and it's all the more amazing for it.
Unlike recent comic book action movies like Wolverine, Watchmen and The Dark Knight this story doesn't rely on darkness and social commentary to be compelling. It simply has witty humor and action to carry it through the whole show... and a couple deaths but somehow it never ever feels heavy handed. Don't get me wrong, you feel sympathy and even empathy for the characters but never in a way that makes your hypothalamus stop and wonder if it should be on at the moment.
Where Wolverine dragged (and epically failed at knowing when Canada was officially a nation according to Roger Ebert) and took itself a bit too seriously, Star Trek decreases dull moments to close to zero by inserting clever humor about a character's personality, something integral to the storyline or a batshit crazy spew of lasers and other special effects. This might possibly be the only movie I've ever seen that has absolutely no unnecessary or boring content. Some have compared it to Iron Man. I say Iron Man is a dull trek through quicksand compared to this.
Of course, if you're looking for broad sociopolitical commentary in your nerd movies, this is definitely not for you. Sure, people will spin the hopeful tone and the time warp part of the storyline with alternate threads of events into something cerebral, but it's really not, and it's all the better for it.
I consider myself a huge fan of noir type stories when they're done right, but damn if I forgot what good ol' escapism is like amongst the myriad of dark, cerebral movie making that Marvel and DC have pumped out lately (and I realize Star Trek is much more of a TV franchise than a comic book one, but it still comes from a corner of the nerdverse hence comparisons).This is possibly the finest example of escapism I've seen, and pretentious and smug needs for a movie to "say something" be damned, a movie this fun earns its place as one of my new favorite movies of all time. By the way future directors, JJ Abrams pulling a set-up movie for a trilogy this damn good officialy throws the "well it's the first one so it has to kind of drag to explain things" excuse promptly out the window.
I rarely like pretty boys, even if they're good at what they do, it takes a bit of oomph for me to admit people who look good are also talented (bastards get everything, I must resist giving them more) but the new Captain Kirk fits perfectly into the tail chasing yet above and beyond skilled and smart character's skin. Same goes for the emotionless (unless "yo mama" jokes come into play) Spock though his face seems a bit younger than the rest of the crew's which threw me off. Still, the acting job more than makes up for it, and Leaonard Nimoy is great as the old Spock.
Captain Uhulu is a bit egotistical but that's a writing, not an acting problem. To be honest, after watching the first 3 episodes of the original show on youtube, all I really wanted from this character was to be hot. Check.
Furthermore, the guy from Harold and Kumar as Captain Sulu is brilliant, and somehow managed to go from stoner Asian token to badass action Asian token with a sword without a single raise of an eyebrow from the audience.
Finally, we've got my favorite character Scotty, both the 17 year old version and the adult are hilarious and fun to watch. It helps that the older Scotty is the main character from Hot Fuzz; he knows his comedy timing.
The only dissapointment if any is the lack of Shatner which honestly isn't a dissapointment unless you're a hardcore classic Kirk fan. I would like to see Shatner just for kicks, though. Maybe next time.
It's not quite as busy and the environment isn't as massive as say a Star Wars film, but the SFX are still amazing and do a great job of making warp speed and matter transportation (and explosions) look damn cool.
All these elements combine to create a constant, coherent, and hugely entertaining stream of win.
Set phasers to... stun... the... audience ... WITH WIN