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Movie Review: Star Trek Beyond

Cary, NC – Star Trek Beyond is the third installment in this rebooted version of the classic television series, and thanks to wonderful cast interaction and a focused story, Beyond proves to be a treat for old and new fans alike.

My dad is a lifelong Star Trek enthusiast, which basically means I am too. I grew up on the original series with William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy and of course have seen all the films. I’ve enjoyed this new series a good deal as well, thanks primarily to a group of actors who were all perfectly cast in their respective roles. The first two installments were fun, but leaned a little too heavy on the blockbuster side to truly feel like Star Trek.

A Treat For Fans Old And New

Star Trek Beyond still has a summer blockbuster feeling, but director Justin Lin (Fast & Furious) and co-writer/co-star Simon Pegg have fashioned a thrilling installment that feels like another episode of the original series, and that is definitely a compliment.

Lin, who directed four of the seven Fast & Furious films, might seem like an odd choice at first but his experience with a large and diverse cast makes him a prime choice for a Star Trek adventure. The crew spend a good amount of time separated into small groups and Lin has no trouble going back and forth with clarity and ease, letting each member get a chance to shine.

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Cast Knocks It Out Of The Park Again

Speaking of the cast, I really can’t say enough about them. Chris Pine has the kind of bravado that Captain Kirk needs. Zachary Quinto finds the humor and humanity in Spock in surprising ways. John Chu and Zoe Saldana as Sulu and Uhura both prove to be as heroic and capable as anyone else on the crew. Simon Pegg as Scotty is a delight. And of course, Anton Yelchin, who recently passed away, as Chekov is a testament that this young actor is gone far too soon.

But for my money, the MVP is Karl Urban as Bones. Grumpy and sarcastic, Urban gets the best lines of the bunch, and emcompasses the best of DeForest Kelley’s original performance while still making it his own. I’ve never understood why Urban wasn’t a bigger star, but hopefully if he keeps delivering the way he does here his time will come.

Idris Elba (Luther, The Wire) is the big bad in this one. Like any great villain, he truly believes he is doing the right thing, and he proves to be a worthy adversary for the crew. Perhaps not an instantly iconic villain, but a good one nonetheless.

Trek At Its Best

Perhaps my favorite aspect of Star Trek Beyond is the low stakes of the film. This time out, the crew aren’t trying to save a whole planet or an entire species. Granted, they are trying to save a space station, but the point is the film offers more time with the cast and a focus on teamwork rather than all spectacle and that is what helps it really feel like Star Trek.

Fun Adventure Worth The Trip!

Overall, Star Trek Beyond is a wonderful addition to the Star Trek universe and I for one can’t wait to go on another adventure with this particular crew. Definitely worth the trip!

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Jordan Hunt reviews movies for CaryCitizen. Read more Movie Reviews. Photos from Facebook.