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My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness" 
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Post My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
I saw Star Trek Into Darkness for a second time a few days ago, and I couldn't help but feel as if many of the complaints raised against the film felt invalid. For example:

1. Borrowing from The Original Series is clearly a cop-out, and it indicates that the filmmakers have nothing new or exciting to say. The whole "dual reality" thing is just meant to cover up for sloppy writing.

I disagree. To me, Star Trek Into Darkness felt like the first half of a truly epic two-part summer blockbuster. In many ways, this Star Trek and the next sequel will serve as the franchise's Skyfall. They will demonstrate that Star Trek is still very much alive and well, while also including elements from the older films. In the same way that Skyfall included sly nods to previous films in the 007 canon, I expect that Abrams is trying to do the same here as well. The release of Star Trek III in 2016 (celebrating 50 years of Trek), coupled (hopefully) with the return of Benedict Cumberbatch's character, should make for an equally exhilarating second act. In the same way that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1 let to the phenomenal series conclusion of Deathly Hallows - Part 2, I expect the same to happen here. (I've always thought that a franchise should have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Even "immortal" franchises, like Bond and Star Trek, should die eventually.)

2. Abrams only cares about action. He has done to Star Trek what Michael Bay did to Transformers and George Lucas did to Star Wars.

Entirely wrong. The Abrams' Trek films don't even venture close to the godawfulness that was those latter two film franchises; they're at least eight or nine notches better. I'd even say that they are the antithesis to those movies. The problems that many fans have with Abrams' vision can be summed up in two words: Star Wars. This has always been the more popular space opera franchise (yes, I realize that Trek is more than just a space opera), and since Abrams has always been more of a Wars fan, he will hopefully do that franchise even greater justice. That being said, the Abrams' Trek has taken over the niche that Star Wars once occupied. With the release of Star Wars: Episode VII in 2015, the two franchises will become even more diverse. It's kind of like the split between the humorous, more lighthearted Avengers movies and the darker, more realist Dark Knight trilogy.

That being said, I have no problem with a franchise becoming more action-oriented, as long as it retains its quality. Trek will eventually return to the formula of the olden days, especially with Episode VII coming out. I won't be sad if Abrams leaves, as it will allow another filmmaker (hopefully one more aware of Star Trek lore) to take over. If the series doesn't capture the wonderment of The Original Series, then the next reboot probably will.

Don't forget "The Curse" either. Every odd-numbered pre-Abrams Star Trek film was bad if we take the Galaxy Quest rule into account. It's not as if the old Trek films were all perfect. To complain about Abrams ruining Star Trek is like arguing that Martin Campbell or Sam Mendes ruined Bond. Since Trek had more of a cult following than Bond, perhaps more fans were willing to attack Abrams instead. Don't get me wrong: I would love to see a more nostalgic version of Trek in future years in the same way that I would like to see a more Connery-era Bond film or Mission: Impossible movie reminiscent of the TV series. But I can watch those DVDs whenever I want, and I think that Abrams has allowed the series to live long and prosper. I won't miss him should he leave the series, but I don't mind his interpretation of the franchise either.

Nonetheless, I stand by what I said earlier: Star Trek Into Darkness is a fine addition to the Trek series, one of the few solid blockbusters of 2013, and a three-and-a-half-star film for certain.


Thu Jun 13, 2013 3:02 pm
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Second Unit Director

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Post Re: My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
1) Can be problematic somewhat. This is Star Trek so some borrowing is to be expected but... if you felt it was too familiar, that's a perfectly good reason not to like Into Darkness.

2) Perfectly legit 100% reason for not liking the film. I liked the film and *I* felt it was too action orientated. Everytime there's a big emotional moment or the characters start to talk about something thought provoking, something invariably blows up in the middle of the conversation. This got annoying after awhile.

I can't compare this to Transformers, but this definitely felt like there was too much running around then was necessary for the story itself.
-Jeremy

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Thu Jun 13, 2013 4:05 pm
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Post Re: My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
thered47 wrote:
1) Can be problematic somewhat. This is Star Trek so some borrowing is to be expected but... if you felt it was too familiar, that's a perfectly good reason not to like Into Darkness.

2) Perfectly legit 100% reason for not liking the film. I liked the film and *I* felt it was too action orientated. Everytime there's a big emotional moment or the characters start to talk about something thought provoking, something invariably blows up in the middle of the conversation. This got annoying after awhile.

I can't compare this to Transformers, but this definitely felt like there was too much running around then was necessary for the story itself.
-Jeremy

I understand your complaints, but to me, Star Trek Into Darkness felt like the first half of a two-part movie. Unlike Deathly Hallows - Part 1, however, this was the more action-oriented installment. I hope that Star Trek III is more dialogue and character-driven, but I also thought that this second Star Trek movie delivered in terms of storytelling aesthetics.


