Escape to the Movies: Star Trek: Into Darkness

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Dale Ware:

The Dubya:
It's The Amazing Spiderman all over again. There's always that ONE retarded film every year that inexplicably tricks the masses into thinking it was any good, when 10 years down the line it's going to be remembered in the same vein as Independence Day or Wild Wild West, at BEST. Films that had a good amount of box office success and fan support during the time it came out, but over time begins to rot away as everyone either likes it "ironically out of nostalgia" or never EVER admit to anyone that you had any part in that movie's popularity.

I understand how Wild wild west fits in what your saying there, despite the fact i love it for what it is, but independence day? Really? it was the casual Sci-Fi epic of the time. until the Matrix came along, and still enjoyable.

Why WOULDN'T that fit more since you could classify this movie as "casual" Sci-fi as well? Again, especially compared to the stuff guys like Blomkamp have to offer these days.

But you know what, I think you got a point. I may be being too mean to Independence Day. Sure it was dumb and cheesy, but at least it made no convictions of being anything else but dumb and cheesy. Not like this mess where it's supposed to be the "DAAARK AND SERRRRIOUS" second chapter of your routine film trilogy.

ShadowHamster:
Sigh...Bob is right. Bob is even right about...some of...why. Khan is badly done, he gets hardly any backstory. Benedict Cumberbatch plays him very very very well, but that just means he delivers a few quotable lines and stands in front of a camera menacingly a few times. NOTHING is given to his back story. NOTHING is given to anything different that may have happened to him in this new reality.(other than being discovered a bit early due to investigations of the last movie) They sum his character up by having old Spock say "He's a badass" to young Spock. That's kind of it.

That's just one example of the sheer brilliance we're dealing with here, folks.

All Cumberbatch gets to do is imitate Anthony Hopkins' Hannibal Lector all day, while we have to LITERALLY BE TOLD about how he's the biggest badass villain the Enterprise ever dealt with. No no no, not through actually SEEING the actions of his villiany, but because Leonard Nimoy has to all but turn directly to the audience to tell us why we should give a crap about a villain that's basically done dick all up to that point.

Hey, didn't some other little indie flick makes this kind of mistake? Did Abrams suddenly forget about the Show Don't Tell rule? Or was he too busy trying to rush from setpiece to setpiece to bother giving anyone, especially the villain, an actual living breathing character?

Maybe Abrams WAS the only logical option for director of the new Star Wars films. He and present-day Lucas sure are starting to have a lot in common...

And this is why I choose to go see the movie first than watch MovieBob's review. I didn't want another's views to skew my enjoyment of a movie since I am naturally, easily impressionable. That said, just getting back watching the film...I enjoyed it greatly, and MovieBob's critique will not affect my mindset that this is overall a much more enjoyable ride than the 1st reboot movie was. Of course this is just me...I'm not a film critic, which means I have the luxury of enjoying movies whilst having it's flaws rush by over my head...not because I am stupid, but because I have choose not to study the aspects of what makes a great movie great. I am not saying MovieBob is wrong in any respect, but what I am saying that one man's critique doesn't mean the movie is bad....oh the movie is bad to him....but I encourage people to form their own opinions before listening to another's.

That said...my opinion of the movie? It was damn good. An entertaining romp of a sci-fi flick with interesting characters, an interesting villain, and an enjoyable plot. And that event at the end where Bob says it was stupid...I liked it. Since it is technically an alternate universe, it would make sense that something like that would happen, albeit in a different way. And let's be honest here....if they were going to do that in the first place...there were ALOT more worse ways to screw that scene up...and the one playing Spock performed admirably. Well...that's my opinion, take it as it is.

Wow. Such a butt-hurting review.

I grew up on the Star Trek movies and the tv shows. I rewatched Wrath of Khan after seeing Into Darkness. Overall, I'd say they average out to about the same quality. Lack of character development? Not really. Kirk learned to not be as much of a jackass just because he's got to be the youngest captain in Starfleet, and Spock's character was well-played. The references and redoing just came across as exploring a "what-if" scenario. Nothing wrong with that. This movie isn't anywhere near the best I've seen, but I'm now looking forward to seeing what Abrams can do with the Star Wars sequels.

And I'm surprised and disappointed that you would be offended about the parallel between the plot and the Second Gulf War. Given that that damn war has defined a generation, I'd think you'd be more appreciative of it being used as an inspiration. And it made sense, provided that you accept that there are people in power who take their duty seriously to the point of insanity. And as for the villain who plans to be captured, yes it's an obvious plot device. What's interesting to watch, however, is how the plot unfolds.

Overall, I shake my head in disapproval and disappointment, Bob. You sounded just like one of those whining fanboys who can't get over the Star Wars prequels. You don't have to like the mystery box, but it seems to me that you went in expecting to hate this movie just because it's a reimagining of your childhood. That kind of attitude is what makes people hate critics.

Oh, and personally, I quite liked the Klingons' new look and attire. It was still pretty faithful to the original garments, but it made more sense and was less preposterous. After all, more than a few warrior cultures on Earth designed their headgear to make them look monstrous. Why wouldn't the Klingons?

templar1138a:
Wow. Such a butt-hurting review.

I grew up on the Star Trek movies and the tv shows. I rewatched Wrath of Khan after seeing Into Darkness. Overall, I'd say they average out to about the same quality. Lack of character development? Not really. Kirk learned to not be as much of a jackass just because he's got to be the youngest captain in Starfleet, and Spock's character was well-played. The references and redoing just came across as exploring a "what-if" scenario. Nothing wrong with that. This movie isn't anywhere near the best I've seen, but I'm now looking forward to seeing what Abrams can do with the Star Wars sequels.

