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  • Justin 3:47 pm on May 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , Star Trek Into Darkness,   

    Star Trek Into Darkness | Parodying Star Trek in a Canon Star Trek Movie 

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    Star Trek Into Darkness, one of the biggest movies of the year hit theatres this week, and while overall reviews for this movie are very good, this is my official letdown (for now) of the summer as Star Trek Into Darkness is essentially a canon trek movie that is parodying a previous Star Trek movie; and the best one for that matter.  Star Trek Into Darkness  stumbles around looking for character arcs, themes, and a compelling, well-constructed plot. 

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    The movie starts off fairly strong with a Indiana Jones esque intro-event with Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) taking action during a away mission that saves Spock (Zach Quinto) and gets Kirk into some trouble with Starfleet as he is, as per usual, breaking regulations, but that’s what Kirk does best. Shortly after, Earth ( a futuristic London specifically) is bombed by a mysterious person names John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) that Kirk and the crew of enterprise are soon commanded to pursue. The crew is all back with John Cho as Sulu, Zoe Saldana as Uhura, Simon Pegg as Scotty, Karl Urban as Doctor McCoy, and Anton Yelchin as Chekov. Also we have newcomer Alice Eve as Carol Wallace (or is it Marcus…?).  And of course Benedict Cumberbatch as John Harrison. Though unfortunately Karl Urban/McCoy and Yelchin/Chekov are completely wasted. Cumberbatch’s performance is the best among all of them during the movie without a doubt.

    Again, the movie has a very promising beginning. And throughout the movie, as expected, the visuals and the audio are great.  And there are several action sequences that are very well done (though most have been seen before…and so are also alittle forgettable), but while JJ Abrams’ 2009 Star Trek was fun, witty, and smart with a opening that was quite epic (http://groomsmenonfilm.com/2013/05/16/top-10-star-trek-movie-moments-3/) Star Trek Into Darkness is not smart at all, and is unbelievably generic in its storytelling.  Now I cannot go into too much detail as to why I say Into Darkness parodies Star Trek because I’ll  be in spoiler territory, (but don’t worry scroll down to see it).  Yes your eyes will be on the screen for the entire 2 hours, there are certainly some laughs, and great sequences, but I honestly expected much more than a story that has been done  before. I think it’s average B reviews are appropriate; its a fine summer movie.

     

    Star Trek Into Darkness Grade: B/B-

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    [Okay here comes the spoiler warning!]

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    [SPOILERS BELOW!]

    Now, for the 800lb gorilla in the room. Yes John Harrison is Kahn. And I’m actually totally okay with this. The problem is the absolutely unoriginal story telling here. Writers Orci, Kurtzman, Lindelof, and  Director Abrams had four years to create a Star Trek that was their own, and they ended up stealing someone else’s movie.  Not only did they rip off a better film, but their script is still filled with lazy cheats, and building the story around the set pieces rather than vice-versa. The whole purpose of the alternate universe was to create new adventures.

    It’s truly Kahn in name only. A new story would require originality and effort, and no one wants to put in the hard work.  Instead, they continue to rip off Wrath of Khan.  They plagiarize Spock’s famous death scene but instead decide to “kill” Kirk.  There’s no real weight to this death (given there’s no decades-long relationship/we’ve only seen them together in two movies and we all knew Kahn’s blood would save someone in the end), so we know Kirk will be fine.  Abrams and his writers pat themselves on the back for reversing the roles, even though that role reversal doesn’t tie into any earlier conflict.  The death scene has NOTHING on the original scene; all I saw was two new actors re-acting the original scene; I almost thought it was a joke, I couldn’t believe it. Seriously  I almost started laughing. And Spock looking down at Kirk’s body and yelling Kahn was just embarrassing and that did it for me (Seriously he doesn’t even yell Kahn well….) Oh yeah and then Uhura just beams down and shoots Kahn in the back?!? (And don’t get me started on using the original Spock (Leonard Nimoy) to TELL Spock (Quinto) that Kahn is dangerous …)

    In Star Trek II, Kahn may be the villian, but the movie embodies everything about Kirk. The Wrath of Khan brings him a deadly nemesis from his past, who then forces Kirk to learn a harsh lesson, and lose his closest friend.  The movie embodies the best of the original series (the tense, naval-style battles; outsmarting rather than outgunning the enemy; an admiration for the creative and destructive power of science), but you can enjoy it without having seen a single episode. But if you’ve seen The Original Series, Spock’s death has serious weight.  It’s the end of a decades-long friendship, and the line “I have been, and always shall be, your friend,” gets the tears flowing.

