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Star Trek Into Darkness (3D)

2013-06-06 10:49
 
Star Trek Into Darkness is, without a doubt, an action movie.
Star Trek into Darkness
What it's about:

When the crew of the Enterprise is called back home, they find that an unstoppable force of terror from within their own organisation has detonated the fleet and everything it stands for, leaving the 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.

What we thought:

Early in Star Trek Into Darkness, Scottie turns to Captain Kirk and asks something along the lines of, "Is this a military operation or are we explorers?" It's an apt question as one could similarly ask of the film whether it is an action film or science fiction. More on that later.

When Starfleet suffers a brutal attack perpetrated by a rogue officer, John Harrison, Kirk and his crew are tasked with hunting Harrison down and killing him (with a missile, because you want to be certain when it comes to these matters). As it turns out, things aren’t as simple as they first appear, and figuring out what’s going on takes the crew of the Enterprise into the dark corners of Starfleet.

As far as this reviewer is concerned, Star Trek Into Darkness is, without a doubt, an action movie and taken as that, it is entirely acceptable fare. It features some exhilarating sequences (a space-jump between two ships is a particularly thrilling example) and your appetite for spectacle will certainly be satisfied. What is disappointing, however, is how the film squanders the opportunities presented by its world and its supposed genre.

The crew of the Enterprise have a ship that can explore new worlds and cultures light-years away from our own. In this film the crew goes to another planet to blow things up, kick, shoot and otherwise maim its inhabitants (the Klingons, not that it has much bearing on matters). Perhaps that's a commentary on American foreign policy but I'm not so sure.

The film wears all the expected clothing of the science fiction genre, i.e. futuristic tech, shiny clothes, spaceships, etc. but it doesn't explore the possibilities of what any of these things could mean, merely employs them as adornments in its breathless rush from one plot point to the next.

The performances are good, though one gets the feeling they would be better if Abrams slowed things down and let his characters breath a bit. Chris Pine is once more cocky, brash and hot-headed as Kirk, though I do wish he'd be allowed to grow up and leave the boyishness behind. Zachary Quinto is fine as Spock, nothing more, nothing less. Benedict Cumberbatch, as the villain Harrison, manages the trick of being very good while still feeling wasted.

More than its pretence of science fiction, the most annoying thing about Star Trek Into Darkness is how often it references earlier films in the series. Presumably, this was meant to appeal to the fans, but I can't imagine any fans enjoying this when it's done in such a clumsy, contrived manner as it's done in this film. 

Which brings us to the sad irony of Star Trek Into Darkness, which is that, for a film that so proudly uses that famous dialogue ("To boldly go where no man has gone before...") it doesn't actually go where others haven't gone before. In fact, it happily goes where others have gone before, and it does so without bringing much that is new to the table.

Put simply, if you liked the 2009 film, you'll probably enjoy this one. It's often quite funny, the special effects are top draw, it's action packed and, like the earlier film, moves like a runaway train.

Still, it's likely that you'll forget about it once you leave the cinema and, sadly, it wastes the opportunities that its sci-fi roots afford it.

NEXT ON CHANNEL24X

Son of God

2014-04-11 09:36

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(Comments may be edited or deleted at the Channel24 editors’ discretion)
Jackie 6/6/2013 10:17 AM
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Technically it's a Space Opera or an adventure with the backdrop of space. It's not meant to be ground breaking with science predictions etc. It's an action/adventure romp in the future with characters we all love.
Carlo 6/7/2013 10:45 AM
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I loved 2009 Star Trek and thus far I think its gonna be great. Cant wait to see it later today and I do believe the Trekkie fans out there might be dissipointed, but i know I wont be, coz I was never a big fan of Star Trek, but the 2009 blew me away.
Carlo 6/7/2013 11:04 AM
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I loved 2009 Star Trek and thus far I think its gonna be great. Cant wait to see it later today and I do believe the Trekkie fans out there might be dissipointed, but i know I wont be, coz I was never a big fan of Star Trek, but the 2009 blew me away.
Gav 6/8/2013 11:29 PM
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I fully agree with this review. This movie is just mindless, escapist fun. I still enjoyed it, but end of the day it is all about action and nothing truly Star Trek about it.
ScubaSteve 6/9/2013 1:14 PM
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I saw into Darkness.It is brilliant! I am a trekkie fan and I see this as a great addition to the franchise. And anyone who thinks ooh this is not going to the frontier of space blah blah then wait till the next one because that is where it is pointed.
HL Giorgino 6/10/2013 8:42 AM
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Superb, one of the best movies of the year so far.
Live Long and Prosper! 6/10/2013 12:53 PM
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This was an awesome movie! Awesome script! Well acted! Emotionally charged! Great villain and really nice twists! Well done Damon Lindelof and JJ Abrams! You guys create magic!
James 6/10/2013 11:06 PM
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Admittedly I was tired and actually almost fell asleep during the movie, so perhaps not the most fair review. I agree with the author. I was a massive fan of the previous movie as it told a coming of age tale. Into Darkness, was neither here nor there. Kirk is some playboy kid and one can't understand why he's in charge of a starship, Spock is pinned as some super hero and the most likeable character is actually Khan. The whole 'teleport' thing needs to go as it actually kills the options available. But mostly I felt the movie failed on two fronts. 1. Unbelievability (too many near misses, lucky escapes, co-incidences and "just in times") 2. Mostly all happens on Earth... which was the same complaint I had about the latest Bond. We're drawn to these movies as they take us to far and away places, this doesn't. Looking forward to Man of Steel. Zack Snyder to take #1 spot.
Sam 6/11/2013 1:51 PM
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Absolutely brilliant movie, loved it!
Nadia 6/12/2013 10:18 AM
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I was not as impressed. . . its ok, at best.
michael davies 6/12/2013 9:43 PM
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it was the best so far ! did not even eat all my popcorn. story line was great and special effects was out of this world. had the pleasure of watching it in Phuket Thailand better cinemas than what we have. I also thing the condition of the cinema plays an important role in comfort of viewing.
Jon 6/13/2013 1:59 PM
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Your 3 three review is a revelation into your starless brain. dimwit. The movie is a 5 star movie. Quite the blockbuster on all levels.
Neven 6/13/2013 3:58 PM
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Watched it in 3D. It was awesome. I had a problem with there being a Tribble on board the ship. They only encounter the Tribbles later on when they go on their 5 year mission which starts at the end of this movie but seeing as the timelines have changed thanks to Nero and the original/older/future Spock I can overlook this. People must remember that this is a movie and not an extended episode of a TV series when they comment.
JadedKnight 6/16/2013 9:12 AM
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Why do they persist on sending people who have no knowledge of the genre (Or in this case, appear to dislike it) to review a movie that so clearly would require it?!. The review is bland, uninformative.... and readily forgettable.
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