And I'm surprised and disappointed that you would be offended about the parallel between the plot and the Second Gulf War. Given that that damn war has defined a generation, I'd think you'd be more appreciative of it being used as an inspiration. And it made sense, provided that you accept that there are people in power who take their duty seriously to the point of insanity. And as for the villain who plans to be captured, yes it's an obvious plot device. What's interesting to watch, however, is how the plot unfolds.

Overall, I shake my head in disapproval and disappointment, Bob. You sounded just like one of those whining fanboys who can't get over the Star Wars prequels. You don't have to like the mystery box, but it seems to me that you went in expecting to hate this movie just because it's a reimagining of your childhood. That kind of attitude is what makes people hate critics.

Oh, and personally, I quite liked the Klingons' new look and attire. It was still pretty faithful to the original garments, but it made more sense and was less preposterous. After all, more than a few warrior cultures on Earth designed their headgear to make them look monstrous. Why wouldn't the Klingons?

In some ways your right. I do have a few points though:
1. Khan actually develops a nasty plan in the original, and very quickly. Due to a mistake of which planet they are going down on, two members of starfleet(One being Chekhov) get captured by Khan and forced into playing into his schemes. He then calls Kirk out, and grabs a weapon powerful enough to wipe out life on an entire planet(by creating new life on the planet, and giving him and his people a new home). It is at that point that Khan has made himself into an evil mastermind that has to be dealt with. When Kirk DOES show up, he also manages to convince him to go down to a planetoid that should keep Kirk stuck as Khan takes out his precious ship. He uses a large amount of subterfuge the whole way, and only dies to his passion(putting up a pretty decent fight right until the end.)

In comparison, Khan in the new movie saves a little girl with his blood to convince a guy to blow up a building(a building called the archives which does not AT ALL parable the twin towers)and then gets in a small ship and shoots up the leadership. He then teleports away to territory that they can't easily get to. That is the pinnacle of his villainy and it's over in a few seconds. After that he is an obviously evil ally who falls into everyone's beat. He falls for every trick thrown at him, and is too incompetent to deal with any of them for any length of time. The only thing really scary about him is his apparent ability to squeeze people's heads off.

2. Both movies are the pilots for new characters. Sure, they kill David in the next film, and Saavik never really does much after Wrath of Khan, but they do do things in the movie they appear in. They are useful, and actually serve a purpose to the story. In this movie we get to meet the daughter of the admiral, and she is almost COMPLETELY useless. She shows how to open a torpedo, but needs the doctor to do it. She gets to disarm one bomb, and then every scene after she is COMPLETELY useless. She doesn't fit, she feels like some scrappy sidekick thrown in because someone is her dad.

3. The holes in the plot of this one are big enough to drive planes through. Why does Khan show up now? Why is allowing indiginous people a big enough crime to lose your spot as captain(when they did it countless episodes of the original series and on). They have never suggested that such regulations are ship captain loss level offences, but rather something they wouldn't be pleased about. This movie uses a lot of this as filler to continue a story that isn't going anywhere.

4. We don't get any "because I say so" moments in Wrath of Khan, anything that appears that way is given visual aid and explanation(such as explaining the "Genesis" project.) while in this marvelous movie we get several instances of it. We get Old Spock telling us how much of a badass Khan is rather than a huge amount of showing, or even having Khan explain it himself. Nope, Spock gets to TELL us he's scawy. This also occurs several times with the evil admiral.

My problem with this movie has nothing to do with whether or not it's cheesy. I don't care if it's cheesy, and Wrath of Khan is INCREDIBLY cheesy. There is a lot to forgive in the old one before you can truly enjoy it, but there is even more in this one. This one feels badly made, with tricks to fill time used every five seconds. Lots of close ups of Khans sneer, lots of telling instead of doing, lots of dismissable science that doesn't work in a true sci-fi story(like, how the hell does Khan's blood bring Kirk back after he's been dead for over 5 minutes. Go look up how quickly the brain loses it's ABILITY to function after death.)

But worse than all of that, we have to get preached to about 9/11 in a really bad mirror of current politics. Robocop is trying to "force a war" with the backwards Klingon insurgence using a dangerous relic from our past. When that relic feels like betrayal is around the corner he blows up a monument that doesn't serve a strategic purpose(it is discovered it DOES have strategic purpose, but that leads even more into his little parable here) but will amount to a lot of death. This all comes to a close as they match sound files to SOUND like 9/11 as Khan crashes a large flying vehicle into an island based city with tons of people. We even get a cheesy dedication to the 9/11 events in the credits. It was oozing with this strange 9/11 truther propaganda nonsense, which is either largely ignored, or dismissed by it's audience as something that SHOULDN'T BE IN A STAR TREK movie. Frankly, this was the thing that angered me the most. Up until I noticed that little aspect of the movie, I could have walked away calling it forgettable.

Bob makes a lot of good points in describing the flaws in this movie. The funny thing is... I still prefer this one over the one that came before it. The pacing issues weren't as bad, the setpieces weren't quite as blatantly shoehorned in, (for the most part) the actions scenes were pretty cool, and it had some genuinely funny and touching moments in it. (Even with the repeated cheesy, "you can tell this is a touching moment by the tear streaming down my face, even though there's no change in my expression" moments) :P I can see how the "bad imitation of lame, pandering fanservice" as Bob puts it, could irritate people, but I kind of saw it in the light of what I think Abrams intended it, that I should laugh along with it. (And yeah, saying "it's not as bad" isn't much of a compliment, but I still found this one much more watchable than the one that came before it)

The thing that did bug me about it was the glaring plotholes, which there are quite a few of, but I'll just draw attention to one or two...

