Star Trek Into Darkness review

By Max Maier | Jun 18, 2013

In 2009, Director J.J. Abrams, famous for tv show Lost and several other movies, put out a reboot called Star Trek. Abrams wanted to create a new storyline and universe for these characters, so he could retell stories from Star Trek lore, but in his own way. And for the most part, people loved. It was a box office and critical hit and is still regarded as a very good sci-fi movie, and possibly one of the best Star Trek movies ever. So after such a successful opening salvo, Abrams wanted to set his phasers to victory once again and create an even better movie. Has he? If not, then he has created a movie just as good.

The movie opens up with the crew of the Enterprise on a dangerous mission on a foreign planet, where Kirk (Chris Pine) breaks regulation rules to save Spock (Zachary Quinto). Afterwords, Kirk and his crew are punished for it. Meanwhile, a mysterious man is attacking the Galactic Federation. His motives and methods will bring Kirk and the crew across the galaxy in a battle to save everything they stand for, but is all hope lost? Will our beloved crew fall into darkness?

 

The first movie had strength in its story, cast and action all across the board, and this movie matches it and improves on it on several levels. The story in this movie is quite strong. The pacing is great and there are many twists and turns. In fact, there are a couple of twists I can't spoil here, mostly involving our villain, played by Benedict Cumberpatch. In fact, if you want to keep this spoiler safe until you see the movie, do not look up info for him, the revelation is phenomenal. One of the beautiful things about this story is how some elements of the original Star Trek series is retold here, but its implication is genius. Abrams has crafted his own universe with Star Trek, and his twists on original stories is a breath of fresh air for the series. My only gripes with the story is involving some decisions in the beginning involving Kirk and his crew's punishment after the film's opening. It leaves little impact and just doesn't really amount to much. Overall though, this story is great.

The action is also amazing to see. Now granted, we have the intense cgi action of Man of Steel, but Into Darkness' action was more tense as apposed to flashy. The film's climatic battle is also a great bit of tense action and a FANTASTIC bit of fan service for some of the characters involved. The other action scenes are alot of fun, and the space battles are just as impressive as the last film.

Once again, this is a stellar cast. Every actor delivers great performances, no matter how much screen time they have. The synergy between the actors is quite an achievement. Chris Pine is once again our beloved Kirk, but see a more experienced Kirk here, and it comes off great. The rest of our crew is as strong as always, but the standout amongst our heroes is Spock. Zachary Quinto was great in the last movie, but he comes into his own in Into Darkness. A surprising amount of the story is dedicated to Spock, and his beliefs and methods. It could almost be considered a character study at some points, but it's just the strength of the story. The biggest shock though is Cumberpatch as the villain. Again, I wish I could go into what makes him truly great and his true methods and history, but that's for all of you to discover. Star Trek fans will know of this character, and he may not be quite as cool and memorable as his original incarnation, but Cumberpatch has created his own version is a fantastic villain at every angle. This is a fantastic villain and possibly one of the better villains I've seen in a while.

My only complaint about the movie is the fact that the focus given to all the characters is more diverse than the last movie. In the first movie, each member of the main crew got a decent amount of screen time, as did several other secondary characters (Leonard Nemoy). However, Into Darkness gives more time to Kirk, Spock, Scotty, Uhura and Cumberpatch's villain. Now the content we get from them is great, but it's the lack of attention from the others that really leaves a crack in this otherwise near-perfect movie. Dr.McCoy, Sulu, Chekov and others get a few good lines, but not much more. They gave great performances, but we didn't get as much of them as we did in the previous film. That's just how the story pans out. Also, Alice Eve's character, Carol, serves little purpose other than eye-candy, a convenient plot answer later on and a rather forced underwear scene.

 

Other than those minor gripes, Star Trek Into Darkness is a fantastic sci-fi action movie that delivers more great acting, more great action and whole lot of fun. It is gonna be a long summer, but so far this movie stands atop many of them. The crew of the Enterprise's only real competition so far is a particular superhero's movie. I highly reccommend Star Trek Into Darkness to fans of sci-fi, action, space and Star Trek.

 

I give Star Trek Into Darkness a 4.5 out of 5, and set phasers to stun.

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