter teaser trailer still gives away quite a bit of the film and is actually better at selling the film as a fun sci-fi adventure. Plus it has the inadvertently funny bit of narration: "from the mind of a madman."

The DVD features this theatrical trailer, the teaser trailer, and TV commercials


Thanks to YouTuber ShipHunter


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I don’t care what anyone says… this movie is great.

The campfire scene perfectly shows the relationship between Kirk, Spock, and McCoy. It’s so perfectly done.

Ok, I am done now.

The film is such a clunker in so many ways, but I still enjoy it.

Could use a TOS style remastering though.

Best part of the film was when Spock and McCoy confront their pain, and kirk fights back…”I need my pain!!” Good scene, great acting, for a change… The special effects sucked though.

the trailer is better then the movie. and i hope that the same thing doesn’t happen with the new one.

speaking of new one, still no news whatsoever, and early showings in usa start on monday or tuesday i believe

From the mind of a mad man, indeed.
Poor Shat. Um, then again… poor us.

(Actually, this is by far NOT the worst of the movies.)

Well, if you want a serious science fiction film about the quest for God, try some of Tarkovsky’s work, such as “Solaris” and “Stalker” both of which are based on great SF novels.

This, unfortunately, is juvenile and jaw-droppingly superficial compared to those great films, which is sad, because it is a wasted opportunity. Star Trek can, at times, engage with philosophical and religious matters in a relatively mature way but this certainly is not one of those moments.

I believe that there really is a good movie somewhere inside Star Trek V, it just wasn’t given the support it needed to grow. Competition the summer of 1989 was tough (Indiana Jones, Ghostbusters 2, and let’s not forget the other guy with the pointed ears…Batman), but Trek could have fared better if Shatner had been allowed to really finish the film. Budget cuts, a writer’s strike, and studio indifference hobbled this movie well before it reached the theaters. Add to that the atrocious special effects and the heavy-handed attempts at humor and you’ve got yourself box office poison.

Even with all the strikes against it, though, I have to admit that I do like Trek V. Despite its many flaws, it’s heart is pure. I really wish that Paramount would finance a Director’s Cut and let Shatner finish the film. Tighten the editing, drop some of the forced humor, re-do the FX, and you might just be able to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Alas, we’ll likely never know.

RE: 7. The “I need my pain” scene is almost an illusion to Dickens’ “Haunted Man.” Probably the only moment in this film that rises slightly above the utterly superficial tosh that is the rest of it.

As well as a great spiritual quest, it could have been a great critique of those bizarre United States phenomenons, the televangelists and “Religious Right”.

This continues to be one of my top 3 favorite TOS-crew movies. It really brought the characters together and focused more on their interactions….Kirk/Spock/McCoy, Sulu/Chekov, Uhura/Scotty….I agree with #2, this movie has some of the best, if not the best, moments of Kirk/Spock/McCoy together. And just for fun, this has my all time favorite Spock/McCoy spat…I probably don’t need to quote it, since you’ll likely know what I’m talking about, but here it is anyway:

At the campfire:
Dr. McCoy: “It’s a song, you green-blooded Vulcan. The words aren’t important, what’s important is that you have a good time singling.”

Spock: “Oh, I am sorry, Doctor…were we having a good time?”

McCoy: “My God, I liked him better before he died.”

I know fans love to crap on this movie, but I still find it a lot of campy fun (and certainly more entertaining than the lame TNG movies).

In fact– while TUC was a better send-off overall– I’m actually kind of grateful now that we got to see Kirk, Spock and McCoy go on one last romp together. Their scenes are just fun as hell to watch.

The film is better than most people give it credit, and has some fine moments between a cast that by then had worked together for well over twenty years. There were certainly no dull moments as in TMP. It remains very interesting that Shatner’s film was in many ways the most spiritual of the Treks and the first with the poignancy to name and depict the crew mates as a family.

11, agreed. Kirk’s “I need my pain” scene is such a classic, Kirk kind of moment.

And apparently Shatner DID want to explore the appeal of these televangelists, etc a lot more, but either the studio wanted to dumb things down too much or his writing talents just weren’t up to the task.

Of course he also wanted to have a real God and a real Hell, so I’m not really sure WHAT kind of point he was ultimately trying to make…

I believe Nick Meyer once said that Shatner was the type of actor that needed to be reined in by the director. Nowhere is that more apparent than in this movie.
And is everyone else just phoning in their performances? Even in this trailer the acting is rough. It’s like they’re just humoring Bill.

13. Yes, I heard that Shatner wanted to explore those issues. Pity he missed the mark, for whatever reason. If there was some biting social commentary in the film, I would have much more respect for it.

A real exploration of God? As per my previous comments, check out Tarkovsky’s masterpiece films, “Solaris” and “Stalker”. You will be richly rewarded as they show what science fiction can and should be.

Still, in my opinion, it is not the worst Trek film. Nothing could be as bad as Generations, which plays like a 12 year old’s attempt at fan fiction as far as I am concerned…

ST:V is such a strange beast.

