TrekMovie LiveTweet Watch Party: Star Trek: The Motion Picture 7PM (Pacific) Sunday

This afternoon I got into a twitter debate with Free Enterprise director Robert Meyer Burnett over the virtues of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, the first Trek feature from 1979. We have decided to live tweet-watching the film starting at 7PM pacific. You can follow along below.


TrekMovie live tweet of Star Trek The Motion Picture

I will be live-tweeting while watching Star Trek: The Motion Picture this evening, starting at 7PM Pacific. I will be discussing and debating with Free Enterprise director Robert Meyer Burnett, who contends TMP is the best Trek feature, where rank it somewhere in the middle of of the Trek films. This is a last minute thing so I am just throwing this up quickly, but it looks like Star Trek Enterprise writer/producer Mike Sussman will also be joining us. You can follow along with the #tmptweet Twitter hashtag below (which will include our tweets and others who decide to join in). 

We will be using the 2001 Director’s Cut DVD and we will start the movie at 7Pm (Pacific) sharp (including watching the "overture"). You can follow along here:

UPDATE: Event over + maybe do Khan next
This was a fun event. Lots of folks join Rob Burnett, Mike Sussman and myself as we tweeted our way through TMP. You can read a transcript of the running commentary below. As noted, this was a last minute thing, but now thinking about doing it again for the other movies.


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What a great idea! Please live tweet the films in order up to Star Trek XI! :D

Ah, The Motion Sickness — a great sf film and a bad Trek film.

Hooray for Robert Burnett!

@2 Oh, it’s a bad sci-fi film too, but hardly dreck. Rather just what happens when someone makes 2001 A Space Odyssey a decade after 2001. First it’s iconic, then it’s just slow and plodding :P

Whats going on with Free Enterprise2?

Just twittered for Tmp. That was a lot of fun. Next week. Lets get together for Star Trek 2 the Wrath of KHANNNN!!!!!!!!!!!!

I’m in Mike!

Good lines.

@6. Yes, this was a blast.

We should do this every week for all of the trek Movies

And then the TOS eps.

I just watched TMP last night, and it’s a lot better than I remember it being. The first time I saw it I thought V’Ger was a pretty lame idea, but I’m really starting to like it now. But will someone please tell me why the V’Ger/Ilia probe is not wearing pants throughout the second half of the movie?

if you do TWOK, everybody tweet “KHAAAAAAAAAAN!” simultaniously when Kirk screams it.

#12 they constrict her hard-drive.

My favorite STAR TREK Movie!

But I’m twitless….”as in frightened out of captain sir….”

To all…ENJOY!

It’s interesting, though not referred to in the script, that Decker is the son of another Decker who merged (in a less happy way) with a machine.

#12: You don’t like the “fresh out of the shower” look? I really like Ilia’s gams!!!

I love the Enterprise in dry dock scene. Yes, it’s five minutes long and has been maligned by others but it still gives me goose bumps. Jerry Goldsmith’s majestic music is absolutely magnificent. And get this. If you listen to the commentary on Star Trek (2009), J.J. Abrams says when he pans over the Enterprise for the first time, it was a homage to the first movie. Now for the next movie, let’s have a close-up of letters “The United Federation of Planets” and I’ll start to cry. :-)

The Trek 2009 Enterprise flyby is a tearjerker for me even more than in TMP.
“Jim, you gotta look at this…” The Spielberg-like glow from outside. Then the shot of the space station right out of the Franz Josef Technical Manual. So amazing.


The flyby in the new movie is a nice homage but the build up and Jerry Goldsmith’s music is still my preferred one.

I know some people call it boring and say get on with it already but I think it’s a great cinematic moment as you see the Enterprise on the big screen for the first time.

And no offence to the new movie’s designers but I did not think that the new Enterprise had the same beauty as the refit of the original did in this movie.

TMP is one of those movies that as a kid you find boring but as you get older you really get to love that film a lot more, and a film to appreciate as something unigque to Star Trek and something akin to 2001.

