first lemme ask you if .. you are ready to
“.. boldly go where NO ONE has gone before ?!”


beware : spoilers galore once inside : but it will only enhance your near-IMAX experience
for the well-crafted storyline understood : your outer senses are fully at the mercy of what you will now hear AND see ..

as a long-time “trekkie” oh how I welcome this young & fresh installment of Star Trek .
regardless of actual age, William Shatner and his crew has been becoming fat as movie sequels advanced and their expression on their faces were :
“oh we’ve been to where no one has gone before .. and come back . so nothing can surprise us further in THIS World.”
we miss the challenging attitude shown in the original TV episodes of Star Trek .. truly “bold”.

I saw it at iPark Mall . surprising to see the supposedly largest shopping complex in Korea (challenged by the new Centum City in Busan, or Pusan) NOT packed with people on a hot weekend in Spring . yes the deep recession is taking its toll in stark difference to see neighboring shopping haven of Myung Dong packed with young Japanese tourists here for the low Korean Won .  add to this the globally spreading Mexican Swine Flu epidemic .

ofcourse in this download society you don’t get to see many actual movies other than (semi) IMAX versions . for it is very much worth the extra Dollars and Wons over the normal version, which put you seated reminiscent of ‘Star Trek: The Experience’ theme adventure showcased at the Las Vegas Hilton from January 1998 through August 2008 .. hey, you’ve been there haven’t you ?! no, it wasn’t out-of-this-World but still the closest thing next to the real thing .

this action-packed beginner of all Star Treks was very much entertaining, opposed to the rather slow-paced brain-teasers shown on the original TV series . but to the tune of Star Wars fame : it simply is NOT logical that earlier time-frame stories have more complicated science trivia such as time travel . the spaceships in Star Wars Episode I was far more futuristic than the original Episode IV and this starter-installment of Star Trek seem to have more advanced visual designs . then there is the feaseability of ultra-long range transporters (!) pinpointing multiple targets (!!) moving at warp speed (!!!) add to this : space-jumping into the atmosphere and sky-diving straight into Jedi-like sword battles (?) do NOT compute in Star Trek database . still the universal battle scenes are what make this prequel IMAX worthy .

but like earlier Hollywood critics I gotta agree they picked damn good casting models or actors for Spock’s role from childhood through this Zachary Quinto personality . matter of fact : the whole major cast of the USS Enterprise was a great set of younger look-alikes of the original TV-series . moreover they act damn alike their older selves, and was it the hairdo ? or just me seeing Beyonce Knowles in Zoe Saldana as the younger flirty role of Uhura . and she kissing Spock .. it just so is NOT logical . or perhaps it was how it should have been .

well I plan to see this again or a third time before the few days of IMAX showing is over 😉
if you are new to Star Trek I suggest you glance over some of the spoilers available on the .Net BEFORE going to the theatre because the movie starts in the middle of this storyline, when Romulan mining ship Narada arrive through a black hole to revenge the fateful destruction of their planet in their future .
if you are from the States and accompanying a Korean friend to see this : I suggest you take your time explaining the Star Trek norm for there aren’t many Star Trek fans in the Orient due to other more easily approachable robotic anime stories .

– enjoy –


Star Trek IMAX DMR Digital 2D Version showing May 7th(Thu) ~ 20th(Wed) in following 3 CGV Theatres in Seoul only .
(actual show dates may be extended but limited here by earlier on-line search date limits)
add to this DaeGu (TaeGu) makes the total of 4 IMAX CGV Theatres in all of South Korea .

sure, you have more selection of theatres AND regions for the normal version
but hey : this is the story of how it all started and you gotta have the “IMAX EXPERIENCE” 😉
(however know this is a digitized film version and NOT an original IMAX)

luckily Korea although now a Technically advanced nation,
is not so much a Sci-Fi nation even not as close to neighboring Japan with the Otaku craze,
so monitoring seating availability : the seats would fill up only imminent to show time
but the better seats would be filling almost half a day in advance .

(you will be able to reserve seats on-line at links below
but favourable viewing angles will be gone as available seats fall below 50% mark)


even those living in the port city of Busan (Pusan): I urge you to make this the excuse to shop in the Capital for a day :
2:40 ~ 2:50 hours by KTX bullet train which will land you at anther futuristic Seoul KTX Station
then a mere 2 subway stops South or 10 minutes taxi ride to the humongous iPark Mall 6~7th floor where CGV Imax is showing .

afterwards eat out at one of the many variation of restaurants on 4th~ 8th floor of the same complex
to finish off venturing into YongSan Electronics Market only a connected walking path away .

if you plan to stay over in the Capital, I suggest you try one of the new “residences” in Seoul
becoming popular in the Millennium with boutique-style decor for half the price of deluxe hotels .
( much more information available if you search for my alternate blogs on “Shopping Complexes in Seoul”
or “Alternate Residences in Seoul” )


CGV IMAX YongSan aprox.392 seats
[SHOW TIME] 9:30 am, 12:15, 3:00, 5:45, 8:30, 11:15 pm,
[WeekEnds] 9:20 am, 12:05, 2:50, 5:35, 8:20, 11:05 pm.

CGV IMAX WangSimNi aprox.280 seats
[SHOWTIME] 9:00 am, 11:40, 2:20, 5:00, 7:40, 10:20 pm, 1 am (same on WeekEnds) ,

CGV IMAX iLSan  aprox.250 seats
[SHOWTIME] 9:45 am, 12:25, 3:05, 5:45, 8:25, 11:05 pm,
[WeekEnds]  9:35 am, 12:20, 3:00, 5:40, 8:20, 11 pm.


related sites :

iParkMall site has a guide in Korean and even English, Japanese and Chinese
but the floor-by-floor map is most extensive in Korean .

