Stars: **1/2 out of Four
Summary: Somewhat lackluster, it pales in comparison to its predecessor but managed to help get the franchise back into the status quo.
Review: After Leonard Nimoy successfully lobbied for the death of his character, Spock, in ‘Star Trek II’, there was fan outcry that balanced out the very high critical reaction to the aforementioned movie. Suddenly, it seems, Nimoy realized how much he enjoyed being a part of the ‘Trek’ phenomenon, and so the Sequel was made.
The results are… mixed.
Picking up right after ‘Trek II’ ended, the film has a fairly contrived – though not completely alien from the ‘Trek’ mythos – method of bringing Spock back. The sad thing is, the subplots don’t connect well enough with the central premise, making the urgency feel forced.
Spock’s absence is practically tangible. The other characters feel out of balance, and I was just waiting for the various obstacles to be over so that the ‘Trek’ universe could be set right again. It’s a missed opportunity, that feeling, as I doubt I’m the only person who felt that way. They could have capitalized on it more than they did.
The next thing that the film suffers from is low production values. It uses less stock footage than its predecessor, but the new effects are fair-to-middling.
All in all, this film was a necessary step to restarting the franchise, but it didn’t add too much on its own. Still, fairly enjoyable, with a good balance of humor, action, and drama.