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Star Trek: Insurrection  rating

Review: written 2006

Worthy, fun, even exciting - just not Top Trek

Star Trek fans and other viewers have long derided this film for what it did not do. It did not follow on from the tension and excitement in First Contact, and it did not on the other hand live up to the pre-film hype that it would return to the humour of Star Trek IV.

However, what it did do, with benefit of hindsight, is in fact be one of the Next Generation movies that does live up to Roddenberry's ideal - there is a real theme and message here that Roddenberry would have been happy to put his name to.

The story starts when Data, involved in a duck-blind observation of the Ba'ku, a peaceful 'new-age-y' sort of race, goes apparently rogue. Picard and crew come to investigate, only to find that the planet may have the secret to eternal youth, and the observers have more than observing in mind - they plan the mass eviction of the Ba'ku. Picard is placed in a position of choosing between principle and his career, living out the moral centre ideal that Roddenberry loved so much.

There are elements of humour, some welcome fan appreciated vignettes, such as Geordi having a chance to see, Riker and Troi becoming close again, and the story moves along at a respectable pace. Set design is impressive, and the movie benefits from more on-location sets than any other Next Generation movie, giving it a unique identity. However, the darker edge is missed, and while good, the movie never quite reaches the heights of some of its predecessors, or explores the themes quite as much as you would want it to.

If you have not seen the movie - don't be put off by the negative talk - sure, this is no Wrath of Khan, but it is probably (arguably!) the second best of the Next Generation movies.

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