REVIEW: “Star Trek Into Darkness” Retail Blu-ray

STID_BR_DVD_RetailStar Trek Into Darkness
Release Date: September 10, 2013
Blu-ray Disc / DVD Combo • 2 Discs
Paramount Pictures

Picture Quality
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Bonus Features
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It's likely that I'm a bigger fan of 2009's Star Trek reboot than a large segment of our readers, certainly more than our editor. I thought the cast was perfectly chosen; the film made big changes to the world of Trek while taking the time to protect the "prime" universe we'd been living with for decades; it drew heaps of both critical and 'civilian' praise, finally bringing Star Trek back into the mainstream after years of waning interest from the general public - while at the same time, turning off a more-than-small number of dedicated, lifelong Trek fans.

When fans began to think about the inevitable sequel, everyone's first instinct was to wonder how director JJ Abrams and writers Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof and Roberto Orci would handle it. Would they take a well-known story from Trek history and reinvent it for this modern audience? Would they begin an all-new adventure, following this group of untested Starfleet officers on a mission we'd never seen?

It's fair to say that Star Trek Into Darkness has been a hotly-argued film since the moment the title was announced. As time marched on towards the London premiere in May 2013, speculation that the film's villain would be a recast Khan Singh - a role made famous by Ricardo Montalban in the Original Series and later Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan - stoked the fire under an already antagonistic segment of the Trek fanbase, who remained doubtful that the team that "ruined" Star Trek in the 2009 film could ever honor such a famous and well-loved character.

Benedict Cumberbatch's character "John Harrison" became the centerpiece of the debate as soon as the name became public: Was he a new character? Is he Khan in disguise? Maybe he's the new Gary Mitchell, with Alice Eve as Elizabeth Dehner!

Eventually, Paramount's unusual international release schedule for the film - premiering in the UK two weeks ahead of the United States - brought all the discussion to a head: Cumberbatch really was playing Khan, and oh boy, you are going to hate this movie!

Once again, the lines were drawn: people either loved the film for it's action and adventure, incredible visual effects and ship-to-ship battles, and Cumberbatch's cold, calculating juggernaut of a villain, fighting to protect his family... or people hated it for taking the beloved storyline of Star Trek II, running it through a garbage disposal, setting it on fire, and dumping the ashes into a film can. (Note: an actual review posted on a popular discussion forum).

I'm not going to spend this review focusing on the problems I had with the plot of Into Darkness - though I will address certain issues as they come up in the bonus material - but I'm sure our readers will enjoy a lively debate on the film's merits (or lack thereof) in the comments below.

Shall we begin?

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It's difficult to find any word besides perfection to describe the visual quality of Into Darkness.

Every single shot - from closeups of the mud-coated Nibiran natives in the lush forests, to the bright halls of Starfleet Headquarters under attack from outside the building, to the high-speed chase above the surface of the Klingon homeworld - provides a dazzling display of color that really propels this film to the top of the "best-looking" Trek release list.

The white corridors of the Enterprise, the bleak planetoid used for torpedo surgery, the flashy nightclubs in downtown San Fransisco... each new location looks better than the last.

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Every vibrant color, from Nibiri's lush red forests to Kirk's blue eyes, just pops on screen.

There is a lot of darkness in this film as well - pardon the pun - from the depths of the Enterprise engineering section to the bowels of the Vengeance cargo bays. Despite the dim lighting used to accentuate these scenes, there was never a sense of loss of clarity when I rewatched the film on Blu-ray.

The National Ignition Facility reactor at Livermore Labs, used in Into Darkness to represent the Enterprise's warp core, is a piece of technology that looks just as futuristic as the ship it's meant to power. Every tube, wire, coil, and switch is viewable in amazing detail in this release, even when the ship is careening towards the surface of the Earth.

nif_reactor spacesuits
Every inch is full of rich detail, even in darker areas like the engine room or airlock.

The only detraction I have to offer is regarding the lack of IMAX footage in this release. Several scenes from Into Darkness were filmed with IMAX cameras for a dazzling display in theaters, and all of that footage has been cropped to match the standard 2.40:1 aspect ratio of the rest of the film.

This may have been done to reduce viewer confusion, as those unaware may have wondered why the aspect ratio of the film kept changing from scene to scene - but for a movie that looks as good as this one, that extra picture is a significant loss.

It's been reported that the German edition of the 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combo pack includes the IMAX footage in full aspect ratio, but it's unclear as to why it wasn't included in any of the domestic releases.

