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Star Trek Beyond: New Trek fails to boldly take off

By Damon Smith

Captain James T Kirk (Chris Pine) is considering relinquishing the bridge but keeps his plans secret from the rest of the crew including human-Vulcan science officer Spock (Zachary Quinto), communications officer Uhura (Zoe Saldana), navigator Pavel Chekov (Anton Yelchin), chief engineer Montgomery Scott (Simon Pegg) and helmsman Sulu (John Cho).

During a visit to a Federation starbase under the control of Commodore Paris (Shohreh Aghdashloo), Kirk and the team respond to a distress call issued by an alien called Kalara (Lydia Wilson). The Enterprise subsequently comes under attack from an otherworldly despot called Krall (Idris Elba) and his swarming drones.

Star Trek Beyond is a familiar conflation of past and future present that fails to set its phasers to stun. Pine, Quinto and co are solid in roles that lack dramatic meat and don't progress the characters over two hours, and a flimsy, contrived plot resolves potential conflict with minimum blood, sweat and tears.

Three stars

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