Don’t laugh, but when you think about it, James T. Kirk, captain of the starship Enterprise, really is one of the towering characters of 20th-century pop culture, and the reason why The Wrath of Khan remains the best of the Trek flicks is because it recognizes that and treats him as such. Under the guidance of director Nicholas Meyer, Kirk gained a strong, Ahab-like nemesis in the genetically enhanced Khan — while William Shatner gave his last great performance before becoming an interstellar punchline.
There’s not that much footage added to The Director’s Edition — less than five minutes — and it’s mostly scene extensions and alternate takes; they add a little flavor to an already hearty dish. There’s also a pleasant commentary from Meyer, as well as a running subtitle commentary from Trek expert Michael Okuda, pointing out little bits of trivia that might win you drinks at a Star Trek convention happy hour.
The highlights of the second disc are a bundle of interviews, both new (from Shatner, Meyer, Leonard Nimoy, and producer Harve Bennett) and old (check out the groovy pink pimp suit Nimoy wears in a 1982 spot), that detail the making of the film that, by most accounts, saved Star Trek as we know it.