    I clearly love the original Star Trek II: Wrath of Kahn, so most people won’t feel the way I do. Again it’s a fine summer movie; but if you want the real deal, go watch Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn. There is a reason it’s considered a classic.

     
  • Justin 7:35 pm on May 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Khan, , , , Star Trek Into Darkness   

    A Groomsmen’s Prediction on Star Trek Into Darkness 

    With its big opening on Wednesday, and its continued rumor and hype on whom its villain is, and the positive reviews pouring in.., I thought I’d take a shot at who Star Trek Into Darknesses’ villian is, and what may ensue.
    We are big here at reviews and box office predictions but not sure if we’ve ever done a box office story prediction, so here goes, keeping in mind all I’ve seen are the previews…

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    Prediction 1: I think the villain, John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) is playing our infamous friend, Khan, the genetically enhanced superhuman who along time ago tried to take over the world. He was Kirk’s true nemesis back in the original Star Trek series and the best Star Trek movie: Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan….

    Preview Evidence: He is “better at everything” and Carol Marcus (Alice Eve) is Kirk’s “love interest,” just like in the original series/The Wrath of Kahn

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    Prediction 2: Okay this is where I’m jumping here.., but, I think Kirk dies. If it is Kahn, then there must be some grand escape sequence where one must die just like in the Wrath of Khan, where Spock dies. But, assuming its Khan, then Spock can’t die cause it can’t be done exactly like before , just similarly as this universe goes…so to make it impactful, it has to be Kirk. Now how Kirk lives for the next movie, I have no theory but I really don’t think that matters.

    Preview evidence: A scene showing a hand up against a glass wall and another hand on the other side ( I know, I know…), just like The Wrath of Kahn.

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    Prediction 3: This is easy, the Enterprise does not crash. This is simple misdirection in the  previews. The ship may look like its crashing into San Franciso Bay, but the ship hitting the water clearly resembles / has the outline of the other (bigger) ship in the preview…

    Preview evidence: The preview ship crashing into water sequence….

     

     

    We’ll find out soon enough!

    Star Trek Into Darkness hits theaters in IMAX and 3d this Wednesday.

     
  • Justin 4:53 pm on March 23, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Fast and Furious 6, GI Joe 2, , , Pain and Gain, Star Trek Into Darkness, The Great Gatsby, The Hangover Part III   

    2013's Big Movies: From March to May 

    They always say “this is the year of sequels,” but 2013 may top them all when you look at the number of blockbusters this year that are sequels or spinoffs.

    While the summer months like June or July don’t have your typical big blockblusters, there are plenty of big movies with big stars and big directors: a Roland Emmerich film, a new Superman movie, a new Iron Man movie, and the return (hopefully to form) of Hugh Jackman as Wolverine with op director James Mangold. We even have a movie from Michael Bay that is low budget and has nothing to do with big giant robots, Neil Blomkamp’s first movie since District 9, to JJ Abrams directing what will be one of the biggest movies of the year. Here’s Part 1 of the rundown of big movies in 2013, from March to May:

     

    GI Joe Retaliation (March 29th)

    Director: John Chu

    Cast: Channing Tatum, Bruce Willis, Dwayne Johnson, Ray Stevenson, Adrianne Palicki, Ray Park, Jonathan Pryce

    While originally a summer 2012 movie, a set of factors got this movie delayed to what will now be end of March. Not exactly something I’ll see in theatres, but it surely will do well.

     

    Oblivion (April 12th)

    Director: Joseph Kosinski

    Cast: Tom Cruise, Olga Kurylenk, Andrea Riseborough, Nikolaj Coster Waldau, Melissa Leo, Morgan Freeman

    Director Joseph Kosinki had his directorial debut in 2010 with Tron Legacy and returns this April with Oblivion. While Tron Legacy has its imperfections, I remain a big fan of it, especially of its visual style, which has not been lost based on this preview, which has me excited to see Kosinki’s new movie lead by Tom Cruise this April.

