Back in my youth, I used to sit every weekend and re-watch every Star Trek film (although not Star Trek V) ever made featuring the original cast of William Shatner, DeForest Kelley, Nichelle Nichols, James Doohan, Walter Koenig, George Takei and Leonard Nimoy. As I got older, my tastes changed and the crew of the starship Enterprise started to look lame to me. When the franchise was given the once-over with a new, younger cast in the latest film, I decided it wasn't so bad to be a Trekkie after all.
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, which was released in 1986, was directed by Leonard Nimoy, who played Spock in the original series, and in the films featuring the original cast. For people who never watched the older Star Trek films, nor bothered to see the television series, the plot of this film will be confusing. The sheer quality of the direction, the script, and the acting, however, should be enough to encourage a non-fan to watch Star Trek: The Wrath Of Khan and Star Trek III: The Search For Spock in order to understand the logic behind the plot of The Voyage Home.
The plot is fairly easy to follow. A strange probe looking to communicate with some humpback whales indirectly sucks the life out of the planet Earth. The crew of the Enterprise, which faces charges upon their return to Earth for stealing the ship after being put down and rescuing Spock, find themselves the only folks who can save Earth from the probe by returning to a 1980s-era Earth for some humpback whales to talk to it.
The original Star Trek now and then dealt with the notion of time travel. Here rather than merely focus and concentrate on the mission, Nimoy's direction and the clever script written by Nicholas Meyer and Harve Bennett allowed for this Enterprise crew to relax and have a laugh. Rather than feeling paranoid and uneasy around a 1980s Earth setting, they treat it as if they are in a fantasy land where their superior knowledge allows them to run amok and possibly improve the future sooner than later.