13 July 2016

Star Trek 4: The Voyage Home

Star Trek 4: The Voyage Home - What the fuck is it about?

In the future, mankind has hunted all whales to extinction which is awkward because an angry alien thing has just turned up assuming whales to be Earth's dominant species. So after they investigated some blue space-mist in the first film, dealt with the wrath of Khan in the second, and resurrected Spock from a dying planet in the third, there was really only one obvious story that this fourth movie could tell. Kirk and his crew must travel back in time to the 1980's, steal a couple of whales from SeaWorld, take them back to the future and then have them tell the angry aliens to 'piss off'. Talk about cliched! It's also worth noting that the movie begins with the crew in exile after the shit they pulled previously. Shouldn't be a problem for them though really, considering that's where most of the cast spend their time when not making these movies.

So was it shit or not then?

Well, it could be said that this is the moment that the franchise jumped the shark. Or considering at one point that Spock dives into the Seaworld tank to ride one, perhaps a more apt phrase would be 'it fucked the whale'. Though you know when an idea is so stupid that it actually becomes kind of brilliant? Well, this is one of them. The best sci-fi is actually a comment on modern day society anyway so why not just save time by having your sci-fi characters actually come to modern day and simply comment on it? Particularly when it's as legitimately fucking funny as this. I also liked that it had a proper full-on eco-message. I mean, most comedy movies aren't even funny, let alone actually funny and with some degree of subtext. Admittedly the subtext is about as obvious as how fucking old the actors are becoming, but at least there's no denying it's there.

Actually if I'm being honest, my biggest criticism isn't anything to do with the ridiculous story at all but probably is in the state of the cast. At this point they're all clearly getting on a bit, but rather than letting them appear as their actual age, the movie attempts to convince us that they're all still young. I mean, Sulu has so much make-up on his face that for the first half of the film I just assumed he was some random fucking geisha. Even Shatner is starting to resemble a cross between a clown and a prostitute. That belt of his is looking tighter, too. Does the plot revolve around them looking for whales just because they wanted a species to make him look thinner? Usually it's the character wearing a red shirt that's going to die but a fucking bright-red face can't exactly be a good sign. Also at four films in, Uhura still hasn't done that much. I appreciate that the crew is made up of all various nationalities and so obviously has a liberal left leaning view for the time, but everybody has their moment to shine in these films with the exception of the only woman. I doesn't help the point either that her name basically sounds like "A whore? Urgh”.

Anyway.. Is this film worth seeing? Absolutely. Even if you haven't seen the previous three then it works as a decent enough comedy as it is. Sure, the cast look a little bit like they've been drawn onto a stretched out ballsack, but they're still all really funny.