Star Trek Beyond
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Star Trek Beyond

50 years ago NBC premiered a new science fiction series that its creator, Gene Roddenberry, envisioned as "Wagon Train in space." This hour-long action adventure series was titled, ‘Star Trek.' It struck up for renewal in the first season, but even fan support cannot overcome the decision by the studio executives canceled a series of three years. In the 50 years since Star Trek has become the most successful science-fiction franchise ever encompassing six live-action television series, 13 future movies as well as an animated television series, numerous books and graphic novels as well as being one of the most prevalent topics of discussion and cosplay science fiction and fantasy conventions around the world. The on the 50th anniversary of this fantastic television series was, ‘Star Trek Beyond, which is the third film in the reboot of the original series by science-fiction visionary JJ Abrams. Due to his involvement with revitalizing another juggernaut franchise, ‘Star Trek,' Mr. Abrams stepped down from the roles of screenwriter and director remains detached as a producer. Taking over as director was Justin Lin, who has numerous credits in television and has helmed several movies of the ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise. The screenwriters for this outing of the Starship Enterprise were Justin Lin and Simon Pegg. Mr. Lin has several writing and directorial credits on television. Mr. Pegg not only reinvented the iconic role Engineer Montgomery Scott is a highly respected comedic writer and performer known on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. What these creative people did in the crafting of this film is not the top or fifth-century enthralling fans the capstone masterpiece, but rather provide a solid piece of entertainment that contains everything that made this series such a major contributor to the zeitgeist of several generations. Many fans, particularly of such wildly popular franchises of this, appear to be under the impression that each movie is obligated to be vastly superior everything that has come before. Not only is this unrealistic but it provided impossible expectations that will lead to disappointment. While this is not the best Star Trek film, ever it is incredibly enjoyable providing everything you expect from Star Trek.

As the film marking the 50th anniversary of the Star Trek franchise, there was more than the usual number of little Easter eggs sprinkled throughout this movie. The references run the gamut from blatantly obvious to those only true trekkers will be able to discern. For example in recognition of the cancellation of the original series after three years the opening scene shows Capt. James Kirk (Chris Pine) recording his personal log. He noted here they are three years into the five-year mission, and he is feeling restless because of how episodic stay has become. Later when Dr. Leonard McCoy (Karl Urban) offers a toast Kirk on his birthday, he states; "perfect eyesight and a full head of hair." Fans will recognize this sentiment is a nod to a similar scene in Star Trek IV McCoy gives Kirk a pair of reading glasses as a birthday present in the well-known fact that William Shatner wears a toupee. The inside jokes such as this occurred throughout the entire film but as a testimony to the craftsmanship created minds behind the still the majority is given during the quieter times in the story so as not to impede the pacing of the action sequences. You might also notice that the film progresses that this seems to be more alien races than you have ever seen in Star Trek. In recognition of 50 years of entertaining fans with a reported 50 new species of aliens introduced. The introduction of a myriad of new life forms is more than a gimmick. It shows just how widespread the scope of the Federation of planets has become how many species have benefited from the benevolent empirics of the many this film is sitting on it to Mr. Roddenberry and his visionary belief that humanity would one day be part of an intergalactic community dedicated to peace and exploration. This theme is brought out explicitly as a significant contributor to the central premise of the story.

One continuing trope in this new reboot is that the crew of the enterprise is always on the precipice of being disbanded, reassigned to other parts of Starfleet. Kirk is about to be made the youngest Vice Admiral in the fleet while Mr. Spock (Zachary Quinto) has just discovered that is often itself, Ambassador Spock (Leonard Nimoy), has just died and Mr. Spock feels he must leave Starfleet to dedicate himself to the reestablishment of the Vulcan race. The movie was made explicitly for 3-D. It is not only quite obvious that this is the intention from the start that the filmmaker, as well as a demonstration of his fundamental understanding of how to use the illusion of that, is an integral part of telling a story. All too often 3-D is still used as a gimmick which is all too often distracting rather than beneficial to the story. I was interested right in the beginning images of the Starship Enterprise artistically designed to show the grandeur of the best, the immense scope and attention to detail is breathtaking as the high-definition 3-D images make this iconic ship more realistic than you could ever have imagined. After an unsuccessful diplomatic mission where Capt. Kirk fails to bring peace to two warring factions he brings his ship back to the nearest base. One of the most incredible visuals provided is with the Federation’s newest Starbase, Starbase Yorktown. It is an incredible transparent sphere internally crisscrossed by a plethora of habitable plank ways. It is so large that it is transparent to within it easily holds a ship as large as the Enterprise allowing the inhabitants of the Starbase to watch the ship move to its docking port casually. This cosmopolitan location offers a natural site depicting many of the new alien species of aliens and humans going about their business in peace and security. After the Enterprise docks, the scene of the crew and their families reunited is shown. One reunion, in particular, included Lieutenant Hikaru Sulu (John Cho), helmsman and third officer of the ship. Use joyfully greeted by his husband and their daughter.