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The standard Star Trek Into Darkness Blu-ray release includes just a handful of behind-the-scenes featurettes - completely produced in-house by Bad Robot, the film's production company, and not by Paramount - running just over 40 minutes. Yep, that's it - no deleted scenes, no audio commentary, not even a set of trailers for the film.

Why, you ask? I'll give you two words every consumer loves to hear: retailer exclusives.

It's certainly nothing new to Trek fans; ever since the first DVD boxed sets started coming out over a decade ago, words like "Best Buy bonus disc" became synonymous with Star Trek media releases. Even the newly-produced Enterprise and Next Generation Blu-ray sets were hampered by exclusive content (specifically paid for by Best Buy for release at their stores), though that program has thankfully ended for the foreseeable future.

Sadly this isn't a case of a single feature being produced for a specific retailer: for Star Trek Into Darkness, an entire hour's worth of additional making-of footage is relegated to Best Buy's CinemaNow streaming service and Target in-store bonus discs releases (with each retailer offering DIFFERENT content).

On top of that - and brace yourself for this one - the sole audio commentary track is locked into the iTunes digital release package.

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Let's break it down: buying multiple copies of Star Trek Into Darkness in an effort to obtain all the bonus features can get pretty pricey, especially if you paid even more for the 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combo set... and God help you if you've already dropped $79.99 on that Amazon-exclusive Blu-ray/Phaser combo set, which includes NONE of the Best Buy or Target features.

As for our international readers, we're still trying to piece together all the different international options for getting hold of the additional material. Canada's Best Buy release will include a physical bonus disc in place of the CinemaNow streaming content; the German 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combo set and the the Sainsbury's (UK) Blu-ray/DVD combo appear to have the same features as the Target release; Tesco's Blinkbox streaming service is apparently advertising twenty minutes of unspecified extras in the UK - but aside from that, we have no information as to where the rest of this extra content will be available outside of the United States.

Best Buy/CinemaNow release:

  • Down With the Ship (6:09)
  • NIF: Home of the Core (4:32)
  • Safety First (2:26)
  • Unlocking the Cut (5:10)
  • The Sound of Music and FX (5:27)
  • Aliens Encountered (6:50)

Target release:

  • The Voyage Begins... Again (2:29)
  • Mr. Spock and Mr. Spock (4:15)
  • Rebuilding the Enterprise (5:30)
  • Vengeance is Coming (4:27)
  • Kirk and Spock (5:34)
  • Visual Affection (9:02)
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Wondering about deleted scenes and other footage? Time for a cold shower.

There are at least two deleted scenes known to exist for Into Darkness: JJ Abrams showed a clip of Khan showering during his May 2nd appearance on TBS's Conan, and Alice Eve described a cut sequence involving Carol Marcus' backstory in a mid-May interview with TrekMovie.com. So where are they?

AUSTRALIA.

Well, maybe. The only retailer we've found listing any kind of deleted scenes is Australia's Big W, which also includes "Bloopers", a mysterious "Roundtable" piece, and "Easter Eggs" on their Into Darkness product listing, along with generic listings for the standard VAM (and some of the Target exclusives). We have not yet been able to confirm this content, so please take this information with a large grain of salt until we can lock down the facts.

SEPTEMBER 2 UPDATE: We've gotten a copy of the Australian release details, and it seems that no retailer is set to include deleted scenes in their Blu-ray package. Read more here: http://trekcore.com/blog/2013/09/into-darkness-exclusives-part-i-video-vam/

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Don't be so quick to throw out that Digital Download certificate. I mean it.

There's only one bright spot out of this mess, and that's the Digital Download code included with the retail Blu-ray set. While you can use it with several online movie services, it's also compatible with iTunes, which means that it WILL give you access to the iTunes exclusive "enhanced commentary"... if your Internet connection can handle an additional 5Gb download.

I've already read comments around the web from people saying that they'll just play the commentary from their laptop while watching the Blu-ray on their big-screen television, but I've got news for you: the iTunes commentary is more than just an audio track - it's an entirely separate encoding of the film, with on-screen picture-in-picture annotations and behind-the-scenes footage. There's no additional scenes in this version of the film, but because the commentators often pause and rewind footage to highlight specific elements of production, the thing runs nearly thirty minutes longer than the standard film.

It's also the full 1.78:1 IMAX version of the film - something I already covered up above, missing from the Blu-ray disc - presented with shifting aspect ratio to provide the true IMAX-sized picture where applicable.

