Review: Star Trek Into Darkness

SpockKirk

You cannot imagine the frustration of being a massive geek and not having time to see the latest Star Trek film in the cinema. It’s been out for so long, I’ve had to work hard to avoid overhearing or reading spoilers. But I was determined to see it on the big screen…

After a busy few weeks at work and then moving home, I finally got to see it last night.

It was definitely worth the wait.

Now, let’s put this in context. I’ve been a fan of Star Trek since I was old enough to watch moving images on the TV screen. I have vivid memories of watching Shatner et al run around dodgy sets in the Original Series when I was five or six. I instantly fell in love with the movies and – whether this is something to be proud of or not – I know most of the movie dialogue off by heart.

I’ve watched each literally dozens of times.

I was a little nervous when the last film came out. A reboot? Of Star Trek? Just how awful would it be?! I braced myself for nonsense and was so happy and relieved when it turned out to be a massively impressive revisiting of the Star Trek universe. It was clever and funny in so many ways.

I’m happy to report that the sequel is even better.

There’s far less focus on setting the scene and much more on elaborating our insight into the new Star Trek universe. Yes, the events of the first movie have changed things forever and it’s best to think of this as just one of many possible alternative futures.

Thus, Spock and Uhura are…gettin’ it on. Vulcan has been destroyed and most of its inhabitants with it. But we still have the same Enterprise crew, in very familiar guises.

This sequel picks up from the first film and drives us into non-stop, exhausting action. But at the same time, you don’t need to know anything about Star Trek to understand and/or enjoy it. It’s completely self-supporting plot-wise.

Despite being a new twist on an old story, there’s plenty of in-jokes, references and the like to keep old-school trekkies happy. I’m not going to share any of them here for now, as they’re all pretty big spoilers. If you’re into Trek (and you haven’t seen it yet?!) you’ll spot them.

The cast is once again impressive. Even more so, with the addition of the amazing Benedict Cumberbatch. He gives good villain. Quinto and Pine are a great double act, but unlike the old Trek films, the other cast members actually have something to do. No scene-hogging from Kirk and Spock this time.

All the same, for me it was Zachary Quinto (Spock) who stole the show. His facial expressions alone were worth the price of the cinema ticket. I was not alone in wondering what had happened to Chris Pine, though. Was he really trying to emulate William Shatner in his consumption of pies prior to filming?

He looks very…prosperous throughout the film.

Kirk’s love-handles aside, the special effects are massive but also subtle. The cityscapes on Earth are beautiful while the action scenes are so realistic, I totally bought in to their physics-bending content.

But then again, I am a geek.

in summary: new film good. Even better than the last one. Go see.

Next up? More sic-fi geekery with Iron Man 3.

  1. I watched the first JJ Abrams right after seeing Into Darkness, and I felt like both Quinto and Pine had put on some weight. At least 10 pounds apiece. Oh well, the sequel was amazing anyway.

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    1. Glad I wasn’t the only one who noticed the waistlines!

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      1. Yeah. Well… they are getting older…

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  2. […] finally managed to see Iron Man 3 last night, after what seemed like a very long wait. As with Star Trek, I’ve been trying desperately to avoid any spoilers and after seeing Iron Man last night, […]

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