The Motion Picture also has one of my favourite scores and the visuals of the V’Ger are awe inspiring and beautiful.

I think the first and last movies are so oppositie from one another. The first one is considered too slow pace and the latest movie is the complete opposite as it’s so fast paced. Interestign that I find.

I guess this means I don’t think that new audience Abrmas brought will likely not like TMP. Which is a shame because I think there is some cool stuff in the movie, even if it is a bit slow in places.

@ 20 Captain Neill

I certainly hope that new Trekkers who came aboard after the last movie, will discover the original series, and all the Star Trek’s iterations. And I hope they discover what Leonard Nimoy said about the show in the 1973 convention story. Star Trek was entertainment, provocative and uplifiting.

I’d love to take part. I’ve seen TMP more times than I care to remember. But I’m slightly out of phase with your space-time continuum.


It’ll be about 3am in my timezone.

It looks like you guys had a hoot! I’ll try my best to join in for any future events… I’m almost certain this is the reason why Twitter was created!

Ugh, the God awful TMP. Thank heavens they made Khan next and not followed along the same lines as the dreck of the first film.

Are you in the UK as well?

Oooh Ahhh (looks at twitterfeed)

It happened already.

Blimey. That was short notice.

Hope you all enjoyed it. I was a sleep.

25. Yep.

Hey, just out of random curiosity, does anyone else here use the TMP DE Commentary as a sleep aid? I swear when I hear Robert Wise’s voice on the commentary, it reminds me alot like my grandfather reading me a story before bed. I just doze right off hearing his voice, creepy huh?


The disadvantage of being across the water.

Agh! Missed it!

Star Trek: The Motion Picture has always been my favority Star Trek film. Great special effects, great music and it was the ultimate exploration of new life in Star Trek.

Some people complain about the plodding pace of the fly around of the Enterprise, but don’t forget, this was the first time the refit Enterprise was ever seen, so I think they wanted to give the fans some time to focus on that.

I thought it was a great film and love watching it. At the same time, it was one of a kind and I was glad for the change of pace for Star Trek II. After all you can’t do the same thing over and over again.


It also still has one of the best film scores ever in my opinion.

The Cloud is still a beautiful piece from Jerry Goldsmith.

I love this movie very much although it got the worst Vulcan nerve pinch that I had ever seen.

There is an epic quality to TMP that no other ST film came close to surpassing. And the 2001 Director’s Cut improved on the original…IMHO.

Could still have been trimmed by 20-30 minutes. I remember seeing it in a theater a couple of times the first day it came out. The audience cheered during the opening credits and anytime an original cast member appeared on screen for the first time. And we howled with laughter at Kirk’s “thataway” comment to close the film. BUT…about a week later, I saw it again with a “normal” audience. And I remember noticing how I could hear people shifting in their seats during the Enterprise and V’Ger flybys….with what I realized was impatience or boredom. That’s when my fanboy-love started to lose it’s luster for TMP.

Still, I have to rate it in the Top 5 for shear ambition and epic scope.

Ready for Star Trek 2 The Wrath of KHANNNNNN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

@20. The Motion Sickness still holds a place in my heart as the first Trek movie, and it does have some very cool sequences and parts to it. But the pace of the movie is painfully slow and the Trek characters for much of the movie are joyless to watch.

@20 “I guess this means I don’t think that new audience Abrmas brought will likely not like TMP. Which is a shame because I think there is some cool stuff in the movie, even if it is a bit slow in places.”

I completely disagree. People today still like good movies, regardless of pacing or length. Look at the length and pacing of the LOTR films for example.

Unfortunately, Wise botched making TMP into one of the great Trek films, and that, combined with the lack of sentimentality that us old farts have for TMP, is why new Trek fans will not likely like it.

It is a decent hard-sf movie though.

ST:TMP still ranks as my favorite ST film, despite the changes in story, characterization, and action that would mark the later films (and believe me, I can’t watch ST:TWOK enough times).

