Sunday, 14 July 2013

Film Review: Star Trek Into Darkness

About the film
Star Trek Into Darkness is the second instalment of the newest Star Trek series of films. It was released at the cinema on 9th May. The film is rated 12A and has a run time of 132 minutes.

After venturing out to the planet Nibiru and managing to save it from destruction, the crew of the Enterprise is called back home. Shortly after though, Captain Kirk is demoted to First Officer, and former Captain Pike takes his place after putting his crew in danger and not following protocol. When someone from within Starfleet bombs a secret area called Section 31 in London, all hell breaks loose. An emergency meeting of all Captains and First Officers is called but is attacked by the man responsible for the bombing. The attack results in many deaths, including that of Captain Pike. With a personal vendetta to settle, Kirk takes charge of his ship and leads a man hunt for Khan, the man responsible for everything. However, Khan is unlike any other Starfleet Officer and Kirk and his team have a near impossible mission on their hands if they’re going to stop him and save everyone they know.

What I thought
Star Trek Into Darkness was one of the films I have been looking forward to most this year. Each time I saw the trailer at the cinema, it gave me goosebumps and I was obviously desperate to see it and I went a few days after it opened.

The film starts off full of action, with Captain Kirk and his crew running through a beautiful planet but away from the inhabitants that live there while Spock is trying to stop a volcano from erupting. Not only is the beginning of the film really exciting but it is also stunning to watch. We also quickly get reacquainted with the cast and crew of the Enterprise. James Kirk is back up to his old tricks by not following the rules and doing whatever the hell he feels like, Spock is there to try to talk sense into him and his relationship with Uhura has deepened. I liked the reintroduction to the characters as it meant the film was able to get right into the plot instead of spending a long time establishing who everyone was.

Chris Pine reprises his role as Captain James T. Kirk, a strong headed and selfish kind of guy. It doesn’t seem as though his character has come very far from where he was in the first film. He still thinks he can do what he wants and nothing bad will happen because of his actions. He still cares mostly about himself with the exception of a few moments between him and a couple of other people. As the lead role, you would expect Kirk to be more likeable but he isn’t. I couldn’t warm to him very much at all and I had been hoping that in this film, he would have changed a little bit.

Spock, on the other hand, was every bit as fabulous as I remembered him to be. Zachary Quinto is an exceptional actor with the ability to take on pretty much any role. The role of Spock is so far away from that of those he played in either Heroes or American Horror Story but yet he pulls each of them off with perfection. As a character not feeling human emotion, nor the ability to lie and break from the rules, he is so interesting to watch. Not only that, but the relationships that he develops are almost as interesting as the character due to the fact that they are unlike any relationships I have seen before. Spock’s character is also funny in an unconventional way due to his strange mannerisms and the fact that he doesn’t think he is in the wrong… ever.

The plot follows the crew of the Enterprise, Starfleet and the man responsible for bombings and attacking the Captains and First Officers. The man in question is Khan, aka John Harrison, played by Benedict Cumberbatch. Khan’s character has a lot of secrets and reasons behind his actions which are slowly revealed over the course of the film. He’s unlike any other Starfleet member though and for a fantastic reason. The whole film revolves around Khan’s past and where he comes from. As a villain, he was supposed to be very devious and cunning, with skills beyond belief. While Cumberbatch has a wicked evil look to him, I just didn’t believe he was that bad. Never did I think of him as a huge threat, even when he did wander around with massive guns shooting the crap out of Klingons.

While a large amount of the cast was a let-down, the action never stopped. This is a film with fight scene after fight scene and constantly changing settings. Both of this things are what make this an enjoyable film. Into Darkness concentrates strongly on good vs. evil and the need to do the right thing. It was interesting to see these lines blurred throughout the film. Kirk is sure he is doing the right thing while Spock continues to tell him he isn’t There are also However, with characters lacking in substance, it makes it hard to care who lives or dies, who fails and who succeeds. There are however, a few nice moments regarding the friendship between Kirk and Spock but this doesn’t last nearly long enough.

Unfortunately, I just didn’t love this film as much as the first one. While it was exciting and quite emotional in parts, the villain was somewhat of a let-down and I just didn’t care as much. Don’t get me wrong though, Star Trek Into Darkness is still a good film just not as good as the first. 

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