Valdosta Daily Times

May 20, 2013

New ‘Star Trek’: Better left in the darkness

Adann-Kennn Alexxandar
The Valdosta Daily Times

VALDOSTA — “Star Trek Into Darkness” (Science-Fiction/Action: 2 hours, 12 minutes)

Starring: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Zoe Saldana

Director: J. J. Abrams

Rated: PG-13 (Violence and strong language)

Movie Review: John Harriman (Cumberbatch) is a homegrown terrorist within Star Fleet. After Harriman commits a major act of terrorism, the crew of the Federation starship Enterprise, led by Capt. James T. Kirk (Pine) must find and defeat Harriman. Their task will not be easy. Harriman is a brilliant strategist with a keen mind. Even more, he is hiding in the war zone of an enemy planet.

This is not “Star Trek.” This is a dumbed-down copy to the point it is not good science fiction; it is just an action movie that takes place in the future.

Director Abrams, who directed 2009’s “Star Trek,” and three writers offer what could be a good story, but they give this story nothing of substance. Instead, this plot jumps from scene to scene without clearly defining characters along the way. As the scenes move from one to the next, the transition is not one that makes you care for the characters.

Many people know the crew of the Enterprise. Yet these famed characters, plus new supporting characters, are missing solid foundations. They all appear fabricated players, secondary to the action displayed. The relationships are pretentious. The fakeness is not convincing. The best example is the relationship between Spock (Quinto) and Uhura (Saldana) that appears artificial.

A convoluted story and flat characters make this “Star Trek” a disjointed piece. Several stories are woven together to create an unbelievable one. They try to put too much into one screenplay. Two major stories exist and their merger leaves much unsettled.  

The film’s best moment is a unique twist that happens midway through the film when a character reveals something unexpected but predictable for true “Star Trek” aficionados. This is the best moment of the film. At this point, the film actually takes time to provide some intellectual material among multiple adolescent moments.  

Also, the visual effects are sharp and engaging. However, the story’s quick moving pace leaves little to no time to marvel at the art.

The 2009 “Star Trek” was like “Saved by the Bell” in outer space. It was adolescent in nature, but it was new and comically entertaining and better than this one.

Grade: C (Apparently, the script originated in the dark.)