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How to Binge the Best of ‘Star Trek’ for Free on First Contact Day - April 5

Jeff Kotuby

Today is a day to celebrate the Star Trek universe. April 5 is “First Contact Day,” commemorating the scene in “Star Trek: First Contact,” where humans first make contact with the Vulcans. Granted, we’re still a few decades off from the real First Contact date, but we can still party like it’s 2063 in 2022!

If you’d like to binge some Trek today, the best place to watch online is Paramount+, though a handful of titles are available elsewhere. You can start watching with a 30-day free trial!

Where to Watch All the Star Trek Movies

  • Star Trek: The Motion Picture

    December 7, 1979

    When a destructive space entity is spotted approaching Earth, Admiral Kirk resumes command of the Starship Enterprise in order to intercept, examine, and hopefully stop it.

  • Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

    June 4, 1982

    It is the 23rd century. The Federation Starship U.S.S. Enterprise is on routine training maneuvers and Admiral James T. Kirk seems resigned to the fact that this inspection may well be the last space mission of his career. But Khan is back. Aided by his exiled band of genetic supermen, Khan - brilliant renegade of 20th century Earth - has raided Space Station Regula One, stolen a top secret device called Project Genesis, wrested control of another Federation Starship and sets out in pursuit of the Enterprise, determined to let nothing stand in the way of his mission: kill Admiral Kirk… even if it means universal Armageddon.

    This one is so, so good. Settle in for a fun adventure with brain-controlling bugs, Ricardo Montalban’s super-villain, Kirk’s legendary Kobayashi Maru story, and a breathtaking ending. It’s the highest-rated Trek movie starring the original cast, with 87% on Rotten Tomatoes.

  • Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

    June 1, 1984

    Admiral Kirk and his bridge crew risk their careers stealing the decommissioned Enterprise to return to the restricted Genesis planet to recover Spock’s body.

  • Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

    November 26, 1986

    It’s the 23rd century, and a mysterious alien power is threatening Earth by evaporating the oceans and destroying the atmosphere. In a frantic attempt to save mankind, Kirk and his crew must time travel back to 1986 San Francisco where they find a world of punk, pizza and exact-change buses that are as alien as anything they’ve ever encountered in the far reaches of the galaxy. A thrilling, action-packed Star Trek adventure!

  • Star Trek V: The Final Frontier

    June 9, 1989

    The crew of the Federation starship Enterprise is called to Nimbus III, the Planet of Intergalactic Peace. They are to negotiate in a case of kidnapping only to find out that the kidnapper is a relative of Spock. This man is possessed by his life long search for the planet Sha Ka Ree which is supposed to be the source of all life. Together they begin to search for this mysterious planet.

    This is the worst-reviewed Trek movie with just 21% on Rotten Tomatoes, but it does include the awesome scene where Kirk talks about how he needs his pain. Also, “What does God need with a starship?”

  • Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

    December 6, 1991

    After years of war, the Federation and the Klingon empire find themselves on the brink of a peace summit when a Klingon ship is nearly destroyed by an apparent attack from the Enterprise. Both worlds brace for what may be their dealiest encounter.

  • Star Trek: Generations

    November 18, 1994

    Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the crew of the Enterprise-D find themselves at odds with the renegade scientist Soran who is destroying entire star systems. Only one man can help Picard stop Soran’s scheme…and he’s been dead for seventy-eight years.

  • Star Trek: First Contact

    November 22, 1996

    The Borg, a relentless race of cyborgs, are on a direct course for Earth. Violating orders to stay away from the battle, Captain Picard and the crew of the newly-commissioned USS Enterprise E pursue the Borg back in time to prevent the invaders from changing Federation history and assimilating the galaxy.

    There is so much to love about this movie - the best of the Next Generation films. From Jerry Goldsmith’s score to James Cromwell’s turn as a reluctant legend to Patrick Stewart’s tortured turn as a captain hell-bent on revenge. This is one of the most accessible Trek films, and it plays well even if you’re coming in cold. It scored 92% on Rotten Tomatoes.

  • Star Trek: Insurrection

    December 11, 1998

    When an alien race and factions within Starfleet attempt to take over a planet that has “regenerative” properties, it falls upon Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise to defend the planet’s people as well as the very ideals upon which the Federation itself was founded.

