- Words By | Charles E. Singletary
- Pen Name | Profex
- Twitter | @Profexxion
I wasn’t around to pen the review for J.J. Abrams first journey into the stars, but I was definitely impressed. I grew up watching Next Generation with Profex Sr. and hearing stories about the original from my uncle, but never considered myself a Trekky. Any “space journey” fiction intrigued me as a kid (hence my love for Ender’s Game) and the Star Trek lore always intrigued me, just never as much as Star Wars.
The rekindling of the franchise in 2009 was an opportunity for a fresh start. These modern takes were made for people much like myself: Curious, but not entirely informed. Most times, as a fanboy, I condemn the liberties taken when writers get a hold of these stories that we hold near and dear. It took a different perspective for me to truly understand, though.
Its definitely true that some writers get a little wild with additions/subtractions to existing material, but I think the Trek movie got it write. With Into Darkness bringing one of the most infamous Trek villains to the screen, will the energy built by the first film carry over, progress, or fizzle out?
- Genre | Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi
- Rating | PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi action, violence, and Khan. Shall we begin?
The Reel Quick Review
Things begin with a bang, with (now) Captain Kirk, played well by Chris Pine (Unstoppable, This Means War), still early in his Enterprise career. The surveyal of a remote planet goes awry and the dynamic between Kirk and Spock is placed front and center. Kirk’s headstrong approach is an exact counter to Spock’s ever logical stance. Not to take away from Pine’s Kirk, but Zachary Quinto (Heroes, American Horror Story) has truly made his portrayal of Spock a highlight of J.J. Abrams’ films. The cold calculating character would be nothing without the brief glimpses into the emotion of his human side, and its in these moments that Quinto shines.
On another note, Abrams struck pure gold with Benedict Cumberbatch’s intense illustration of the enigmatic Khan. I’ve never seen Wrath of Khan, but I knew the story and was interested to see how the original would be reflected here and what new twists would be introduced to the story. Not only was everything Khan related good writing, but Cumberbatch (The Hobbit, Sherlock) stole nearly every scene with his sinister demeanor. I say nearly only because he “overacts” a couple moments, but he’s fairly consistent. Seems his genius role as Sherlock wasn’t a fluke after all. The supporting cast is as solid as ever as well, especially Simon Pegg, but the main trio is a treat to watch.
On top of the great acting, the story is good and well paced. After about the first 20 minutes, things take an intense turn and keeps you on edge until the credits roll. The action is epic, the humor….humorous, and the fan service is top notch.
Per the Abrams norm, the production is also stellar through and through. The CG is beautiful and the set pieces are incredible. The used a specific warp shot a few too many times for my liking, but it was a really good shot and I’d have probably done the same in their position.
The first Star Trek was the sum of incredible parts. Into Darkness doesn’t add anything super new (except an arguably better villain), but perfects the same cogs that made the first movie work so well. All these things come together to make Into Darkness the best movie I’ve seen thus far this year.
The Quick Recap
- + Great Pacing
- + Beautiful Production
- + Benedict Cumberbatch (Khan) Slays
- + Zachary Quinto (Spock) Slays Again
- + Awesome Story