Star Trek Beyond (2016)7:07 AM
Star Trek Beyond is directed by Justin Lin (Fast & Furious 3-6) and stars Chris Pine (Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, Into the Woods), Zachary Quinto (Margin Call, Hitman: Agent 47), Idris Elba (Pacific Rim, The Jungle Book), Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: The Secret Service) and Simon Pegg (Shaun of the Dead, Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol). "The USS Enterprise crew explores the furthest reaches of uncharted space, where they encounter a new ruthless enemy who puts them and everything the Federation stands for to the test". I still haven't watched the first Star Trek and I wasn't a fan of Star Trek Into Darkness - my expectations are low...does this third instalment really go beyond?
Star Trek Beyond is much better than Into Darkness - I liked it much more! Even though I spent the first 30 minutes of the film a little confused, the simple plot evolved and the film was easy to follow (that is both a negative and a positive). I think Star Trek Beyond does have an issue with its identity - I think it wanted to be more light-hearted as films like Guardians of the Galaxy and Deadpool but Star Trek films are usually pretty dark and sophisticated so I don't really think this fits in with your typical Star Trek flick. That being said, I prefer this take on Star Trek and I am pleased Lin was able to create a more fun instalment for the franchise.
Despite the performances being strong all round, none of the talent involved did anything that stood out or was memorable. However, the script didn't really give them a chance to be memorable as we only really got a glimpse at each character - this Star Trek was a little too crowded - there were more than 6 leads! Chris Pine did a fine job and Zachary Quinto proves once again that he is the perfect Spock. I was also impressed with Sofia Boutella who did make an impression on me - I liked her character and her performance quite a lot! However, the same cannot be said for Idris Elba and Simon Pegg. I thought Elba was ok but I have seen him play a much better villain already this year in The Jungle Book - this definitely doesn't compare to that. Elba's performance got worse as the film went on and the twist to do with his character was not very believable and didn't make sense really. Elba's villain also didn't really have a clear end goal which should be the most important thing for any villain! Simon Pegg on the other hand just played Simon Pegg with a Scottish accent - it was clear he wrote this film as his character's side was increased much more than needed.
The writing and story is what lets this film down. The characters are pretty thin - even though 2 other films have established them beforehand, I didn't really feel connected to any of the characters - that could be down to the performances as well as the writing. I also didn't really think there was much speaking in general - more dialogue could have helped to develop some of the characters and twists. The story is pretty simple which is a good thing as it is easy to follow but is also a bad thing as it made the film feel a little generic - it didn't really go beyond. I also had problems with the pacing of the film - the film was too fast paced to begin with. What I didn't like about Avengers: Age of Ultron was that it began in the middle of an action sequence - this does it and the sequence is around 20 minutes long so I felt really confused which really took me out of the film. However, as the story progressed, the film did get much much better.
Some of the saving graces for Star Trek Beyond are the action and visuals. I thought one of the final action sequences was fantastic - the use of music as the background for the action was fantastic and really put a burst of energy into the film. The action sequences were consistently strong and exciting to watch. The visual effects were also very good and looked very real.
Star Trek Beyond is my favourite Star Trek film that I have seen - even though the performances are nothing special, they are still strong and Boutella is a refreshing addition. Star Trek Beyond does almost reimagine the typical image of the recent Star Trek films but I think it does it successfully - Beyond is much more light-hearted and fun - it doesn't take itself too seriously. The action is exciting and the plot is straightforward but easy to follow. Even though the film does have some pacing issues to begin with and writing issues in general, I would recommend Star Trek Beyond as it is a fun watch.
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