And did anyone else notice that they had a habit of breaking radio silence a lot when they really shouldn't? Like Sulu calling Harrison on the Klingon homeworld, announcing the presence of the Enterprise despite the fact that this is supposed to be a secret, covert mission that they don't want the Klingons to know about? (Seriously, wouldn't the Klingons pick up that call too? Why do they act like the Klingons still shouldn't know they're there?) Or calling Starfleet despite the fact that this is supposed to officially not be a Starfleet mission?

Meh... despite all this, though, I really wasn't all *that* bothered by this movie; I might even see it again some day... as long as I can do so for free. :)

ShadowHamster:
She gets to disarm one bomb, and then every scene after she is COMPLETELY useless. She doesn't fit, she feels like some scrappy sidekick thrown in because someone is her dad.

Correction: She isn't completely useless. She undresses to her underwear for two seconds. This gives the development team the excuse to use that scene in all the trailers. It's a very important part of marketing the movie and Zoë had already done it in the previous one so she couldn't do it again. ;)

I have to say, apart from MAYBE the sound effect, i completely missed the 9/11 comparison the movie creates. And now that its been brought to my attention, i don't even think its honestly intended. When faced with certain defeat, when does the villain ever not try to destroy as much of the hero or what they stand for as possible?

After the surprisingly good first movie I was hoping they would go to interesting places and come up with some fun new ideas for the sequel. Instead it seems their just doing 'Ultimate Star Trek'.

Not that an Ultimate Universe would be a bad thing, but its not a good one either. A good one takes the old stuff and mixes it together in a new and interesting way aka 'The Ultimates' or IDWs ninja Turtles, a bad one just put people in trench coats to make them so much more 'cool', see 'Ultimate X-Men'. There was nothing wrong with the Next Generations klingons so why the hell did they completely change them just so they can look more 'Extreeeeeeeeeem'.

I was going to watch this review until I saw that is was "spoiler filled" will someone let me know if MovieBob is just having another one of his nerd manbaby tantrums again and caring more about the baggage from a nostalgic series than impartially reviewing a movie. Or would it be absurd to assume that he actually did his job? The Escapist needs to find better movie reviewers than Bob Chipman and Jim Sterling.

I personally thought the movie was better than the original (as in the last new Star Trek). It didn't have serious plot holes such as a super massive black hole now near Sol or the fact that the same people who invented warp theory have no actual comprehension of how it works. Space moves not the ship? Wow no shit even Futurama managed to figure that one out.

Spock did steal the show on this one and while I was awaiting that inevitable quote that any Star Trek fan would know it made me feel guilty about wanting it at all. No its not Star Trek as we used to know it, but its still a decent movie. Thats more than you usually get these days. Oh and I will never get tired of watching the Enterprise go into warp. The warp trails were just sick.

Django Unchained uses dynamite throughout the entire movie, but the movie took place before dynamite was invented... oops.

mattawbrown:
I was going to watch this review until I saw that is was "spoiler filled"...

The spoiler that Bob mentions will mean nothing to anyone who isn't familiar with Star Trek lore and people who are familiar with it will see it coming anyway. (At least I did) Either way, you probably aren't missing much by seeing the spoiler and he doesn't mention it until halfway through the video. (He puts a spoiler warning sign on the screen just before he says it) And yes, as you may have guessed, his rant about the movie is mainly based on comparisons to the original series. :)

But...but...

Anyway, I haven't watched the film but the plot twist was something you could see coming from almost 31 light-years away. Nevertheless, I am going to watch the film and see what Benedick Cucumberinasnatch has to offer.

On another note: are there any plans about making a Star Trek television show again any time soon? I know that Enterprise got shot down before it got (really) good, but maybe CBS (I still assume they have the rights to it) wants to cater to the real fans and bring something TNG worthy on to the small screen. Okay, and now I'm going to stop dreaming.

Tormuse:

Why were Khan's people inside the torpedoes? It doesn't make any sense!

Khan's people were inside the torpedoes so that they'd be placed on board the Vengeance. Which Khan, rather obviously, planned to steal.

It makes perfect sense; hide his crew in the weapons, and steal the ship once it was completed. He got caught doing the former though, and had to abandon his shot at the latter.

Couple that with the fact that apparently Khan's big blind spot is assuming other people are as ruthless as he is, and it's not particularly a surprise when he assumes that the Admiral promptly shot his crew into the nearest convenient planetoid. When Sulu issues threats regarding long-range torpedoes, that's why Khan asks how many; to confirm if these are, in fact, the original weapons he'd placed his crew in.

Why Marcus uses the torpedoes and doesn't strip the crew out is also fairly simple; he didn't have any other weapons capable of doing the job, hadn't managed to produce more torpedoes yet, and didn't want to risk something catastrophic happening to the weapons by attempting to remove the frozen crew from them.

Blood Brain Barrier:

Mason Luxenberg:

Blood Brain Barrier:

The reason you liked this film is because you're not a Trekkie. Only non-Trekkies could enjoy it because that's what Abrams wanted. You can't make money unless you pander to the larger audience and not a niche, and Abrams is a Jew after all.

Way to be randomly anti-semitic, jackass!

Ya well, if Shakespeare and South Park can do it then so can I. Historical stereotyping is great.

Shakespeare was and is known as the greatest author of the English speaking era, and the south park writing continues to be a mast-head for it's own style of comedy. Both used anti-Semitic prose and situations to further extend a plot, reveal character, or provide conflict.

you, on the other hand, are a prejudiced internet-dwelling cretin whose opinions are utterly meaningless.

and for the record, I'm not Jewish. I just find it hilarious that someone as insignificant as you actually tried to compare themselves to the likes of Shakespeare and South park.

