Franchises of All Time
The Star Trek Films:
(The Next Generation)
Star Trek Generations (1994)
Star Trek Films (Next Generation)
Star Trek Generations (1994) | Star Trek: First Contact (1996) | Star Trek: Insurrection (1998)
Star Trek Nemesis (2002)
Star Trek Generations (1994)
Film Plot Summary
In the late 23rd century, the maiden voyage of the USS Enterprise-NCC-1701-B was indicated by a tumbling Dom Perignon champagne bottle (under the credits) crashing in slow-motion against the starship's hull during a christening; the ceremonial inauguration was attended by members of the original crew ("a group of living legends" including retired Captain Kirk (William Shatner)) and the new Enterprise crew headed by inexperienced Captain John Harriman (Alan Ruck), as it set off on a brief maiden voyage from Spacedock with Kirk ordering: "Take us out" - but the ship was still structurally and functionally incomplete.
The starship received a distress call about a strange energy ribbon (with "severe gravimetric distortions") that threatened to tear apart two El-Aurian transport vessels (Lakul and one other) loaded with refugees; the novice crew (with the aid of Kirk, Captain Scotty (James Doohan) and Commander Chekov (Walter Koenig)) struggled vainly to save the ships during an impromptu rescue mission, and some survived when beamed aboard, including Dr. Tolian Soran (Malcolm McDowell) (who kept crying: "Let me go back") and Guinan (Whoopi Goldberg); Kirk went below deck to the Main Engineering area to work on the deflector relays and save the ship from structural collapse; the ship was partially damaged by the ribbon - leaving a deep gash in the hull where Kirk was working (and now missing).
78 years later (in the year 2371), a new crew, led by Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) and Commander William T. Riker (Jonathan Frakes), commanded the USS Enterprise-NCC-1701-D - they were on the holodeck (in a 19th century sailing ship scenario on a ship named Enterprise) during a promotional ceremony for Klingon Officer Lieut. Cmdr. Worf (Michael Dorn); they were interrupted by a distress call from the Amargosa solar observatory that was under attack, where they found two dead Romulans and only five other survivors, including Dr. Tolian Soran.
Android Lt. Cmdr. Data (Brent Spiner) (with a newly-installed emotion chip that was only partially integrated into his system) and Lt. Cmdr. Geordi LaForge (Levar Burton) (with a VISOR to aid his sight) searched the observatory's lab where they found traces of highly unstable trilithium secretly concealed behind a hidden compartment; Soran unexpectedly appeared - knocked LaForge unconscious, and held a gun pointed at Data while he launched a trilithium-containing solar probe at the Amargosa star - imploding it; this caused a tremendous shockwave that altered gravitational forces, and turned it into a supernova; Soran kidnapped LaForge by transporting the two of them onto a cloaked Klingon Bird of Prey (commanded by the Klingon Duras sisters, Lursa (Barbara March) and B'Etor (Gwynyth Walsh)), while Data was rescued by Riker and Worf after a phaser duel.
Threatening them with his possession of a "weapon of unlimited power," Soran bribed the Duras sisters to take him to the planet Veridian III; Capt. Picard researched Soran's background, learning that he was 300 years old and had lost his entire family when the Borg destroyed his planet - and then escaped with other refugees aboard the Lakul; Picard learned from Guinan that Soran's primary obsessive goal was to get back to the Nexus and remain there, and the energy ribbon was its "doorway"; the Nexus was addictive - "like being inside joy" and Soran who wished to return there "could be a very, very dangerous man"; Picard theorized that Soran was attempting to "make the ribbon come to him" starting with the Amargosa star's explosion - hence his current journey to Veridian III to collapse or explode a Veridian star (that would consequently cause the destruction of all the planets in its system, including Veridian 4 with a population of 230 million) - the explosion would make the ribbon/Nexus accessible to Soran from the surface of Veridian III.
