Star Trek: Into Darkness – Movie Review
By Anne Brodie May 16, 2013, 14:04 GMT
In Summer 2013, pioneering director J.J. Abrams will deliver an explosive action thriller that takes "Star Trek Into Darkness." 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 ...more
It’s not just that it’s splendidly huge and ambitious, or that it features blood red forests, new magical horizons or new ideas, it is simply a film that successfully brings together the trappings of Star Trek canon and makes them new and relevant.
It also serves up one of the best villain in Star Trek history, a Starfleet officer gone bad called John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) who is really ... well, you’ll have to find out. His first crime is a massive bomb attack on London, not a pretty reminder of the events in Boston or 9/11, etc.
It is merciless and deadly as citizens fall and you have to wonder how this kind of thing becomes standard entertainment. That’s another story. But that’s the kind of man he is, mocking, vicious and determined. He exhilarates the film which at times settles briefly into complacency.
The mission is to put him down decisively before he can do more damage. In order to kill him, the crew must journey into a war zone – is there any other kind in space? The battle scenes are visually hard to follow and the thing goes soft, but things heat up again.
Nothing has changed with Kirk and Spock; they are still Sci-Fi’s longest-married old couple, griping and connecting, both so different and completed by the other. Even in their sentences. They embody the heart and soul of the Star Trek conundrum, the struggle between Vulcan and human sensibilities. Both appear to die. Spock’s volcano experience is particularly gruesome.
They’re still funny. They’re about to be separated and Kirk says to Spock that he’ll miss him. Spock looks at him in confusion, but somehow wanting to reciprocate. Kirk laughs, shakes his head and walks off.
Starfleet Science Officer Dr. Carol Marcus (Alice Eve) returns to the fold for the first time since The Wrath of Khan back in 1982 and intrudes on Spock’s bailiwick. She’s the daughter of Admiral Alexander Marcus but aboard the ship under an assumed name in an act of rebellion against him. She gains a foothold but doesn’t do much just yet except attract Kirk.
The film is many things, reflecting the mind of Abrams, its intelligent, richly drawn, ingenious, bold and unexpected, bringing new life to the well-known characters. The situations may not be new or go where they haven’t been before, but it the story is written on a huge canvas and entertains on the grand scale.
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Written by Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman and Damon Lindelhof, based on Gene Roddenberry’s television series
Directed by J.J. Abrams
Opens: May 16th
Runtime: 132 minutes