Synopsis: After the crew of the Enterprise find an unstoppable force of terror from within their own organization, Captain Kirk leads a manhunt to a war-zone world to capture a one man weapon of mass destruction.
When it comes to JJ Abrams, everyone is talking about Star Wars. I think that everyone should take a break from the great Star Wars debate and focus on his latest film. Star Trek Into Darkness is what I am referring to as this year’s best blockbuster thus far. If you enjoyed the first film, I think you will enjoy the continual development of the characters and their relationships as this film begins to establish its independence as a true Star Trek film.
A cast that began as fresh has grown more into their roles as they begin to blend the traits of the original characters with their own. This gives a welcomed familiarity to the fans while maintaining an independence that that redefines the characters for a new audience. Zachary Quinto is first and foremost the most notable among the cast. He has taken the role of Spock and given it a youthful appeal while maintaining the characteristics of Leonard Nimoy’s original version of the character. Comparing Nimoy to Quinto cannot be done, it’s like comparing Sean Connery’s James Bond to Daniel Craig’s. I would consider this more of a passing of the torch for Spock as well as the other characters and Quinto’s Spock is a welcomed addition to the franchise. Outside of Quinto’s role, I would say Simon Pegg is a close second with his portrayal of Scotty. The nervous, tense nature of the character meshes well with Pegg’s style of humor. Scotty is a more passive character which fits well with many of Pegg’s usual roles. I do like Chris Pine as Captain Kirk and I think he does an adequate job, but there are moments of goofy humor that persist across both films and it is a distraction from the role. Aside from the recurring characters, Benedict Cumberbatch is amazing as the new villain. He is a formidable opponent on both a physical and mental level. Cumberbatch displays a vast amount of confidence and intelligence in the role which made me wonder both when and how he would strike and how he would be defeated.
The cast may modernize the characters but it is JJ Abrams’ vision of Star Trek that modernizes the film. His concept of a world focused on space exploration in the distant future is unbelievably stunning while remaining a believably adaptable concept of what the future could be. You can easily get lost in the vast eye candy that is outer space. As the Enterprise warps across the galaxy leaving a trail of warp dust, we are introduced to a variety of new worlds, new galaxies, and new races that could maintain cinematic appeal on visuals alone. While many may be opposed to Abrams, I think that he is this generation’s master of visuals when it comes to Sci-Fi films. I cannot think of a recent film in the genre that can match Star Trek Into Darkness‘ visual depiction of space.
With stunning visuals and dynamically evolving characters, I don’t see how this film can be missed. The plot is typical of a summer blockbuster, being very formulaic with an unstoppable villain that is not so unstoppable, and heroes that band together despite their differences. While the plot may be typical, it in no way makes it any less interesting, it even provides some delightful surprises for the fans. I think that JJ Abrams has kept the momentum for the franchise going with this film and I can easily say it is the best of the blockbusters so far this year. Throughout the film I experienced a roller coaster of emotions bringing me up and down with excitement, suspense, awe, and even laughter. I can’t wait to see this film again and definitely look forward to the next Star Trek film to come.
Star Trek Into Darkness – 8.5 out of 10
Absolutely stunning, the best summer blockbuster thus far…