After Soran unsuccessfully attempted to question LaForge about his knowledge of trilithium, he modified LaForge's VISOR to provide secret transmissions (to the Klingons) before returning him, in a "prisoner exchange" with Captain Picard; Picard was beamed down to the surface of Veridian III, where he found an intractable Soran working on another missile-probe installation behind a protective force shield; LaForge's VISOR revealed the Enterprise's defensive shield modulation frequency to the Klingon sisters, and they attacked the ship in its weakened state; although the Enterprise was able to counter-attack and destroy the Klingon Bird of Prey, it was critically damaged; the starship's saucer section was ordered (by Cmdr. Riker) to be detached from the damaged core - it was launched but the impact of the exploding section caused it to crash-land on the surface of Veridian III.
As the Nexus approached closer, Soran and Picard fought hand-to-hand - as Soran successfully launched his trilithium missile probe at the Veridian star, and both men were sucked into the ribbon following the blast; Picard found himself enjoying Christmas with his family (and a reunion with his favorite deceased nephew Renee who died in a fire), but then realized that he was in the unreal temporal Nexus ("This can't be real"), and was told by Guinan, also in the Nexus, that he needed to get help from Captain Kirk, also happily entrenched there reliving his past (after being drawn into the Nexus 78 years earlier); after convincing Kirk to help him stop Soran ("Make a difference again") and save millions of lives, the two Captains materialized back on Veridian III just before Soran was to launch his missile and destroy the star.
Kirk fought hand-to-hand against Soran as Picard attempted to sabotage the launch of the solar-probe (although Soran cloaked it before it was disarmed); there was a struggle to reach the launch's remote control pad that had fallen from Soren's hand, and rested in an inaccessible area when a bridge was blasted into two halves; Kirk valiantly jumped from one bridge half to another to access the remote and was able to decloak the mechanism just before the ribbon arrived, but he fell into the chasm when the bridge collapsed and was mortally wounded; Picard was able to engage the locking clamps on the missile to prevent it from launching; Soran was killed when the missile exploded on its pad.
Picard reached the dying Kirk; and assured him that they had "made a difference"; Kirk's final words were: "(The) least I could do ... for the Captain of the Enterprise. It was fun...Oh, my!"; after he buried his friend under a pile of rocks, Picard was picked up by a shuttlecraft to be taken to the unsalvageable Enterprise crash site - where he was reunited with his crew and the survivors that were being evacuated by the USS Farragut.
Captain Picard retrieved his family memories album and told Riker: "Someone once said that time was a predator that stalked us all our lives, but I rather believe that time is a companion that goes with us on the journey, and reminds us to cherish every moment because they'll never come again"; looking over the damage, Picard also added: "What we leave behind is not as important as how we lived."
Film Notables (Awards, Facts, etc.)
The first film of the second series - the first film in the series to star the TV cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation (TNG) led by Patrick Stewart as Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (which first TV-aired in 1987 and lasted seven seasons), set less than a year after the end of the series.
No Academy Awards nominations. Nominated for one Razzie Award: Worst Supporting Actor (Shatner).
With a production budget of $35 million, and box-office gross receipts of $75 million (domestic) and $118 million (worldwide).
Great Scene(s): The crash-landing of the saucer section of the USS Enterprise-1701-D on the surface of the planet Veridian III, and the death of Captain Kirk.
Also Worth Your Attention...
Captain James T. Kirk
Dr. Tolian Soran
Capt. Jean-Luc Picard
Cmdr. William T. Riker
Lt. Cmdr. Geordi LaForge
Lt. Cmdr. Data
Counselor Deanna Troi
Lt. Cmdr. Worf
Dursa Klingon Sisters
Lursa and B'Etor
(Barbara March and Gwynyth Walsh)
Series-Introduction - Index to All Films | Series-Box Office
- J.J. Abrams InterviewLearn about the new movie from the director
- Damon Lindelof InterviewThe movie's executive producer explains why Trek needed a reboot
- Simon Pegg InterviewLearn about the new Scotty, actor Simon Pegg
- Ultimate Fan QuizTest your Trek trivia with questions from the movies.
- John Scalzi's Trek Cheat SheetCatch up on past movie plots with original Trek Haiku
- Villains Photo GalleryFind out what warped these Trek movie villains
- Aliens Photo QuizSee how well you know the obscure Trek aliens
- Franchise OverviewFilm historian Tim Dirks takes a detailed look at the various entries in the series
- Meet Your MakersCatch up with the careers of the Original Series cast