HOLLYWOOD—Back in 2009, J.J. Abrams revamped the idolized TV series “Star Trek.” Well Abrams is back with the sequel to his 2009 hit, “Star Trek Into Darkness.” This chapter follows our favorite space intergalatics Captain Kirk (Chris Pine), Spock (Zachary Quinto), Uhura (Zoe Saldana) and Bones (Karl Urban). I was never a fan of TV series or any of the “Star Trek” movies until I saw the Abrams remake a few years ago. His sequel, “Into Darkness” is a delicious tale of deception and intergalactic travel that will have Trekkies, sci-fi buffs and people not fans of the franchise believers.
The picture opens with the USS Enterprise hoping to rescue the civilization of Planet Nibiru from an impending volcanic eruption that could take out the entire population. When Spock’s (Quinto) life is compromised, Captain Kirk (Pine) makes some tough decisions to keep his colleague safe. Those actions put troublemaker, Kirk at the backseat as Commander of theEnterprise, he’s demoted to First Officer and finds his position now being held by Admiral Christopher Pike (Bruce Greenwood).
After the secret “Section 31” installation is bombed by Starfleet agent John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch), a string of events are set into motion that will test the willpower of the USS Enterprise and its members. It’s been stated time and time again that for every hero there has to be an equal if not better villain out to destroy them. That villain is portrayed with ferocious intensity by Cumberbatch, whose presence alone sends chills down the spectator; it’s no secret he’s out to do harm, just look at his face. The rest of the picture is a cat and mouse game for the crew to discover the identity of this elusive figure who may not appear who the audience thinks he is. Audiences are also treated to the evolving relationship between Uhura (Saldana) and Spock (Quinto).
The supporting players just like in the predecessor are each allowed ample amounts of time on the screen to assist with theEnterprise’s mission. Kirk finds a potential love interest in Dr. Carol Wallace (Alice Eve) who has a connection to one of the members of the crew that may surprise the audience. The movie has its fair share of action-sequences that are downright awesome. The idea of space has been a daunting task for filmmakers in the past, but with the current evolvement of technology, “Star Trek Into Darkness” takes the audience to a world that is so surreal is exhilarating. The dialogue is what every Trekkie looks for in a “Star Trek” picture and the plot is moved along at a steady pace, thanks to writers Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindeloff and Roberto Orci.
It’s a sequel in my opinion that outdoes what its predecessor provided to audiences. There is more action, more drama, more characters and a thrilling story that hooks the spectator at the opening of the picture and doesn’t let go into well after the picture ends. Abrams pays exceptional attention to detail in staging the action that never appears forced or uneven; it’s obvious the filmmaker was a fan of the franchise. He understands what the fan wants, just as much as what the picture needs to draw in a new audience.
“Star Trek Into Darkness” is an explosive chapter in the franchise, that is certain to explode at the box-office this weekend. Even if you’re not a fan of the franchise, this is a picture that all ages can enjoy.
By LaDale Anderson