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Star Trek Into Darkness (****)
directed by J.J. Abrams
written by Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, and Damon Lindelof,
based on the creations of Gene Roddenberry,
and also making heavy un-credited use of ideas by Gene L. Coon and Harve Bennett, to mention just two
Principal Cast
Chris Pine -- Kirk
Zachary Quinto -- Spock
Zoe Saldana -- Uhura
Karl Urban -- Bones
Simon Pegg -- Scotty
John Cho -- Sulu
Benedict Cumberbatch -- Khan
Anton Yelchin -- Chekov
Bruce Greenwood -- Pike
Peter Weller -- Marcus
Alice Eve -- Carol
Ratings are based on Rick's four star system.
One star - the commercials are more entertaining than the viewing.
Two stars - watch if you have nothing better to do.
Three stars - good solid entertainment.
Four stars - you never dreamed viewing could be this good.
Past Feature Reviews
A review by Rick Norwood

Star Trek Into Darkness Star Trek Into Darkness, like Iron Man 3, is another extremely good film that falls short of greatness. Every time I go to a major motion picture, I hope for a Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jurassic Park, or Star Trek First Contact. The most recent film to be that completely satisfying was The Avengers. There are only a few such films in a decade, and I'm glad for fine entertainments in between.

The biggest problem with Star Trek Into Darkness is that it is too frantic. The characters come within a few seconds of total destruction at least five times, which is about four times too many for any real sense of suspense.

Then, there are the copious references to earlier Star Trek films. It is hard for me to guess what someone not steeped in Star Trek lore will make of this movie. When does homage become mere imitation?

Despite the title, it is not a particularly dark film, no darker than Star Trek TNG episodes such as "Conspiracy" or "The Best of Both Worlds." It is an entertaining special-effects extravaganza with a lot of Star Trek references thrown in to please the hard-core fans.

One advantage Star Trek television episodes have over movies is that they can be quiet and thoughtful, with interesting ideas and characters. "Measure of a Man" comes to mind. A Star Trek movie with no explosions is unthinkable.

Copyright © 2013 Rick Norwood

Rick Norwood is a mathematician and writer whose small press publishing house, Manuscript Press, has published books by Hal Clement, R.A. Lafferty, and Hal Foster. He is also the editor of Comics Revue Monthly, which publishes such classic comic strips as Flash Gordon, Sky Masters, Modesty Blaise, Tarzan, Odd Bodkins, Casey Ruggles, The Phantom, Gasoline Alley, Krazy Kat, Alley Oop, Little Orphan Annie, Barnaby, Buz Sawyer, and Steve Canyon. Visit his web site at

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