It’s possibly the most embarrassing of all the movies, in terms of quality, but it has, tucked away between the folds, some of the BEST moments (the aforementioned campfire scene, Sybok showing the trio their pain, etc.). While I certainly can’t blame anyone for disliking the movie, it’s grown on me over the years. I still wince at the bad effects and the out of character bits, but I know they meant well, and like someone said earlier, it definitely portrayed them as family.

It didn’t dawn on me until right this moment: the flick starts with the new 1701-A being portrayed as a broken vessel. Doesn’t that kind of bring down the end of ‘Voyage Home’ a notch knowing that Starfleet dumps this garbage heap on Earth’s savior? ;D

This will truly be regarded by trek historians as THE ONLY trek to stay cannon to its roots. The music was perfect , the mood was ambient and the special effects were fun. In regards to the special effects…its the campiness that makes it fun.

the deal i heard was that nimoy and shat have contracts that says, when one of them is offered something, the other gets the same offere. so when nimoy turned down the chance to direct part five, they had no choice but to offer it to shat, who obviously accepted. i dont think anyone at paramount wanted it to happen, but they had no choice

at the time i really enjoyed it, but am kind of embarrassed now when i look at it. the best part is the music – special effects are on the same level as the original series..shockingly bad

For me, it’s a great movie, I like it very much. And it’s nice to read here, that there are people who like it too.

I’ve been subjecting – I mean, introducing – my girlfriend to these films and this one is her favourite because of its ‘realism’. That might sound odd but it does have more and better banter between the characters than any of the other films, giving it a dimension that helps it to overcome the often implausible action.
Also, this is really the only one of the classic Trek films with a message worthy of the series – albeit buried in a slightly jokey moment.
“Excuse me – what does God need with a starship?”
When Sybok and even McCoy are ready to bow before their creator, Kirk exposes the charade simply by being a little bit sceptical and asking a question.
Question everything. You’ll always be learning, and you won’t be a slave to anyone’s tall stories.

V is not as bad as it is made out to be. The worst Trek movies are all in the TNG half of the movie series.

This movie had some great character moments. The death of McCoy’s father, the camping scene. Also, great lines..”I miss my old chair”. “What does god need with a starship?”. If Paramount didn’t cheap out on the budget, the shuttle crash would have looked a lot cooler than it did.

Hitting God With a Photon Torpedo, Alone made it worth watching.

but I like it anyway.

All hail the best TREK film… to, uh, feature a half-naked feather dance by a 50+ year old Nichelle Nichols.

Worst moment is TREK V?

Has to be that “Go climb a rock” T-shirt. WTF?????????

I live in London, England, I saw this movie (twice!) opening weekend in San Francisco. I cried in the camp fire scene, and still do at the line ‘You were never alone’. One observation…The audience in SF, cheered and applauded at the line ‘I need my pain’.

I saw the movie again in London. At the same point, the British audience burst in laughter.

Two nations separated by Trek.

Well, I can watch this trailer now, and say with confidence “At least we were fairly warned.”

Virtually everything that bothers me about this movie is paraded openly in the trailer. My only defense is that I was too young and eager to pay much attention.

So Sean Connery chose THE LAST CRUSADE over TREK V, eh?

“He chose… wisely.”

I agree with you on that one SPB! Glad to know denim will still be around in the 23rd century.

V had it’s moments and not so great ones. IMO the not so great ones involved the behind the scenes troubles the Shat had. According to his book: Captain’s Log: William Shatner’s Personal Account of the Making of Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, he complained about how not being able to use ILM because of a union strike and had to go with a low budget special effects company. He knew the Enterprise didn’t “look right” in the space shots. And there was a host of other problems that he had to deal with in making the film. I was pleased to see that he used Harve Bennett as the Starfleet Commander that gave him the order to go after Sybok. Harve was very instrumental in getting the Star Trek franchise going again.

My favorite scene: Scotty: “I know this ship like the back of my hand” and then gets hit with a conduit pipe!!

“…Not in front of the Klingons.” was one of the Worst lines in any of the Movies, But Every time I hear it I can’t stop Laughing.

i liked that movie instead of what most people say.the crew seems more relaxed and with a special bond..and seeing kirk with jeans ont the bridge it shows clearly that it is his ship….perfect idea

I always remember…

…that I went to see TREK V on opening weekend with my high school buddies, who loathed STAR TREK (and teased me mercilessly about it), but figured it was something to do on a weekend.

Early on, I of course knew we were in trouble (pretty much from the point Chekhov started blowing into the communicator), but my friends seemed to guffaw from beginning to end. When it was over, and as we filed into the lobby, I was prepared to apologize profusely for dragging them to see it, but they started singing its praises! “That’s the best STAR TREK I’ve ever seen!”

As if I needed any further confirmation that TREK V was terrible.

Best moment is when Chekov jerks back in the captain’s chair on the viewscreen as the compound is invaded – a real director’s touch

My favorite line:

Kirk: “I could use a shower.”
Spock: “Yes.”

Awesome . . .