     

    Pain and Gain (April 26th)

    Director: Michael Bay

    Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Mark Wahlber, Tony Shalhoub, Anthony Mackie

    A Michael Bay film that doesn’t at first glance look like a Michael Bay film makes you scratch your head. Bay apparently has been wanting to do this low-brow project for some time. And it looks like he may just pull of alittle successful hit with it. Savor it now before he returns to the world of gigantic robots as he brings and directs Transformers 4 to the screen in 2015.

     

    Iron Man 3 (May 3rd)

    Director: Shane Black

    Cast: Robert Downey Jr, Don Cheadle, Ben Kingsley, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Hamilton, James Badge Dale, Paul Bettany

    Iron Man 2 in general fell alittle short of expectation after the success of Iron Man. With great support in the interim by 2012’s The Avengers, but most importantly IM3 having a strong cast, a decent director, and more time for the script and production, Iron Man 3 will hopefully what we want it to be and bring back the fun and adventure of the original. The new trailer is pretty sweet.

     

    The Great Gatsby (May 10th)

    Director: Baz Luhrmann

    Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio Tobey Maguire, Carey Mulligan, Isla Fisher

    Acclaimed director Baz Luhrmann (Romeo + Juliet; Moulin Rouge) has brought F Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby to the big screen. While I’m a not a big fan of his work, I certainly appreciate it and the high caliber visuals and cast he has going should make this a good one in May which is filled with some pretty big movies such as Iron Man 3 and Star Trek.

     

    Star Trek Into Darkness (May 17th)

    Director: JJ Abrams

    Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldana, Anton Yelchin, Simon Pegg, Benedict Cumberbatch, Bruce Greenwood

    JJ Abrams brought new life into one of the most famous media franchises created with a Star Trek reboot that was not only for hardcore fans but the everyday person, making an action adventure that was big on characters and not just ships in space. Star Trek Into Darkness is looking like the “The Dark Knight” or “Wrath of Kahn” for this new Star Trek trilogy. What is expected to be one of the biggest movies of the year is looking pretty good based on the previews.

     

    Fast and Furious 6 (May 24th)

    Director: Justin Lin

    Cast: Vin Diesel,Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Gina Carano, Luke Evans, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson

    I think I’ve only seen the first one. I think it is safe to say no one ever expected a sixth, but the Fast and Furious is very much alive, with the last few movies doing very well financially domestically and abroad. Director Justin Lin, who directed the fifth, this new sixth installment, has already confirmed along with Vin Diesel, that a seventh is already set for 2015.

     

    The Hangover Part III (May 24th)

    Director: Todd Phillips

    Cast: Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms, Mike Tyson, Ken Jeong, Mike Epps, Heather Graham, John Goodman, Jamie Chung

    Yeah, there’s one more. The sequel was terrible, but of course a huge hit at the box office given the first one. This third will undoubtedly turn a very nice profit. Yeah, that means there could even be a fourth. It’s up to you people, it’s up to you.

     
    Come June and July, the summer rolls on with After Earth, Man of Steel, Monster’s University, Kick-Ass 2, White House Down, Despicable Me 2, Pacific Rim, and The Wolverine.

     
  • Justin 5:50 pm on December 17, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Anton Yelchin, , , , , , , , Star Trek Into Darkness, ,   

    New Trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness 

    A new trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness has gone online. Unlike the previous teaser, this one is far more melancholy and epic as we hear Pike (Bruce Greenwood) tell Kirk, “There’s greatness in you, but not an ounce of humility. But there’s going to come a moment when you’re wrong about that. And you’re going to get yourself, and everyone under your command, killed.” From there, we see the epic action director J.J. Abrams is going to unleash. Details on the story are still scarce, but a teaser trailer never gives those away. They’re meant to entice, and this new trailer is even better than the first one.

    The film stars Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Benedict Cumberbatch, Karl Urban, Anton Yelchin, Zoe Saldana, John Cho, Simon Pegg, Alice Eve, Peter Weller, and Noel Clarke.  Star Trek Into Darkness opens in 3D on May 17, 2013.

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