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Movie Review: ‘Star Trek: Beyond’

Story by Sarah Baker, Editor

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Star Trek: Beyond went beyond expectations. The third film in any series often does not feel up to par with the rest, but this movie could very well be the best of the trilogy thus far.

Star Trek: Beyond opened July 22 and has been well received by critics and audiences alike. Rotten Tomatoes, a top movie review site, gave the film a ‘Certified Fresh’ rating of 84 percent. The rebooted series has done rather well so far. Its predecessors, Star Trek: Into Darkness and Star Trek, both received an 86 and 95 percent respectively.

The latest movie opens to show the crew of the USS Enterprise three years into their five-year journey through space. Captain and crew are starting to feel the effects of being in space for such a long duration and seek some rest at a Starbase when they hear word of a distress call. Drama and action ensue and the crew must fight a hostile enemy who seems to have a personal vendetta against the Federation.

The third installment in the latest Star Trek series did a lot of things right, one being the development and interaction of the characters. You see a stronger bond between Bones (Karl Urban) and Spock (Zachary Quinto) that was not previously seen. This movie also reveals that Sulu (John Chu) has a husband and daughter, and at the end of the film you come out with a stronger appreciation for his talents.

A new character, Jaylah (Sofia Boutella), shines beautifully as strong and intelligent young woman who has nothing and fits in well with the crew of the USS Enterprise. Even the antagonist, Krall (Idris Elba), is given a solid motive and acts as a nice foil to Captain James T. Kirk (Chris Pine). Kirk and Spock both take journeys of their own about what to do with their futures and how to deal with the pain of losing loved ones.

Another thing the story does well is combine action and nostalgia. It keeps some themes and elements that harken back to the original series and movies, but that doesn’t bog down the action at all. There is enough action to keep audiences interested, but not too much to where it loses the story.

Some laughs were definitely had with one-liners, certain song and visual effect choices. The laughs are important to this series as they help lighten the mood of an often dire situation, and the series would not be as successful otherwise.

In the ending credits, the cast and crew dedicate the movie to Leonard Nimoy, the original Spock who passed away earlier this year, and Anton Yelchin, who played Chekov and died tragically in June, just a month away from the movie’s release. There is a scene in which some members of the crew are toasting to friends they have lost, and to those who know of the recent passing of both Nimoy and Yelchin, it is very touching.

Overall, Star Trek: Beyond is a successful third film and worthy of the Star Trek legacy. Trekkies will be pleased with this latest installment and may just call it the best of the three.

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