Even when viewed today, TMP generates a sci-fi sense of awe and wonder about futuristic space travel which is rarely matched by the sequels. The relatively slow pacing supports the grandness and formality which makes the film unique. Many cite the opening Klingon battle, the Enterprise fly-around, and V’ger flyover (with Goldsmith’s score conveying the vastness) as favorite scenes, but the movie is so much more. The look and feel of Engineering, with its pulsating vibe, swirling plasma, and long conduits down the spine of the secondary hull, has never been equaled.

Those who haven’t seen the ST:TMP Director’s Edition should do so. It is the definitive version, IMO.

33. It’s slow-mo turn of the guy, that’s the problem. He looks like he’s just been inappropriately touched or something! :p

We’re so used to seeing an actor ‘spasm’ or contort their face in surprise, in reaction to the pinch and then collapse unconscious.

38–Agree about the Directors Cut. Robert Wise definitly cleaned things up a bit and changed the pacing a bit.

As an aside, I wish Paramount had given William Shatner his million dollars to redo the special effects for Star Trek V. I wonder if better special effects would have helped people warm to the movie a little more. I still loved it as much as I love any Star Trek (esp the character moments and music score), but it was my least favorite of the films. Improved special effects could go a long way to at least making the film look better.

Putting in my 2-cents, I really, really liked TMP because it presented such an awesome epic mystery on a grand sci-fi scale. I hated it, because it included the crew of the enterprise. This is not because I hate the crew of the enterprise, but because they were superfluous to the movie. they were UNNECESSARY!!! Spock was the only character that actually had an arc that mattered. Sure Kirk had to go through dealing with his “get back into the captains chair” issues, but that was really a bad attempt to give Shatner….Something….anything, to work with. I would love to take the entire V’ger Idea and play it out with a completely original set of characters. maybe just one guy, like in SOLARIS. That would be cool. anyways….that’s my 2-cents.

TMP: still better than trek 09.

except for the totally useless scene with the wormhole which added nothing at all to the plot.

Much as I love TWOK, I also love TMP despite its flaws. I really want Star Trek to take on more “big-idea science fiction” in the future, but I worry that I hope in vain after the way TMP polarized the audience.

@40 Damian, I don’t think Trek V would have been helped that much by better effects. They were still trapdoored into an impossible story. I will grant without hesitation that the effects were the worst of any of the movies, and I can’t fathom why Paramount wouldn’t approve the extra $$ in the budget to have them done right before the film was released.

BTW, I posted during the chat last night as “DavidW” and made several comments negative toward TMP, but I thought it was important to point out that I’m not a TMP hater at all. The scale and grandness of that movie is inescapable, even if the movie was flawed. I would have preferred a story that allowed us to enjoy the reunion of the characters more, and also about 40% less blue and gray in the Enterprise’s interiors and uniforms….

And I like the notion that the “machine planet” that rebuilt V’ger was actually the Borg homeworld!

@42 Re; “wormhole”

I’d disagree that the wormhole scene was pointless. It was specifically used as a device to demonstrate Kirk’s lack of experience with the redesigned Enterprise’s phaser cut-off due to the antimatter imbalance.

The novelization went into this in much greater detail. It talked about how Kirk had seen this cutoff idea midway through the Enterprise redesign plans, and vehemently opposed it. He assumed that his name and his experience would carry enough weight to ensure that the proposal was nixed. So he never followed up, and assumed it was implemented.


you just made my day.


obviously you’re a guy. do you enjoy her baldness too?


you put too many N’s and too little A’s in there, Commodore, sir.

it’s my favorite as you get time to get comfortable immersed in the trek universe

48. That’s a very good point actually. Trek immersion. So many scenes are dependant on SFX. Imagine if it was in 3-D or virtual reality.

@42 Re; “wormhole”

The wormhole scene was one of the best parts of the Trek becuase it finally tied up for the audience how in real physics warp drive could work. I love the wormhole scene!