So I went to see Star Trek: Beyond, and I had some very snarky thoughts about it:
The movie opens with KIRK doing some stupid shit that’s supposed to be funny; this is a New Star Trek Movie thing; they start with a funny pre-credits scene that’s funny.
Me: It isn’t.
At least the McGuffin from the supposed-to-be-funny scene is the movie’s main McGuffin.
KIRK is having second thoughts about being captain; five years on a mission is too long and his little baby heart is bored. This is supposed to be motivation.
Me: It isn’t.
All his crew are acting like frat-house kids, and Kirk himself is actually BORED by being in freaking SPACE and whining about how nobody loves him and his mission is boring.
Me: GOD I miss the maturity of the crew from the Trek TV series. The captains were professional and dedicated. Kirk is like one of those spoilt boys who thinks he can get out of any scrape by throwing out a super-cute smile.
Even though they’re on a boring five-year mission, they still go to some expensive CGI for shore leave. While there, KIRK throws one of his super-cute smiles at an admiral and she’s charmed.
SULU is gay, and for some reason the cinema does not explode and the world does not end. How about that.
Me: It’s shown in a very short scene that can easily be cut from the final version to go to China (two US production companies, two Chinese ones, I see what you did there).
SPOCK has broken up with UHURA because reasons.
Me: Actually the reasons are good reasons; it’s a ‘last of his kind’ thing where the guy faces his reproductive responsibilities. It’s something other shows (I’m looking at you, Doctor) have skated over. Then they promptly skate right over it. And he’s half-human anyway so yeah.
SPOCK has a little cry over OLD SPOCK
Me: Spock. Cries. I’ve read something like that, where he’s weeping uncontrollably? Over the death of a character called… Mary Sue or something? And it wasn’t in character there either.
SPOCK and KIRK have a totally slash moment, sharing their feels.
Me: There is way more chemistry between Spock and Kirk than there is between Spock and Uhura. Way more. If someone were to tell me that Quinto fancies Pine in real life I would not be at all surprised.
Having established all the feels, they go to a planet and are attacked by even more expensive CGI. There’s some tributes to previous Trek movies …
Me: Don’t DO that!
There’s a lot of shaky, dark camera work and I don’t know whether they’re supposed to be on a moving ship or a non-moving ship or they’re moving or what’s moving and I can’t see what’s happening…
And crash, so they are separated in full-on Dr Who companions-gone-missing style.
Me: Not a tribute.
Scotty meets a girl. She’s young, a scavenger, has her hair twisted into multiple tie-backs, fights with a pole, wears a tan-coloured textured outfit, has been all alone in a burnt out ship after being orphaned, has evaded capture by the bad guys, is brilliant at engineering –
Me: HEY GUYS I FOUND REY
Said girl is a tough-talker and is able to take down minions (but anyone higher than minion kicks her ass)
Me: That is NOT a Strong Female Character. That’s just posturing.
There’s a lot more CGI, and people shouting at each other. KIRK does some stupid shit …
Me: Oh spare me.
There’s a moment of teamwork where they all work together…
Me: Oh SPARE me.
And they all go to rescue the CGI from the Big Bad who is a spoilery sort of makes-no-sense what-the-hell where-did-that-come-from twist.
BIG BAD: I am really an X because it adds to the moral point of the story. I go mad and rant about being this thing which is the opposite of what Star Trek is all about. Here, my hand is very heavy.
Me: Yeah, very heavy-handed. And KIRK for god’s sake – shoot the bastard while he’s standing there telling you all his Evul Plans. Shoot him. SHOOT HIM!
Kirk: I didn’t bring a gun.
Me: The HELL? WHY NOT? You had a whole working STAR SHIP and no PHASERS?
Kirk: Reasons. And so Big Bad can do the Big Evul Talk thing. And then we get to do some cool-looking wire work because Rule Of Cool.
Me: You fail at Starfleet.
(KIRK flashes that smile at me. It bounces off and hits SPOCK.)
They do more CGI and the movie ends with everybody holding hands and singing Kumbaya. There’s a cameo by the supposed-to-be-funny thing from the beginning, this time without pants.
Me: STILL. NOT. FUNNY.
Maddy: It wasn’t supposed to be funny.
Me: It was!
Maddy: I don’t believe you.
(All snark aside I did enjoy it.)