To MovieBob, I know you probably don't read these, nor do you care, but I just want to send my deepest sympathies toward you because you lost a good chunk of your credibility as a critic with this one.

now, for the record:
NO, I am not a Trekkie
NO, I am not a J.J. Abrams fan.
NO, I do not disagree with you solely because I enjoyed it and you didn't.

but the fact that you said that you enjoyed Fast and Furious 6 and disliked this film... I'm sorry, but that just screams not only hypocrisy but crappy judgement as well.

You yourself have said on multiple occasions that you hate when people say that the just want to "turn their brain off" when they see a film, and that's what you evidently have done with FF6. You knew it was goofy and dumb but you made yourself enjoyed it anyway by not letting the bad outweigh the good.

Correct me if I'm wrong but it seems like you went into this film WANTING it to be bad because you know, as I do, that J.J. Abrams is the WRONG person for these films. And instead of looking at it from a neutral, open mind, you were ready to identify everything that was wrong about it instead of accepting the good parts for what they are.

That's the behavior of a Star Wars fan hating on Phantom Menace, wouldn't you say?

Give it the credit where it's due:
The action scenes were well choreographed and stunningly executed. Benedict Cumberbatch's character choices, while not guided properly, WERE great to watch. The film was funny where it needed to be, moving (though in some places cheesy) in the quiet "emotional" spots, and balanced the action and character arcs well. It was also paced well, with the action sequences and dialogue drama pieces never running too long or overshadowing the other.

And YES, there were character arcs. Kirk willingly makes the sacrifice play even though in the first film he believes that there is "no such thing as a no-win situation", and Spock does his (typical) emotional come-around, only this time he actually uses his emotion FOR his actions rather than just using them to understand them.

The film was misguided and J.J. Abrams has no right to take on these films since he was never a Trek fan. But for all it's flaws the film was overall a good film. Not the greatest, and certainly not an apt re-tread of the Kahn storyline, but a good movie on it's own merit.

So re-watch your own Phantom Menace retrospective and take a leaf out of your own freaking book.

Sincerely,
A non-trekkie fan.

Mr0llivand3r:

Blood Brain Barrier:

Mason Luxenberg:

Way to be randomly anti-semitic, jackass!

Ya well, if Shakespeare and South Park can do it then so can I. Historical stereotyping is great.

Shakespeare was and is known as the greatest author of the English speaking era, and the south park writing continues to be a mast-head for it's own style of comedy. Both used anti-Semitic prose and situations to further extend a plot, reveal character, or provide conflict.

you, on the other hand, are a prejudiced internet-dwelling cretin whose opinions are utterly meaningless.

and for the record, I'm not Jewish. I just find it hilarious that someone as insignificant as you actually tried to compare themselves to the likes of Shakespeare and South park.

I'm glad you aren't a teacher or anything. I wouldn't want a student of yours to get their math test back and find you have written "who do you think you are? Einstein?" after using one of his equations, and failing him for doing so.

So I avoided many of the reviews and previews because I like to go into a movie, I know I am going to see with open eyes. I don't think BOB does that. It seems he went it wanting to hate this movie. As he does with others. Not that he or the escapist care, but the criticality of this site is getting overwhelming. You spend 5 minutes tearing this movie up and then 10 seconds saying ok the action, visuals, sound and even some of the acting is good. Oh wow, um sounds like that's a good portion of the movie. We also get it, you don't like Chris Pine, I thought he did a good job. I have seen all the Star Trek Movies and TOS and TNG series multiple times. Maybe I missed it, but I didn't see the plot twist happening. I must be dumb. And guess what that movie is 30 years old! Get over yourself with it.

With that said. I can't imagine even using one of Bob's reviews to decide whether I want to see a movie. Critic doesn't mean you have to find bad. Yahtzee does it as part of his character, and he does it humorously. You are not him..

Akichi Daikashima:
Yeah, I was a bit lukewarm about the reboot(the 1st movie) too.

I never really had any investment into the series, as I never watched it, but I can't imagine how painful it would be for me if I had.

Yet everyone still rates Into Darkness as "above average" and "quite good".

...

ABRAMS!!!!!!!!!!!

*echoes* ABRAMS!!!!!!!!!

Everyone who is not a Trek fan rates it as "above average" and "quite good" Everyone who is a Trek fan was PISSED when they saw the ending... I mean really THAT is their ending?

I am now at a point where I want to force Disney to take Star Wars away from Abrams........ That ending was SHAMEFUL!!!

I was struck by the fact that the other half of the plot (the rogue admiral seeking to militarize Starfleet with a big warship) seemed to derive from Diane Carey's 1986 Star Trek novel *Dreadnought!*.

I really do find it cute that the Bayformers fans have apparently transferred over and have latched onto these AbramsTrek films, with basically any criticism about how amazingly stupid this movie really has a common defense that can basically be summed up as "OMG STFU ITS JUST A FUN ACTION MOVIE STFU UR JUST A STUPID FANBOY HAHAHA LOLOLLOL [insert rotten tomatoes score here]!" Not one defense I've seen in this thread has gone beyond that. No one can actually defend the in-movie logic the movie tried and failed to build up with its story and characters and just resorts to "Uhhhh welp...it was nice to look at" or the aforementioned "fanboy insult."

Seeing as how it's written by the same people as those Had A Barrel Of Money To Cover Up How Retarded It Is Transformers movies , and it's attracting the same kind of fans and defenders, it'sssss not very hard to connect the dots here...