CGV Theatres official site in South Korea
where members can reserve seats in advance .

independent movie reservation sites in South Korea are (used more for concerts)


[ Movie Theatre Ticket Prices in South Korea ]
OK here is the rule-of-thumb when assessing what to view when :

  • Normal and Digital Versions matinee first showing (usually 7:30 ~ 8 am) including weekends = W4,000
  • Normal and Digital Versions on Mon~Thu = W7,000
  • Normal and Digital Versions on Fri/Sat/Sun = W8,000
  • Normal and Digital Versions on Fri/Sat late night last 2 showings (usually 11 pm and 1:30 am) = W7,000
  • Normal and Digital Versions on Sunday late night last showing (usually 11 pm ~ midnight) = W7,000
  • IMAX and “Digitized” IMAX matinee including weekends W90,000
  • IMAX and “Digitized” IMAX including weekends W10,000


[ How Koreans Purchase Movie Tickets ]
being the most networked nation on Earth circa 2009, you would purchase tickets on-line AND pick seats and print out a voucher (or memorize a reservation number). once at the theatre you would input the voucher or your reservation number at one of the ticket vending machines . you can usually cancel (as a whole and NOT a portion such as taking 2 persons out of a reservation of 4) on-line up to 20 minutes prior to listed movie time . there-after you have to cancel on-site BEFORE listed commencement time . (actual movies starts after about 15 minutes of ads and trailers from the listed time)

also Movie Theatres are the one place younger Koreans are most likely to use their accumulated “Points” from a wide array of sources including Credit Cards and all sorts of MemberShip Cards (like bookstores and department stores) where Telecommunication MemberShip such as SKT and KTF is the most used .


[ Couple Seats ]
why ? you might wonder would Koreans pay a hefty sum to go to a movie theatre when – after a substantial time of Seasonal search – you can download a full movie in a few movies .. one (after *immediate premiere dates matching those of L.A. Area, crisp, crisp visuals and stomach punching sound effects) of the larger reasons is that global, elusive practice of um, dating . pronounced “Kouple-Seok” it has exactly 3 variations of meanings :

  1.  any normal seat in a movie theatre where you can lift the arm-rest so that you can hug your date,
  2. separate two-seaters that are usually at the front, sides or rear of a normal theatre depending upon the location AND the theatre company,
  3. couple-dedicated hall where ALL seats are 2-bound, resembling Las Vegas show VIP seats, minus the table, among a dozen of normal halls in a given theatre . most noteably CGV Theatre in ApGuJeong Branch (Subway Line 3 ApGuJeong Station Exit 3) has even a brand name “Sweet Box” attached to it 😉 .. what ? oh, the catch : it’s W12,000 weekdays and W15,000 in the weekends -_-

oh and then there is the matter of secluded Karaoke Bars and DVD-Rooms – which is the nearest thing to a “Lovers’ Lane” Koreans have access to in a massively concentrated living environment .. but again, that is another story ~



if however you still opt to download : side-angled and soft-focused but viewable Russian CAM versions from ripping group NiCE and DEViSE was released on May 8th into binary newsgroups and available in a few members cafe in a handful of download portals in South Korea as of dawn May 11th . a galactical difference between CAM versions and the crystal-crisp IMAX can be witnessed 10 minutes into the movie where miniscule shuttle crafts from the attacked starship USS Kelvin escape . and you should take seat up-front to experience the holocaust screen 25 years later when the brand-new USS Enterprise arrive out of warp speed into a trap where 7 federation starships are being blasted out of this Universe – reminiscent of another gigantic scene from ‘StarShip Troopers’ (1997) where Johnnie Rico’s starship is decimated right above the “bug planet” .

amen oh I mean : “Live Long and Prosper”

[ supplemental log 2009.5.13 ]
insiders have revealed on interviews the existance of Easter Eggs hidden in several scenes
including the 7-starship armada deathtrap mentioned in the above paragraph .

they say viewers would have to wait for the release of DVD’s
for you really have to look close to find them .
and justly so : current CAM versions are focused-out you’d be glad to make out all the small shuttle crafts 😉

[ PreQuel to the 2009 movie Star Trek ]
OK you’ve enjoyed the movie so much you want more ?! ofcourse
or even if you’re a layman trying to figure what gives on the unfamiliar storyline ?

a 4-part sleak comic book entitled ‘Star Trek CountDown’ has been released 2 weeks prior to the movie’s WorldWide release
even available on iTunes & Apple Store, but NOT yet in portable Kindle version at as of mid-May -_-

embedded in the latter Star Trek TNG – The Next Generation era : it tells the finer story
of how Nero, captain of the Romulan mining vessel came to clash with the older Ambassador Spock
eventually falling into the black hole that starts this 2009 movie reviewed here .

no, NOT recommended unless you can get it for free and blowing time while waiting in a hair salon watching in a portable machine 😉 for the story is so feeble it barely links up to the point where the above movie starts -_-

[ further recommended viewings ]
if you want to brain-lock yourself to really make-believe the story building AND the outcome of this movie : search and collect the following former episodes of Star Trek TV series and/or movie titles which loosely connect to this movie’s before-and-after .

  • Star Trek TNG The Next Generation Season 5 Episodes 7 & 8 “Unification” Part I & II (from where the future Spock in the above movie comes to be),
  • Star Trek Nemesis released December 2002 (several years after which the future part of the above movie starts),

– Korea Tech BLog, May 2009 –