By Matt Singer | Criticwire April 23, 2013 at 12:12PM
Yep, "Star Trek Into Darkness" reviews.
No, I know the movie doesn't open in U.S. theaters until May 17th. I know that's still almost a month away.
No, there's no time travel involved.
No, not the slingshot effect.
Yeah, I know it's also called the light-speed breakaway factor.
(Yeah, I know I'm a nerd. Thanks.)
No, I'm telling you: nothing that impressive. The movie just premiered in Australia, so reviews (and hilariously awkward photos featuring the cast standing around with "Star Trek" surfboards) are beginning to appear online.
The first is from IGN's Lucy O'Brien, who gives the movie a score of 8/10. She says that while "it may not be the most sophisticated of sci-fi spectacles you'll see this year, 'Into Darkness' will certainly be one of the most fun:"
"'Star Trek Into Darkness' is a hell of a lot of fun, maintaining such constant velocity that by the time you've half-formed a criticism in your head it's swept away by the next plot-twist or action sequence. It still has that urgency that made the first film so appealing, those big, optimistic messages of right vs wrong in a world at war."
At 3News, David Farrier strikes a similar note, praising just about everything in the movie except for "one of the most ridiculous titles in recent memory:"
"As dark as it is, it’s fun. You could liken J.J.’s 'Trek' films to the 'Iron Man' films, although again, this is darker territory here -- a perfect blend of action, humanity and humour. At one moment, I became annoyed by Bones’ puns -- one rolling in after another. The moment I had that thought, Kirk interrupts, telling Bones he’ll boot him off the ship if he continues."
Graffiti With Punctuation's Blake Howard provided a slightly less positive take in a 3.5/5 star review. "This isn’t the franchise defining 'middle' picture that this reviewer was hoping it to be," he wrote. "It’s not the 'Empire Strikes Back' of an Abrams trilogy; and consequently it didn’t quite hit the emotional crescendo of that kind of film:"
"'Star Trek Into Darkness' isn’t ready to stretch to the unknown pockets of the universe just yet; instead it relishes in the evolution of the key characters in the wake of their defining challenge. It’s a rousing adventure and Abrams has laid the platform for a healthy and long lasting franchise."
Sounds to me like "STID" is very much a sequel to the last "Star Trek;" a big, spectacular adventure, heavy on action and effects and light on old school "Trek" philosophizing. But we'll find out more when the movie premieres -- barring any further time continuum incursions -- next month.