But...
I liked it...
I thought it was fun...
:(

Hm. I thought it is really better then the first one. It actually RESEMBLED Star Trek. It had more or less PRESENT ethical and moral elements in character motives. Overall the movie was fun to watch and it had within it just a bit more then simply OMFG A GIANT SHIP BLOWS THINGS UP!!!1111

(Disclaimer: I gave up on spoilers here so I put them in. Warned...?)

I watched the review, and now I've watched the film, and I agree with a lot of Bob's points here. Then again, I'd consider myself a Trekkie, just watched The Wrath of Khan again, and I disliked the first reboot movie anyway. My expectations going into this weren't high but I was expecting a decent action movie.

What I got was a very emotionally mixed movie with pacing issues and one of the most bizarre, horrible, and contrived endings I've seen in a while. Even if I liked the movie more than I thought I would, the ending was just so down-right cliched and obvious that I kept thinking, "no no no, that's way too obvious!" What's the point of this twist, including all the actually nice emotions and acting that I thoroughly enjoyed in this film, to waste it on yet another fight scene and an almost pointless non-character arc. I loved the Kirk/Spock moment -- the "twist" -- but dammit, they really ruined it for me. Revenge does not suit you Spock.

The rest of the movie was full of ham-fisted ideas, action scenes, lack of character, and a lack of a good Khan. I kept waiting for Khan to go all psychopathic on us and when we did, when he went for his crew, I got so little of it that I wondered why they even had him in there. Khan, in here, felt too generic and lacking in the gravitas of the original.

Plus I just don't like the new Spock. I really don't. Strangely his character gave me the best scenes, mainly towards the end, and the reason why I'm so conflicted with this movie. Some of it was pretty damn good yet a lot of it was just really boring. Kept yawning and waiting for some plot to pick up. Another Star Trek movie I won't watch again and I'm not too hopeful for the rest of the series or Star Wars right now.

I'm not trying to sway anyone into thinking anything but their own opinion of the movie (I'm no critic) but I thought I'd throw my two cents in. It's ok to hate this movie and it's ok to love it. In the end, does it really matter? This is the Star Trek we're going to be getting for a while, for better or for worse. At least we still have the originals on Netflix.

As an aside: poor Klingons! Ugh.

mattawbrown:
I was going to watch this review until I saw that is was "spoiler filled" will someone let me know if MovieBob is just having another one of his nerd manbaby tantrums again and caring more about the baggage from a nostalgic series than impartially reviewing a movie. Or would it be absurd to assume that he actually did his job? The Escapist needs to find better movie reviewers than Bob Chipman and Jim Sterling.

It's 95% of manbaby tantrum and 5% review. At least he's consistent, when it comes to movies like this.

The Dubya:
I really do find it cute that the Bayformers fans have apparently transferred over and have latched onto these AbramsTrek films, with basically any criticism about how amazingly stupid this movie really has a common defense that can basically be summed up as "OMG STFU ITS JUST A FUN ACTION MOVIE STFU UR JUST A STUPID FANBOY HAHAHA LOLOLLOL [insert rotten tomatoes score here]!" Not one defense I've seen in this thread has gone beyond that. No one can actually defend the in-movie logic the movie tried and failed to build up with its story and characters and just resorts to "Uhhhh welp...it was nice to look at" or the aforementioned "fanboy insult."

Defend the movie? Are you trying to be funny?

It'a a critical and financial success - 87% at RT, 260 000 000+ worldwide at boxofficemojo. What's there to defend?

JJ Abrams made a second successful Trek movie in a row. All Bob has to show for is 5 minutes of fanboy-tears.

Now that Abrams is taking his crew and moving on to Star Wars, I'm looking forward to Paramount hiring some hack-director, who will either try to emulate Abrams' style (and fail at it) or the style of the older movies (and fail at that).

Either way expect another 10-year hiatus after a few failed movies (like after Insurrection and Nemesis), while these two movies will go down in history as the most successful movies in Star Trek franchise.

Grenge Di Origin:
*sigh* Maybe then I should go see the Wrath of Khan, then? Like Doctor Who, I've always wanted to get into this quintessential nerd franchise but I don't know a good starting point for it. Do I watch the original series, do I watch Next Generation, do I start with the movies? I just don't know...
...but, having stopped before I could get spoiled, I'll probably watch this one anyhow.

If you'd honestly like to attempt to get into the Trek franchise, I would recommend starting with The Next Generation.

It's a bit rough at first. Mostly hit and miss. But by season three on to season seven it becomes one of the greatest science fiction shows to ever air.

From there, continue on to Deep Space Nine and Wrath of Khan (movie). After that, well....if you're not into the series by then it doesn't matter.

I'm glad I watched this review. Bob is normally so bad at reviewing movies and I pretty much disagree with everything he says as the stuck up snob he is. I, by the off chance, just watched this review with a friend of mine and as soon as he said "it's bad" I knew it would be great.

So we went and watched it and I was right. It was a great, great movie!

So thank you Bob for always being clueless! You constantly show me which movies I should go see :)

Also, the poster above asking about getting into the Trek universe, watch some of The Next Generation to get to know the characters then go rent First Contact.

Just saw the movie last night

And like the first movie, I liked it

Now, I've only ever really seen the Next Generation and onwards of star trek media, so the original series... well...

Lets just say that the greatest exposure I get of the original series is via Day Job Orchestra's youtube hilariously silly redubs when they use original series clips.

I liked the movie - I found some of the twists quite imaginative, and... well

Lets get spoilery:

Final verdict: Good popcorn flick, nothing grand - but an ok movie, at least for someone who hasn't seen the original series movies. Its abrams after all.

I watched the movie just a bit ago...