  • Star Trek: Nemesis

    December 13, 2002

    En route to the honeymoon of William Riker to Deanna Troi on her home planet of Betazed, Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise receives word from Starfleet that a coup has resulted in the installation of a new Romulan political leader, Shinzon, who claims to seek peace with the human-backed United Federation of Planets. Once in enemy territory, the captain and his crew make a startling discovery: Shinzon is human, a slave from the Romulan sister planet of Remus, and has a secret, shocking relationship to Picard himself.

    This is the worst-reviewed movie of the Next Generation series. Just 39% of critics gave it a positive review. But it does star a young Tom Hardy, so that’s something.

  • Star Trek

    May 6, 2009

    The fate of the galaxy rests in the hands of bitter rivals. One, James Kirk, is a delinquent, thrill-seeking Iowa farm boy. The other, Spock, a Vulcan, was raised in a logic-based society that rejects all emotion. As fiery instinct clashes with calm reason, their unlikely but powerful partnership is the only thing capable of leading their crew through unimaginable danger, boldly going where no one has gone before. The human adventure has begun again.

    Critics loved this J.J. Abrams reboot. The film scored 94% on Rotten Tomatoes, the best of any Trek flick.

  • Star Trek Into Darkness

    May 5, 2013

    When the crew of the Enterprise is called back home, they find an unstoppable force of terror from within their own organization has detonated the fleet and everything it stands for, leaving our world in a state of crisis. With a personal score to settle, Captain Kirk leads a manhunt to a war-zone world to capture a one man weapon of mass destruction. As our heroes are propelled into an epic chess game of life and death, love will be challenged, friendships will be torn apart, and sacrifices must be made for the only family Kirk has left: his crew.

  • Star Trek Beyond

    July 7, 2016

    The USS Enterprise crew explores the furthest reaches of uncharted space, where they encounter a mysterious new enemy who puts them and everything the Federation stands for to the test.

Where to Watch All the Star Trek Series

  • Star Trek

    September 8, 1966

    Space. The Final Frontier. The U.S.S. Enterprise embarks on a five year mission to explore the galaxy. The Enterprise is under the command of Captain James T. Kirk with First Officer Mr. Spock, from the planet Vulcan. With a determined crew, the Enterprise encounters Klingons, Romulans, time paradoxes, tribbles and genetic supermen led by Khan Noonian Singh. Their mission is to explore strange new worlds, to seek new life and new civilizations, and to boldly go where no man has gone before.

  • Star Trek: The Animated Series

    September 8, 1973

    The animated adventures of Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock and the crew of the Starship Enterprise.

  • Star Trek: The Next Generation

    September 28, 1987

    Follow the intergalactic adventures of Capt. Jean-Luc Picard and his loyal crew aboard the all-new USS Enterprise NCC-1701D, as they explore new worlds.

  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

    January 3, 1993

    At Deep Space Nine, a space station located next to a wormhole in the vicinity of the liberated planet of Bajor, Commander Sisko and crew welcome alien visitors, root out evildoers and solve all types of unexpected problems that come their way.

  • Star Trek: Voyager

    January 16, 1995

    Pulled to the far side of the galaxy, where the Federation is 75 years away at maximum warp speed, a Starfleet ship must cooperate with Maquis rebels to find a way home.

  • Star Trek: Enterprise

    September 26, 2001

    During the mid-22nd century, a century before Captain Kirk’s five-year mission, Jonathan Archer captains the United Earth ship Enterprise during the early years of Starfleet, leading up to the Earth-Romulan War and the formation of the Federation.

  • Star Trek: Discovery

    September 24, 2017

    Follow the voyages of Starfleet on their missions to discover new worlds and new life forms, and one Starfleet officer who must learn that to truly understand all things alien, you must first understand yourself.

  • Star Trek: Short Treks

    October 3, 2018

    Each episode tells a stand-alone story that serves as an opportunity for deeper storytelling and exploration of key characters and themes that fit into Star Trek: Discovery and the expanding Star Trek universe.

  • Star Trek: Picard

    January 23, 2020

    Set twenty years after the events of Star Trek Nemesis, we follow the now-retired Admiral Picard into the next chapter of his life.

  • Star Trek: Lower Decks

    August 6, 2020

    The lives of the support crew serving on one of Starfleet’s least important ships, the U.S.S. Cerritos, in 2380. Ensigns Mariner, Boimler, Rutherford and Tendi have to keep up with their duties and their social lives, often while the ship is being rocked by a multitude of sci-fi anomalies.


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