Science fiction movies always are hard for me to discuss, because they go by rules that are obscure to me, such as those allowing amputations—and even death—to be temporary conditions. But let’s see what can be done with Star Trek Into Darkness.
The special effects are as impressive as one has come to expect, with the inner workings of Starship Enterprise looking even bigger than the ship does from the outside, with Chris Pine's Captain Kirk crawling among the parts like Charlie Chaplin in Modern Times. The orange explosions are big and frequent, as are the action sequences—including a really exciting fistfight over various levels of open space, a la James Bond.
I can’t doubt that I missed a hundred other references to other movies, but you can’t miss The Wrath of Khan or “The Trouble With Tribbles.” These always escape me, but you’ll spot them.
And there are the many issues of the day, like assassination by drones, the handling of whistleblowers, the necessity of trials of the accused, and relying on gut feelings instead of reasoning—though the urgency to get on to the next action scene prevents any real consideration of the issues. Even Kirk’s continual violations of regulations are presented in situations so obviously on his side that you will not be moved so far as to think about them.
It is refreshing to see a support character like Scotty get so much to do, and the acting is perhaps better than the script requires.
In general, Star Trek Into Darkness should satisfy its intended audience, and probably a good many more.