I am an old star trek fan. I grew up watching TOS, TNG, DS9... I watched all the movies multiple times. I know the lore pretty well, but I don't obsess over it.

I hated the Into Darkness. I didn't MIND the first remake, I thought it was somewhat clever and while some of it got a bit too convenient, I ultimately left that movie feeling happy. I was looking forward to this movie. So then I watched Bob's review of the movie. I watched it all the way through, and I was kind of disappointed, because I said 2 years ago: "God I hope they don't try to remake the old movies" But w/e right?

This. Movie. Was. Awful.

The twists were asinine and predictable, Once we knew who Cumberpatch was, if you had seen the original movies... the Entire Movie Was Over. You knew exactly what was going to happen from there on out. None of the dramatic scenes had any weight, none of the shout outs did anything... and I even got the freaking Obscure shout outs (Section 31...). And the Klingons... Oh god the Klingons.

Why on earth are they not taking this in a new direction? Hell, there are so many directions they could have taken this movie, stuff from the original series that not only would have made a good movie, but would have made fans happier than watching a poor retread of Material we all saw when we were younger. Make a movie about Harry Mudd, Make a movie about the klingons (Using actual Klingons), Make the movie about one of the innumerable god-like beings that could really stretch the FX budget. Don't do the same thing that they did already, but get it all wrong.

I cant believe JJ is the ASS who is going to do the next star wars

I cant believe JJ is the ASS who is going to do the next star wars

Yeah.... I've never liked Moviebob and now I remember why.

The characters went through trails in the movie and came out better for it.
They didn't 'rip off' the end of Wrath of Khan, it's called an Homage. Something a critic (as Moviebob claims to be) should understand.

Action was good. Acting was great. Moviebob has no credit. Stop reviewing things.

Well it's been about 2 months and I've FINALLY seen Star Trek Into Darkness (and now I've finally seen this review), and I have to admit, I did like the movie.
Though at the same time, I wasn't too thrilled about Kahn being the main villain either. I'm really a bit conflicted.
I think the actor who played Kahn was all wrong.
And when Spock yelled out Kahns name I just didn't buy that.

