Monday, June 10, 2013

Movie Review: Star Trek Into Darkness

Hello friends!  I had the opportunity to watch two of the biggest summer movies with my dad in theaters within a day of each other (Star Trek Into Darkness and Iron Man 3).  Since I watched Star Trek Into Darkness first, it shall be the first to be reviewed.

Surprisingly, after absolutely LOVING the first Star Trek movie, I wasn't all that excited about the second one.  Maybe I was getting tired of movies always having this trend of getting darker as the series go on.  :/

Besides all that, I was taken aback at how great this movie was.  I don't know what I was expecting and I couldn't exactly imagine a Star Trek movie being bad; I have this sci-fi, space travel bias..

This movie had everything:

-Action (tons of it)
-Fights on moving vehicles
-Alien duke outs
-Battles in warp
-Hostage bargaining
-Space jumps
-Character development
-Great villain
-Awesome CGI & practical fx
-AND they even managed to fit in a boob scene.  lol

Star Trek, like it's predecessor, had amazingly detailed graphics that were seamlessly blended with practical effects (makeup, set, etc.)

 I was loving these landscape shots!
Even though it's been years since the first Star Trek movie, I still hold each of the characters dear to my heart. 

First lets talk about PRO's of the movie and what I thought made it so special.

1.) I was very impressed with Chris Pine's interpretation of Captain Kirk's internal turmoil.  He was having issues with truly taking responsibility for his actions because of his naturally arrogant and free-spirited personality.  He created a surprisingly deep portrayal of his character and that added just enough realism to take this film to a whole new level.

Now about Mr. Logic...

I feel like the theme of this film is greatly based upon Kirk and Spock's relationship.  They're sort of like this two sided coin, Spock being the logical side and Kirk being the intuitive/impulsive side.

This movie explores how Spock's logicality starts to interfere with certain moral decisions that he makes and how his crew reacts to his actions.

In the scene above for example, Spock is in this unstable volcano and the crew is on a mission to stop it from erupting to save these aliens who for some reason, built their city right next to it.  Spock is willing to sacrifice his life so that the Enterprise doesn't reveal itself to this primitive civilization.  This doesn't sit well with Uruha as personal feelings are involved.

Kirk, while irritated about Spock's indifference to his own life, is mostly annoyed by the fact that Spock basically 'tattled' on him to their boss back at the academy.  Kirk's reaction?...
"O-M-G, I saved your life!!!  Why'd you go behind my back bro?!!!"

This brings me to my next favorite thing about the movie, the characters.

2.) I am completely in love with the crew and they're all so endearing in their own special ways.  I love watching them interact with each other and the entire dynamic is beautiful.  I think this is something that a lot of action films fail to do and I get so bummed because it adds so much dimension and substance to the film as a whole.

There's this scene where Kirk, Spock, and Uruha are in this space ship together and Uruha decides to complain to Spock about her annoyances.  Poor Kirk is literally in the middle of this bickering couple.  It's so funny and relatable..  I really like that scene.  There's also a lot of other funny moments that are purely emotional reactions but it works so well and I actually find them funny!  (Side-note: I usually don't find movie jokes that funny.)  I'm so happy that they left out the cheesy jokes and lines because I believe real humor in films come from the character's expressions and reactions that we don't expect.

Another very touching moment is when Kirk is in locked in the power room, getting radiation poisoning and he has this moment with Spock.  He asks him how he doesn't feel anything so he can die without suffering.  Spock starts to cry because he's finally acknowledging his feelings from his Human side and the sadness of losing a friend (although we totally know Kirk isn't going to die, it's a touching scene nonetheless).  

In this moment, they both place their hands on the glass and form it into the 'V' symbol that Spock is so well-known for.  They've met each other halfway.

Loving the bromance here.

3.)  The last favorite thing I love about this movie is the villain!

LOVE him!

Benedict Cumberbatch was a great choice as the diabolical villain, Kahn.  The writers were clever in how they slowly revealed Kahn's motiviations.  Kahn had real motives for doing what he did.  He was a villain with substance.

His accent makes him sound extremely intelligent and conniving.  I really like how Cumberbatch portrayed Kahn.  He was a physically advanced, intelligent, and conniving character and I believe that Cumberbatch delivered on all aspects.

Now for my criticisms.  After reading other reviews with similar nitpicks and responses, I came to a better understanding of certain things that happened so I'll explain them if they come up.

1.) There's so much action in this film.  After a certain point in the movie, it's like the characters are always in mortal peril.  It's like one obstacle after another with no breather in between.  I guess if you're a hardcore action fan, this isn't really an issue but personally, I thought it to be somewhat overwhelming and it dulled my senses as this action stretch went on and on.

2.) At first, I wondered how Spock was suddenly able to kick Kahn's ass after being beaten down by him so easily in the early stages of their fight.  But some people were explaining that Uruha was helping Spock to take him down by hitting him with multiple shots from her stun gun and that's how Spock eventually defeated him.

3.) One part that bugged me was the scene where Kirk was stuck in the radioactive room.  He was obviously dying and Spock was on the other side and I just didn't get WHY they didn't break that glass to let him out of there.  Or if anything, just unlock the door and let him out!  He was able to get in, why was he not able to get out?  And even Scotty (who, btw helped Kirk to get into that room) was there.  Don't get me wrong, I really liked that heartfelt scene with Kirk and Spock but I can't wrap my head around why they weren't able to pull him out of there and instead were content with leaving him to die from radiation poisoning.  Seriously, couldn't they have broken down the door?  They got him out of there when the ship landed, why not then?

That's all I have to say on this film.  I love it because it had everything, maybe a little too much action overload but they included all these fun moments with the characters and there was so much development between Kirk and Spock that I forgive them for these little flaws.

It's a great summer movie and I highly recommend people to see this in theaters as it offers a more epic experience and gives this film the justice it deserves.


Anonymous said...

There wasn't any part in the movie where I was bored, I was hooked the entire film. Good review.

MiNapi said..., I know, it was a really exciting movie. Totally delivered the action it promised. Thanks! :D