Thanks to Paramount Pictures Australia we had the chance to see Justin Lin ‘s Star Trek Beyond at its Australian Premiere, right after we interviewed the cast. This is our review of the film, but – as usual – no matter what we say, we recommend that you still go to your local cinema and see the film because there is no better critic than yourself!

star_trek_beyond_still1After years in space on a mission to explore the furthest areas of the galaxy, the USS Enterprise, under the command of Captain James Kirk (Chris Pine), is sent on a rescue mission in uncharted territory. They are ambushed by an unknown, unstoppable alien force headed by Krall (Idris Elba), a sworn enemy of the Federation. During the battle, the Enterprise gets torn apart and crashes on a mysterious planet; and, meanwhile, its crew is taken hostage, one by one, from their escape pods, with just a few able to get away.

Now, with no way to call for help and with his crew spread across the planet, it’s up to Kirk to rescue his comrades and defeat this new threat to the Federation, a quest that will unveil an awful truth about his new nemesis.

With J.J.Abrams moving into a production role, Fast and Furious director Justin Lin was given the hard task of taking over the highly successful, rebooted Star Trek franchise. This was a very risky move on the behalf of, the studios, as long-time Star Trek fan Lin, was not the obvious choice for many fans.

STAR TREK BEYONDLin somehow manages to succeed by delivering an action-packed and very entertaining next chapter of the saga. This is aided by a very committed cast that after two films, seems to be more united than ever. Additionally, input by Simon Pegg on the script brought some good fanboy sequences to life.

Moreover, Karl Urban‘s Bones and the beloved Anton Yelchin as Chekov steal the spotlight, not only with their iconic hilarity, but also with solid performances that really take their characters to the next level.

Thus, the film delivers two decent hours  of action. Unfortunately, however, it fails to properly develop new characters, like Idris Elba‘s Krall, whose big reveal feels rushed and is outshone by the millions of distracting CGI ships. A similar thing happens with what was set to be a new fan-favourite character, Jayllah (played by Sofia Boutella), whose best lines were spoiled by the trailer; and, furthermore, she is far from being a main character, despite the hype. We also can’t understand why her character’s accent isn’t even vaguely alien-ish. Consequently, she just doesn’t come off as an authentic alien character.

star_trek_beyond_still4One major flaw of the film is its bungled romantic subplot involving Spock (Zachary Quinto) and Uhura (Zoe Saldana) that simply goes nowhere.

The action in Beyond is superb, as is the musical score by Michael Giacchino. Furthermore, the special effects are impressive, and despite being way too over-the-top at times, they still manage to amaze.

Overall, Star Trek Beyond is a bit different from the previous two films: it’s more action-focused, and sometimes doesn’t feel like a Star Trek film (especially when the “Sabotage” song (as seen on the trailer) kicks in for the silliest reason ever during what was meant to be an epic battle). However, it still manages to fit into the franchise, paying tribute to older generations of fans with an abundance of nostalgic moments (and a controversy involving Sulu). And, finally, it also leaves the door open for future adventures.

Star Trek Beyond – In cinemas July 21