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A THURSDAY NIGHT REVIEW OF STAR TREK BEYOND

Year: 2016 Cast: Chris Pine, Karl Urban, Zachary Quinto, Simon Pegg
If anyone else was a bit... taken out of the far future of the STAR TREK universe when the new James T. Kirk, a wayward James Dean style rebel not yet a Starfleet Captain, listened to The Beastie Boys, then there's bad news and good news. First off the song, Sabotage, one of their better tracks and not sounding too hip-hop, is used in an extremely important scene. The good news, for just about everyone, is the song doesn't go to waste – there's perfect reason for it to be played, and loudly.

STAR TREK BEYOND aka ANOTHER STAR TREK III is the new franchise's way of getting back to basics, so the title is a bit misleading. Finally off on that brutally lonesome five-year mission, our reposeful Captain is suffering the turmoils of being in the far reaches of space – but with an Americanized planet so close by, they don't seem so "out there" (or dare it be described as "far, far away") like the iconic TV series. Speaking of, BEYOND begins with the kind of campy aliens that most adored from the original 1960's television series; yet with so much CGI it's like a millionaire wearing ripped blue jeans. The humor's in the Marvel AVENGERS style, coming at a fast sarcastic tongue-in-cheek pace, usually from the odd couple that made the Original Cast Movies shine: Spock and Bones. While their reluctant camaraderie works, it's a bit much after a while... As is the villain, who, like Eric Bana's galactic barbarian from the 2009 film, seems like an angry WWF Wrestler seeking world domination using brute strength and half-explained vengeance. But at least, unlike the second venture, he's completely original – and to fit the usually-creative TREK plot-lines, there's a neat twist that ties the whole proverbial room together.

TREK-BEYOND Score: ***1/2
With tons of action wielding the power of last minute suspense to the hilt, and BEYOND, this is an entertaining movie that never suffers downtime or bouts of tedious exposition. Most of the film takes place on a planet that also resembles the OS (Original Series) Universe, and like those computer generated exterior shots added to that same series so Millennials don't shy away from anything considered too "dated," there's an equal balance of primal-retro nostalgia with modern technology that couldn't work in the Sixties or the post-1977 STAR WARS era, when William Shatner's Kirk and Leonard Nimoy's Spock (the latter alternate universe vulcan mentioned throughout) had their own six movie run, and, in their THIRD FILM, the Enterprise is destroyed while here... well... see for yourself.
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