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About 30% of each IMAX sequence is cut due to the cropped aspect ratio on the Blu-ray.
Note: the IMAX capture is in 720p due to the iTunes enhanced commentary source file.

I can hear your response now: "Oh, I'll just wait for the inevitable 'ultimate edition' of Star Trek Into Darkness, with all of this stuff in one package." Well, I wouldn't hold my breath - Paramount hasn't shown any interest in repackaging bonus material sold to different retailers into a combined release in the past, and with so many separate parties involved this time around, it's unlikely that it's going to happen anytime in the foreseeable future.

TrekCore was able to obtain ALL of the additional retailer-exclusive material produced for our review - that's TWELVE MORE featurettes, along with the iTunes commentary - and we'll cover all of that stuff in a second article, coming in the next few days.

For now though, here's what's included in the standard retail release:

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Creating the Red Planet (8:28)

This is the first of several features showing off just how much effort the Into Darkness production team put into using physical sets and props to create the Star Trek universe for the big screen - starting with Nibiru, the jungle planet seen in the movie's opening sequence.

The team reveals the original plan to film the sequence - using Hawaiian jungle, color-corrected to an alien red - fell through when it was deemed to be too expensive, so the design department spent six months building an expansive, outdoor jungle set to film Kirk and McCoy's escape from the Nibiran tribe.

The first half of this feature also focuses on the creation of the Nibiran natives, from early sketches to the final makeup design.

More impressive is the second part of this segment, centered around Zachary Quinto's experience filming the fiery visit into the Nibiran volcano - all filmed in one long night shoot on a large rocky set surrounded by dozens of pyrotechnic elements and a camera-equipped helicopter!

The whole piece is just a visual extravaganza, which I can't imagine looking even half as good on DVD.

. . .

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Attack on Starfleet (5:25)

Khan's attack on the Daystrom Conference Room at Starfleet Headquarters is the focus of this segment, centered around the choreographed stunts, wire work, and live explosives spread throughout the set.

One unexpected discovery includes a look at the large, spotlight-adorned rig built to stand in for Khan's attack ship on set. Using the practical set piece as the source of the dynamic lighting on stage served to add a much-needed bit of realism to the sequence.

. . .

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The Klingon Homeworld (7:30)

This piece puts the redesigned Klingons front and center, along with the production team's efforts to walk the fine line between respecting the lore and wanting to put their own spin on everyone's favorite warrior race.

The Kronos set - intended to represent a bombed-out, abandoned city on the Klingon homeworld - took up nearly every inch of a massive 40,000-foot stage, with nearly 1,500 lighting elements throughout the set drawing over a million watts of power.

Costuming and makeup creation is also covered; much of the new makeup design was built first in CG for easy manipulation, and then printed in 3D for use by the makeup crew to tailor to each actor set to wear the prosthesis.

Zoe Saldana's (Uhura) Klingon language skills are also touched upon, with long-serving Trek linguist Marc Okrand making an appearance in one of the feature's brief interview segments.

. . .

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The Enemy of My Enemy (7:03)

Okay, here's where the big question of "Why Khan?" is addressed - and the answer, from what I can tell, is "because we wanted to." Abrams and the writing staff start out by saying, "Look, there's fifty years of Trek lore to draw from, so where should we start? Khan, because no character is as important as he is!"

Abrams also shakes off potential criticisms of Benedict Cumberbatch's casting - rather than a race-specific actor to match Khan's ethnic background - by saying, "The truth is, I think if something's good, that sort of supersedes everything. [His casting] felt like the right way to go because he was so damned good."

While this segment does touch on one of the more interesting parts of Khan's usage in the film - as a weapon wielded by Admiral Marcus, the "real big bad" - I can't help but feel extremely disappointed in this entry.  I was hoping for any sign of hesitation or reluctance to using one of the most iconic figures from Trek history, but aside from a brief comment at the beginning of the piece, there was no indication that anything like that was ever considered.

. . .

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Ship to Ship (6:03)

The Enterprise-to-Vengeance space-jump was one of the more memorable sequences from the film, and this featurette focuses on the two halves of that scene: the CGI work needed to project Chris Pine and Benedict Cumberbatch into space, and the creation of the oversized cargo bay aboard the Vengeance, where Simon Pegg (Scotty) was preparing for their arrival.

Featured are both early CG pre-visualization sequences and lots of greenscreen wirework footage; one interesting thing of note is that the glass visors worn on the jump helmets seem to be a mix of both practical costuming and CG elements, depending on the shot.

