May 27, 2013

Lots of Running in Star Trek Into Darkness

Of course I went to see Star Trek Into Darkness. I’m a huge Star Trek fan.

After about a week of letting it digest, I just realized that the characters did a lot of running in this movie. Like, an AWFUL LOT of running. They could marketed the movie as “Starfleet Academy’s Cross Country Team.”

I think I can talk about this with giving away any spoilers.

You’d think that in a Sci-fi movie they’d spend all their time sitting in their spaceships as they float around space. But they spend a ridiculous amount of time sprinting and running.

The opening sequence which was shown in a lot of trailers has Kirk and “Bones” running away from some angry aliens on the planet Nibiru. They’re running, not riding on a hovercraft, futuristic jet pack, or even riding some alien horse thing (well, they were supposed to ride the alien horse thing, but Kirk shot it by accident).

Kirk and "Bones" running away from aliens on Nibiru (source)
Kirk and “Bones” running away from aliens on Nibiru (image source)


There is a particularly appropriate scene that highlights the crossover between Star Trek and running. In this scene I’m talking about, the Engineer Montgomery Scott (Scotty) is running down a very long room. The way that Pegg sells the scene makes it actually a very funny. This article says that Pegg ran so fast that he outran the motorized vehicle holding the camera. After the 3rd taping of running all out, he apparently threw up!

Simon Pegg channeling his Run, Fatboy, Run character while running in Star Trek Into Darkness (Image Source)

A particular irony is that Scotty is played by Simon Pegg who starred in the 2007 movie Run, Fatboy, Run, which features Pegg’s character ‘running’ a marathon in London.

The characters spend a lot of time running while they’re on the ship too. Must be a really large ship!

Who needs a track when you need to run around your 370 meter long ship? (image source)
Who needs a track when you need to run around your 370 meter long ship? (image source)

One more running scene I’d like to highlight is Spock running through a futuristic San Francisco. He’s sprinting really fast in this scene for a rather long distance. It would have probably been a pretty grueling run. Either Starfleet trains their officers well, or half-Vulcan physiology gives him an athletic advantage.

Spock sprinting through a future San Francisco (source)
Spock sprinting through a future San Francisco (source)

One thing that I really liked in this scene was that among the futuristic cars on the streets of San Francisco, a traditional trolley streetcar was also shown. I thought it was nice that they included that.

I’m not quite sure what point I was trying to make with this post. Probably just highlighting that even in a pseudo-utopian future, we’ll still have to run a lot. Multiple sources indicate that Starfleet Academy does have a cross-country running team. Marathon training even into the 23rd century!

UPDATE June 21

I found these two great animated gifs on tumblr that show some more running.



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  1. LOL! My dad keeps on talking about this movie! He’s a big Star Trek fan. I guess a lot of action movies have running scenes. Never thought about how exhausting it’d be for the actors 😛

  2. jygsawpuzzle says:

    best part about the running was that they show the whole body running unlike the Tom Cruise scenes where you only see his upper torso “running”