10 Movies That Did Star Trek Better Than Star Trek‏

The final frontier...doesn't lie with Kirk.

Star Trek Into Darkness - the grammatically iffy follow-up to JJ Abrams' 2009 big screen reboot of the classic sci-fi series - was certainly a box office success, recouping its considerable budget of $185 million and then some, making it the most financially successful Trek movie of all time. The spit-shined new Enterprise and its young, sexy crew were considerably less well received by critics, however, with some of the plot twists and call backs to earlier instalments riling fans up rather than rewarding them. Really, it didn't matter what Into Darkness did - so long as it carried on being the sort of film the first new Star Trek was, they weren't going to be happy. You've gotta sympathise with the Trekkies (Trekkers? Trekstars?) a little, because the 21st century Star Trek doesn't bear all that much of a resemblance to the Gene Rodenberry source material. Superficially it does, with the cast decked out in update versions of the classic Starfleet uniforms, familiar alien races popping up and sly references being made to obscure planets and history from the franchise's sprawling mythology. Whilst everybody looks the part, the reboot jettisons a lot of what made Trek so unique in the sci-fi genre in the first place - which, arguably, is what has made the films so successful for modern, non-nerdy audiences more interested in seeing Chris Pine wrestle with Benedict Cumberbatch than discuss the finer points of Klingon phraseology. Rodenberry's vision was of a pacifistic, humanistic future society, where the Enterprise was only decked out with weapons as a Plan Z safety precaution should all other approaches fail. The heroes of Star Trek share a worldview and approach to travelling the cosmos to Doctor Who, more interested in "to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations". Not explode them. Which is mainly what happens in the new Trek films. Lucky for us, dear readers, the original Star Trek has inspired (and been inspired by) so much of pop culture since its début in 1966, we have a whole sub-genre of sci-fi films that are, essentially, are Trek movies in all but name. Films which do the pacifism, the sense of wonder, the space travel, the made up science and the diversity better than Abrams and co have managed so far. Here are ten films that did Star Trek better than Star Trek.

Tom Baker is the Comics Editor at WhatCulture! He's heard all the Doctor Who jokes, but not many about Randall and Hopkirk. He also blogs at