Star Trek: Insurrection (1998) starring Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner, LeVar Burton directed by Jonathan Frakes Movie Review

Star Trek: Insurrection (1998)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Patrick Stewart and Donna Murphy in Star Trek: Insurrection (1998)

For Non Trekkies to Boldly Go

On a beautiful planet a routine mission to observe the easy going Ba'ku goes wrong when Lt. Commander Data (Brent Spiner) for some reason becomes out of control and turns against other Federation officers as well as the Son'a people. Admiral Dougherty (Anthony Zerbe) orders Captain Picard (Patrick Stewart) to retrieve Data or else he will be forced to destroy the robot. But what should be a simple mission to get Data turns into something more complicated as Picard becomes aware that the Federation High Council is violating its own Prime Directive when it comes to attempts to remove the Ba'ku from their home to mine the planet for its rejuvenating properties.

So those who have read my other reviews of the Star Trek movies will know I am not a Trekkie and have watched the previous two "Star Trek: The Next Generation" movies and struggled because of my next to nothing knowledge of the characters. As such when it came to "Star Trek: Insurrection" the ninth movie in the Star Trek franchise I expected for it to be a struggle again for the same reason and in some ways it was. Whilst having got to know the characters a little during the previous movies this Star Trek universe with Ba'ku, Son'a and so on is a mystery to me and I imagine to other non Trekkies who endeavour to watch this movie also.

But once again "Star Trek: Insurrection" benefits from Jonathan Frakes taking on the role of directing and he just keeps the whole thing ticking over making this movie feel like an episode of a sci-fi series rather than trying to make more of it and being over reverent or epic. It is why for non Trekkies these last two movies have entertained because the focus has been on general action and fun rather than building on stories and aspects of the TV show. And in this movie there is a lot more focus on fun with comedy from Picard singing a song from HMS Pinafore to distract Data to Data's head appearing to float in mid air when he removes his invisibility helmet. Plus there are moments of romance in "Star Trek: Insurrection" which just add to the lightness of tone which is dominant this time around which may not be what true Trekkies were hoping for.

What this all boils down to is that so far "Star Trek: Insurrection" is the most accessible of the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" movies for non Trekkies with its lighter tone. But it is still a movie which to me works best for those who are fans of the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" movies and know the characters.