Potpourri – Impressions of Star Trek Into Darkness


Did I mention ***SPOILER ALERT*** ?

This film left me with mixed impressions. As a whole and taken on its own, it was a decent film. Then again, I have the hindsight of 4 television series and something like 11 previous films of history before this one. There is a lot not to like here, but despite that, the film was entertaining. Where do we begin? How about…

What I liked about the film:
+ Uhura is a strong female character, the way she should have always been. She’s just as balsy as Kirk.
+ Kirk is starting to look and act and talk more like Shatner’s Kirk. It makes him more believable and convincing.
+ More human traditional uniforms are used planet-side, leaving the more functional tee-shirt uniforms for field use. Makes sense and I like it, but it does make one question the sincerity of the non-military Star Fleet.
+ Kirk’s act-first, think-later attitude. We had glimpses of Kirk’s younger days in TOS, and this is consistent.
+ The Kirk-Spock-McCoy triangle is beginning to form.
+ Gritty Earth. Science fiction in the pre-Star Wars days was clean. Spotless. Star Trek continued that through all the movies until the reboot (although the Enterprise series did start moving in this direction.) It’s a more believable Earth.
+ Klingons. The new Klingon look is more believable to me. Alien look and alien culture made clear by the facial and head-lump jewelry. Best edition yet.
+ The inclusion of tribbles. A nice setup for that flew under the radar: the capture of Harry Mudd’s spacecraft, the one Kirk used to land on Kronos. This was a terrific nod to the older fans–subtle but unmistakable.

What I did not like about the film:
– The Enterprise gained the ability to enter an atmosphere. That is, and was always intended to be an orbital ship using shuttles or transporters for away teams.
= Putting the Enterprise underwater. Really? This was such a spectacular WTF moment that it needs no further comment.
– Khan’s random malice and vengeance toward Kirk. Kirk threatened to arrest him and take him to trial. He did not strand Khan on an unstable planet and leave him to die.
– The remake of Star Trek II – The Wrath of Khan. Nods to previous incarnations are fine, but this was so gawdawful and predictable from the moment the misalignment was mentioned through the end of the movie. If I want to see The Wrath of Khan, it’s sitting on my DVD shelf. My daughter didn’t understand any of that part and why it was in the movie at all. Forced, very forced.
– Ricardo Montalban is Khan. His performance cannot be topped.
– There was nothing new here. Pretty much every part of this movie has already been done at some point in the Star Trek universe.
– The Enterprise should have been the ship to discover and waken Khan, not some vague off-screen discovery by somebody else.
– Khan being immune to phaser stun.
– Khan being that much stronger than a Vulcan.
– Khan’s blood is a miracle drug that cures everything, and McCoy was able to synthesize it. Hooray, there will be no more sickness or dying. Ever.
– Transwarp? Used by transporters? Can send a man from Earth to Kronos? Really> Khan couldn’t have simply beamed into a nearby building and later disappeared into the desert or a forest? That was an excuse to show us what Klingons look like now, nothing more.

I stop here because they keep coming. But it did have nice special effects.

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