The second part is another example of Abrams' impressive use of real, in-camera tricks to create impressive backdrops: the Vengeance cargo bay turns out to be a just massive wood-walled warehouse. Abrams' idea to use the warehouse pretty much "as is" - enhanced only by a new black floor and deep shadows caused by strategically placed stage lighting - drew a lot of concern and criticism from the production design team, but they were all eventually won over after the first footage starting coming in from the shoot.

. . .

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Brawl By the Bay (5:44)

The climactic ending chase sequence - where Spock trails Khan through the streets of San Francisco - was a massive endeavor, utilizing hundreds of extras, stunt actors, policemen, and production staffers, culminating in the knock-down, drag-out fight scene on a pair of floating garbage scows above the city.

Once again, I have to say that I'm extremely impressed with the set work that went into the fight scene: the entire garbage scow was built on a rotating turntable to adjust to the position of the hot Californian sun as it moves across the sky each day.

Zachary Quinto (Spock) and Benedict Cumberbatch spent four days on top of that set, working very hard to look like they were really beating the crap out of each other - but time is taken to recognize the two stunt actors who performed the really tricky and dangerous wire-assisted jumps and throws.

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There's no denying that the high definition presentation of this film looks absolutely beautiful - but this is the most confusing, exploitative release ever to bear the Star Trek name. While we can hope that Paramount one day puts out an "ultimate" edition of Star Trek Into Darkness with all of these additional features in one package, there doesn't seem to be much precedent for such a set, looking at their recent release strategies.

Fans will most likely be forced to troll eBay or other resellers to track down copies of the Target and Best Buy bonus discs, but for those who want to watch the Enhanced Commentary outside of the iTunes restrictions... well, let's just say they will need to turn to other means.

Are you as angry as I am yet? You have every right to be, but make sure your displeasure isn't aimed solely at Paramount for this one.

From a source I spoke to familiar with the situation (who requested that we not publish their name):

"Bad Robot had 100% control [over the VAM production], it was all produced in-house, which is new - and they delivered the content to Paramount, who had basically no say.

It's possible - and this is speculation - that the Bad Robot content was delivered late; because account-specific features typically have a later deadline than the Blu-ray, it could have been thrown to different SKUs. That's a 'nice' way of looking at it.

The other possibility is that those retail outlets paid for the extra content. Could Bad Robot have sought out those exclusive deals? Possibly... for sure, this is not JUST Paramount's doing. Nothing happened with that Blu-ray that wasn't discussed and approved by Bad Robot, even if Paramount drove the decisions.

My point is, I think it's fair to say that Bad Robot was involved in the split VAM decision, and it's naive to think otherwise - because at Paramount, it's JJ's world. If anyone is disappointed in the Blu-ray, criticize the responsible parties - not only the 'faceless' studio."

Bottom line: The old joke about Trek releases becoming "double dip" purchases is once again being told with Star Trek Into Darkness - but this time, it's no laughing matter.

Order Star Trek Into Darkness on Blu-ray today!



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  • Joe Siegler

    I wonder. If you buy the blu-ray, and use the digital code to get the movie via the iTunes store, it will then show up as a purchased movie if one owns an Apple TV. I wonder if the commentary track will be viewable that way?

    • ShaunKL

      From what I understand the commentary does not work with Apple TV.

      • archer9234

        To quote the Sali delegates from TNG, “Sickening…It’s barbaric”.

  • James G.

    This release is embarrassing. If this is the future of physical media, then we’re screwed.

  • archer9234

    Holy ****. I’m glad I didn’t buy the movie then. This has got to be the WORST abuse of bonus material ever in a release. Who in gods name makes the video commentary exclusive to the iTunes file. I’m not using a crap encode thank you very much. I’ll do my own disc ripping Paramount. I’m not going near this movie period after this mess. No one cares who made the VAM exslusive to what store. The bottom line it was done. Paramount will get the blame.

  • Connor

    Trekcore: Please release the article about all the retailer exclusive bonus features before release date so that I may have a chance to make a decision on which version to buy.

    • http://www.randomtuesday.com/ Aatrek

      Don’t worry, we’ll have it up as soon as we can… but understand that there’s another three-and-a-half-hours of VAM to get through – it’ll take some time!

  • Joe Siegler

    Actually, I’ve been buying DVD’s since 1997 or so, and in all that time, I’ve cooled on extras. I still like the good one here and there, but ultimately there’s only so many ways you can see the same stuff. The only exception is the Doctor Who line of DVD’s, which has an outstanding collection of extras.

