Star Trek Into The Darkness review

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Star trek into the darkness is the 2013 sci-fi action movie and a sequel to the Star Trek, which created an impact at the box office as well as a good impression for the fans of the original CBS series. A sequel was inevitable as the popularity turned out to be astounding. Star Trek into the darkness is a good ride and an intriguing entertainer. When compared to its predecessor, the movie faster livelier and more relishing. We won’t realize the time passage. In addition to that, the depiction of the characters is much better in this movie, especially that of Spock.

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However, the movie watching experience raises more questions related to the storyline. The movie begins with the exploration of a planet where Spock (Zachary Quinto) succeeds in rendering a Volcano inert, a process which almost got him killed. After the incident, as Capt Jim Kirk (Chris Pine) filed a false report, Kirk loses his ship to Capt Pike (Bruce Greenwood) after he was exposed by Spock who himself filed a report. The movie began with everything opposite to the first movie. Kirk was declared as someone who is daring and profound in the predecessor and relieves Pike from duty. But then here, after 15 minutes he loses his ship and that was rather quick to happen, especially when you watch this movie immediately after Star Trek. Later a terrorist named John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) attacks the council of Captains and first officers, killing Pike in that process. He beams onto Kronos.

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Kirk vows revenge and he is asked to fire 72 photon torpedoes onto Kronos to kill Harrison. This is a huge shift of role by the enterprise as they were explorers, thus, the point is accentuated by Montgomery Scott (Simon Pegg) while he tries to protest against the carrying of the torpedoes without being given specifications. I was taken aback at this change of scenario and the films have introduced a completely different environment when compared to the television series. There are several issues in terms of plotholes. John Harrison beams from one edge of space to the next with the help of a portable trans-warp beaming device. Yet, Kirk had to a fly a ship to get to Harrison. This is because they wanted to fire the torpedoes but don’t tell me that the beaming device is left out of the plot just like that.

And, we are introduced to the controversial character Carol Marcus (Alice Eve), because of the way she was exploited. When her character came on screen as per mysterious circumstances, she changed her surname to come abroad the enterprise(for example), I expected more involvement from her. The only useful thing she does is turning off an active torpedo, by accident. And of course, there were hue and cry related to her 5-second appearance on screen in her underwear. As someone with a built-up and revealing, it was indeed disappointing to watch her being reduced to that of a sex appeal, not to mention she stands such that her 6 packs are visible enough. J.J Abrams and the writer apologized when there was an outrage, their excuse for having this shot is because Star trek series have a bigger male fanbase. Pity that they use half naked women to please men instead of tough and skilled women. Except for those menninists who are fighting for their “right” to oppress women, most boys enjoy watching wonder woman, Furiosa, the bride, Hermione Granger, Katniss Everdeen etc kick ass instead of damsels in distress. Alice Eve’s presence wouldn’t have made a difference even if she was the potential villain’s daughter.

John Harrison eventually surrenders to the enterprise crew and he reveals himself as Khan, a genetically engineered 300-year-old super human who was revived by admiral Marcus to help them built weapons during desperate times. When Khan is revealed, we can only assume that something or the other related to “Star Trek: wrath of Khan” will be used.

KHAAANN!!!

In spite of delivering the best performance in this movie, Casting Cumberbatch as Khan also a raised a lot of controversies as Khan in the original version looked like this.

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It is rather surprising to see a gorgeous looking caucasian actor reveal himself as Khan, who is nerve-racking and eccentric in the original version played a middle eastern actor. However, apart from the casting issue, Cumberbatch was brilliant in this movie. If there is any positive review then they have highlighted his performance as Khan. His voice, gestures and body language will make you believe that he is a genetically engineered superhuman. I ended up believing that he is a genetically engineered superhuman in real life. 😛 So the name factor might be less of an issue, as the character looks appealing owing to Cumberbatch’s performance. I genuinely believe that he should have been given some other name instead of giving scope to the controversy. Also, at one point in this movie in an awesomely performed scenario, Khan is not actually the villain, as he emancipates a tale related to him and his crew being victimized by Marcus. That was a good development of his character and I just wished that they stuck to that plot instead double crossing it with the obvious twist, Khan IS the villain… Duh. As a superhuman, Khan is fast, strong, intelligent and is able to jump from impossible heights etc. But, Spock was actually able to chase him down and have a fist fight where he wins, does that mean that Vulcans are stronger and better? If Khan is a superhuman then why did he run after seeing Spock?

But that being said, there are more plus points. I like how Kirk changes from a boyish chap with no seriousness to a tough commander at par wit the original version. He actually makes sacrifices for his crew and makes tough choices. He’s made stupid decisions as well, like putting 17-year-old Chekov in charge of the engineering section. Chris Pine delivered a steadfast portrayal and his gestures are fun to watch, notably in the scene where Scott ends the phone conversation. Spock is better portrayed in this movie and he makes the clever decision for a change. Uhura is not reduced to a ruse when compared to the first movie. She makes daring moves to save her friends and we see more depth in her. However, her bickering about Spock’s lack of loyalty and no personality of his own is again a disappointment. Karl Urban and Simon Pegg stuck to their standard performance. It was a pleasure to watch Bruce Greenwood although his role is limited. Pike’s death turned out to be a minor blow for the movie.

Technically the films have all the traditions, notably the lens flares. J.J Abrams continues his culture of grabbing the viewer’s attention. This movie has a lot of similarities and plot points copied from the original “wrath of Khan“, therefore people will end up comparing the two films. Direction wise most of these moments are better in this movie, lacking of originality is what challenges it. Well as someone who has not watched the original before watching this movie, I didn’t find those aspects problematic. J.J Abrams’s direction was able to bring cents on its own. Compared to Star Trek 2009, into the darkness is more rewatchable, mostly it owes to J.J Abram’s vision, better characterization, Benedict Cumberbatch’s profound presence, and the apt pacing. Whenever I sit before this movie, I end up watching the whole thing.

3.5/5

Featured image: chiriscrespo.com

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