Rebel with a Cause Picard and Pals Head out to Save a Tiny Planet from the Federation in 'Star Trek Insurrection'

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), December 11, 1998 | Go to article overview

Rebel with a Cause Picard and Pals Head out to Save a Tiny Planet from the Federation in 'Star Trek Insurrection'


Byline: Dann Gire

"Star Trek Insurrection"

* * 1/2

Written by Michael Piller. Produced by Rick Berman. Directed by Jonathan Frakes. A Paramount Pictures release. Rated PG. Running time: 103 minutes.

Cast:

   Capt. Jean-Luc Picard   Patrick Stewart
   Lt. Cmdr. Data      Brent Spiner
   Anij            Donna Murphy
   Ru'Afo         F. Murray Abraham
   Adm. Dougherty      Anthony Zerbe

With Jonathan Frakes, LeVar Burton, Gates McFadden, Michael Dorn and Marina Sirtis.

Finally, after a string of bloated save-the-universe plots, the "Star Trek" movie series has scaled down to its TV roots as a straightforward morality tale and thinly masked political allegory.

In the slickly made "Star Trek Insurrection," the noble crew of the USS Enterprise draws a line in the intergalactic sand when the Federation starts pushing around a minority on a very small planet.

Lt. Cmdr. Data (Brent Spiner), the ship's lovable android mascot, has gone nuts while assigned to the Ba'ku planet where the Federation has been secretly observing the small civilization of 600 Ba'kus.

The Federation representative on Ba'ku, Adm. Dougherty (science-fiction veteran Anthony Zerbe), assures Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Steward) everything will be fine once Data gets aboard the Enterprise and the crew leaves.

But Picard stays long enough to find out what Data tried to stop: the "cultural survey," being conducted by the Federation and their deformed-looking allies, the Son'a, merely a front for an elaborate conspiracy to abduct and relocate the Ba'ku to another planet.

Once the Ba'ku have been moved, the Federation and the Son'a plan to take over their planet, which has a strange radiation that cures illness and renders residents impervious to the passage of time. In short, the planet has its own fountain of youth that slows down the rate of human growth to almost zero. …

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