Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Edition

Many, who were not previously fans of the television series, jumped on board the franchise two feet first when this feature-length film was first released in 1982.  Mostly that was because it was a much better film than the first film, Star Trek: The Motion Picture.  A big leap in production values and story led to people paying attention to this deep space saga.  This rerelease of the film on blu-ray is because it is the Director’s Cut.  Truth be told there is not much difference between this version and the theatrical one, so if you own it a purchase of this one might not be warranted…unless you are a huge fan.

The crew of the Enterprise is taking part in some routine training maneuvers under the command of Admiral James T. Kirk (William Shatner – from television’s Boston Legal).  Kirk seems to realize that this might be his last mission of a long and impressive military career.  It becomes apparent very quickly that if it is his last it is going to be anything but routine.

That is because Khan (Ricardo Montalban – from television’s Fantasy Island) is back and looking for revenge.  He and his band of genetic supermen have attacked the space station Regula One and robbed it of a top-secret tool called Project Genesis. On top of that, they have gained control of a Federation Starship.  With all this firepower Khan has set his sights on his arch-enemy, Kirk.  This means that a big battle will ensue with only one man coming out on top.

Mostly everything about this film works.  Right off the top, this film does well because the villain is a guy that has to be taken seriously.  He is no lightweight.  A great villain in the realm of science fiction films.  The music is decent and the special effects (with help from George Lucas) are great looking.  Direction is a strength with Nicholas Meyer (Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Volunteers).  He does a great job with his camera focusing on the important things and keeping the action sequences realistic.  A surprise for me is the acting of William Shatner.  Usually, he trends towards hammy overacting, but in this one, he is unusually contained (for him) yet emotional.  He and the rest of the cast bring the quality you have come to expect based on the television series.

Bottom line is that they have returned to the things that made the series so successful for so long.  There is an epic conflict, a well-developed story, opera-like over-the-top acting and dramatic moments, danger, and heroic moments.

Special Features:

  • Digital Copy
  • Audio Commentary: Director Nicholas Meyer.
  • Audio Commentary: Director Nicholas Meyer and Manny Coto (Theatrical Version).
  • Text Commentary: Michael and Denise Okuda (Director’s Cut).
  • Library Computer (Theatrical Version)
  • The Genesis Effect: Engineering The Wrath of Khan
  • Production
    • Captain’s Log
    • Designing Khan
    • Original Interviews with William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, and Ricardo Montalban
    • Where No Man Has Gone Before: The Visual Effects of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
    • James Horner: Composing Genesis
  • The Star Trek Universe
    • Collecting Star Trek‘s Movie Relics
  • A Novel Approach
  • Starfleet Academy SciSec Brief 002: Mystery Behind Ceti Alpha VI