FILM REVIEW: STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS

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Director: J.J Abrams

Writers: Roberto Orci, Alex Kaurtzman and Damon Lindelog (Screenplay), and Gene Roddenberry (Creator of original “Star Trek” TV Series)

Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Benedict Cumberbatch
In 2009 Trekkies rejoiced when king of the nerds, the legendary producer/director/writer J.J. Abrams lived out of his childhood dream and rebooted the classic Sci-Fi TV show Star Trek into a sleek, sexy and sensational film.

The reboot delved into the development of lead protagonists Captain James T. Kirk (Chris Pine) and Commander Spock (Zachary Quinto) and their fiery bromance, whilst also providing some solid supporting characters, a thrilling storyline and breathtaking visual effects.

Abrams returns with his crew of space explorers in 2013 with Star Trek Into Darkness. The film is a direct sequel to its predecessor and begins with a typical chaotic rush to save an alien world from destruction. From this very opening sequence we know we’re in for one hell of a ride. We are immediately able to feel connected to the crewmembers of the Starship Enterprise, almost as though we are a part of their weird and wacky family.

However, the Universe does not stay saved for long and we encounter a terrifying terrorist act on London by the sinister but charismatic John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch). When finally apprehended by Starfleet, Harrison offers to help Kirk and Spock in uncovering a master plot to destroy Earth, à la Lecter/Starling.

Cumberbatch portrays Harrison as a mysterious creature full of charisma and steeliness, but his voice is so smooth and soothing that every word he utters sounds like a line from a Shakespearean play. Nevertheless, his villain is chilling, fascinating and holds firm ground against the protagonists.

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Abrams utilises his sleek style magnificently through Star Trek Into Darkness, with his signature solar flares lighting up the screen giving a warm feel to the film’s atmosphere. His team of writers and himself effortlessly chop and change between moods, whether it’s an edge of your seat action sequence, heated debates between two highly-strung intellectuals or a witty dose of comic relief (usually served up by Scotty played by the ever charming Simon Pegg). For both die-hard Trekkies and casual fans (like myself) there is certainly something in Star Trek Into Darkness to please everyone.

The next project on the horizon for Abrams is a reboot of the just as loved and epic Star Wars franchise. If his reboot of Star Trek is any indication, Abrams’ Star Wars will be just as sleek, seductive and intelligent. Both franchises have legions of fans and infinite worlds of possibilities to explore, so it will be a thrill to see where Abram takes Star Wars.

As for Star Trek Into Darkness, one does not have to be a devoted fan to the series and films to enjoy this thrilling and hilarious ride through the universe. It is a film that delves into our imaginations and exhibits some truly exciting prospects for the future. Hopefully Abrams will be back post-Star Wars to lead the adventures of the Starship Enterprise. Live long and prosper, I say.

RATING: 4/5

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