Finally — I feel like I’ve broken out of some kind of tractor beam … OK, not quite. Kirk is still … hanging … around. But at least we’re relieved by the crew from The Next Generation. It’s both good to see them as new faces, and good to see them again. And Scotty did utter the phrase “space time continuum,” even though he was only in the movie for about 15 minutes.
Overall: B- Not a great movie in and of itself. A transition movie. Kind of like Search for Spock, but a little better.
Plot: C I really didn’t get what the ribbon/nexus thing was or how it worked. Picard seemed to jump in and out of it at will. And how handy that Whoopi Goldberg was there to explain it all to him!
Costumes: B- TNG folks were in their standard polyester jumpsuits. I was never really a fan but they were better than the old jumpsuits. They managed to get the Klingon thing down during the making of TNG, though — maybe all those hours doing Worf.
New cast members: A- Malcolm MacDowell. That’s really all you need to say, right? Whoopi Goldberg doesn’t really count since she was a regular on TNG. The only drawback to MacDowell is that he and Patrick Stewart outclass Shatner to a near-embarrassing degree. But Shatner’s really beyond embarrassment, isn’t he? And casting Cameron from Ferris Bueller as the new Enterprise captain at the beginning was a little obvious. We just knew things weren’t going to go well.
F/X: B+ The crash of the Enterprise saucer section goes on a little too long but it is impressive. And in an earlier battle with the Klingons, there’s an especially impressive slo-mo of bodies flying around the bridge — several steps beyond the old everyone-falls-to-the-right battles on the bridge.
Series Ranking: 1. Wrath of Khan 2. The Voyage Home 3. Generations 4. The Undiscovered Country 5. The Search for Spock 6. The Motion Picture 7. The Final Frontier