x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Film review: Star Trek into Darkness

A sequel that delivers just as much razzle-dazzle but falls a little short on wit and humanity.

Zachary Quinto and Zoe Saldana in Star Trek into Darkness. Courtesy Paramount
Zachary Quinto and Zoe Saldana in Star Trek into Darkness. Courtesy Paramount

Star Trek into Darkness

Director: JJ Abrams

Starring: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Benedict Cumberbatch, Simon Pegg

***

Four years after successfully rebooting the creaky old Star Trek franchise into a visually ravishing blockbuster, JJ Abrams returns with a mega-budget sequel that delivers razzle-dazzle but falls a bit short on wit and humanity. Into Darkness lacks the freshness and audacity of its 2009 predecessor - Leonard Nimoy's cameo as the future Spock feels superfluous, for example. That said, the CGI set pieces are stunning, especially a deep-space volcanic eruption and a cataclysmic spaceship crash that destroys half of San Francisco. The British actor Benedict Cumberbatch impresses as the suave villain - a cross between Hannibal Lecter and Osama bin Laden. The action-heavy plot is a bit clunky and muddled in places, but never boring.

* Stephen Dalton

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