To celebrate the release of Star Trek Into Darkness, the Flickering Myth writing team look back at the classic sci-fi franchise. Next up for Star Trek Month is Andy Naylor looking at Star Trek: Insurrection….
Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise learn of a conspiracy against the peaceful inhabitants of a distinctive planet, and decide to take matter into their own hands by defying a Starfleet Admiral.
You know what – out of all the Star Trek: The Next Generation movies this is the most “Next Generation” of them all. This is the movie that easily portrays the feel of the The Next Generation series and what made it successful. We have a crew whose moral compasses are so true and straight that they are willing to ruin their own careers and face a court martial to do what they believe is right. This film could easily slip into a The Next Generation season as a two-parter and no-one would complain. There’s no horrific plot holes that you could fly a Borg cube through (I’m looking at you Star Trek: First Contact), there’s no random Picard murderous rage (again, hello Star Trek: First Contact) or Jean-Luc whimpering (the god awful Star Trek: Nemesis); he’s the Captain Picard of the series and he’s in complete control of his destiny. Each and every character is behaving as they would in the series and that is the charm of Insurrection.
That however is Star Trek: Insurrection’s problem. It simply doesn’t make for a gripping cinematic experience. It’s all too cutesy and safe and, dare I say it, boring. It just doesn’t grab the attention of the non-Star Trek public enough to ever be considered remotely a successful film. But that is precisely what I enjoy about it. It’s not a bad thing it just a very limited film with a mediocre story line. Most of it is quite forgettable; in fact I’d be surprised if anyone could name any villain in the film by name. I do want to defend it for the reasons I stated above but it is so unremarkable and unmemorable in almost every way that I can’t. The only stand out moment of the entire 116 minute run time is the Riker manoeuvre, but that isn’t enough to entice you back for a second viewing.
The Next Generation, arguably, catapulted Star Trek into the mainstream mass market, but there is no argument at all that The Next Generation films killed Star Trek. And the conservative nature of Star Trek: Insurrection just hastened that journey.
Star Trek Month continues tomorrow with Luke Owen looking at Star Trek: Nemesis…