Dispensing with the title system used by the previous ten Star Trek films, Into Darkness continues where the 2009 film left off, in a parallel universe with no major differences except that Spock now exists twice. A useful fall back for the writers when actual exposition or ingenious schemes are too difficult.
Director JJ Abrams pushes his cinematographer to add more lens flare, rendering scenes blindingly blue to the point of obscuring who is speaking. An honourable mention goes to every single lens flare added manually to a CGI shot. By the next film I reckon the screen will be 50% flare.
Apparently the Enterprise now goes where “no one has gone before”. In a move of outstanding equality and political correctness Into Darkness also features two female characters, one of whom gets naked, the other one fawns over Spock. Additionally prepare for a crew containing more aliens than people of colour.
Speaking of which, this parallel universe, which only branched off at the point of attack on the USS Kelvin about thirty years before this film is set apparently now has the power to change the race of previously established dual-universe characters on a whim. Although with Scotty now speaking in a, debatable, accent and McCoy slipping in and out of Texan one wonders just how multicultural San Francisco is at this stardate.
With more banter than ever before it’s no surprise that the crew of the Enterprise is often caught off-guard as our terrifying super-villain maniac John Harrison interrupts them in the middle of some high-quality bickering and manly bonding.
Anticipation is apparently not something that is necessary in a film these days. Watch in wonder as the ending is pre-determined from halfway through the film by the magical process of reusing scripts from previous films.
Spock and Uhura are still dating, miraculously. Their relationship is somewhat awkward and serves only to create yet more inter-crew bickering. After fifty years of homo-erotic undertones Star Trek is now an exclusively heterosexual place. Unless you’re counting all of that concerned, brotherly love.
As a Star Wars and a Star Trek fan there is something essentially wrong about Kirk flying through a small gap in a debris field by turning his small, circular, not-at-all-similar-to-the-Millenium-Falcon vessel sideways.
A film best seen in cinemas. Revel in the four-dimensional viewing experience as die-hard Trekkies will quote along with a film they have never seen before, hum the theme tune at random intervals and groan confusedly as Uhura continues to kiss Spock.