Well, I finally saw STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS. I missed it when it was in theaters this past summer so I decided to wait and see it when it came out on Blu-Ray. Now I won't get into the latest brouhaha over the disc's paltry extras and how many (myself included) feel that this marketing strategy by Paramount just might rank up there with the Edsel and New Coke-no, this is about the actual film itself.
I enjoyed it.
Now, I realize that, to a lot of people in the STAR TREK universe, what I typed above is the equivalent of saying that Hitler had some good ideas or Ted Bundy was misunderstood or that I just signed the order to have all copies of the Bible burned and purged from people's memories. To those people I have this as a reply: STAR TREK V.
At a recent ST con, a poll was taken of the attendees and STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS was chosen as the all-time worst of the ST films. You heard that right-it is considered the worst of ALL THE STAR TREK MOVIES. Now I am not one of the acolytes of Gene Roddenberry's legacy and I probably should describe myself thusly: I only saw some fleeting glimpses of the original series when it originally aired (the best remembered being "Spock's Brain" [I know]); I caught up with some episodes when the show went into syndication and enjoyed what I saw but I did not get as caught up in this as I was with STAR WARS in the beginning; I was really looking forward to the first film when it came out and was totally captivated by pretty much all of it (and still am, although I thought then and, to a lesser degree still think that Shatner had some of the worst line readings in movie history: "Bones-I need you! BADLY!"); saw all the rest of the films with both the original cast and the TNG cast on opening day; and only missed opening days for J. J. Abrams reboot and this new one due to circumstances beyond my control, the death of my mother the main reason for not seeing the 2009 film for a month. I do love a good sci-fi story well told and well produced, and for the most part all of the ST series and films have pretty much satisfied my wants and needs. The idea of mankind having a future out there in space is still a pretty cool idea, and compared to much of the pessimism and angst present in so much speculative fiction both on the printed page and in visual media these days, Roddenberry's idealism and optimism is a pretty wonderful thing, and I can understand the devotion that so many have to what he charted out and nurtured over 40 years ago.
Except in this case-THE WORST OF THE FILMS? Really? Seriously? Nope, nope, nope, nope, nope and nope.
I guess this is the movie that had Spock do some goofy turn in gravity boots and spooking Kirk while he free climbed El Capitan. Oops-my mistake-that was STAR TREK V.
Maybe this was the movie that had Kirk, Spock and McCoy singing "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" around a campfire, proving that those recordings that Shatner and Nimoy made were pretty good after all...oh, dopey me, that was also STAR TREK V (They also sing the song again at the end-a reprise of sorts-nice).
I got it-this is the film where Scotty turns and walks right into a bulkhead on the ship he knows better than the back of his hand and that he loves more than life itself and everyone watching went "Wha?" Oh...that's right-STAR TREK V, again.
A pattern seems to be forming...well, this certainly is the film where Uhura does a fan dance to distract some people so that Kirk and his men can accomplish a mission while the audience buries their face in their hands or slides down in their seats because they can't believe what Nichelle Nichols was talked into doing.
What was that? V again? No!
OK-last chance...this has to be the movie where the Enterprise, in an attempt to find some phantom planet that will be impossible to reach due to a barrier in space that looks impenetrable, manages to smash through that barrier...like someone opening a door and stepping into a hallway immediately...right?
No?
V...again? Dammit!
So-all the above took place NOT in STID (easier than typing it a lot) but a film that came out in 1989, got the worst reviews of all the ST films that I have read (it also has the lowest rating of all the films by Leonard Maltin-**, admittedly not a fan of the series but that does stand out), abruptly reversed the financial windfall of the fourth film, which until the 2009 film was the most financially successful of all the ST films, even taking into account ticket price inflation, and even caused one of the featured actors in it-David Warner- to remark to me when I asked him about it after the 6th film came out: "Oh, please-I would rather talk about the GOOD STAR TREK film I was in."
Now let me say this-STID is not, in my opinion, a great ST film-not comparable with WRATH OF KHAN, THE VOYAGE HOME, THE UNDISCOVERED COUNTRY, FIRST CONTACT or even THE MOTION PICTURE. Some things from a story angle were really hard to swallow-
SPOILER ALERT!! SPOILER ALERT!! SPOILER ALERT!!
-how does a pitched battle between two Federation starships over Earth not get seen by the Federation or even people on the ground without some form of intervention?
-for someone with the last name of Khan, whom we have been told in previous incarnations was from India, Benedict Cumberbatch looks rather pasty and pale for someone from that area (although I do not recall any mention of his heritage in this film, so that might get a pass)
-how does a ship in the vacuum of space not totally implode when a bunch of explosives go off? This happens more than once in the film, and how does a massive ship, crashing towards Earth, not cause more destruction as it tears into a huge city than what appears in this film?
-exactly why does the Carol Marcus character have a shot where we (and Kirk) see her in her underwear?
There might be some other minor quibbles but I cannot remember them at this time. Much griping and grousing has been made of the reversing of the roles Kirk and Spock play in the big emotional scene toward the end. I found myself trying not to wince when I head some familiar lines from WRATH OF KHAN, but I felt that there were not too many to make me feel like they lifted the entire scene line-for-line from it, and Zachary Quinto's reading of the 'KHAAANNN!" line easily eclipsed Shatner's faux apoplexy in WOK. The only problem I had with the scene is that this Kirk and Spock are not as emotionally invested in each other as with the other cast, so the feelings that are expressed felt a bit forced to me.
But getting back to my original point-there is no way that this film is worse than Shatner's misfire. For one thing, the characters in V that we know and love do things that just make no sense when you compare how they were in the series and the films before and the one after. Seriously-making Spock and Scotty comic relief? I am surprised that Leonard Nimoy and James Doohan did not walk away from this film when they saw what was being done to their characters or request serious rewrites (I can understand now why Doohan had little nice to say about Shatner in later years) as well as Nichelle Nichols, who has a lovely voice but...a fan dance? Secondly, the idea of the ST crew either going to find God (or some higher power) or running across someone in their travels who thinks they are A or The God is not new-the TOS episode "Who Mourns For Adaonis?" comes to mind, but if you tell the audience that to reach someplace where "God" is supposed to be, you will be taking a great risk getting there, then don't begin the journey and almost in the blink of an eye-you are there! If there was a reason to have something like the V'ger flyover from TMP reprised and perhaps jazzed up a bit, this plot point cried out for it. Having the characters see their own lives flashing before their eyes and what they hope to achieve when they would actually meet God would have been an interesting visual as their ship travelled to their destination, and having Kirk ask "What does God need with a starship?" pretty much negated what the whole reason for going was about-if God is so all-powerful, using a starship to get somewhere would seem awfully slow to me.
My main complaint about STID is this: why do a remake of what many consider the best film of the franchise instead of just sending the crew out on the 5-year mission? After all is said and done, this film is pretty much a time-filler until the crew actually sets out exploring those "new worlds and civilizations," which looks like what they were doing at the beginning of the film anyway. Maybe Abrams and his crew felt they needed to clear the decks of everything and make sure this new crew was firmly set in the public's mind before doing so, but to me and I would think to many, the 2009 film, in giving us an alternative timeline pretty much did this. Whether the filmmakers felt that they had to make this film in order to lay new groundwork (the RAIDER OF THE LOST ARK/Khan shot feels like both an homage and a rip-off and an elbow to the ribs-I guess we'll see him again, cripes) is beyond me, yet I did not feel like this was a vanity project like STV was. I found the story compelling, many of the visual effects shots really cool (I love the vapor trail when the Enterprise goes to warp and the shot of the ship dropping and dropping then hitting the clouds and finally rising up through them just gorgeous), the actors filling the shoes of the characters in most respects (Urban, Pegg, Cho and Quinto are really growing on me; Pine, Saldana and Yelchin..we'll see), and a real sense of a futuristic Earth that we only got glimpses of in the other incarnations.
What I find so fascinating about the people who do not like this film, and again-I also think it has faults, is the vehemence against it. The way I have seen some people rail against it you would think that Abrams had made a minstrel show onboard the Enterprise (calling McCoy "Bones" seems apt for that) or that all previous ST TV series and films and anything connected to them would now be taken to a big bonfire on the Paramount lot and incinerated and all who loved them would be lobotomized or sent to camps run by Michael Bay.
Folks, that ain't gonna happen. Everyone who loves STAR TREK has had at least a few moments when they thought the franchise was dead: when the original series went off the air, when the new TV network that was supposed to have a new series as the cornerstone didn't work out, when the first film came out, when V came out, when the original cast made the sixth film, when TNG had a sputtering first season, when DEEP SPACE NINE came out and many thought it perverted Roddenberry's vision, when NEMESIS came out and did badly, when ENTERPRISE first aired and when it last aired, when Abrams made the 2009 film, when Abrams made this film....kee-ripes! The great thing about STAR TREK is its resiliency-it has gone through so many iterations, deaths, rebirths, and resurrections as to make Jason Voorhees seem like a piker. You know, I remember when people were begging George Lucas to make more STAR WARS movies-they did that for so many years that it seemed whenever he blew his nose there was speculation that a new film was in the offing. Then, when he did make his next three films the fans turned out in droves but those same people also hated a lot of those films (even if they saw them over and over in a theater then at home) with a passion-because they weren't the STAR WARS films they wanted. Now George Lucas is vilified for those three films and so many complain of how he ruined the franchise-hey guys, it was his franchise and he could do what he wanted with them...
So J. J. Abrams didn't make the STAR TREK movie everyone wanted-hey, he could have made the characters appear in a burlesque show but he didn't; he could have made it with everyone just sitting in a room around a table talking about what they would do but he didn't; he could have had Kirk and Spock doing their own version of BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN but he didn't. He made his own STAR TREK movie because the first one did well and that is what the studio wanted, so they had him make another one. This isn't Uwe Böll, or Michael Bay, or McG or even Alan Smithee-this is someone who has made many things that people love and are as devoted to almost as much as STAR TREK.
The way things are going with the entertainment business-which is exactly that, a business-and how those in the offices either base their decisions solely on what the public wants (another RESIDENT EVIL movie?) or face a hue and cry when the public doesn't get what they want (a White House petition about Ben Affleck as Batman-God...), is it any wonder that we either keep getting sequels or recycled stuff and then people complain about it? This franchise will survive and-I hope-be going long after all the original "Trekkers" are long gone and are buried in their photon torpedo tubes.
As William Shatner put it-get a life.

