'Star Trek Into Darkness' Is Great, Until...

'Star Trek Into Darkness' Is Great, Until...

Star Trek Into Darkness actually does everything right, regardless of how you feel about the franchise. It’s action-packed; it’s fast-paced; it’s even actually surprisingly thoughtful, raising the question of whether we hunt terrorists damn the torpedoes or whether we stop and think about the moral consequences of our actions. Do we go to our enemies guns blazing and give no quarter, or do we refuse to accept war as an inevitability?
And then everybody loses their damn minds. Spoilers to follow.
Let’s start with the good. This is not a remake of The Wrath of Khan and in fact largely avoids using it. Unfortunately, where it does, it’s massively clunky, and it leads to the worst part of the movie. But until then, it’s a lot of fun, better than the first one, even.
OK, so there’s a lot of Star Wars here. Kirk even flies what amounts to a Millenium Falcon at one point. The opening is clumsy and tone-deaf to an alarming degree. It’s not a perfect movie by a long shot.
But then the ship rights itself. Abrams, having a good cast and being a TV guy, handles the moments of quiet drama better than the enormous action sequences, but the enormous action sequences are fun and solidly done. The movie does a good job being its own story and it actually makes superb use of Khan as a character, helped considerably by Benedict Cumberbatch knowing when to show restraint and when to eat scenery like it’s candy. Once the editing smooths out it’s actually a zippy ride.


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