Editors' pick

Star Trek

MPAA rating: PG-13
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Director J. J Abrams brings new life to the series with a chronicle of the early days of James T. Kirk and his fellow USS Enterprise crew members.
Starring: Chris Pine, John Cho, Simon Pegg, Winona Ryder, Zoe Saldana, Anton Yelchin, Eric Bana, Leonard Nimoy, Diora Baird, Tyler Perry
Director: J.J. Abrams
Running time: 2:06
Release: Opened May 8, 2009
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Editorial Review

Let us pray.

Lord of "Star Trek" and all its spinoffs, we thank thee for a movie that, against all odds, has miraculously resurrected a wheezing but beloved franchise.

We thank thee for an origin story that, unlike such recent downers featuring the Incredible Hulk and Wolverine, pays affectionate respect to its source material but never falls into the trap of slavish worship.

We thank thee for a cast of bright young actors who plunge headlong into the spirit of "Star Trek" at its most goofily straight-faced, saying some of the show's most familiar catchphrases as if for the very first time, and capturing the gestures and physical habits of their characters.

We thank thee for Zachary Quinto, who plays Spock with surprising pathos. We thank thee for a setup that pits James T. Kirk (Chris Pine) and Spock against each other, giving "Star Trek" its fraternal rivalry.

We thank thee for the U.S.S. E nterprise, where the young ones gather for their first mission. The marketing campaign for the movie has suggested this is "not your dad's 'Star Trek.' " But this 11th installment of the movie franchise, the first in seven years, is not just your dad's "Star Trek." It's a movie that is correct enough to appease the most hard-core buffs, while opening up the final frontier to a new generation of fans.

We thank thee for giving screenwriters Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci the power to resuscitate not only the "Star Trek" brand, but a long-abandoned principle in American cinema: pure pop pleasure.

But most of all, Lord, we thank thee for director J.J. Abrams, who has woven myth and escapism together so masterfully with the TV show "Lost" and proves such an able steward of the "Star Trek" narrative and characters.

We thank thee for imbuing Abrams with taste and conscience enough to guarantee that "Star Trek" will once again live long and prosper. May he do the same.

Amen.

-- Ann Hornaday (May 8, 2009)

Contains sci-fi action and violence, and brief sexual content.