Star Trek Beyond – film review
Fortunately, the trailers were off.
Star Trek Beyond is a good action movie—a darn good action movie. Fights are well-choreographed enough that not one of them feels choreographed, and while they are certainly abundant, I didn’t find them superfluous. The effects—real and digital—are fantastic, and—as with the fight scenes—they’re not just gee-wow whiz-bang effects. They actually support the story.
Speaking of, there is a story. It is a good story—a little choppy in spots, but solid and easy to follow, with just enough surprises to keep me interested. The theme of “strength in unity” is well-developed without beating viewers over the head with it.
Characters fare well in Star Trek Beyond, as well. Most of the main cast get some fun character-development moments. I think Kirk, Spock, Scotty, and Uhura fared the best, but there were good moments for all the main cast. I think my favorite part of the movie was how well the characters finally jelled as a crew. They’re not the exact same characters as in TOS and its associated movies. For me, that’s okay. This series of movies is a reboot. It’s not the original, and I don’t expect or want it to be. But it’s a lot of fun to watch the new characters developing the same familiar banter and camaraderie that I enjoyed in TOS and its movies.
There are numerous nods to TOS and its fandom in the movie. Famous lines make a return (most memorably, Bones’s “Dammit, Jim, I’m a doctor, not a ___”). The hubby and I both had fun trying to spot the “Easter eggs” scattered throughout the film (and we’re not die-hard, hardcore fans, so I’m sure we missed a lot). The memorial acknowledgements to Leonard Nimoy and Anton Yelchin were awesome and very appropriate. They will be missed. A lot.
Star Trek Beyond is not perfect. As aforementioned, the pacing got a bit choppy in spots. The villain…was interesting for most of the movie, but the complicated denouement to his story arc did not work well and felt out-of-place. The solution for Krall’s drones was very entertaining but a bit too predictable. I could see it coming the proverbial mile away, and I would have liked to be surprised there. There were moments that really stretched my suspension of disbelief. They were cool to watch, just…very implausible in an otherwise well-reasoned story.
That said, these things are quibbles. The movie as a whole was a grand romp, and with all the lousy stuff in the news lately, I greatly enjoyed watching a movie that holds as its basic premise humanity getting its act together, uniting, celebrating individual strengths, and leaping to the stars—all without completely destroying good old Earth. I thoroughly enjoyed Star Trek Beyond, recommend seeing it on the big screen, and hope to see it again.
Release Date: July 7, 2016 (Australia)
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Original Title: Star Trek Beyond
Alcohol/Drugs: 1 (some social drinking)
Language: 2 (fairly mild cursing, no f-bombs, some deity and stronger)
Sexuality: 1 (innuendo)
Violence: 3 (lots of combat and explosions, minor characters die but usually not in gory manner)
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