*Spoiler Alert* *Spoiler Alert* Please do not read further if you want to avoid being spoiled.
Star Trek Beyond opens by reacquainting us with well-loved characters, their lives, and stories. Kirk (Chris Pine) meets with the Teenaxis to offer a treaty with their enemies, the Fenopians. The Teenaxi leader (Shea Wigham) sees this as a threat and attacks Kirk with all his small adorable rage! I couldn’t help but find these small yet ferocious creatures charming.
Scotty (Simon Pegg) beams Kirk back to the ship. Kirk has become bored with his mission to explore after three years. He looks at taking an admiral position and suggests Spock as the new captain while at Starbase Yorktown, where we also discover Ambassador Spock has passed away.
The Enterprise is then lured into an attack by numerous ships when they respond to a distress call. This is a gorgeous part of the film! You can see the ship being ripped to shreds as the aliens board the ship and take what crew they can hostage. The ships throughout the movie and Starbase Yorktown are all so interesting and dazzling. You can see the details and care that goes into creating these scenes with the ships. I don’t think this is possible without some real love for the Star Trek franchise.
Scotty meets a tough young girl named Jayla (Sofia Boutella) whose family was killed by the enemy who is led by a villain with the name of Krall (Idris Elba). Jayla’s character is scrappy and has been taking care of herself since she escaped the enemy. I really enjoyed the determined spirit of this character and how Scotty takes to helping her see what it means to be a team.
With Jayla’s help, they take on the villain Krall. Krall is a realistic villain. He is holding a grudge against Starfleet for what has happened to him in the past and wants revenge. It doesn’t get any more predictable than that when it comes to Krall’s storyline. I would like to see the more complex storyline, but I don’t feel the predictable miscreant’s story hurts this movie at all. Krall is interesting because of how he becomes the type of creature he is and how he survives. He gives the Enterprise crew a dilemma they can unite and fight against which propels the story well.
The actors all do a wonderful job in portraying the spirit of the original characters. My personal favorites were Kirk and Bones (Karl Urban). Pine and Urban were just so believable portraying the original characters. I also enjoyed the interactions between Kirk and Chekov (Anton Yelchin) after they crash onto the planet. Anton is definitely going to be missed on the Enterprise.
Towards the end of the movie Spock opens a box that was owned by Ambassador Spock and holds up a photo of the original crew. It was such a poignant moment. I could not help but have tears in my eyes for such a touching tribute to the past. With the recent passing of Leonard Nemoy and Anton Yelchin, it was a much needed moment to honor the past. Now as we move forward in the Star Trek world, it only deepens the stories if we can recognize and honor the past instead of living in it as Krall did in Star Trek Beyond.
Star Trek Beyond does an excellent job of honoring the past stories while moving beyond. This is an excellent film made with love for the Star Trek universe.