By Marc Bernardin
November 12, 1999 at 05:00 AM EST

Ah, to be a geek. laugh if you will, but there’s something inspiring about the intense passion and clarity of purpose that beats in the heart of a true Star Trek fanatic. Think about it: Do you love anything that makes you spend all of your money, all of your time, and all of your energy on it—and all you expect in return is some audiovisual pleasure?

The documentary Trekkies attempts to penetrate the freaky mystique that surrounds Star Trek worshipers. Of course, it tells us, they’re people, too, albeit people like Denis Bourguignon, a dentist who has turned his entire office into the theme restaurant-ish Star Base Dental. They’re everyday folks who seem a wee bit touched, and you’d think that a movie called ”Trekkies” would help us understand them. Instead, it simply portrays them as lovable but unfathomable kooks.

The indie comedy Free Enterprise, on the other hand, thinks it knows exactly what makes the inner geek tick—it’s the need to be seen as normalized fan boys like Mark (Will & Grace’s Eric McCormack) and Robert (Rafer Weigel), sci-fi obsessives who still manage to drive convertibles, land babes, work in the biz, and keep their cool when making first contact with the God Who Walks Among Mortals himself, William Shatner. Unfortunately, we know that this just isn’t the case. The hard truth is that most droolers are happy to be like the fans in Trekkies, living their lives just to the left of reality, and not like the hipster nerds of Free Enterprise, who have shaped reality to suit them. Trekkies: B- Free Enterprise: C