Star Trek Beyond is the first of the new Star Trek movies that I’m probably going to see in theaters twice.
Allow me to explain. I’ve been rather cold on the rebooted Star Trek films. I thought that the 2009 reboot film and Into Darkness were alright, but they weren’t anything special to me or anything to cause incredible amounts of rage. They occupied the same space as the Amazing Spider-Man films did; “I don’t really like them, but I’m not going to be pissed off by their mere existence”.
So It came as a surprise to me that Star Trek Beyond…now there’s a title that’s ripe for riffing if I’ve ever seen one. I’m partial to Star Trek Beyond All Sane Reason and Star Trek Beyond Zardoz, but please leave yours in the comments section. Back to the topic at hand, Star Trek Beyond Two Souls managedto really entertain me and keep me invested throughout its two hour run time. And it did it by simply doing one thing: making the best out of the ensemble cast they’ve gathered for this thing.
As for the plot, we find Kirk (Chris Pine) and company take leave a deep space colony that Bones (Karl Urban) rightly describes as a “snow globe in space”, when a lone survivor of a downed ship comes requesting their aid. The Enterprise crew go after them, of course, but it’s all a trap set up by Krall (Idris Elba) a mad general who wants to destroy the Federation because he believes its weak. With the Enterprise taking it’s biggest onscreen beating since…what, The Search for Spock?….our intrepid crew is separated and m must figure out a way to defeat Krall before he obtains a superweapon that could give him an edge in his mad war.
Now I said that this movie uses its cast to better than either of its predecessors…but I will give one caveat to that. Idris Elba’s Krall is severely underutilized, in my opinion. Yeah, I know he’s the villain and we have like eight people to give something to do, but a little more time to get to know the guy would’ve been greatly appreciated. Plus, all time with Idris Elba onscreen is something we want more of in every movie. Am I right, people?
As for the rest of the cast, they range from good to spectacular on this outing. While I’ve never found Chris Pine to be especially engaging as Kirk, he’s finally seemed to gel with the rest of the cast and is more in the groove of things. Zachary Quinto’s Spock and Urban’s Bones have some of the best scenes in the movie during their time separated from the group after the crash. Sulu and Chekhov (John Cho and the late Anton Yelchin, respectively) don’t get as much as the rest of the cast, but what their given is some pretty good stuff. Simon Pegg has to at this point be the series’ MVP , since almost all of his scenes throughout these movies is a damn show stealer. Zoe Saldana works well playing off Krall, debating peace and unity to Krall’s militaristic lunacy. And Sofia Boutella is good as newcomer Jayla, though her arc feels a bit rushed.
There’s not much else to tell, really. The effects and action are all pretty damn good and have been throughout these movies. The score is excellent. The writing (done this time by Pegg and Doug Jung) is probably the best in the reboot series. And…that’s about it.
Look, I know that the reboot series has not in fact garbed a lot sympathy from the geekier side of the web (and not without good reason), but Star Trek Beyond Outrage is in fact a damn good movie. Possibly the second best of the summer (behind Captain America 3), but don’t quote me on that. Go see it as soon as possible.