A dedicated film maker by the name of Tommy Kraft has created a full length feature motion picture set in the Star Trek universe. It’s called Star Trek Horizon, and it released today after three years in production. Kraft put the project into preproduction in 2012, and by May 19, 2014 his Kickstarter campaign had concluded with a funding level of 226%. With a mere $22.6 thousand in hand, Kraft set into motion the production of a fan film that is a marvel of economy, yet entertaining and well crafted on nearly every level. In addition to being the film’s writer, director and executive producer, he has even written the entire score himself, which has just been released. Surprisingly, this is also very high quality and quite professionally done. It is rare indeed that one person possesses this much creative ability and talent.
In Star Trek Horizon, set in the Trek timeline some time after the events of the fifth television series Enterprise, the Romulan Empire is the one starfaring civilization not willing to join the rest of the civilized galaxy in peaceful cooperation. They subvert, and go to war with, the fledgling Coalition of Planets, a young alliance of worlds led by Earth. Desperate for a chance to gain the upper hand in the war, the Coalition forms an alliance with T’mar, a Romulan deserter, in the hopes that she can provide valuable intelligence on her former masters. The film covers the exploits of the NX-04 Discovery, with its commander, Captain Harrison Hawke, played by veteran actor Paul Lang, as they work to unravel the Romulan agenda.
Star Trek Horizon cleans up a lot of the dangling story threads left over when Enterprise was abruptly canceled before the full series story arc could be played out, but it also tells its own story, and tells it well. It is well acted, well directed, and the effects in many cases are so good that we can frankly say we’ve seen worse come from the official theatrical Star Trek motion pictures.
Our only complaint is the continuous and heavy use of soft filters on the camera, as though the blurriness of the images is not meant as a stylistic choice, but instead simply hides seams that Kraft didn’t think he could hide any other way. This is probably due to the fact that nearly every set was virtual rather than physical, so a little blur hides a lot of potential problems. At times it’s appropriate to the atmosphere and environment. At others, it’s just a distraction, much as J.J. Abrams apparent addiction to lens flares. That said, we are fully prepared to sit down and watch this beautifully crafted fan film on the big screen with the lights out, bowls of hot buttered popcorn at the ready. Tommy Kraft has an incredible achievement to his name, and we hope that this is the beginning of even greater accomplishments to come, for the entire cast and crew.
Star Trek Horizon is a labor of love, and it shows in every frame.