Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)

Article 3433 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 11-28-2010
Posting Date: 1-7-2011
Directed by Leonard Nimoy
Featuring William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley
Country: USA
What it is: Star Trek movie

A mysterious space probe is sending untranslatable messages into the oceans of the Earth, threatening in the process to destroy the planet. Captain Kirk and his crew discover that the probe is trying to communicate with humpback whales, a species extinct since the 21st century. They decide to go back in time and bring some whales to the future in order to save the Earth.

I’ve covered the first two movies in the series, and now I find myself skipping the third and hitting the fourth. Since the common belief is that the even-numbered movies in the “Star Trek” series are the superior ones, this might be interpreted as jumping to the next good one, though I myself don’t have any major problems with THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK, though I haven’t seen it in years. Nonetheless, this is a very good one in the series; it roughly completes a trilogy that began with the second movie in that there’s a certain flow of the story line to all three movies that finally comes to a conclusion here. It steps away from the heavy action emphasis of the previous two movies and relies primarily on character and wit; the scenes of Kirk’s crew alternately struggling with and feeling superior to the technology and mores of the late twentieth century are very amusing. I particularly like watching Spock struggling in an attempt to use profanity, McCoy grousing about the barbarous state of medicine, and watching what develops with the tactical mistake of sending Chekov on the mission to acquire nuclear materials. And, having been an old fan of the series, I always like those neat character moments when the characters react just as we’ve grown to know they would. And, of course, the scene I most remember most is here, too; you know, the one with the punk rocker on the bus.


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