    But otherwise, I care more about the movie itself. Still, having said that, I’d be a fool not to keep my eye out for what’s going on.

  • Chris915

    Well, I’m buying the 3-combo pack from Amazon… BD, DVD and Digital.

  • Chris915
    • archer9234

      That’s odd. I wonder if it was caused by some weird issue with the 3D projector lens’.

      • Chris915

        Or it’s an added effect that was added too strong… in After Effects, you can separate a layer out into separate RGB channels and slightly offset their position to give the effect, but if the layers are too far apart, you end up with something like this image…

        • archer9234

          But what would be the point? This doesn’t really help with realism. Especially in such a face pace moment.

          • Chris915

            Chromatic aberration attempts to mimic the effect of real-world camera lens effects… it’s considered something that adds to the realism of a shot…

            http://www.photoanswers.co.uk/upload/5711/images/cb.jpg

            The problem isn’t so much that it’s there, it’s that it’s so noticeable…

          • archer9234

            I certainly would never add it into a scene that moves that hectic. That’s what probably what caused it to be really visible.

          • Chris915

            Well, even with a slow paced scene, if the individual RGB layers are spread too far apart, it’ll cause the same effect, I could recreate this same scene and cause the aberration to look like this… or not.

          • archer9234

            This is why I don’t buy it. They work on each shot for months. It was either done intentionally, which seems odd, or it was a 3D lens issue.

          • Chris915

            Yes, but again, it could be a post effect added after they render out the ship, in which case it could still be intentional or accidental… but I’m banking intentional… but it’s not very noticeable when you see the scene as it’s so fast… it’s added for realism, the same reason they add film grain to it as well as do an ambient occlusion pass… to add realism, of how it would look in the real world.

          • archer9234

            Then why’d you complain? If in motion it was okay. I was getting the impression it made the shot look horrible or something.

          • Chris915

            In the picture it looks horrible, but in motion it’s fine, I was just pointing out, that in reality, it’s way too much aberration regardless…

            Here’s the shot in motion:
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ano8Pqf8Tw

          • Chris915

            Well, it’s still too much aberration regardless… but in motion it’s not noticeable, overall the movie looks great. Especially compared to in the theater… the movie looks so much better on my computer screen than it did on the theater screen.

          • Chris915

            I threw this together really quick…

            Here is the shot with extreme chromatic aberration, similar to the shot from the movie:
            http://chriscorner.binhoster.com/STIDDigital/CA1.png

            Here is the same shot, with a more subtle chromatic aberration effect:
            http://chriscorner.binhoster.com/STIDDigital/CA2.png

          • kadajawi

            I have seen movies with this (almost) this level of CA… it always depends on the lens used. Your sample is from the center of the photo… that’s where there is hardly any CA if at all. But look at the lower part of the photo… even without magnification it is clearly noticeable.

          • Chris915

            Yea, I know what causes it, but sometimes, some shots have way too much… especially for a CG shot, where that effect is controllable, since it’s a CG shot… since chromatic aberration is a type of distortion in which there is a failure of a lens to focus all colors to the same convergence point…

            It occurs because lenses have a different refractive index for different wavelengths of light (the dispersion of the lens).

            In the earliest uses of lenses, chromatic aberration was reduced by increasing the focal length of the lens where possible.

            Since chromatic aberration is an undesirable effect, but it’s still adds realism to a CG shot, since even if you minimize it with real-world lenses, you still get it, just to a lesser degree.

            I just think it’s too strong in this shot…

  • lolshto

    Not only one of the worst stupidest Star Trek movies ever, but also a terrible blu-ray release. Good job Paramount.

  • Gilbetron

    Sigh. This is such an infuriating situation. I’m not the biggest fan of Abrams Trek as it is, and now everything about this release shouts one overarching message: “The fans are not our priority.” It shows through in a lot of ways, not just the split-VAMing, but certainly that’s the biggest and most recent symptom of the larger cancer behind the scenes.

    • Olivia

      I love Abrams trek. But I do agree, they are basically saying “we don’t care about the fans.” Which is a huge mistake. The fans are the reason of this movie. And if they aren’t willing to pay $80 then they won’t! Or they will but they will give paramount shit about it and a VERY bad press.

  • Platitude

    Loved the movie, this is a disappointing move on Paramount’s part. Glad the video quality is high, I was really impressed with the video quality of ST09′s blu-ray. But still, this special features thing SUCKS. Paramount’s treatment of home video releases for Star Trek has been done with much less love than CBS has done with the TV sets.

