After much anticipation, Star Trek Into Darkness is finally out this weekend. Peter and Germain have weighed in with their mostly-positive takes, and you guys have also chimed in with your thoughts. I personally enjoyed watching the movie from beginning to end, and got a kick out of seeing these characters come to life once more, as played by the immensely talented cast. It’s a non-stop thrill-ride, a riveting experience that may leave you scratching your head at certain points, but never leaves you bored.
About those head-scratchers: yeah, this movie definitely made pretty bizarre decisions, several of which continued to nag at me days after I’d seen it, even though my overall memories of the film were ones of fondness. So, in the grand tradition, you’ll find some of my issues after the jump. As always, feel free to respond with your own and/or correct me in the comments.
MASSIVE SPOILERS FOR STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS FOLLOW.
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It’s in theaters now, and all the secrets are out in the open. Star Trek Into Darkness, the second Trek film from J.J. Abrams, has been locked (mostly) in the producer/director’s “mystery box” for over a year. For hardcore fans, at least, the secrecy around the precise nature of the character played by Benedict Cumberbatch has been a big part of the marketing allure, but the energy Abrams and his cast brought to their first outing on the Enterprise has been enough to make a huge audience curious about their encore.
And in the end, the irony is that, while there was a type of secret to preserve with respect to the character, in the end he plays a weird role in the plot. (There’s a certain kinship to Iron Man 3 in that respect.)
Abrams has said that he wanted to make Star Trek for people who aren’t Star Trek fans, and in that respect he might have succeeded. Into Darkness has a few well-executed setpieces, and loads of the same winning cast presence that made the first Abrams Trek a success. But does it work? Does the film’s wide divergence from many well-established Trek characteristics fly, and does it even really matter who Cumberbatch is playing? Weigh in below, where full spoilers are in force. Read More »
Sequels are a tricky thing. In the best cases, they transcend the original work by adding emotional depth and context, elevating the entire story arc. In the worst cases, they’re a carbon copy of the original with perhaps a bigger “wow” factor. Star Trek Into Darkness, like many sequels, falls into the middle ground. It expands and broadens the scope of the original while duplicating most of the elements that were already in place from the 2009 film.
To follow his first Trek revival, director J.J. Abrams has made a much more visually impressive and exciting action film, and one worthy of the Star Trek franchise. It simply lacks the inspiration that made his first film so special.
After the jump, read the rest of this review and see a video blog with some differing opinions. Read More »
When do Man of Steel tickets go on sale to the general public? What did Kevin Feige have to say about possible Phase Three films Doctor Strange, Inhumans, Runaways and more? Which character does Dwayne Johnson want to play in the Marvel Universe? Where can you see a live Iron Man 3 art discussion? What are the best superhero board games? Are S.H.I.E.L.D. and Pulp Fiction related in anyway? Read about all this and more in today’s Superhero Bits. Read More »
When I first saw Stories We Tell I was stunned. When I saw it again, I knew that reaction was warranted. And when I talked to the film’s director, everything was further illuminated. That director is Sarah Polley, who is probably best known for roles in films like Go and Dawn of the Dead. Polley is undeniably great in those movies, but after seeing her third feature film Stories We Tell, there’s no doubt she’s an even better director.
Polley approaches Stories We Tell with brilliantly layered execution. On the surface, it’s a personal documentary about her family history, featuring accounts from her brothers, sisters, parents, and friends. The basic story follows how her mother and father met, and started a family. From there, Polley questions the construction of story and truth. She breaks down the structure, turning the camera on herself. Finally, Polley uses this pleasant, thought-provoking documentary to pose surprising questions regarding the essence of cinema. Stories We Tell is now playing in select cities nationwide, so you can finally see what I mean for yourself.
Which brings us to a warm May morning poolside at a Beverly Hills hotel. I was lucky enough to sit down with Polley to discuss her wonderful film and ask all the burning questions I had after seeing it. You can read the conversation below. Read More »
Joss Whedon is creating some real problems for his heroes in The Avengers 2. The writer/director recently said, yes, Quicksilver and Scarlett Witch will be in the film, but they won’t be there to help the team. “I’m not putting any characters in the movie that will make things easier,” the director said.
He also said, despite rumors to the contrary, Iron Man will be back for the 2015 sequel and that Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will “throw something in that foreshadows [or] echoes” events in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Lots of Joss quotes today. Read them all below. Read More »
Two pretty big rumors regarding The Avengers 2 are whipping around the Web today, so we figured they were worth a look. The first one seems most plausible. It concerns the possible inclusion of the Black Panther in the sequel and the hint comes from the chairman of South Africa’s Cape Town Film Studios. He said Marvel has been in contact about filming the Joss Whedon sequel there.
The second rumor is that Hawkeye could be recast. Jeremy Renner played the character in Thor as well as The Avengers, but citing a lack of activity in Phase Two and his negative comments about his role in The Avengers, one source believes the character could become the next War Machine or Hulk. Read More »
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Want to see some epic new images from Man of Steel? Is a surprise guest returning in Captain America: The Winter Soldier? Has the trailer for Batman: Arkham Origins been released? Did Shane Black comment on the use of The Mandarin in Iron Man 3? Which five Marvels roles could Dwayne Johnson play? What do Tony Stark and Justin Timberlake have in common? And which superhero director showed up on the set of Amazing Spider-Man 2? Read about all this and more in today’s Superhero Bits. Read More »