Okay, full disclaimer, I have never been nor I doubt ever will be a full on Star Trek fan. It’s not like I don’t like the series or anything, it’s just that I was more raised as a Star Wars kid myself. Now that being said, here are my thoughts on J.J. Abrams Star Trek movies! In a nut-shell, they’re not that bad! Great visuals and special effects, great cast and acting all around, good action, and clearly even if Abrams is more of a Star Wars guy himself (like me), he really seems to be giving these two movies his all……. Just a shame that the plots of both movies are some of the stupidest and most contrived plots I’ve ever seen.
Now it’s not like they didn’t have some cool ideas or anything. Bringing in Old Spock was a really cool touch, and I’m really sad that they won’t be able to do that for part 3, but other then that we might as well be stepping into Sy-fy movie plot territory. Take the plot of the first movie. If I can remember it correctly it went something like this. *Ahem* “So this supernova is about to go off near a Romulan mining planet or something and Old Spock goes to save it with some Red Matter. However he’s too late and the sun explodes and creates a black hole which sucks a mining ship and Old Spock into a parallel timeline. The Romulan dude on the mining ship gets angry that he had to watch his planet explode and decides to (I think it was something like) use the Red Matter to create more black holes so that he can alter the time line to kill Kirks Dad, abandon Old Spock on an ice planet so he has to watch his planet get destroyed, and then go blow up Earth.” So wait, if this guy can manipulate wormholes and stuff to travel through time WHY DOESN’T HE JUST GO BACK AND STOP HIS PLANET FROM EXPLODING IN THE FIRST PLACE? Seriously, was this explained AT ALL? Was there like some kind of really emotional moment I missed where like the bad guy reveals he already tried and it never worked? Seriously, if so, someone let me know, I’d really like this cleared up. And hopefully by this time I really shouldn’t have to explain why Star Trek Into Darkness completely failed on a plot level. Abrams, please take note, when you’re going to reintroduce the most famous villain in the franchise, don’t try and say that he’s anything but what you’re building him up to be. It doesn’t work as a plot twist. At all. Also, it doesn’t add any significant depth to your story to re-do scene’s from The Wrath of Khan with a slight twist. Heck, I haven’t even seen Wrath of Khan yet, and I know what you’re doing. And I also know that, yes it is slightly cool, but it doesn’t add anything to the story. And it really doesn’t help if you keep inviting comparisons between your movie and the one we all know is obviously better. Okay? Okay. Don’t do this with episode 7 please.
On the plus side, it’s nice to see movie’s that are as willfully fun as Star Trek is. I think the best scene’s are just the one’s where the big set-piece moments are just allowed to be set-piece moments. That scene with Kirk and Khan flying through space? That’s awesome! The opening to the first movie? That’s pretty awesome! Also, the new cast is honestly just killing it, my personal favorite being Simon Pegg as the new Scotty. The special effects and cinematography are top notch. I am glad that they eased back on the lens flares for Into Darkness though, they were just distracting.
So overall, the new Star Trek movies are fine, as long as you’re willing to leave your brain at the door. I’m not sure if that’s something that’s good for this franchise in particular, but I don’t think it’s a terrible thing. (at least when the movie knows it’s that kind of movie) Am I concerned that Abrams is coming to Star Wars? Not really. Star Wars has usually had more of a simplistic story when you come right down to it, even the prequels were fairly strait-forward when they weren’t busy being stupid. I think we’ve all learned from the prequels at this point, and I’m sure whatever Abrams is bringing it will at least be interesting and unique. Right?