I have to admit – when the first teaser for this came out, along with Justin Lin’s name attached to it, I was really worried. This was looking like Star Trek: Fast and Furious. Thankfully, all the subsequent promos were a lot better. And after the last – rather disappointing outing from the Enterprise – Into Darkness, I’m quite relieved and happy to say that things get more than just back on track when they head – Beyond.
So as things stand, life has become a bit routine and monotonous aboard the Enterprise (if that were possible!) Friends and family are being missed and alternate jobs are being considered. That’s when Kirk decides to take up a new search and rescue mission to another planet as they are the best-resourced to carry it out. Things go South when they’re attacked and then marooned on an unknown planet. The crew are separated and stuck in pairs and must find their way together to combat supervillain Krall who has his own evil plans.
What really works well in this installment is the fusion of the old school, nostalgia of the original series with the freshness and special effects that would be possible only today. Add to that director Justin Lin’s flair for the big, showy action setpieces, you have a very potent, enjoyable Star Trek adventure. It really felt watching an extended episode of the Original Series. Spock and McCoy are a hoot together and Scotty finds himself stuck with a welcome addition to the party in the form of an alien – Jaylah, played by Sofia Boutella, who you might (not) remember as the ass-kicking, fleet-bladed henchwoman Gazelle from Kingsman.
A bit light on plot and familiar in its ways, Beyond makes up for those with some fantastic eye-catching visuals and clever use of 3D – which is a rarity in live-action movies these days. Even though I’ve still not quite warmed up to Chris Pine as Captain Kirk, most of the cast is in fine form although I wish Idris Elba’s Krall – cool voice and all was a bit more menacing. And they’re well aided by a perfectly rousing score. There’s a genuinely moving and well-done tribute to our original favourite Vulcan – Leonard Nimoy and it made me sad to see the super-talented Anton Yelchin on the screen in one of his last outings.
Star Trek Beyond doesn’t exactly go where no man has gone before but wherever it does go, it does so in a really enjoyable, spectacular way. And we’re ready for more. LLAP!
My Score: 8 on 10
Star Trek Beyond
Genre: Sci-Fi, Action
Directed by: Justin Lin
Starring: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Idris Elba, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg
Running time: 120 minutes