Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

star-trek-into-darkness-trailer-finalRoze-Rating: 4.5 / 5

This second installment of Star Trek follows a now experienced James Tiberius Kirk as he captains his crew on the prestigious USS Enterprise. He has now taken to the chair but not Spock’s lack of emotion when it comes to certain situations. As a result of compromising a mission to save Spock’s life, Kirk is relieved of his captaincy and is demoted to first officer. This doesn’t last long as there is an attack on Starfleet’s archives in London by an enemy that no one is aware of but Fleet Admiral Alexander Marcus. Kirk is then sent with his crew to find the attacker with limited knowledge about who he really is.

Star Trek Into Darkness is definitely the most ambitious Star Trek film as it has almost everything you want in a Sci-Fi film. I’m not familiar with the past Treks and because of that I can’t offer any meaningful Comparison’s. But from what I hear the old films never touched upon some of the things the modern adaptations have. For instance they never had a clear depiction of Earth during the 2200’s and Kronos. Thank god for the development of modern technology for we wouldn’t be exposed to such awesome sites as these. Thus heaps of satisfied fanboys.

What I love about this film is that it’s more than just a space adventure, it’s nothing like Star Wars as people might think. From what I’ve read Star Trek has always been about developing stories that encompasses drama and character, not so much about the thrills of space shootouts. Star Trek Into Darkness definitely has the action and large scale thrills that previous installments lacked but it also has a strong plot and story line. It’s more of a space crime thriller than a full on action which I found quite refreshing. The action actually had substance, it wasn’t just silly and gratuitous, there was a believable reasoning to each action sequence.

What really differentiates Star Trek from any other space film is its filming style and overall look. We get too indulge our eyes to a colorfully crisp film consisting of a shit load of lens flares, which I actually liked a lot. It gives the franchise a new identity but also gives the impression that the future is bright. The film’s opening is probably the best example of a beautifully filmed shot of vivid colors aided massively by a great set.

I like how this film tried it’s best to film as much as they could authentically, making it a lot harder to pick out what’s real from the CGI. Huge props to them because it improves the film massively. The design as a whole is awesome, I don’t usually notice costumes that much but they’re freaking NAICE in this film, I want nothing more than to have a Starfleet jacket now.

Performances and cast are as solid as the last film. Slowly giving their own twists to their previously acted characters. I like the chemistry that they have which makes you as a viewer really buy into the crew’s relationship dynamics. What needs to be mentioned is the villain played by Bennedict Cumberbatch who is just phenomenal. I think quite a few people would agree when I say he’s gotta be the best villain of 2013. His character is more than just a ruthless super human, he actually show’s genuine emotion which almost makes his actions justifiable emphasized when he asks Kirk “is there anything you would not do for your family”; then the mind games ensue. On the first viewing these mind games are great fun making the film a whole lot more tense; who’s telling the truth and who’s your enemy? Overall, great popcorn flick with more substance than your used to in your average blockbuster film.

Dredd (2012)


90851_galRoze-Rating: 4.5 / 5

Judge’s have the combined power of being judge, jury and executioner all at the same time. Dredd has a prestigious reputation making him known as the most feared judge around. They have been enforced to keep order in a deteriorating society where the criminals rule the chaotic streets. Justice calls for Judge Dredd to take down drug leader Ma-Ma (Lena Headey) who is the main distributor of a new street drug “slow-mo” which makes your brain perceive reality a fraction slower. He has been given rookie Cassandra Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) a mutant psychic, for him to assess, unlucky for her, her first day isn’t a breeze in the park.

This film is exactly what we’ve been missing this year. I think we’ve been deprived of good no nonsense action films with cool gadgets and a simple bad ass character with good one liners. It’s unrealistic, gritty and bad ass all at the same time, exactly what you want from a comic book character brought to the screen. I have no relationship with the comics and little knowledge of the character, but from what I’ve read about it, Dredd perfectly captures that deteriorating society atmosphere with murky surroundings and a tolerance to violence. 

I really liked the cinematography, it’s stylish and has a genuine comic book look to it. The transitioning of the scenes reminded me of how comic strips are laid out and drawn, as well as the vivid colours that came out of the slow-mo moments. It made the action a lot more enjoyable to watch and set itself apart from the generic action films with static camera work.

Despite the lack of expression of Judge Dredd, I think Karl Urban did an outstanding job, he captured that non nonsense precision of the character perfectly. He plays Dredd extremely tough but also portrays his human side effectively during his moments with Anderson (Olivia Thirlby). Would like to see him in more actions flicks as good as this. Olivia Thirlby surprised me so much in this film, when I saw her cast as Judge Dredd’s temporary partner I honestly thought her character would be a mess. I’m extremely happy to say that she put in one of the most surprising performances of this year for me, I was totally hooked to her character. At first I expected her to exude femininity because of Thirlby’s past roles, but she doesn’t show a hint of it. She’s mysterious, calculated and incredibly gritty. Her abilities make her interesting and the way they are used is very entertaining. Definitely one of my favourite characters this year.

A great action film bringing Judge Dredd from the comic strips to the big screen with stylish cinematography, excess computerized blood and engaging characters, definitely one of the best action films of the year. I really hope they make a sequel, can’t get enough of these characters, truly badass.