First we trekked, then we trekked into darkness, and now we’re trekking beyond. I can’t wait for the fourth film, Star Trek to Walmart.
Star Trek Beyond features the crew of the USS Enterprise boldly going where no one has gone before, making new friends, and facing new enemies. Is it the final frontier of filmmaking or a star system too far? Well, let’s take a look at the trailer and find out.
So who stars in this film? The cast of the first two films is back, including Chris Pine as Kirk, Zachary Quinto as Spock, Karl Urban as McCoy, Zoe Saldana as Uhura, Simon Pegg as Scotty, John Cho as Sulu, and the late Anton Yelchin as Chekov. New characters include Idris Elba of The Jungle Book as Krall and Sofia Boutella of Kingsman: The Secret Service as Jaylah.
The director is Justin Lin, responsible for bringing us several of the Fast & Furious movies. Expect a faster pace and more action in this version of Star Trek, even more so than JJ Abrams brought to his films.
The trailer opens as Kirk ponders his place in Starfleet. “My dad joined Starfleet because he believed in it,” he says. “I joined on a dare.” Already I’m struck by how character-focused this trailer is, and I can really get behind that. “You spent all this time trying to be your father,” McCoy tells him. Well, his father was Thor, so that’s not an unreasonable use of time. “Now you’re wondering just what it means to be you,” the doctor goes on. Generally, it means speaking with lots of unusual pauses, getting your shirt ripped open for no reason, and womanizing every female in sight.
Someone comments on how easy it is to get lost (in every sense of the word) in the vastness of space. Doggone it, Kirk, I knew we should have stopped and asked for directions! The Enterprise gears up for takeoff, and McCoy asks, “You really want to head back out there, huh?” I understand his reluctance; it seems like every time the leave atmosphere, they get shot at.
This time is no exception, as about a billion kamikaze spaceships attack the Enterprise, crashing through the hull. “They’re boarding us,” Uhura says. No kidding; you’d think they’d use the doors instead of making their own. Krall and his army come in shooting, and Kirk gives the order to abandon ship. The escape pods drop toward a nearby planet, and–spoilers–the Enterprise basically gets blown up.
On the planet below, Scotty meets Jaylah, who claims to know why they’re here. Because the ship crashed? Meanwhile, Uhura and some of the other crew are captured by Krall, and she warns him that “Our captain will come for us, and mercy will be the last thing on his mind.” “I am counting on it,” says Krall. I’m desperately hoping he’ll foil my plan and kill me.
Scotty nearly falls off a cliff, Uhura bangs on a door, and Spock and McCoy have a conversation about fear of death that reminds me of their interacting worldviews in the classic show and movies. We see lots of punching, shooting, falling, and explosions, and Jaylah shoots down the idea of a rescue mission. “Everyone who goes there, he kills,” she says of Krall. “Those are our friends out there,” says Scotty. “We cannae just leave them behind.” They’re not even wearing red shirts!
“Unity is not your strength,” Krall declares. “It is a weakness.” Says the guy who commands a billion ships all attacking in perfect unison. “I think you’re underestimating humanity,” says Kirk. Clearly he hasn’t seen this year’s election debacle. “Hold on to something!” Sulu shouts, channeling his best Ian Malcolm in The Lost World. Kirk goes flying on a motorcycle, a ship falls out of the sky, Jaylah screams, and Kirk commands his crew to “Fire at will!” But what if my will is to wait about an hour to fire?
The title comes up as Beyond, with Star Trek popping up above it as sort of an afterthought. And the trailer ends as Kirk goes to sit in the captain’s seat, very politely asking Jaylah’s pardon, only to have her snatch it out from under him. “He likes that seat,” Scotty points out. It’s the only one with a built-in cup holder.
So based on the trailer, do I recommend this movie? Yes, yes I do. It’s got plenty of action and fun, but it also looks like it’s taking time to delve into our favorite characters and what makes them tick. It seems to be keeping the spirit of the original series while kicking it up a notch for our modern generation. If you’re a fan of the franchise, definitely check this one out.
Who knows? If they make enough money on this film, they might be able to afford a colon for the next film’s title.
Star Trek Beyond is owned by Paramount Pictures.