Star Trek Beyond – review

The latest instalment in the new Star Trek franchise goes beyond, directed by Justin Lin as the crew of the enterprise, now 2 years into their mission go through the motions and carry on in their endeavour as they investigate a mysterious incident which leads to the enterprise being attacked and the crew taken, the film stars Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, John Cho, Karl Urban, Sofia Boutella, Zoe Saldana, Anton Yelchin.

There’s a notably different feeling to Beyond, with more of a focus on individual characters I feel, even though the overall story is still important, space faring is again and exploration a key element as it was in the previous films with the plot exploring the affect on the characters of prolonged co-habitation and exploring in space. From what it makes characters like Kirk feel and think about their long term goals to how the crew feel about each other having been together so long, this made for some interesting character exploration in a film that has its fair share of action and spectacle.

The cast is again on their A-game and a lot of the fun of watching Beyond comes from their interactions, you can see the cast genuinely get along and enjoy each others companies, with Urban as Bones and Quinto especially relishing in their respective roles and with the crew split up and spread out, you get to see pairings of characters you haven’t seen before, which was interesting. While new characters in the villainous Krall (Idris Elba) and the warrior Jaylah (Sofia Boutella) made for some interesting additions, while it was great to see Yelchin as Chekov one last time in a role he seemed to truly enjoy. Plot wise, the film isn’t all that great to be honest, with a pretty by the numbers story that which would have felt at home in one of the older TV shows but it’s not a huge let down, though having saying this, the plot does go in interesting directions but in comparison to Trek ‘o9 and Into Darkness, the story doesn’t quite match up in quality.

There’s a familiarity of tropes, themes and visuals here in relation to the other two films with a nice mix of humour derived from the well written characters, good action and some great spectacle and believe me, seeing the USS Enterprise never gets old, though seeing it destroyed is always a shame! There are some pretty spectacular set pieces present with some creative ways of executing them and you can tell Simon Peggs influence with the writing was definitely there in a few scenes and I think he did a pretty good job, not hamming up the film with too many clichés but still making things feel familiar and bringing fans what they enjoyed about the previous two Trek films with some added new aspects. Overall Star Trek Beyond is a fun roller coaster ride with some good action, great spectacle and great character interactions, the films have a great formula now and it’s genuinely fun to watch the crew of the Enterprise do just about anything, things here and there may feel a bit generic but the sum of its part is a good blockbuster and a great film to sit back and watch in summer.

7/10

. Great character interaction, cast revels in their roles

. Has some great set pieces, spectacle

. Plot is a bit by the numbers

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