The hard thing about writing a review for a movie is trying to avoid critical comparisons to material that it borrows ideas from.
That’s the problem Star Trek Into Darkness faces in my eyes. Worse still, it’s taking liberties from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, considered by many as one of the best films in the franchise’s history.
The gang from the first film are all back and fit into their roles comfortably from the outset. In fact, the opening scene works spectacularly well in bringing them all back with an effort that shows that Bond style opening sequences can work a treat but is wasted in that these same characters have to step aside for the rest of the film to allow new faces in.
Instead of angry Romulans, there is a new enemy in the form of Benedict Cumberbatch’s John Harrison aka Khan (old news now), who seems to have a pretty good talent of appearing in stuff and being more awesome than everyone else in a scene.
With all that is in its favour, STID begins to stumble with every moment stolen from WoK which elicits more groans of disappointment than nods of appreciation. I don’t mind the occasional reference but one whole scene is so completely ripped that despite its twist, just comes across as unoriginal. And reusing an iconic Shatnerism seems insulting.
It almost smacks of desperation to provide fan service; the movie would have stood stronger without them. Such a strange turn of events after the previous movie was so courageous in its willingness to break from the past and forge a new path.
The disc itself is not packed with a lot of content but does have some shorts covering keys sequences in the film. Movie quality though is superb with a great picture. The amount of colour and visual splendour in the effects will make any TV look a million dollars.
A movie like this makes me wish I wasn’t a Star Trek fan to begin with. If I wasn’t familiar with the original material I could perhaps enjoy this more. Because when the movie hits its stride it can almost make you forget. Almost.
On the bright side, its not as bad a ripoff as the Total Recall remake.