An Enterprising Future
Star Trek: Beyond
Review by Ross Anthony

The film opens with a refreshingly reflective and even philosophic James Kirk. His voice over is smart and hosts more than a few poetically-put existential points. I enjoyed them and tried my best to remember them. But alas, this does not reflect the bulk of the film. Even the interesting break for the Enterprise crew on a floating retreat community is truncated abruptly in order to swiftly launch the crew headlong into danger's way and the film into action.

Unlike the first film in this Star Trek incarnation, Beyond struggles to blend its action with reflection and even with its comedy. Partly because the script feels overly revised, and partly because its key plot progression points are simplistic and more contrived than believable. The film then has to rely on its action, good humor, momentum and the charisma of its actors -- all of which are pretty good - especially the latter.

That said, the character of Jaylah is particularly well costumed, created and realized (despite her concept feeling a bit derivative). Sofia Boutella, Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto kept me invested. I'm usually a big fan of Pegg as well (who is credited as co-writer), but here, he's not a stand out.

And that leaves the rest of the apparently scores of other crew members who are talked about by the command as if family, but have almost zero screen time to prove it, save for serving as passing pawns.

Kudos to the filmmakers though for thinking to include a small wordless scene -- which is the film's most powerful moment. Without spoiling, it involves Jaylah and the rear window of a space ship.

-- Books by Ross Anthony, Author/Illustrator --

  • Star Trek: Beyond. Copyright © 2016.
  • Starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Anton Yelchin, John Cho, Simon Pegg, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldana, Idris Elba, Sofia Boutella. Directed by Justin Lin. Paramount Pictures.

Grade..........................B- (1.5/4)

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Copyright © 1998-2022 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

Last Modified: Friday, 22-Jul-2016 11:49:42 PDT