Thursday, May 16, 2013

Star Trek Into Darkness

Rated PG-13 / Runtime 2 hr 12 min / Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi


The crew of the Enterprise in this alternate reality are boldly going where no one has gone before..  again.  This time there is a terrorist (Benedict Cumberbatch) that is threatening to take out Starfleet's leadership.  The terrorist is one of their own, and knows all of their secrets.  Kirk (Chris Pine) is tasked with stopping him.  The usual cast of characters are there to help.  I could really sum up this movie in one sentence.  I just don't want to give too much away.


Just like the first movie in this reboot series, everyone gets some face time.  Sometimes this is good, and other times it seems like they are trying too hard to keep everyone involved.  Zachary Quinto and John Cho are both excellent in their respective roles.  Of course, Spock has a much larger role and gives Quinto more of a chance to shine.  Karl Urban and Zoe Saldana are good in their own roles, but aren't given much to do in this iteration.  They do have their moments, but not nearly enough of them.  Chris Pine and Simon Pegg both still seem miscast in their roles.  Pine does a serviceable job, but you can't help but to compare him to Shatner.  Pegg is much too campy for his role.  Benedict Cumberbatch does a fine job of looking menacing in his role as the terrorist.  One thing did irk me about his performance.  He seemed to be speaking as if no one could hear him, and we all had to read his lips to understand him.  


This is a well written movie that has high ambitions.  There are a few mistakes that are repeated from the first Star Trek movie.  One is trying to keep everyone involved as a major or semi-major character.  It ends up looking forced in some cases.  They really could have taken one character in particular out of the movie, and I don't think anyone would have noticed.  They also have a few lines that were thrown in that make the actors look like they are saying, "Look at me! I'm playing (insert Star Trek character's name here)."  All they are missing is a thumbs up towards the camera.  There are fewer of those moments than in the first movie, but they are very noticeable.  Keith Urban seems to be the best at delivering these lines, but it looks painful anyway.  These are relatively minor gripes for an otherwise excellent film.  The story has a few twists and turns that keep it interesting.  The special effects are spectacular just as they were in the first movie.  The sparks from the volcano in 3-D are well worth the price. 

The Bottom Line

If you liked the first one then you should like this new Star Trek movie.  It is wildly entertaining with beautiful special effects.  There are also tons of one liners that had the audience breaking out in laughter.  At the showing I went to the audience applauded the movie several times.  This is a must see for anyone who enjoys science fiction or action movies.  J.J. Abrams has fine tuned the formula he used for the original reboot of this franchise, and improved on nearly every aspect.  This one ranks right up there with Wrath of Khan as one of the best Star Trek movies even if it doesn't quite knock Wrath off the top spot.  

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