ByscreenPhiles, writer at
writing from a not-so-secret location in Washington, DC

What both Star Trek and the Power Rangers have in common is Roberto Ocri, who was working on both projects before he left development on the later to direct the former.

The thing is, Orci has a tendency to write about things that he doesn't seem to know anything about (and apparently has no interest in learning).

Let's look five movies that he's had a hand in ruining.

  • Star Trek: Into Darkness

Ocri wrote (along with Alex Kurtzman and Damon Lindelof–who brings all sorts of baggage of his own) a scene in the opening of Star Trek: Into Darkness where a cold fusion bomb freezes an active volcano.

The problem with that scenario is that cold fusion actually involves a nuclear reaction that happens at room temperature (which is theoretical at this point), though what you should take away is that it has nothing to do with ice, or cold for that matter.

And while I would have preferred that Orci and company had at least attempted to wrestle with the science, that's small tomatoes compared to the stuff he seemingly gets paid to frak up.

To start, Orci doesn't seem to respect Star Trek fans very much. If he did they wouldn't have had Dr. McCoy (Karl Urban) injecting a tribble with Khan's blood to see what its effects were.

Why not, you may ask? Because it's a tribble! It literally makes no sense at all!

And what about the Prime Directive? You know, that little rule the Federation has in reference to not meddling in the affairs of developing cultures, a rule thrown out even earlier than cold fusion was.

And it's not like Captain Kirk (Bill Shatner) in the original series wasn't above breaking a few rules–okay, more than a few–though it wasn't typically his first response.

So how about I stop dancing around what irritates me, and get to the heart of the matter, when we learn that that John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) is actually...

Wait for it....

By which I mean that Star Trek: Into Darkness is essentially a remake of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.

I am all for remaking movies that weren't that good to begin with, but Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan ranks among the best of the Trek films, so for Paramount to muddy it for anyone who haven't yet seen it is criminal (or at least should be).

And you know what? I wouldn't even have minded Star Trek: Into Darkness if it had somehow improved upon what clearly inspired it.

It doesn't, though that's not to say that it isn't attractive and competently-made, but for the life of me I don't know what the purpose or point of the movie is (other than perhaps taking away just about everything that made Star Trek so engaging in the first place).

So, while Into Darkness was by no means terrible, it was in a way worse because it's a well-made copy of a movie absolutely no one asked for.

  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Did I mention that Ocri (along with Kurtzman, who was his writing partner before they ended their relationship) also wrote The Amazing Spider-Man 2? You know, the movie where Max Dillon/Electro (Jamie Foxx) accidentally gaining the ability to control electricity somehow removed the gap that existed between his two front teeth?

The same movie that took Spider-Man's relatively simple origin (high school student bitten by a radioactive spider, gains the proportional abilities of a spider. He learns "with great power comes great responsibility." after a thief he allows to escape ends up killing his Uncle Ben) and rehashed it into an overly complex mess?

Like in the case of Star Trek: Into Darkness Orci and his writing partners took an established character and changed him in ways that no one asked for or wanted.

  • The Transformers and The Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

When I learned that The Transformers were being made into a movie, a nerdgasm the like which I had never known ran through my body. I was never a huge fan of the cartoons, but just the idea that someone was bringing giant robots to life that had the ability to change into vehicles (despite never quite explaining how it was even possible because things acceptable in a children's cartoon should meet a higher standard in movies) to the big screen made my inner child giddy.

Then a funny thing happened: I saw both The Transformers and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and felt my dreams curdle like milk kept long after the expiration date.

I don't know. Maybe I am getting old or something but lately I have come to expect movies to at least have a semblance of a plot and character development; even one based on a popular line of children's toys.

And the thing is, while Michael Bay gets a lot of flack (some of it deserved) for directing movies were titiliation and explosions take the place of plot and character development, as far as I know he's not writing the stuff that he directs, so at least that can't be laid at his feet.

  • The Island

You might recall the plot of Michael Bay's 2005 movie, The Island (as far as I am aware, the only flop from Bay) that revolved around Lincoln Six-Echo (Ewan McGregor) who eventually learns that he's a clone that existed only for the purpose of spare parts.

Prior I may have sounded critical of Roberto Orci, but have to admit that The Island (written with Caspian Tredwell-Owen and Alex Kurtzman) is a great idea for a movie.

And it is, though the problem is that there's reason to suspect that the idea originated not with Orci, Kurtzman and Tredwell-Owen but from a story by Bob Sullivan and a screenplay by Sullivan, Myrl A. Shriebman, Ron Smith and Robert S. Fiveson first seen in a movie called Parts: The Clonus Horror (MST3K did an episode on it, which I though that it didn't deserve).

And I am not the only person who's noticed the similarities, which isn't necessarily to say that either Orci, Kurtzman or Tredwell-Owen stole the idea for their screenplay.

That being said, both movies are remarkably similar.

So as far as I am concerned, the man at least partially responsible for some pretty mediocre movies directing (and probably writing in some capacity) Star Trek III doesn't exactly have me bursting with confidence.


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