As Star Trek Beyond opens in theaters today, we thought we would take a sec to look back and reflect on the film history of this iconic Sci-Fi series. Here it is, Geek Domination's Worst to Dank!
12. Star Trek V: The Final Frontier
The fifth movie of the original crew of the Enterprise, this saw the introduction of Spock’s half-brother Sybok (terrible name) and his search for God. Yup. Terrible premise, terrible one-liners, and as this was directed by William Shatner; this saw Captain Kirk going full Shatner.
11. Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home
I know a lot of Star Trek fans who hold this picture up as a classic, as well as one of the best movies from the original crew. I am not one of them. The movie for me is boiled down to a lot of poor comical jokes, a monolith in space emitting whale sounds, and Spock swimming with the aforementioned whales. Boring.
10. Star Trek: Nemesis
The ideas for Star Trek: Nemesis weren’t exactly bad. I didn’t mind the face-off between a younger clone of Picard (played by the excellent Tom Harding) and the real Captain Picard himself, nor the emphasis and attention to Data’s character. It’s just the way this story was told, and it’s really convenient plot devices, that hold it back. Also, why would you drive in a 4-wheel vehicle when you have awesome space shuttles to get you to your destination?!
9. Star Trek III: The Search For Spock
Not a shit movie altogether, but there were a few issues that held this one back for me. Savik’s actor change was a little jarring to me, the tone of this movie starts depressing while The Wrath of Khan ended more hopeful, and while I love Christopher Lloyd as much as the next guy; he was a terrible Klingon and villain. His character just came off as really bizarre to me, because you could tell he was still trying to infuse his role as ‘Doc Brown’ from Back To The Future into this performance.
8. Star Trek: The Motion Picture
Let’s face it, this movie kind of suffers from Star Wars syndrome. Not because it tried to copy it, but because it did a hard left and veered into the ultra Sci-Fi science type of film. This was Star Trek’s answer to 2001: A Space Odyssey, but came out in a time when audiences craved more of the Star Wars type of action where Sci-Fi was concerned. I personally really enjoy his movie, but I’ll even admit that there are moments where I get bored with it as well. Also, Kirk was a dick in the way he took command of the Enterprise, though in his defense we did see something much similar later….
7. Star Trek: Generations
Captains from two different generations of Enterprise meet, the Enterprise crash lands, and you see Kirk on a farm. I really enjoy this movie for the cast, beginning and ending, and I personally enjoyed Malcom McDowell’s heroin addict type villain here. The nexus is really weird though; sometimes McDowell could get a little too cracked out, Kirk’s personal Nexus I didn’t totally buy, and the second act of the movie takes forever to get through in hindsight.
6. Star Trek: Insurrection
Star Trek: Insurrection is all about the camp. I know that as movie, there are some objectively bad things about it. The villain isn’t the best, the Baku’ make for an all too obvious allegory of forced relocation, and the kid that’s on screen all of the movie is flat annoying. In spite of all this though, I love the script that Rick Berman and Michael Piller wrote. Data has asks hilarious personal questions, Picard has a romantic fling with a grandma basically, Worf has some hilarious on-liners, and Riker gets an incredibly bad ass moment in which he takes the helm of the Enterprise. It’s a bit hammy and full of silly camp, but I love it for it!
5. Star Trek: Into Darkness
Star Trek: Into Darkness was a really fun action movie. My only issue is; If you have this new timeline, why try and redo Wrath of Khan all over again? I don’t hate this like some Star Trek fans do, but I recognize that they had an opportunity to try something truly fresh, and they definitely didn’t.
4. Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
This movie is wasnan incredible allegory for the changing times that America found itself in when the Cold War ended, and Soviet Russia collapsed. It explained, in detail, one of the events that would shape a large part of the Star Trek universe for the future. It had a prefect amount of character detail and attention for each of the crew members, featuring what would end up as some of each character’s best moments in the movies. Add on the Christopher Plummer as a villainous Klingon who quotes Shakespeare, and you have one hell of a great movie. Captain Kirk’s character also goes through some incredible character growth here as well, in which he finally has to reconcile his son’s death.
3. Star Trek (2009)
A re-boot, while also being a re-launch, this movie expertly weaved together a new plot for the crew of the original generations Enterprise, while still respecting the cannon that had come before. While time-travel seems like an all-too convenient plot device, it is tried and true, and back in 2009 this was the movie that really started the trend in blockbuster franchises.
2. Star Trek: First Contact
First Contact is bad ass. As a film, this grips you straight from the beginning with an awesome fleet battle sequence between Federation forces and The Borg. Big epic fleet battles between species in Star Trek is something of a rarity, so seeing this happen straight from the beginning is just awesome to watch. The Borg are also easily one of the most dangerous species the Federation have ever come in contact with, and The Borg Queen and Captain Picard’s past was the perfect foil to have as the crux of the plot. A Moby Dick story, intermixed with Time Travel to see the seminal beginnings of our exploration into space, as well as first contact with Vulcans, made for an excellent movie. This is close to first on my list, but you can’t deny the sheer excellence of this next movie….
1. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
This movie is practically the ‘Citizen Kane’, of Star Trek movies. Ricardo Monteblanc is Captain Kirk’s adversary, Khan, and is hell bent on revenge after their previous encounter in the TV series. Having a keen mind, as well as an insatiable thirst for revenge, Star Trek’s finest villain came close to defeating Kirk and his crew, the later barely escaping in one of the tensest standoffs seen in movies: two opposing ships both blind and without shields in a misty nebulae. Luck and timing prevails for the Enterprise, and they manage to survive the day, but not without the most heartfelt of sacrifices in the closing act of the movie. This is also hands down the best soundtrack out of the films, which just adds to this movies already massive success. I would even be as bold as to put Wrath of Khan in a list for the top movies of all time. It’s that good.
What did you think? Comment below with some of your favorites from the series, and like/ share the list with your friends! Star Trek Beyond is looking pretty awesome from early reviews, so who knows? The list may change.... :)