Thu Jun 13, 2013 4:27 pm
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Post Re: My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
Sean wrote:
thered47 wrote:
1) Can be problematic somewhat. This is Star Trek so some borrowing is to be expected but... if you felt it was too familiar, that's a perfectly good reason not to like Into Darkness.

2) Perfectly legit 100% reason for not liking the film. I liked the film and *I* felt it was too action orientated. Everytime there's a big emotional moment or the characters start to talk about something thought provoking, something invariably blows up in the middle of the conversation. This got annoying after awhile.

I can't compare this to Transformers, but this definitely felt like there was too much running around then was necessary for the story itself.
-Jeremy

I understand your complaints, but to me, Star Trek Into Darkness felt like the first half of a two-part movie. Unlike Deathly Hallows - Part 1, however, this was the more action-oriented installment. I hope that Star Trek III is more dialogue and character-driven, but I also thought that this second Star Trek movie delivered in terms of storytelling aesthetics.


I liked "Into Darkness" as a movie...still not sure of it as a "Trek Movie" though...fairly ambivalent here. My comment is, you seem to be hanging a lot of your opinion of the new Trek II on Trek III, which seems a weird place to be coming from for a movie that hasn't even been scripted yet.


Thu Jun 13, 2013 8:24 pm
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Post Re: My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
I actually thought 'Into Darkness' was okay, but the main problem isn't that it is more action-oriented than traditional Trek. The problem is that it is a lot more stupid than traditional Trek, or anything else, for that matter. The plot doesn't make sense and individual scenes don't make sense. The movie completely disregards all sense of logic in favour of action and in this respect, comparisons to the 'Transformers' movies are apt.


Fri Jun 14, 2013 8:52 am
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Post Re: My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
Johnny Larue wrote:
My comment is, you seem to be hanging a lot of your opinion of the new Trek II on Trek III, which seems a weird place to be coming from for a movie that hasn't even been scripted yet.


Bingo.

Saying, "Star Trek Into Darkness felt like the first half of a two-part movie," is really just a way to apologize for Star Trek Into Darkness not being a complete movie. It's a rationalization.

Sean wrote:
In many ways, this Star Trek and the next sequel will serve as the franchise's Skyfall. They will demonstrate that Star Trek is still very much alive and well, while also including elements from the older films. In the same way that Skyfall included sly nods to previous films in the 007 canon, I expect that Abrams is trying to do the same here as well.


The difference is all those nods to older Bond movies meshed with the theme and overall structure of Skyfall. In Abrams' versions of Star Trek the nods feel like callbacks simply for the sake of callbacks. They have no purpose other than fan service.

I'll also say that disagreeing with someone's reasons for not liking the movie doesn't make those reasons invalid. The 2 reasons you've taken issue with are perfectly valid reasons for not liking the movie.


Fri Jun 14, 2013 9:42 am
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Post Re: My Theory About "Star Trek Into Darkness"
PeachyPete wrote:
Johnny Larue wrote:
My comment is, you seem to be hanging a lot of your opinion of the new Trek II on Trek III, which seems a weird place to be coming from for a movie that hasn't even been scripted yet.


Bingo.

Saying, "Star Trek Into Darkness felt like the first half of a two-part movie," is really just a way to apologize for Star Trek Into Darkness not being a complete movie. It's a rationalization.

Sean wrote:
In many ways, this Star Trek and the next sequel will serve as the franchise's Skyfall. They will demonstrate that Star Trek is still very much alive and well, while also including elements from the older films. In the same way that Skyfall included sly nods to previous films in the 007 canon, I expect that Abrams is trying to do the same here as well.


The difference is all those nods to older Bond movies meshed with the theme and overall structure of Skyfall. In Abrams' versions of Star Trek the nods feel like callbacks simply for the sake of callbacks. They have no purpose other than fan service.

I'll also say that disagreeing with someone's reasons for not liking the movie doesn't make those reasons invalid. The 2 reasons you've taken issue with are perfectly valid reasons for not liking the movie.

I understand completely. Many of the complaints about Into Darkness, however, seem reminiscent of the criticisms raised against The Dark Knight Rises. A great deal of it seems a bit too nit-picky, in my opinion.

I did enjoy Star Trek Into Darkness tremendously, but it did remind me of the reboot-within-a-reboot structure of Skyfall, which will truly come to fruition once Bond 24 is released. On its own terms, the movie works, but it seems more like a placeholder for the next installment, something which I don't really have much of a problem with.

The question is, will Abrams return to Trek? If he doesn't, I think that the series will take a new direction, or perhaps it will return to the traditional Trke template. I doubt that Paramount will wait around for Abrams to wrap up Episode VII; that would probably mean releasing the next movie in 2017 or 2018. They're probably going to go for a 2016 release date, and I hope that they find the right director to make that happen. Brad Bird would be my first pick, even though he's too busy with Tomorrowland right now.


Fri Jun 14, 2013 12:13 pm
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