While it may be a little thin on human drama, there are plenty of thrills to be had in the he newest installment in the Star Trek franchise which arrives to the big-screen almost three years after the release of the reasonably successful Star Trek into Darkness. Stepping in for J.J Abram is Fast & Furious' director Justin Lin, who - along with writers Simon Pegg and Doug Jung – has managed to put together and deliver a fresh goody bag of space adventures in the visually grand and super-entertaining, Star Trek Beyond.

It's been three years since Captain James T. Kirk (Pine) set off on his five-year mission to explore the depths of the infinite universe and seek out new life. Growing tired of his everyday routine, he is ready to jump ship, so to speak, and have a go at a more stable career. Subsequently, he decides to apply for the position of a Fleet Admiral at Starfleet's new Yorktown base while his first officer Spock (Quinto) is busy dealing with personal dilemmas of his own.

Their worries are soon put on the back-burner when they are tasked with the rescue of a crew stranded on planet Altamid. However, once the ship approaches its destination, the Enterprise is attacked by the villainous Krall (Elba), who would like nothing more than to get his hands on the artefact the Starfleet has in their possession. With their ship almost completely destroyed, the crew – including Bones (Urban), Uhura (Saldana), Sulu (Cho), Scotty (Pegg) and Chekov (the late Anton Yelchin) – are soon separated and now must find a way to locate each other.

Marking the fiftieth anniversary of the Star Trek franchise, Beyond does a wonderful job in executing the type of visuals needed to immerse audiences into its deep-space world. Integrating a seamless array of striking images and combining them with a competently formed pop-up effect, the film's definitely belongs on the big screen, with the 3D managing to find a way to contribute to the overall viewing experience. The action is genuinely thrilling and Lin shows great confidence in handling some of the film's more intricate action set-pieces, while the story is brisk and never stalls.

As usual, it's the story's characters that the biggest draw, with the focus moving away from Kirk and Spock a little, to lend some spotlight on the rest of the crew who, after the attack, are all sent off on their own little journeys. While some get more screen time than others, all involved do a great job with the best coming from Boutella as the feral warrior Jaylah and the partnership of McCoy and Spock who demonstrate warm chemistry and offered some of the film's best comic relief. 

On the downside, however, Elba's Krall is not as defined as perhaps he should have been and some of the hand-to-hand combat is a little underwhelming from an action standpoint. Nonetheless, the story is solid and the execution even more so with Lin taking successfully taking the franchise the exciting new direction that Star Trek into Darkness scratched the surface of.