Main Features No 36
My God Jim…What a Way to Finish!
Just before they retire, Kirk and McCoy try to make peace with the Klingons, after the Klingon chancellor is assassinated Kirk and McCoy are arrested….
Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country – Trailer, Paramountmovies Digital, http://www.youtube.com and photographs © Paramount MovieS
I guess being in a household which every second weekend is 75% male and therefore inevitably more geek friendly a review on a Star Trek film would eventually surface. I’ve watched the newer films and the original series with William Shatner and his crew but am by no means a Trekkie. I’ve seen Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982) with the mulleted Ricardo Montelban – of course – and as far as his Khan goes there can only be one. I would gladly have cheered his Khan on if he and thespian Cumberbatch had fought it out Highlander (1986) style. I’ve also seen Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986), which I’m surprised still hasn’t been remade by the Syfy crew but involving killer sharks instead of whales. Anyway let’s boldly go where none of my reviews – so far – have travelled before…. Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991)
The film starts with an explosion on a Klingon Moon, after which the Klingons state they wish to make peace with the Federation. Kirk and his crew are asked to attend a meeting at the Federation chaired by Spock. They all attend but aren’t happy about it as they are given a mission and all grumble Danny Glover in Lethal Weapon (1987) style about being three months away from retirement (McCoy, DeForest Kelley) or having made plans to buy a boat (Scotty, James Doohan). The mission requested by the Federation president (Kurtwood Smith who plays Red Foreman in The 70s Show (1998-2006) who is the guy married to the Teri Garr lookalike who gets all the good lines – to escort a Klingon chancellor, Gorkon (David Warner) to earth. Kirk becomes initially sceptical about Chancellor Gorkon’s intentions and then upset. As. Dammit. They killed. His son. The crew is equally disturbed to meet the new girl Vulcan Lt. Valeris, played by Kim Cattrall.
Anyway Kirk and his crew set off and then once they find the Klingon ship, they invite them to dinner, and the Klingon crew are beamed aboard the Enterprise. We are introduced to Gorkon, his daughter and General Chang (Christopher Plummer), his Head of Staff. Plummer is almost unrecognisable being as bald as a coot, moustache and eye patch. At an awkward dinner, old grievances against the Klingons are aired in short sentences. By. Kirk. More eloquent in speech is Chang who quotes Shakespeare. After the Klingons return to the ship, two unknown dudes wearing uniforms and magnetic boots, assassinate Gorkon and some of the crew on board. Kirk and McCoy go to help out with medical assistance but Gorkon dies. Kirk and McCoy are promptly arrested for being accessories to murder as it appears the assassins were Enterprise employees. This leads to my favourite scenes. They are then are tried for murder in a scene resembling a cross between a Star Wars scene and the trial for Zod in Superman (1978), thus using his interogating skills Plummer used previously for a role in Murder by Decree (1979) when he was equally convincing in identifying Jack the Ripper as Sherlock Holmes.
So with the Klingons seeking revenge, and the crew seeking an escape plan for the Captain and the Doc, the rest of this film is a must see. Especially as this film was the last one in which the original Star Trek cast were together on celluloid. This fact was something darlin’ husband neglected to tell me and I surprisingly didn’t guess despite the average age of the cast. The film of course includes the obligatory Kirk love interest – yes, even his own Doctor McCoy is not surprised – a Vulcan mind melt, a fight between two aged Kirks – which would have been much sexier in a 1960s storyline, but with the older Kirk you are more worried about him fracturing his hip. There are a few lines which you think WTF and missed opportunities for catchphrase. On the whole, it’s a good fun film with the rapport and the teamwork of the Enterprise cast still evident. But I must agree with the Red Letter Media guys this film should have been a fitting end to their contribution to this film series.
So The Undiscovered Country was the one I am glad to have seen, as the one with Christopher Plummer – and that made me sob – as my darlin’ husband called it, thus ensuring it as a must watch movie for me. As he knows about my recent liking for Mr Plummer after suddenly seeing him as a bit of a hunk in The Sound of Music (1965) and on remembering what a sweetheart he was in International Velvet (1978). It meant he joined the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Jon Hamm in the good-looking male celebrities I would like to see more of, so now will have to look into seeing Murder by Decree once more… If you too are a Plummerite but avoid Star Trek, do make this one exception to the rule as for me its would’ve really be renamed Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Plummer.
Weeper Rating: 😦 😦 😦 /10
Handsqueeze Rating: 🙂 /10
Hulk Rating: /10
Bonus Trailer: Yes
Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country – Official® Teaser [HD], TrailersPlaygroundHD, http://www.youtube.com
The Ultimate 90s Blogathon
For the Ultimate 90s Blogathon run by Tranquil Dreams and Drew’s Movie Reviews I added this review on Star Trek VI The Undiscovered Country (1991). Other reviews with this cast include William Shatner in The Horror at 37,000 Feet (1973) and Christopher Plummer is featured in my International Velvet (1978) and Sound of Music (1965) reviews.