    • Joseph M

      Blame Bad Robot/Abrams.

  • Kaine Morrison

    It seems like the best way to go is get the Target and Best Buy Canada releases…

    • Kaine Morrison

      But if the Deleted scenes are true, and the Australia Import to that as well…

  • bbock

    And those of us who have decided to get off the physical medium bandwagon are even more screwed all the time. Like the TNG Blu-Ray edition. There is no digital version and they haven’t announced if one will happen any time soon. Not to mention that it’s rare that a digital purchase contains any extras. iTunes with extra material is far between and few.

  • Rob

    Maybe this is supposed be a huge F you to the fans, after they voted STID the worst movie of the franchise at Star Trek Las Vegas.

  • Jeff

    Thanks so much for the great presentation of this review, and for the details about what is on which disc. You did a great job!

  • Colin

    In the video game industry, pre-order exclusive bonuses are arranged between the publishers and developers and the retailers. For the retailers, they need their product to be appealing to the consumer, as competing prices have lost their appeal for the consumer. I am thinking that Bad Robot may have done the same for this release.

    http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-12-22-the-truth-behind-retailer-exclusive-pre-order-extras-article

    This comment may be seen by some as a stretch. I think by having the commentary on ITunes is an “elitist” d**k move as not everyone has access to ITunes. So, for someone to get the commentary and doesn’t have an Apple product, they will have to buy such a product. I wonder – is Apple happy with this arrangement?

    • archer9234

      With games all the DLC is available later on, at some point. You can’t do that with a movie, if a person wants it on a disc.

      • Colin

        However, even in video games, there are limits. Some exclusive content is never made available to buyers, even in DLC. I am thinking about the promotional material for Mass Effect 2, where a person had to buy Dr. Pepper products to get the codes for exclusive content and that this content was never made available for those who didn’t buy Dr. Pepper products.

        • archer9234

          What was the content? I thought everything was available for ME2. Unless it was some stupid Dr. pepper armor skin. Then that makes sense.

  • Sykes

    It’s hard not to feel a tad angry about all this. It’s a real turn-off to know that someone deliberately decided to make sure that you couldn’t get one complete package without real effort and lots of money. I won’t lie and say “No sale!” but I’ll definitely wait a month or so until the standard price drops from where it usually is on release date.

    …And the worst part is, I didn’t even like the movie that much! :-)

    • Kaine Morrison

      The ONLY problem with waiting “a month od so” is that all those Store Exclusives will be no longer available…

      • Sykes

        Yeah, but I’m not going to ass around trying to get all the different bits and pieces. I’m just going to buy the standard one cheap. If it takes two months, good…if it takes six or twelve, so be it.

        • Kaine Morrison

          I’m just not gonna buy it.
          I hated the movie…
          I was only interested in the Special Features. To me, that’s sometimes BETTER than the actual movie…

  • SFSeries&Movies

    For it’s not a problem, with TREK before JJ era, I want to see all the extra’s, every bit of footage, but with JJ’s Trek, I’m just interested in the movie itself, not so much the extra’s. Although an enjoyable sci-fi flick, not the same “feelings” about this Trek.

  • Jamie

    Bad film, bad blu-ray plain and simple.
    Epic fail.

  • Andy0011

    Received my UK copy today and the included iTunes code does not give you access to the video commentary version, looks like that might be a US iTunes exclusive.

    • StalwartUK

      So it looks like UK fans have no (legal) way to get the commentary.

      All this mess just for a few more bucks. Hope it was worth it Paramount/Bad Robot.

      • http://www.randomtuesday.com/ Aatrek

        We’re investigating that.

    • badblokebob

      Got my copy today and the iTunes code DOES come with the video commentary. Could be they only put it up this morning or something, as today is release day?

  • Kaine Morrison

    I hated the movie, but for some reason… (damned OCD/Completionist) I was willing to buy this… But 3 copies, just to get the Majority of the extras…. thats ridiculous…

    • Kaine Morrison

      To get the “Majority” of the extra features:
      Australia – $48.oo +Shipping No International Shipping though!
      Canada – $24.99 +Shipping
      US/Target – $29.99 +Shipping
      102.98 without Shipping Costs

  • Tuskin38

    http://trekcore.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/stid44.jpg

    This image, the Enterprise is lablled with the USS Kelvin’s Registry number :|

  • Colin

    For me, looking at the images, I think of two things at once.

