Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Never Surrender

For one night only the documentary looking back at Galaxy Quest played as part of Fathom Events. Just in time for the film's 20th anniversary, Screen Junkies puts together a solid documentary with interviews from director Dean Parisot, screenwriter Robert Gordon, editor Don Zimmerman, producer Mark Johnson, fans (including a pair of notable Star Trek: The Next Generation stars), and the cast (Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell, Daryl Mitchell, Justin Long, and others) of the 1999 film that examines the troubled history of bringing the film to screen and its enduring legacy as the best Star Trek movie ever made.

Both spoofing and honoring the original Star Trek, with a mix of humor, drama, and sci-fi, it's not surprising to learn that the studio didn't know quite what to make of Galaxy Quest. Never Surrender: A Galaxy Quest Documentary is a loving look at the under-performing box office release that has found a rabid fan base over the years. There are some nice tidbits here, including Harold Ramis signing as the original director for the film, stories from the set, and the studio's original choice for Jason Nesmith.

The movie plays well with fans, who are obviously the target audience here. Prior to its screening there was an extended introduction from the Screen Junkies team featuring footage not used in the documentary, an honest trailer, and various Screen Junkies takes on the film and its place in Star Trek lore. Given the length of this, I was a bit concerned how much the team would inject themselves into the documentary, but (thankfully) they stepped back and let others do the talking once the documentary began. While not quite the must-see I was hoping for, there's certainly enough here for fans of Galaxy Quest to seek it out (including Dean Parisot relaying one hell of a sick burn Alan Rickman made during the filming of Allen's most emotional scene).

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