Star Trek Into Darkness

Concept: 1 out of 5
Execution: 0 out of 5
Yeah, but: Plot holes big enough to fly starships through.
The Long Version:

"Star Trek Into Darkness" first hit theaters (or theatres) in May of 2013. It played well to its intended audiences around the world, racking up nearly a half billion dollars in ticket sales before its run was done. It scored a respectable 87 on Rotten Tomatoes. It was a generally entertaining enough movie, being released for a second round of studio money gorging with its release on Blue Ray later in September. It had the usual cast of characters, and it had Benedict Cumberbatch. What wasn't to like?

The plot, or more precisely, the plot holes. The most egregious occurred early on in the movie after Cumberbatch's character John Harrison, a.k.a. Khan, shot up Star Fleet's leadership while it was conveniently meeting high up in an insecure skyscraper. Harrison showed up in a small one-person aircraft and with his infinite ammunition gun proceeded to open fire on a completely un-defended conference room fronted by an equally convenient floor-to-ceiling window setting that stretched from one end of the conference room to the other, until Chris Pine as Jim Kirk managed to single-handedly cripple Harrison's ship and eventually cause it to crash.

But before it crashed, John Harrison managed to trigger a very magical transporter that was so small it fit into the same cockpit area as Harrison. So magical it managed to transport him to the Klingon home world of Qo'noS, a mythical world located some 112 light years away from Earth. Not only do you see Harrison transported away from an aircraft rapidly spinning out of control, but mere seconds later you see him transported to the surface of Qo'noS, none the worse for wear.

Let me make sure I have all this straight. Harrison is in possession of a small, portable transporter that can move him from a spinning machine on a rotating planet (Earth) orbiting a star (our Sun) with the whole ensemble traveling through intergalactic space in our galaxy, to another planet, rotating on its axis, orbiting a completely different star, and that whole ensemble moving in an independent but generally same direction, 112 light years from Earth.

With that kind of capability, why the hell do you need starships?

With that kind of a transporter, why not just use the same method to go and get him? Oh, wait. You only made one? And the one you found in the wreckage, the one that told Scotty where Harrison had fled to, wasn't working well enough to beam his pursuers to Qo'noS, or him back? How convenient!

In fact, why wasn't this particular type of transporter used to transport anti-matter weapons (or just raw bits of anti-matter) all over the surface of Qo'noS and just blow the planet to bits? What's amazing is that Harrison didn't invent this, Scotty did (with Spock Prime's help) in the first movie. I knew when Spock Prime beamed Scotty and Kirk back on board a star ship speeding at warp velocities in the first movie that JJ Abrams had managed, without really trying, to completely destroy any rational reason for his big starship in the whole series. With just a small scene in the second movie, JJ Abrams managed to make all his big shiny starships totally irrelevant. Every. Single. One.

The 2014 silly season for movies is about to start up again. I think, from this point out, I'm going to sit the whole thing out. At least anything from JJ Abrams and his kindred directors.

last updated 15 february 2014


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