The fate of the galaxy rests in the hands of bitter rivals. One, James Kirk, is a delinquent, thrill-seeking Iowa farm boy. The other, Spock, a Vulcan, was raised in a logic-based society that rejects all emotion. As fiery instinct clashes with calm reason, their unlikely but powerful partnership is the only thing capable of leading their crew through unimaginable danger, boldly going where no one has gone before. The human adventure has begun again.
**The following is a long form review that I originally wrote in 2013** I did like _Star Trek_. I did not, however, appear to like it as much as the rest of the whole damn planet. I appreciate the decent helping of Australian actors in the mix (like personal favourite Chris Hemsworth, above). I can get behind the colourful and impressive special effects spectacle. Most of all I dig the reboot angle they pulled. The whole time travel/tangent universe thing is the perfect breeding of remaining true to the original, while still not constricting themselves to the old canon. Fantastic idea. But I didn’t love it. I’m a big fan of origin stories, but I personally feel that _Star Trek_ never really breached past that point. The first half was brilliant, getting to know the characters, the world, the ideals, everything. But in the latter half it seems they just sort of went “Well, we spent a bunch of time doing stuff good, but now we don’t have enough time left to make an actual movie out of this… Oh well, just chuck an hour of lasers in there and we’ll worry about that next film!” which just isn’t good enough. When _Into Darkness_ comes out later this year, the format will probably pay off, but looking at the merits of Star Trek alone, I think it fell short. Simon Pegg (_Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead_) as the new Scotty and Zachary Quinto (_American Horror Story, Heroes_) as the new Spock were both solid choices, but other casting decisions like Winona Ryder (_Black Swan, Alien: Resurrection_) as Spock’s mother were an off-shot in the worst possible way. I suppose though, in science fiction, it’s often safety first and little steps. As a member of what is probably the most frowned upon of the genres, I wish this Star Trek reboot all the best in its inevitable future, and it seems it will make good use of it. But for now, the solo film itself didn’t reach as far as I felt it could have with a little harder work towards the end. 62% _-Gimly_
A franchise re-energised-big time! It's not an understatement to say that the news of a new Star Trek movie was met in equal measure by suspicion and pretty low expectations. Step forward J.J. Abrams to direct it, and many wondered while the guy behind TV series "Lost" and "Mission Impossible III" would want to dabble on hallowed sci-fi turf?. Things were further eyebrow raising when Abrams openly admitted to not having been a fan of the original show so cherished by a legion of Trekkies. Then news came of the film being a prequel, based around the Starfleet Academy and the coming together of what we know as the U.S.S. Enterprise crew. "Ooh that will be a tough one to carry off" said many, "Kirk & Spock as young spunkers - surely not" they said. Well not only did Abrams pull it off as it were, he simultaneously appeased most Trekkies whilst garnering a whole new generation of sci-fi observers. Budgeted at $140,000,000, Abrams Star Trek went on to gross Worldwide $384,953,778. Figures that, even allowing for the huge fan-base that the franchise has, show that many first timers not only went to see it - but also that they enjoyed it so much they went back for second helpings. I know I did. The success of the film isn't hard to fathom, because although Abrams upped the action quota (with a number of breath taking and eye appealing sequences) he also dispensed with much of the sci-fi psycho babble that has blighted some of the previous filmic instalments in this most up and down of franchise's. Sure there's stuff in there for the discerning fan, with a time travelling revenge plot at its axis, how could there not be?, But Abrams and his writers (Roberto Orci /Alex Kurtzman) keep it simple, savvy and sexy. They smartly link to Trek lore with a crucial plot and character development featuring the Kobayashi Maru, while pain, emotional conflict and personal crisis all feature heavily. This is, one can "logically" say, a spiky post 9/11 Trek movie. There's even room for a romantic strand, a strand that is tender and fits the whole make-up of the piece perfectly. All of which only works because the cast are, in the main, producing great work. Getting Leonard Nimoy to appear in a small, but crucial role, is nothing short of being a master-stroke. His presence keeps the all important essence of Star Trek within what is ultimately a reboot. It's like a father figure watching over proceedings, making not only the cast feel safe, but also us the viewers. The youngsters in the cast are impressive, Chris Pine (Kirk), Zachary Quinto (Spock) and Zoe Saldaña (Uhura) lead from the fresh faced front. While Karl Urban (Bones McCoy) and Simon Pegg (Scotty) impact with comic relief that aids instead of hinders the plot developments. Villain duties falls to Eric Bana as Romulan Captain Nero, he's a touch miffed is Nero, and Bana brings the character's vengeful pain vividly to life. While Bruce Greenwood as Captain Christopher Pike adds a touch of class that he almost always seems to do. This U.S.S. Enterprise has launched itself in another direction, and yes, it's boldly going where no-one has boldly gone before. It is, all told, a bona fide blockbuster with brains and balls. The like of which has sadly been missing from many a modern era summer release. Yes it's not all perfect, the odd scene could quite easily have been jettisoned, and some accents need a bit of fine tuning, but they are very minor complaints. A triumph from Abrams and his team - note the Stardate in the ships log, for this is a noteworthy moment in modern sci-fi cinema. Now comes perhaps a bigger challenge, the notoriously difficult second film... 10/10