Story

Star Trek Beyond is the third movie in the current Star Trek series. After three years of their five-year mission, the crew of the Enterprise is recuperating at the space station of Yorktown. The crew includes Captain Kirk (Chris Pine), Commander Spock (Zachary Quinto), Dr McCoy (Karl Urban), Lieutenant Uhura (Zoe Saldana), Scotty (Simon Pegg), Zulu (John Cho) and Chekov (Anton Velchin).

The crew’s holiday is cut short when a strange alien arrives in a damaged ship. The alien and her crew crashed on a planet deep within an uncharted nebula and the crew is marooned and in dire need of rescue. As the Enterprise is the only ship advanced enough to navigate the nebula, Kirk is given the mission of rescuing the stranded aliens.

Unfortunately for Captain Kirk and the Enterprise crew, the rescue mission turns out to be a trap. When they arrive to rescue the marooned aliens, the Enterprise is attacked by thousands of tiny ships that form coordinated swarms against which the Enterprise has no defence. The Enterprise is destroyed and the crew uses the escape pods to make it to the planet’s surface.

A vengeful alien called Krall (Idris Elba) is responsible for the attack. Krall believes that Kirk has an alien artefact that’s the key to a weapon of mass destruction. Krall wants to use the weapon to destroy the Federation, and his first intended target is Yorktown.

With the help of an alien freedom fighter named Yaylash (Sofia Boutella), Kirk must find a way to stop Krall.

Themes

Space travel; aliens; weapons of mass destruction

Violence

Star Trek Beyond has sequences that show sometimes intense action violence, mass destruction of property, mass murder, many violent deaths, threats of violence and intimidation, and some blood, gore, pain and suffering. For example:

  • An alien creature charges at a man, biting and clawing at his neck and clothing. More creatures charge the man and swarm over him, clinging on to his legs, arms and torso as he tries to throw them off.
  • In a battle scene thousands of miniature, dart-like spaceships behave like a swarm of bees and attack a starship. The tiny spaceships punch through the sides of the starship causing a massive explosion. People fly through the air and a section of the starship breaks off. Alien soldiers armed with laser rifles materialise on the decks of the starship and start firing their weapons at the crew of the starship. Dozens of the ship’s crew lie dead and injured. An alien attacker grabs a crew member by the throat, lifting him up into the air while strangling him. Another alien is ordered to cut the throat of a crew member but this doesn’t happen. Humans and aliens are killed when an explosion rips a hole in the side of the starship and they are sucked into space. The burning starship drifts in a field of its own debris as it falls towards the planet and crashes into cliffs before coming to a stop.
  • An injured man lies on the ground with a large jagged piece of metal sticking out of his side and blood soaking through his clothing. A second man, who has some blood smeared over his face, heats a piece of metal to red hot, kneels down and pulls the piece of metal from the injured man’s side. He quickly presses the hot metal into the wound and cauterises it while the injured man screams in pain.
  • A female alien warrior armed with a power staff and knife punches and kicks three alien attackers in the face and body. She holds a knife to one attacker’s throat and we hear stabbing sounds. When the fight is over the three attackers lie motionless on the ground.
  • A prisoner says that a particular alien takes prisoners away. The prisoner says you hear them screaming and then you never see them again.
  • Several human prisoners hang upside down surrounded by tubes and electrical cables. An alien warrior steps between two hanging prisoners and places a hand on each. This causes the prisoners to scream out in pain as the alien sucks out their life forces (we see some electrical discharge). When the process is over the prisoner are dead. Their bodies look mummified.
  • An alien woman who is a test subject is in a room. An alien man activates a device and a black cloud (like a swarm of tiny metal pieces) envelops the woman. She disintegrates slowly at first and then quickly until she’s completely gone. She shouts in fear as the cloud approaches her.
  • In a climatic fight, a human and an alien warrior punch and kick each other for an extended period. The human shoots the alien in the leg. They wrestle and then fall through a glass window to land on a tower. There is blood on the man’s mouth and small bloody scratches on his face. The man activates a device that releases a swarm of tiny black metal particles that engulf the alien. The alien’s body disintegrates as it is sucked out into space.

Content that may disturb children

Under 5
In addition to the violent scenes mentioned above, Star Trek Beyond has some scenes that could scare or disturb children under five years. For example:

  • There are many alien creatures that younger children might find scary and disturbing. Some look like gargoyles, and others have large blue heads or tentacles and reptilian eyes. One alien woman has a head with a number of bony finger-like appendages sticking out from the side. At one point the appendages unfold to reveal a small device hidden in the top of the woman’s head.
  • A reptile-like alien partially transforms to a human form.
  • In a perilous scene two men in a wrecked starship about to crash on a planet shoot out a window and slide down the ship’s hull. They jump to safety moments before the ship crashes. Other crew members disappear through a hole in the ship’s side.
  • A man falls over a high cliff and hangs on to the side of the cliff by his fingers until another man pulls him to safety. 

From 5-8
Children in this age group are also likely to be disturbed by the violence and scary scenes and characters mentioned above.

From 8-13
Children in this age group are also likely to be disturbed by some of the violence and scary scenes and characters mentioned above. The slightly comical appearance of some of the aliens might mean they’re less scary for older children in this age group.

Over 13
Younger viewers in this age group might also be disturbed by some of the scenes mentioned above.

Sexual references

Star Trek Beyond has occasional low-level sexual references. For example:

  • There’s a reference to how an extended stay in space affects the crew’s interpersonal interactions.
  • A woman dressed in sexy nightwear stands in a hallway in front of a man with a bare chest. She angrily throws some clothing in his face. The scene suggests they’ve recently had sex.
  • A man and woman’s relationship break-up is discussed subtly in a couple of scenes.

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

Star Trek Beyond shows occasional use of substances. For example:

  • Two men drink brandy from glasses and one of them says that the brandy was illegal and could make you go blind. 
  • One scene shows a birthday party where people drink wine and colourful cocktails. An alien woman sits at a table with a dozen empty glasses in front of her on the table. When someone asks her about the drinks, she replies that she drank them to ‘take my edge off’.

Nudity and sexual activity

Star Trek Beyond has some partial nudity and sexual activity. For example:

  • A man and woman kiss in a couple of scenes.
  • Women wear revealing clothing.

Product placement

There is no product placement of concern in Star Trek Beyond but merchandise associated with the movie is likely to appeal to children.

Coarse language

Star Trek Beyond has mild coarse language and name-calling throughout. 

Ideas to discuss with your children

Star Trek Beyond is a science fiction action adventure targeting teenagers and adults, particularly fans of the Star Trek TV series and movies. This movie is a return to the original characters of the 1960s TV series and fans won’t be disappointed.

The sometimes intense violence and scary characters make Star Trek Beyond unsuitable for children under 12 years. We also recommend parental guidance up to 14 years.

These are the main messages from this movie:

  • It’s better to die saving lives than to live with the knowledge that you took someone’s life.
  • Life’s struggles are what make you who you are. 

Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include self-sacrifice and teamwork.