Watching this weak trailer for a truly horrible movie (sorry, folks, but…), I have only one question:

Will Abrams & Co. respect established canon and show us a young Sybok in Spock’s childhood? (Okay, that begs another question: Do we WANT them to include Sybok?)

I won’t go into my tirade against this film–the only TOS film I don’t own and never will–because its failings are well known. (Okay, I’ll say that Spock in anti-grav boots making puns at rock-climbing Kirk is the moment where I see the TOS films jumping the shark and never coming back.)

But I do wonder if it will have any effect on the backstory we see in the new Trek film.

Thanks for this, uh, fascinating trip down memory lane!

Ok. Ths is the seocond worset Trek Movie next only to Insureection. This has some great moments like Spock and Mccoy confronting there pain and the campfire scene was great. Mccoy had a grrat line when he tells Kirk he liked Spock better before he died. Scotty did a good job as well. I did not like the story where the Big E was always having problems and the doors not all working. I think that was a major weak poing and the skermish the Klingons was moot as far as im concerened. But it did have some great moments. I got tearyied when we see mccoys father die and then learned a few months latter they found a cure. That was hartbreaking. The Fx was shaky at best but was ok.

Buckaroohawk: “I really wish that Paramount would finance a Director’s Cut and l”Shatner finish the film. Tighten the editing, drop some of the forced humor, re-do the FX, and you might just be able to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Alas, we’ll likely never know.”

We DO know. USA Network at one point began showing a re-edited version of ST V. They excised some of the bean/fart jokes and fixed the continuity in the riduculous shaft ascent (so they don’t pass the same decks repeatedly.) The result is an improvement, but not a great movie. As to the special effects, they aren’t much less impressive than other movies of the time. I think the biggest remaining technical problem is the lighting. It’s so bright it shows the screw heads in the bridge monitor panel covers… and of course, it shows the wires holding up Miss Kitty. But Shatner’s directing is the biggest problem. He’s in love with every piece of cheese in sight. Every gag, no matter how inappropriate is in the final cut. Lisabeth wandering the bridge trying to hang up a coat doesn’t even make sense, much less draw a chuckle.

This movie was beset with many problems, a shortened shooting schedule, budget cuts, transportation problems during filing, and some of the worst visuals for a trek film. The story isn’t that bad and does in over all structure is more like an episode from the original series. The music score for this is one is one of Jerry Goldsmith’s best with many fine themes. The studio owes the fans of this film and Shatner a directors special edition with at the least new remastered visuals. The visuals on the menu portion are better than whats in the move on the last DVD release and this is just ridiculous. The film is not that bad, with a little editing and some new visuals it could be much better.

Sad that he trailer is so much better than the movie. I give Shatner an A for effort, but he tried to squeeze in too much and went over the top in too many areas.

TFF in my books is The “Battlefield Earth” Of “Star Trek” Movies.

You know who no one ever talks about?

Todd Bryant as Captain Klaa. Made an absolutely awesome Klingon. Too bad he never went mano-a-mano with Admiral Kirk.

#39, fyi, actually that was Melanie Shatner, not Lisabeth, with the coat. A friend of mine went to college with her.

And too bad about Sean Connery…

Had he signed up, maybe Paramount would have given TREK V a little more TLC in the script and FX departments. Hell, maybe they would have gone with a more established director, too!

Give me this over Insurrection or Nemesis ANY day.

The best scene in STV was in the shuttle bay. Really dramatic when Kirk screamed, “Shoot him!”. The worst thing about this movie was the special effects. The Enterprise and other ships looked like they were cut and pasted into the background. Otherwise an almost good movie but the worst Trek.

There are a lot of great character moments in ST V, but the premise was doomed from the start. Everyone knew the Enterprise wasn’t going to ‘find God,’ so there was no overarching tension to the story. With a slightly different premise — say, Sybok is mysteriously drawn to an uncharted world (NOT in the center of the galaxy) by an unknown force, knowing only that the future of the galaxy is at stake, and putting the ship in constant danger enroute (NOT from the ho-hum Klingons), and maybe making him a little more unstable, but otherwise keeping much of the same storyline — you would have had a MUCH better film.

I always liked the suggestion of a different storyline in which the Enterprise is taken not to the center of the galaxy, but to its edge (hence the ‘Great Barrier’ becomes the barrier previously encountered in TOS episodes “Where No Man Has Gone Before” and “By Any Other Name”), and the ‘God force’ turns out to be Gary Mitchell, bent upon revenge against Kirk. It would have been a surprise to Trek fans, along the lines of Darth Vader’s “I am your father,” yet not distracting to non-Trekkers if done right.

Just part of that “Authentic 20th Century” rock climbing experience. :-)

Like others, I do wonder what this film would have been like without the behind-the-scenes problems affecting it’s quality. Comes across as hastily finished to me…

I agree with most people that this ST V is a pile of old tosh. I went to see it for my 18th in 1989 (how sad???) when all five movies were being shown in Leicester Sq. I remember being gutted by the horrible effects, and rather hoping they were temporary. I was very naive.

Anyway, something that no-one has mentioned….the score is actually pretty good. Yay for Goldsmith.

Michael Giacchini better give us some good music!