“Star Trek: Beyond” and the 15 Minute Rule

- July 26, 2016

What does it mean if you show up 15 minutes after the start of a movie and have no problem picking up the thread? Is the directing and the screenplay so airtight that each sequence inevitably unfolds into the next and is imbued with a shared purpose that propels the film forward? Or is the plot so obviously cookie-cutter that a tipsy baboon could figure it out as well?

These are the questions I’m asking myself after showing up late to Star Trek: Beyond. And to the movie’s credit, it takes me a while to come to an answer. Maybe it’s because I’m tired. Or maybe it’s because every time Karl Urban tries to do a different facial expression I have to fight back the urge to beat him with a frying pan. Either way, after missing the set-up, I’m still 100% with it and frankly entertained by the fast pace, Idris Elba as a deformed space worm, and that girl with the funny accent and the crazy mascara. I don’t even cringe at Chris Pine’s pause-for-dramatic-effect one liners.

Surely there’s something wrong with that. That you could miss a chunk of a movie’s most important minutes and have it not really matter. Would Pulp Fiction be the same? Goodfellas? The Dark Knight? Wedding Crashers? No chance, right?!

So here’s the 15 minute rule: If the first 15 minutes of a movie are expendable, so are probably the rest of the minutes.

In the case of Star Trek, it ended up not really mattering much. After happily suspending my disbelief for a while, I decided to quit on the movie when someone thought it would make sense to destroy an army of alien battleships with Rock n Roll music. Are we really that out of ideas?

Rating: 6 / 10 ; VOD that shit

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