This summer's Star Trek Beyond looks to offer a refreshing change-of-pace from the Earth-bound stories of the first two Kelvin Timeline installments by placing the U.S.S. Enterprise crew in the midst of their five-year mission through deep space. Based on the trailers that have been released, the ship comes under attack by the villain Krall (Idris Elba), forcing Captain Kirk, Spock, and friends to seek refuge on an alien planet. It appears that they are split into deliberately mismatched duos as they work on reuniting with each other. For instance, Spock will be spending most of his time with Leonard "Bones" McCoy, which should prove to be an interesting dynamic.
Since there are seven principal members of the Enterprise crew, it means one of the veteran characters will have to pair up with someone new. That honor falls to chief engineer Scotty, who encounters an alien ally in Jaylah (Sofia Boutella) once he lands on the planet. The first meeting between the two can be seen in a new Star Trek Beyond clip, which you can watch above.
Though the situation Scotty finds himself in (separated from his colleagues) is definitely serious, the clip is actually a strong showcase for the humor in the new film. Scotty and Jaylah seem to be on the same side, but it'll obviously take a bit of time for them to get used to one another. Jaylah is very curt and her intentions are somewhat unclear, but as "Montgomery Scotty" says, it's the only help he's bound to get, so he accepts it. His new friend should come in handy, seeing that she knows a bit about Krall and what he's up to.
It will be interesting to see what kind of role Jaylah has in the film. Boutella made a name for herself as Gazelle in Matthew Vaughn's Kingsman: The Secret Service, displaying her strong action chops. There's the potential here for a memorable female character in the Star Trek canon, which would be a welcomed development after many felt Alice Eve's Carol Marcus was marginalized in Star Trek Into Darkness. In recent years, Hollywood has made strides to give both men and women their due in genre pictures (see: Rey, Wonder Woman), so the typically progressive Trek shouldn't have any issues being the next to follow suit.
The fact that key members of the Beyond supporting cast are fresh faces should prove to be beneficial as well. One of the common criticisms of Into Darkness was that it relied too heavily on references to The Wrath of Khan, instead of embracing the freedoms an alternate reality provided. For what it's worth, the Star Trek filmmakers seem to have taken the feedback from the previous installments to heart and worked hard on delivering something special. Even if the franchise won't be as "cerebral" as it used to be, the notion of a narrative that deconstructs the franchise sounds compelling.
Fans won't have to wait much longer to discover if Star Trek's 50th birthday will be one to remember. Paramount is so excited about what they have in store, they're holding the world premiere at San Diego Comic-Con 2016 on July 20, two days before the film premieres in U.S. theaters. Beyond had a very fascinating path to the big screen, but hopefully the team was successful in their goals, crafting a movie that's both entertaining and emotionally engaging.
Star Trek Beyond opens in U.S. theaters July 22, 2016.
Source: Paramount Pictures