Star Trek into Darkness, Blu-ray 3D+2D Blu-ray+DVD+Digital Copy+UltraViolet (2013)

by | Sep 12, 2013 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews

Star Trek into Darkness, Blu-ray 3D+2D Blu-ray+DVD+Digital Copy+UltraViolet (2013)

Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Benedict Cumberpatch
Director: J.J. Abrams
Studio: Paramount (9/10/13)
Video: 2.40:1 anamorphic/enhanced 1080p HD 3D
Audio: English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
Portuguese: Dolby Digital 5.1
Extras: (2D Blu-ray): Note: Extras are dependent on which edition of the disc is purchased. This listing is for the regular retail set. “Creating the Red Planet”, “Attack on Starfleet”, “The Klingon Homeworld”, “The Enemy of my Enemy”, “Ship to Ship”, “Brawl by the Bay”, “Continuing the Mission”, “The Mission Continues”
Length: 132 minutes
Movie Rating: ***½   3D Rating: ***½    Audio Rating: ****

This is the second entry in the J.J. Abrams reboot of the long running TV and movie franchise, and it’s epic, thrilling, and sometimes silly.

The money ($190 million dollars) is up there on the screen with extensive sets and CGI effects that are spectacular. The film has several large action sequences that are as good as anything we’ve seen in a Bond or Die Hard movie. The characters are beginning to settle into their roles, and they seem every bit as worthy as the original TV and film cast.

It’s probably not a good idea to try to understand everything in the plot. Why does Spock risk his life inside an active volcano when the device needed there could have been transported in? But so what. The action is non-stop, and the script is well written with equal amounts of drama and humor. I watched the disc with a non Star Trek fan and it went over really well.

I viewed the 3D Blu-ray version of the movie, as well as the 2D Blu-ray. Both looked great, with the 3D a bit darker as usual. The film was post-converted, but the conversion is a good one, and the added depth was non-intrusive. In a couple of scenes, 3D added to the intensity, such as the chase on Planet Nibiru at the opening and in the ship to ship transfer scene as two crew members avoid debris for an extended nail-biting sequence.

I listened to both the 7.1 Dolby True HD version, and the 5.1 mix. Both were demonstration quality, with very directional sound effects and environmental sounds when inside the Enterprise. There is plenty of deep bass, and the grand score by Michael Giacchano, which at times is mixed too loudly for my taste, but is an excellent score nonetheless.

Good action films are defined by the effectiveness of the villain, and Benedict Cumberbatch as Khan lights up the screen. He’s the best Star Trek adversary since Christopher Plummer and Ricardo Montalban.

This latest Star Trek film has had its share of controversy. Some Trekkers consider it just an action film with not enough of the humanity that was a Star Trek trademark. On the other hand, the TV show, and the the earliest of the films didn’t have the computer graphics capability we see in this latest film. I found plenty of human touches in the film, but each director of a Star Trek film makes it his own.

If you’re a sci-fi buff, you’ve probably already seen Star Trek into Darkness in the theaters. The Blu-ray does full justice to the film. I thought the 3D was better at home, and while audio can be wildly variable depending on where you see the movie, I thought it sounded just great at home.

—Mel Martin

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