J.J. Abrams and an all-star cast return to the galaxy to ward off evil and save the human race in the highly anticipated Star Trek Into Darkness, the sequel to Abrams' 2009 franchise reboot.
Chris Pine returns to the hot seat as Captain Kirk, the leader of the Enterprise who must search deep within his soul to decipher between right and wrong as he leads his crew on an ambitious manhunt to capture a one man force that could tear the world apart. But things aren't always what they seem and what Kirk uncovers during his mission is anything but what you'd expect.
A strong blend of witty dialogue, intense action, and stellar visuals help give Star Trek Into Darkness its surefire crowd-pleasing appeal; however, the strength of its story is what gives it its grit. Abrams cleverly manipulates his characters throughout the course of the story, offering up enough franchise history to keep the fan boys involved but welcoming new fans with a simplistic and adrenaline-filled premise that refuses to lose anyone within the woodworks.
The film does feature several call-back references, occasionally slipping into the cliché dramatics of a summer blockbuster, but unlike other films, Into Darkness is able to keep the moments short, continuously picking up until a climatic crash brings everything back to a place we all know well...Earth.
While Pine, Quinto, and Saldana do a brilliant job in their respective roles, the true art of the film lies within the chemistry amongst the entire cast. Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, John Cho, and Anton Yelchin all provide key supporting work, and newcomers Alice Eve and Benedict Cumberbatch step in with ease, adding to the dynamic cast of returning players. Abrams successfully uses all of his tools to their advantage, keying in on their strengths and offering up a truly complete and comprehensive story that, when mixed with the killer visual effects, is almost a bit too real to be classified as sci-fi.
Abrams, for a lack of better words, has truly outdone himself here.