Star Trek Into Darkness has been in theaters since Wednesday night. Amazingly, I have not seen it yet, though I plan on addressing that Saturday afternoon.
While I would not have called myself a Star Trek fan — Trekker, Trekkie or whatever — one who devotedly watched all the TV shows and movies, I absolutely loved J.J. Abrams' 2009 reboot.
The film did a perfect job of reinventing itself for a new audience while taking pains to reach out to the longtime fans who could make or break the project with their approval. It did what reboots and prequels should do: Tell the story that hasn't been told. For all we know about Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock and the rest of the U.S.S. Enterprise, we'd never seen how the band got together.
To me, this is best typified by the scene embedded below. The Enterprise is an iconic figure in Star Trek mythos and pop culture. Tribute had to be paid to that ship in this new version.
Abrams does it so well here. There's the slow build-up with Dr. McCoy seeing the ship through the window and telling Kirk he had to take a look. We see their reaction. And then there's the reveal with Michael Giacchino's fucking awesome score kicking in. It's probably my favorite scene in the movie, one that I've watched and rewatched dozens of times.
When I traveled to Malaysia last year, I had two movies on my iPad: Star Trek and Iron Man 2. (I also watched a bunch of movies on in-flight programming, but that's another blog post and entry into The Malaysia Diaries.)
While watching Star Trek, I played the Enterprise intro scene over and over again. If the person sitting behind me was trying to watch over my shoulder or between seats, he or she must have wondered what the hell I was doing and when I'd begin watching the rest of the movie. Sorry about that. You're just lucky I kept my pants on as the scene was playing.
But the visuals and music just blow me away every time. It's perfect, it's awesome and I'm getting the geek jitters just writing about it. Will Star Trek Into Darkness have a moment like this?
What I also enjoyed is that Abrams injected some action into his version of Star Trek. In my view, most of the action in the movies was always passive, with characters talking at each other through viewscreens and massive starships lurching at each other in space. Abrams gave his Star Trek an energy that I'd always felt the series lacked. (Many fans might disagree.)
So I'm definitely excited to see the sequel and watch Abrams continue his revitalization. I'm heading off to the theater right after clicking "Publish."