Movie Review: ‘Star Trek: Into Darkness’
Before I begin this review let me just say as a geek; who would have believed the day would come when we would get to see Captain Kirk match wits with Sherlock Holmes? Now that that business is out of the way, we can continue with the rest of the review. The previous installment of JJ Abrams’ (Alias, Lost) fresh new take on the Star Trek franchise, saw as the iconic characters created so many years ago by, Gene Rodenberry took to the roles that fans have become accustomed to them holding. But in this sequel, Star Trek: Into Darkness, the crew of the USS Enterprise, must prove that they worthy of holding their respective positions. In order to do this, Captain Kirk and the others must be put to the test, not just from a Starfleet that doubts them, but also from a new foe in the form Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock). As anyone can probably see from the advertising campaign, this movie will be no walk through the holodeck for their favorite deep space explorers.
The film does not waste time with introductions, but wisely begins with the crew in a pivotal moment which sets the tone for the rest of the film as those aboard the famous starship, begin to lose trust in each other. This leaves them weak and susceptible to a mysterious new villain, who has an axe to grind with the Federation. Each member of the cast has grown even more comfortable in their respective roles, each one of them seemingly channeling those who originated the part, as well as bringing their own twist to it. Chris Pine continues to blow moviegoers away with his acting abilities. Pine clearly plays a Kirk who is still learning the ropes, but over the course of events he becomes the leader fans know him to be. And the newest members of the cast also hold their own including; veteran actor Peter Weller, Alice Eve, and Noel Clarke. But most notably, the most noticeable new member to the ensemble is, Benedict Cumberbatch, who is perfect as the antagonist. While Abrams masterfully makes the newest film easily approachable to new fans, their are many moments that are thrown into the film just for the Trekkers (I defy any fan worth their weight in Tribbles not to get emotional upon hearing that Nurse Chapel was no longer with the crew, but was now happy in the “outer frontier”).
Like the best of Star Trek tales, Into Darkness explores the problems facing our own society through the lens of science fiction, just Gene Rodenberry and DC Fontana did all those years ago. There are many points within the film, where the audience questions the morality of Captain Kirk, as well as who exactly are the true villains. But it is not all heavy handed metaphors and social commentary, there is plenty of action to make this summer blockbuster stand out. From fierce battles in space to a showdown with Klingons, any action fan will be quite pleased with this latest Trek installment. Despite rehashing some of the plot points from previous films, the case could be made for this to be the best, if not most exciting, Star Trek film to date. If you have yet to see it, then I suggest you boldly go to the cinemas and remedy that.
Overall 9 out of 10