Culture: Film

Star Trek Into Darkness

Star Trek

For Trekkies everywhere, this hotly anticipated sci fi sequel of the voyages of the starship Enterprise will have them quivering with delight. This latest movie going “where no-one has gone before” is a fine example of 3D delights, with space debris and spaceships coming at you at the rate of warp speed.

In place of the slightly portly William Shatner, we have a very lithe Chris Pine reprising the role. He is full of brio, keen for adventure and of course, spoiling for a fight.

What I noticed most of all is that the men have great hair. Captain Kirk has a very fetching close-cut 50s style ‘do with blonde highlights, while Spock (played by  Zachary Quinto) has a sleek, jet-black fringe, so he looks like a butch Louise Brooks who appeared in Pandora’s Box.

Baddie Benedict Cumberbatch has a tousled creation, with a long cowlick covering one eye, looking dishevelled especially after he’s beaten the crap out of Starfleet’s finest.

The Sherlock star makes an extremely believable evildoer, the sinister Khan. Of course, he’s English, so in American movie terms, that equates with nastiness. It must be something to do with the accent.

Cumberbatch snarls, sneers and smoulders with aplomb. You certainly wouldn’t trust him alone in a dark alley, especially when packing an enormous gun capable of destroying entire buildings.

Not only does Star Trek fit in the sci-fi genre, it definitely fits into the rom com category. Captain Kirk and Spock definitely have the hots for one another, exchanging mean and moody looks at one other and weeping when either is hurt in a fight. There is a half-hearted attempt at a bit of girlie action for Kirk, who wakes up in bed with two sexy alien girls with tails, but it’s not convincing.

Poor old Uhura (played by the gorgeous Zoe Saldana) who is in love with Spock, has to make do with a brief peck with little passion behind it. No wonder she looks miffed, and takes her frustration out on the poor old Klingons who she thrashes to within an inch of their lives.

There’s plenty of old jokes and in-jokes to keep Trekkies happy. The trouble is that the formula is wearing a little thin. There is the joy of familiarity, the satisfaction of thinking: “Hah! I knew that was coming!”

But a little more ingenuity would go a long way. It’s disappointing that there were not more new tricks up the sleeve of director JJ Abrams, especially for new fans as well as die-hard followers like me.

However, the real stars are the 3D effects and stunning imagery, which make this an exciting romp, which will have you cheering for the good guys, and shouting even louder for the marvellous villain Benedict Cumberbatch.

Star Trek Into Darkness is showing in cinemas now.

Words: Fiona Keating

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