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J.J. Abrams Dumbed Down ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ For Mass Audience

**Spoiler Alert** J.J. Abrams is a genius, and it’s not because “Star Trek Into Darkness” is a great movie. It is not.

Director Abrams and his team are clearly passionate about the original “Star Trek” and the early Star Trek movies. His 2009 big-screen reboot was simply fantastic, and while he’s said that film was directed at Trek fans, “Star Trek Into Darkness,” he says, was made with the general movie-going public in mind, which sounds like code for, “We dumbed it down.”

Somewhere in the back of Abrams’ mind, he must feel like James T. Kirk when he beat the Kobayashi Maru.

For those who don’t know, in Star Trek mythology, the Kobayashi Maru is an unbeatable test given to Starfleet cadets to judge how they handle themselves in a no-win situation. Kirk is the only cadet who’s ever beaten it, and that’s because he cheated.

With their intention of making a Star Trek movie more appealing to the mainstream, Abrams and his team of writers were creating their own no-win situation with die-hard “Star Trek” fans and, you would think, discerning moviegoers. The question is, did he get away with it? Well, yes – but only because he cheated.

From the opening scene of “Star Trek Into Darkness,” Abrams treats us to an absolutely stunning, IMAX 3D experience. Visually, it’s one of the best uses of this technology thus far.

On a distant planet, Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) and Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy (Karl Urban) are running through a lush, vivid red field that’s so pleasing to look at, you may experience multiple eyegasms.

Chasing them are the planet’s primitive denizens, who have no idea that they’re not alone in the universe. Turns out, Kirk and friends are trying to save the planet by dropping Spock (Zachary Quinto) into a volcano, where he’ll deposit a device that will kill the volcano and save the planet.

Only something goes wrong and puts Spock in danger. In order to save him, Kirk will have to reveal the Enterprise to the natives, in violation of Starfleet’s Prime Directive, which is to never interfere with a developing culture.

Guess who’s willing to die rather than break the Prime Directive? Spock! Guess who’s going to break rules to save his friend? James T. Kirk! Back on Earth, Kirk’s violation gets him stripped of his command of the Enterprise, and the captain’s chair is returned to Kirk’s mentor, Captain Pike.

Read the full review at ABC News Blogs

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