The crew of the USS Enterprise explore the furthest reaches of deep space, only to be ambushed and marooned on an uncharted planet.
Star Trek Beyond (2016)
Directed by Justin Lin
Written by Simon Pegg and Doug Jung
Starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Idris Elba, Sofia Boutella
Sequel to 2013's Star Trek Into Darkness
Oscar Nominations - Best Makeup
Star Trek Beyond suffered more setbacks than I can count. They had a rushed production schedule, then the trailer received negative feedback, then Anton Yelchin died in a tragic accident. It seemed like this film was doomed from the start, what with J.J. Abrams leaving to helm the new Star Wars and Fast & Furious alum Justin Lin taking over. This is one situation where I'm happy to have been proven wrong. Star Trek Beyond is a worthy successor to the first two sci-fi epics, as it does justice to the world of Gene Roddenberry and brings something new and exciting to the table.
The main cast remains exemplary, all of them perfectly cast and comfortable in their roles. This film dealt a lot with the theme of legacy, with Kirk (Chris Pine) trying to do right by his own father and Spock (Zachary Quinto) trying to honor the memory of his future self, with the death of Leonard Nimoy being written into the film in a scene that brought tears to my eyes. Idris Elba excelled as the villain Krall, an alien warrior determined to bring down all of Starfleet with an ancient weapon of mass destruction. His character is shrouded in mystery until the very end, though the payoff is quite mind-blowing and well worth the wait. I felt that relative newcomer Sofia Boutella stole the show as alien renegade Jaylah, who helps the Enterprise crew escape Krall's planet. She had great chemistry with Simon Pegg and it was fun to watch them interact.
When early reports came out of the script being "too Star Trek-y," I was curious what the producers wanted from a Star Trek film if they didn't want, well, a Star Trek film. The result is essentially an action film in space, which is what this third entry in the rebooted series aims to be. It accomplished this and more, delivering a solid action flick with the Star Trek flair and tone we've all come to expect. I don't know why I ever doubted it. This is a franchise that has become reliable and exciting after years of trying to make it work for mainstream audiences. I can't wait for part four.