STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS – MY OPINION WITH SPOILERS

Please be aware that this blog is going to contain spoilers.
This is the only warning you are going to get so if you don’t want to know some pretty major plot twists then please don’t read any further.

YOU

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WARNED

First of all I should say that I absolutely loved the film.
The first time was overwhelming and the second time was just nice to let it all sink in.
I found it had a wonderful pace. Not slow, not rushed, just right.
The 3D wasn’t overworked and didn’t have too much going on at once.
The look was very slick and bright and the Abrams trademark lens flares really make you feel like you’re there in the thick of the action.
I really can’t fault it, except for one thing.
McCoy was seriously under used although he did have some cracking lines including the opening line of the film.
‘Damn it Jim, that was our ride. You just stunned our ride!’

Anyway, the opening 9 minutes of the film has had a slight tweak since the preview opening 9 minutes and personally I think it works better.
The opening scene is now actually the Kirk/McCoy chase scene on the planet Nabiru.
The 3D was used to great effect in this scene as angry natives threw spears and at one point as McCoy was running towards the screen yelling ‘they’re trying to kill us Jim!’ one spear whistles over his shoulder straight into the screen and it made me jump and blink on both viewings.
There is a tense scene on the bridge with various crew members in Starfleet wetsuits trying to decide how they are going to ‘save’ Spock…. and at this point I would just like to thank the writers for making this scene happen and the costume designers for the wonderful job they did on the wetsuits. Karl Urban has a surprisingly peachy ass!
This was followed by a wonderful shot of the Enterprise rising out of the sea as it breaks all the rules to reveal itself to rescue Spock.
Let’s face it, we knew Spock wasn’t going to die in the first ten minutes of the movie so it was pretty bloody obvious this was going to happen.

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So the Kirk, McCoy interaction from the first movie is still there but sadly at a very reduced amount.

One character who has substantially more to do in this film is Scotty.
He has some wonderful scenes this time around. Most notably when the Enterprise is crashing to Earth.
There is an incredible scene where the Enterprise is quite literally tumbling towards the Earth and Kirk and Scotty are running through the corridors but having to run up the walls as well as hang onto things for dear life.
Oh yes, let’s not forget when Scotty is a tad pissed off with Kirk and resigns.
Kirk contacts him while he’s enjoying a drink in a bar and he replies on his communicator with ‘well if it isn’t Captain James T perfect hair!’
Scotty has some of the funniest lines in the movie BUT that said, he’s not just the comic relief. He has very serious moments too.

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The heart of this movie is family, friendship and relationships.
There is a lovely scene in a bar with Kirk drowning his sorrows when he is interrupted by Pike.
After a heart to heart conversation Pike reveals he has been given the Enterprise back and that he has talked Starfleet into letting Kirk be his first officer.
It is in this scene you realise what Starfleet and in particular, Admiral Pike, actually means to Kirk and he gets quite choked.
It is shortly after this that Pike is killed and Kirk just lets his emotions out and cries and Chris Pine did an amazing job.

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Spock has trouble dealing with his own feelings again, this time for Uhura, Kirk and the loss of his planet and he too has a moment, well actually a couple of moments with Kirk when he comes to realise what they mean to each other.
Most notably in the ‘homage to Wrath of Khan’ scene.
Roles are reversed and Kirk dies after saving the ship and we actually see Spock cry!
Zachary Quinto is perfect as Spock.
I will admit that four years ago I was dubious.
I loved him as Sylar in Heroes but when he was announced as Spock I was a bit unsure.
I think it was because at the time I couldn’t understand why they were making the film, why they were re-casting such well known and loved characters.
I didn’t see the point…. until I saw the film.

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To be honest, everyone was good for various reasons in this film.
Uhura gets a lot more to do this time around.
She gets to show off her Knowledge of Klingon in the field when she confronts some Klingons single handed before getting stuck in a full on hand to hand battle with them.
I will just say that I love the new look Klingons but I hope they don’t get used too heavily in upcoming movies.
I think Klingons have been done to death in previous Movies and TV shows and I want to see them try something we haven’t seen before.

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Chekov, poor Chekov.
Pictures of him running around in a red shirt instead of a gold shirt were released early on to fuel speculation about the film.
He basically gets thrown right in at the deep end by Kirk after Scotty resigns.
Because Chekov has been mirroring Scotty, Kirk makes him chief engineer and he handles himself admirably. He even gets to save Kirk and Scotty at the same time.

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Sulu is growing in confidence. He’s not afraid to throw opinion into the mix during intense scenes and he even gets to be Captain for quite a chunk of the movie!

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Ah Bones, the lovely, grumpy Bones.
He’s even more grumpy this time around and a little more heavy on the metaphors which I found a ‘tad’ much.
That said, I still love McCoy and this time around we get to see flirty McCoy after he’s transported down onto a planetoid with Carol Marcus and a top secret torpedo!
As he’s flirting away nicely he even reveals that he’s even done a C-section on a pregnant Gorn. Octuplets no less and those little things bite!
One of the last scenes in the movie sees McCoy in a full on white Dr’s uniform which was stunning and very reminiscent of the US Navy white uniform of today, just without the cap. Very handsome.
His last line in the movie sums up the Star Trek experience…. ‘5 years in space, God help me!’

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Dr Carol Marcus is a welcome addition to the family.
I’m so glad they didn’t go straight into a relationship for her and Kirk.
She does remain with the crew for their 5 year mission so it will inevitably happen at some point but for now she was simply introduced and even at the end of the film there is no sign of a relationship but there is a quick scene where Kirk tells her he’s glad she has become part of the family and gives her a tell tale smile and flashes the baby blues.

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Now, down to the whole reason for the film.
John Harrison. Yeah right!
I got my own Into Darkness personal theory completely wrong!
JJ Abrams did an incredible job keeping everything under wraps with this film and he was aided quite nicely by Karl Urban playing along with pretending to let the villain’s real identity slip during a Dredd interview.
As soon as I realised there were 72 torpedos and then Harrison finds this out and immediately surrenders I knew, even before the reveal scene, I knew, we were dealing with Khan.
What an amazing job Benedict does with this character.
All the other cast members have done nothing but praise him in every interview they’ve done and rightly so.
Apart from being extremely athletic and looking amazing, Benedict plays the part very cool. He delivers every line in a calm, deliberate way and because of the deep, smooth, British accent this makes him all the more frightening and dangerous.
Stupid thing is, you actually feel sorry for him. He’s just trying to protect ‘his’ family….. and then he goes and creates chaos.
When Spock finally gives him what he wants….. the torpedoes….. he is oblivious to the fact that his crew members (who were in cryo tubes inside) have been removed and Spock has armed the torpedoes.
When the torpedoes explode in style there is a moment on the bridge where Khan has realised what’s happened and he screams… a gut wrenching scream for what he believes is his dying family… of course this just pisses him off!!
The good thing is, he’s left in cryo with his crew at the end of the movie so he can come back again!! Whoo hoo.

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Anyway, overall I found this film to be everything I expected.
It was exciting, funny, surprising and beautifully shot.
I hope JJ gets to do the next one. If not, I hope whoever they find to do the job will ‘honor’ the lens flare and continue with the feel of the first two movies.
Short of the lack of Bones interaction, this film was perfect and I will happily go and see it again if finances allow.
Otherwise it’s going to be a long wait until my birthday which should be right around when the BluRay is released!!

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