    1. San Francisco looks much like Rapture in one shot.

    http://trekcore.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/stid33.jpg
    Rapture (Bioshock) – http://images.wikia.com/bioshock/images/0/0e/Warnock_tvspot.png

    The Ferry Building looks out of place in that image. It’s like the building was photoshopped into a future city with generic skyscrapers.

    2. For a starship to come crashing into their city, and for that ship to level as many buildings as it did, and with the large number of casualities, San Franciscans do seem overly calm, as if nothing happen. Where are the emergency vehicles? I know that they were heard in the movie, but I don’t remember seeing them.

    On a tangential note, I dislike the graphics that the characters have to interface with. They seem very cluttered, with the text being pushed in some places to illegibility.

  • Colin

    I have been looking at this picture.

    http://trekcore.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/stid61.jpg

    I have identified, through Google Maps, several landmarks, including the Ferry Building, the Sue Bierman Park, the Gateway, and the Piers, which were located along the Embarcadero. I do have several questions, though.

    1. Why did they alter the appearance of the San Francisco Belle, so that it looks like a ship with two bows and a black smoke stack? http://www.hornblower.com/port/yacht/sf+13

    2. Why did they place massive buildings into the bay? These buildings are located between the piers.
    3. Why did they alter the appearance of the poplars at the park, so that now they appear impossibly tall and dwarf the palm trees and townhomes? (See the Gateway above.)
    4. They alter the appearance of the Belle, but did nothing to alter the appeance of the 20th ferries that are parked across the Belle. Why?

    The more I see of these shots of San Francisco, the less I am impressed.

    • Tuskin38

      They Screwed up London as well. The London Eye is in the wrong place, St. Paul’s Cathedral is facing the wrong way.

      • The Bandsaw Vigilante

        Rebuilt facing the wrong way after World War III, maybe?

        (Seriously, I have no real answer, here. It’s a weird one, to be sure.)

  • Marvin3O

    Does anybody know if there will be a steelbook edition? I know there was a steelbook case edition for the UK and Germany.

  • Lenonn

    Well, evidently only Bad Robot has the answers as to what happened. Hopefully Abrams or Burk or someone at BR will speak up about this eventually.

  • DaddyTodd

    I cancelled my Amazon order for the $80 version with the replica phaser. I’ll watch for a second-hand copy later. If I’m not getting all the content, I’m not paying full price.

    • Soulless_Ginger

      I ordered TWO with replica phasers

      RETURNED both

      Both broken chipped pieces of CRAP that don’t work

      Horribly misaligned

      So pissed!!!

  • Scottamer

    Note that the Star trek app has a short sample from a “Cast Roundtable” with JJ and most of the cast. It looks like a great discussion. This is probably what the Australian release “Roundtable” is all about.

  • Colin

    Accordinng to this article, in the summary for the film on the back cover of the blu-ray case, the writer identified the villain as Khan. So, it appears that Bad Robot has dropped all pretense of a mystery box for the film.

    http://uk.movies.yahoo.com/star-trek-darkness-blu-ray-blunder-100600559.html

    We haven’t heard much from Asia. Will they get the film, and what will they get with the film?

  • David

    Is the IMAX footage also included in the standard (NON-3D) german release?

    • http://www.randomtuesday.com/ Aatrek

      So far, the only IMAX footage outside of iTunes looks to be on the 3D release in Germany.

      • David

        Thanks for clearing that up Aatrek.
        I guess the IMAX footage is also to be seen in the 2d version of that 3D German release?
        I ask because I do not care much about the 3d version…

  • Dan Cooper

    Absolutely gorgeous film-anyone can still frame through something and pick it apart—thats not how movies are meant to be watched. Any extras will be on Youtube…..
    Best Trek film to date…by far (and I’ve been a fan since TOS was on the air in the 60′s)

    • James

      yup,, I loved it too. i’m really surprised at the negativity from a small section of hardcore trekkies as the film went out of its way to appeal to that group. My review is here:

      http://ryesofthegeek.wordpress.com/2013/06/18/star-trek-into-darkness-film-review/

      Having said that, I’m disappointed that the extras aren’t all available in one special edition – and I’m also sad that they haven’t included a branching feature option to choose to watch the IMAX footage with.

      • Colin

        James,

        I disagree with your opinion that this film “…went out of its way to appeal to that group.”