Okay there are some spoilers below:

I wanted to see this movie before I commented on it, and now that Netflix has delivered it I figured I'd deliver my commentary in this now ancient-thread.

JJ Abrams is a good creator/director who has done some things I'll admit to really liking, but when it comes to Star Trek he does not get the material or the characters at all. The problem starts with him trying to make things a bit too young and radical, probably in an effort to attract new viewers. In doing so he kind of destroys any credibility that a work of military science fiction is going to have. Originally Kirk was admittedly a swashbuckling maverick, but he was also old enough, and in control enough, despite his arrogance to be believable as a starship captain of the "Horatio Hornblower" mould. When he pushed the envelope of what he could get away with he did it from the perspective of someone who was already an established officer and had enough weight, support, and connections behind him to get away with it. In comparison JJ Abrams has pretty much reinterpreted the character as a spoiled kid who despite some basic talent would never have been put in command of anything, and probably would have been drummed out of any military organization. No matter who his daddy was, or what admiral he had behind him, it's hard to accept him being in command of anything, especially following a sequence of events where a reference to a phrank Kirk pulled in TOS was turned into a major
plot point in the first movie and literally had him getting on board a ship he later commands based on an unbelievably contrived technicality. This entire attitude continues into the second movie, where again we're retreading the same thing where Kirk is pretty much in the process of losing his command, and continues to act like someone who isn't so much an "edgy" military officer, but someone who doesn't belong there to begin with. When you continue to have a movie built off of such a messed up building block, you see the pieces and concepts falling apart which continues into the sequel.

To be honest, I've heard a lot of claims that JJ's "reboot", "alternate universe", or whatever else you want to call it isn't supposed to be for Trekkies. The usual argument being that Trekkies are a small, niche audience (which is funny because it's Trekkies that have kept this alive as long as it's gone on), and that by doing things this way a new, younger, audience can be brought in. Generally speaking the same arguments you see with comics all the time, whenever someone wants to reboot an established universe using the argument that what's holding back sales is the huge amount of material someone has to familiarize themselves with to fully understand what's going on. The results are also predictable where "reboot" comic universes like say Marvel's "Ultimate Universe" themselves ultimately wind up becoming the obscure second fiddler to the "prime universe".... not that this holds up in intent because [spoiler incoming]:

The entire "Into Darkness" movie is basically a parody of "Wrath Of Kahn", and I mean this literally. Unless you've seen the original "Khan" movie you would literally not get the meat this film is leading up to. The entire climax of this film is LITERALLY reversing the roles of the Khan finale. At the end of the original movie Spock dies from radiation while fixing the ship. In this movie it's KIRK who dies doing this. This leads to Spock letting out the epic and much parodied scream "Kaaaaahn!!!!!" before going out to pursue him mano-a-mano Captain Kirk style. The basic gimmick being that in this universe it was established Kirk couldn't even hurt Khan by punching him, but Spock who has super-strength apparently can (this does indeed make a bit of sense) leading to a chase, fist-fight, where Spock winds up getting taken down by Khan and then rescued by Uhura. Given the lack of any high concepts involved here like the "Genesis Torpedos" we have Kirk literally resurrected by a blood transfusion from Khan after Dr. McCoy notices Khan's blood was capable of resurrecting a tribble he injected with it.... an entire sequence which pretty much only "clicks" if you realize what it's subverting (some of the cheesiest, but coolest Trek moments) which requires one to be a Trekkie... in reality it comes across in the scope of the overall movie like "What the F@ck am I watching, did someone accidently switch a "Robot Chicken" script with Act 3 of this movie and nobody noticed?".

In short this is horrible, the kind of thing that happens when a sequel to a movie that should have been let die somehow gets greenlit. Like anything, especially in fandom, even the objectively worst things created wind up having legions of adoring fans, and there are doubtlessly many people who disagree... but really, this is one of those movies that is truly terrible, and honestly with the entire final sequence (which I had to describe to make this point) it has to be noted that the misuse of the license is a big part of it.

Oh and don't even get me started on what he did to the Klingons... really, the only real reason I can see the JJ-verse continue is so he can do "Kirk Meets The Borg" and re-envision The Borg as a cross between Oompa Loompas and The Na'vi or whatever...... I mean the only thing you can do here is wait to see how bad it's going to get.

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