Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (Paramount Pictures, 1989) is the fifth feature film based on the Star Trek science fiction television series. It is often referred to as Star Trek 5 or The Final Frontier. The film was directed by William Shatner, following two films directed by his co-star, Leonard Nimoy. Shatner also developed the initial storyline. It was shot entirely in California.
A Klingon commander named Klaa learns of the Enterprise's mission and pursues in an attempt to capture or kill Kirk. His actions are not authorized by the Klingon government, however, and he takes this quest merely to obtain personal prestige as a warrior.
Upon their arrival at Nimbus III, the Enterprise crew discovers that a renegade Vulcan named Sybok, the emotionally driven half-brother of Spock, has taken Klingon, Romulan, and Federation representatives hostage. Sybok reveals that he used the hostage situation as a ruse in order to obtain a starship, being sure the government of one of the hostages (Federation, Klingon, and Romulan) would mount a rescue mission.
Sybok uses his unique ability to share with and help conquer a person's greatest emotional trauma to gain the trust of most of the crew. McCoy accepts the experience, reliving his father's death (he euthanised his father to end his pain, but learned afterwards that a cure had been developed a short time later). Spock also accepts the experience, reliving his birth (being half bred of Vulcan and Human, he was never fully accepted by his father). However, Kirk denies Sybok, telling him that the pain experience is what makes them Human.
Sybok then seizes control of the Enterprise, so he can reach a mythical planet named Sha Ka Ree, where a mysterious, presumably God-like entity awaits. Sybok claims to have had visions from the entity of its existence, and feels compelled to follow those visions in order to experience the entity's possible wisdom and power first-hand. However, the planet is somewhere behind The Great Barrier, a mysterious region of space that has been walled-off from exploration since time immemorial and that has never been breached (this is the "final frontier" of the title).
Under agreement and cooperation (as long as he plays it by the book), Sybok relinquishes the helm back to Kirk, and the Enterprise successfully crosses the Great Barrier, finding a planet in this uncharted region of space. Kirk, Spock, McCoy and Sybok explore the planet, which seems completely barren until a strange outcropping of rocks rises from the ground in front of them and an entity appears to them. Masquerading as God, the entity asks the explorers how they got there. When told about the Enterprise, it demands passage aboard the ship in order to leave both the planet and the Great Barrier and to spread his knowledge to the rest of the Universe. When the skeptical Kirk questions the entity's motivation ("What does God need with a starship?"), it turns malevolent, harming Kirk. McCoy and Spock rush to his rescue, and even Spock has to ask for an answer to the question. Sybok then realizes that the alien entity is actually the manifestation of his own arrogance, seeking to escape the Great Barrier.
Realizing his mistake, Sybok sacrifices himself to delay the evil being long enough for Enterprise to launch a torpedo. However, while Sybok is killed, the entity isn't, and the Enterprise has enough power to beam up two people. Kirk tells Scotty to take Spock and McCoy, leaving himself on the surface of the planet with the entity. Spock is able to convince the Klingon ambassador to order Klaa (who followed the Enterprise into the Barrier and to the planet) to rescue Kirk rather than kill him. Klaa's Bird-of-Prey suddenly de-cloaks and destroys the alien with a disruptor blast. Kirk is beamed aboard, where he receives an apology from Klaa himself, who admits that his attack on the Enterprise was not authorized by the Klingon government. The crews of both vessels and Sybok's captives enjoy a peaceful celebration of their newfound détente. The film ends with Kirk, McCoy, and Spock resuming their vacation in Yosemite National Park.
|William Shatner||Captain James T. Kirk|
|Leonard Nimoy||Captain Spock|
|DeForest Kelley||Commander (Dr.) Leonard McCoy|
|James Doohan||Captain Montgomery Scott|
|George Takei||Commander Hikaru Sulu|
|Walter Koenig||Commander Pavel Chekov|
|Nichelle Nichols||Commander Uhura|
|David Warner||St. John Talbot|
|Todd Bryant||Klingon Captain Klaa|
|Charles Cooper||General Korrd|
|Cynthia Gouw||Caithlin Dar|
The original end of the movie involved Kirk being chased by a rock monster hewn from the rocky terrain. The monster was supposed to be large in size and also breathed fire, which was revealed on the storyboards for the film. This footage was scrapped when William Shatner decided that the costume looked unconvincing. Shatner originally requested for 10 costumes to be created, which would cost a reported $4 million. Due to the budget which was considerably low, only one costume was made. Because of budget problems and delays partly caused by the expense of the costume, Shatner was unable to re-film sequences and ended up having to re-use shots of the false god's face instead. Test footage of the rock monster appears in the 2003 special edition DVD release. (The idea of the "captain" being attacked and chased by a "rock monster" was used humorously a decade later in the 1999 Star Trek spoof, Galaxy Quest.)