Some say the ‘Star Trek’ movies have an “every other rule,” meaning that only every other one is any good. Following the phenomenal success of the first ‘Star Wars’ movie, every movie studio scrambled to crank out their own space adventure flick and Paramount was no different. Unlike a lot of the others though, Paramount already had a popular cosmic property on their hands, ‘Star Trek’ which ran for three years in the 60s in first run episodes but never left the airwaves thanks to syndication, earning new fans constantly over the years. Unfortunately, ‘Star Trek: The Motion Picture’ was a bloated bore that failed to capture the charm of the TV series. But the franchise was redeemed big time with ‘Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan’ which is still considered the best Trek film by many.
Then came ‘Star Trek III: The Search For Spock’, another dud. But once again, following that disappointment came ‘Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home’ and fans were once again back on board. And they aren’t the only ones.
Walter Koenig recently spoke to Yahoo about his experiences over the last 49 years playing Pavel Chekov the navigator of the Enterprise. Koenig first popped up during the original show’s second season and continued through the first seven movies. Out of those, Koenig singles out ‘The Voyage Home’ as his favorite.
“I feel that’s best film we did. From my own point view, Chekov got to have some specific action, like the scene we did with the “nuclear wessels” and his interrogation by the FBI. He even got his own theme music! I had never shot anywhere but on a soundstage, and that was the first time I got to go out and shoot on the streets of San Francisco. I also think it’s the film that’s most representative of Gene Roddenberry’s original inspiration, to tell socio-political stories that spoke to what was transpiring in the world at the time. We addressed the topic of the environment with the storyline about the extinct whales. I feel we did a service for the world by addressing that subject in cinematic form and making it part of their consciousness.”
‘The Voyage Home’ is often sited as one of the best Trek films ever by fans and critics and it has a healthy 85% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Is it one of your favorites? Or do you think there’s another installment that transcends it?