        After the success of the last film, Paramount looked at way the next film could be even more successful. One of the failings of earlier films was that they hadn’t established much of a beachhead in the international market. Focus groups were formed in those markets with participants being asked what they wanted in the next film. They replied that they wanted more action and less Trek. This is the film we got, and Paramount got want they hoped for. This film broke the cycle with it being the most successful of the films in the international markets.

        As for the hardcore fans, the writers included elements from earlier films in the hopes that those fans would not feel alienated. Some liked this approach, while others didn’t. For me, I want a film that expands on what has been done before, but doesn’t repeat it. I feel that there have been enough revenge-based films, and I am burned out on the conspiracy thrillers that are in vogue now.

        *http://www.thewrap.com/movies/article/star-trek-darkness-heading-where-no-trek-has-gone-foreign-profitablity-89981

        *http://www.thewrap.com/movies/article/star-trek-darkness-eyes-100m-box-office-opening-91566

        I don’t have much hope for the next film. There are a limited number of genres that don’t require extensive translation. This is why revenge-based films are so popular.

        My question is, how much Trek can you take out of a Trek product before it is no longer Trek?

        • archer9234

          I guess when the series loses money, that’s when they’ll find their limit.

        • James

          I think it went out of its way to appeal to trekkies in the following ways:

          1. Presented an allegrical tale that was about something – a valid criticism of the ’09 film.
          2. In – jokes and references, to Mudd, the Gorn, Praxis and much more…including Nimoy!
          3. Discussion of the prime-directive.

          I’m not saying its a perfect film, but for me it was superior to all the TNG movies. I was drawn out of the movie sometimes by all the inter contextual references. I also think that the death of Pike lacked the emotional resonance of Kirk dying at the beginning of Trek 09.

          “My question is, how much Trek can you take out of a Trek product before it is no longer Trek?”

          The film concludes with Kirk realising that he lost perspective following the terrorist
          attack on Starfleet. He then rededicates himself to science and peaceful
          exploration and begins the famous five year mission, to explore strange
          new worlds and to seek out new life. I hope that the next film is about these things, but we should remember that very few of the Trek movies explore strange new worlds and new civilisations, thats something best done on TV.

        • Roger McCoy

          I could be mistaken (it’s not terribly clear), but it sounds to me like they were showing the focus groups already completed portions of the film to figure out how to market it, so I doubt it really had any effect on the script.

  • Dr. Cheis

    At least I can still get the iTunes exclusives when I unlock my digital copy that comes with the disc. I hate when digital copies are incomparable with iTunes.

  • Joseph M

    And greedy swine like Paramount and Abrams wonder why people are turning to illegal torrents. As for STID’s poor, lazy script and sleazy blu ray release, I fear what this little chancer will do with Star Wars 7.

  • bart

    ok can some one answer me this were was george and windna kirk in “into darkness”the end credit come up with chris hemsworth and jennifer morrison has kirks parents,but they weren’t in the film…..???

    • archer9234

      Another cut scene I guess. Reminds me of the female Jaffa credits in Stargate. They where cut out.

    • Christopher Roberts

      Voices only. They can be heard during Kirk’s resurrection.

      • bart

        wow really they get credited for 2 seconds of voice..he says” dare u too do better”.sounds like christopter pike to me.

  • Stokie Spock

    Looks like I’m on a mission to seek out every copy of the movie and boldy go when know one has gone before !!! :-)

  • Alex S.

    It’s easy to see why too many people think this is the best Trek movie, it’s bigger and shinier, everyone is running around screaming and punching, stuff is blowing up. It looks like it cost $190,000,000 to make. But Star Trek has never been so lacking in intelligence, it’s been boring and slow, but never this stupid.

  • smashing300

    I don’t have apple devices or itunes, so there is no way for me to hear the commentary? This is a moronic decision of epic proportions, almost like remaking a 30 year old movie in a time stream set up to create new stories.

  • Kathy O’Brien

    Hey, Gang….”Bad Robot had 100% control” and this is how it came out. How much control do you think he’s getting over the video releases of the Star Wars movies he’s going to make?

  • BK Alley

    Once again greed forgets where their money actually comes from, so they keep pissing off the source.

  • Christopher Brent

    It could be worse. It could be either Star Trek Continues and Starship Farragut on the cinema screen.

  • Luna

    And this is why, despite the fact I love this movie, despite the fact I’ve seen in 7 times (4 times in theatres in the first month it was out), and despite the fact that this movie is what turned me into a Trekkie (I originally only watched it because of Cumberbatch), I still have not purchased Into Darkness.