Emergency escape pod brings an alien, Klara (Lydia Wilson), to the base. She informs the Starfleet officers that she was the only one to escape the crash landing as her crew became stranded in a nearby nebula. Starfleet immediately dispatches the most technologically advanced ship they have, the Enterprise on a rescue mission. This film manages to show the resulting set of circumstances with greater scientific accuracy than usually shown in most space operas. Often, to enhance the dramatic effect by having a ship life through an asteroid belts a great deal of skills necessary to avoid crashing. Meteors in such an environment are typically hundreds of miles apart posing no threat to navigation. It was possible to obtain the same emotional intensity with greater accuracy by using a nebula. As the birthplace of the star and its solar system, it would contain rocky rubble destined to become planets. The 3-D rendering of such objects ranging from tiny rocks to sizable boulders is the throw to watch. Adding to the immersive nature of the experience with Dolby ATMOS audio fills the room perfectly coordinated sounds reflecting the position of what’s on screen.

The big man found in this story is right in line with what the original series portray. Krall (Idris Elba) is an alien warlord is a planet where Kara's ship and crew were held. Before the Enterprise and get in range of the planet, The Enterprise becomes under attack by a cloud of tiny spaceships. There are thousands of these the ships acting as swarm systematically attacking the Enterprise the shares down in the reference are useless against such a multitude of small targets. In a very short time, the attackers cut the Enterprise into pieces. First, the warp nacelles are ripped away followed by removal of the source of the section from the main hall. Thankfully emergency protocols such that many of the crew use escape parts of the majority sought safety in the sources section. When that section lands on the planet, they are immediately taken hostage by Krall. While not the first time fans have seen the Enterprise destroyed, but it is by far the most dramatic. Once again 3-D in high definition bring realism to the individual ships of the swarm and their corresponding presence in the audio track pulls you into the space battle like nothing ever before. Imagery such as this demonstrates how the technology should be used to enhance the feeling of reality making the audience a natural part of the story.

It wouldn’t be a Star Trek film without a beautiful alien female in this requisite role is filled by Jaylah (Sofia Boutella), a beautiful and highly resourceful survivor of another ship captured by Krall. She immediately bonds with Mr. Scott (Simon Pegg) over a mutual love of engineering and fixing things. She takes into her home which happens to be a Federation starship lost for over a century, the Farragut. You might recognize the actress from another high-octane adventure movie, ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ where she played a deadly assassin with the legs replaced by spring prosthetics. Having the female lead bond with a character other than Captain Kirk is a novel twist for any Star Trek film. I n this reboot of the original series unusual romances are just part of the charm. Mr. Spock is an ongoing relationship with the communications officer, Lieutenant Nyota Uhura (Zoe Saldana). There is even a cleverly written scene that subtly plants a plot device necessary for the story’s resolution. On a sad note, this is the final film for Anton Yelchin, who played Ensign Pavel Chekov, the ship's primary navigator. This actor tragically died in an automobile accident at the age of 27 months after completing the principal filming. The film is available in several formats including Blu-ray 3-D and 4K UHD.

bulletDeleted Scenes
bulletBeyond the Darkness: Story Origins
bulletEnterprise Takedown: Destroying and Icon
bulletTrekking in the Desert: On Location in Dubai
bulletTo Live Long and Prosper: 50 Years of Star Trek
bulletFor Leonard and Anton

Posted 11/05/2016

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