I can see why they picked JJ Abrams to head the Star Trek and Star Wars film franchises respectively. He likes to recycle, knows how to use stunning visual effects to great advantage and could give a shit about the canon. What he does, he does well – he knows how to make a relentless action movie. And that’s exactly what the new Star Trek Into Darkness movie is – a recycled action movie that uses every tag line imaginable and then fails to use the one Trekkies expect at the end. There’s no Never Never Land here – no poetry, barely any camaraderie, no beach to walk on, and no star to steer by.
The thing about old Trek – I’m talking TV here – is you got to watch the characters solve puzzles, reason things out, and stick to their principles – regardless of the prime directive. They were four act Shakespearean morality tales that served as a platform to discuss the relevant social and human rights issues of the time.
That’s not the case with the JJ Abrams films. There is barely a moment to breathe, let alone time to reflect – which I suppose is a reflection of our times. Where there is an inundation of information, failing infrastructure, endless wars and over stimulation everywhere, who has time to actually discuss bio-engineering, low tech versus high tech or duty and self-sacrifice?
Leonard Nimoy makes a cameo as the real Mr. Spock and it is simply adds to the absurdity. It’s cold comfort, and needless explanation to appease the Trekkie audience. Simply put, it doesn’t work and the artifice pulls you out of the story and makes you remember “oh, yeah, this sucks.”
SPOILER ALERT: They kill off Pike too soon, they have Tribbles already, and can bring people back from the dead using a serum cultivated from Kaan’s blood. What? Oh, but it’s okay because real Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy) says it’s an alternate time line? What? PHHH~ NO!
Abrams admitted in an interview on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart that he was not a big Star Trek fan. Cha-Yah, ya think? He obviously doesn’t like to think. So there you are. Is the film worth seeing? Honestly? Not really. But if you’re a Trek fan – you know who you are – you’ll go see it anyway, and if you’re not, well either you get a well made relentless action movie, or maybe you’ll find something in it that will pique your curiosity enough to find out about the real deal.That said, if you’re a gamer there is a video game tie-in, but reviews on IGN, are not promising. Maybe the problem is that Abrams consulted the Wrath of Khan script from that bunny animation in making his new treatment. No offense meant to the makers of Bun-O-Vision, I think they rock.