The first teaser trailer for JJ Abrams‘ Star Trek Into Darkness is a tricksy thing. Let’s take a look at it, up close, and see what we might work out.
The film’s first poster may have taken us to London, but this trailer doesn’t. You’ll recognise San Francisco here by its bridge. The city was heavily featured in the last film too, being a key centre for the United Federation of Planets.
And we’re here, it would seem, for a memorial of some kind. That’s Kirk at the podium, suggesting he has a personal relationship with the deceased.
Our own Alasdair Stuart tells me this is the “missing man” formation, flown to commemorate a fallen squad member.
In this shot, Kirk seems to be down on his knees – that makes the most sense of the eyelines. And that kind of depends on the character with his back to us being seated, which makes me pretty sure it’s Captain Pike. He was left in a wheelchair at the end of the last film.
There’s a pattern, repeated throughout the trailer, in which the camera sits more or less at Kirk’s eye level but it looks up to others, for reverse angles on the shots of Kirk most particularly.
It’s like we’re down with Kirk, looking up to other people. Keep an eye out for it.
An establishing shot for what I presume is some kind of alien world, though it could be some odd region somewhere on Earth.
There’s a flag flying on the top of that ‘pile’ in the middle – probably way too much of a stretch to hypothesise this is a ‘capture the flag’ training arena, though.
Note how the blurriness has a bit of tilt-shift effect and makes everything look miniaturised.
Why are Bones and Kirk wearing scarves? Note the hoods too – there’s a lot of hoods in this trailer. What has these guys on the hop, do you reckon?
They find that the only way out is to leap off of the cliff. It’s a little bit Butch and Sundance, a little bit The Fugitive, a little bit The Dark Crystal, a little bit Apocalypto, a little bit Walt Disney’s Pinocchio… it’s not really a new idea. I expect this shot is part of the shot-on-IMAX sequences too.
Here’s Alice Eve as… somebody. When she was cast, we were told she’d be playing a newly invented character. I didn’t believe it then – betting on Janice Rand – and I don’t believe it now. I’m just no longer betting on Rand.
We’re looking up at her, but as before, we’ll be more or less level with Kirk in the reverse.
The expression on his face in this reverse angle suggests that Kirk is quite attracted to Eve’s character. How do we read Bones face, though? He seems to be worried about this. Should Kirk not be flirting with this lady?
Note that the item in her hand has flashing lights on it…
Here’s another hood. I’m thinking this is likely to be Benedict Cumberbatch’s villain character, complete with super jumping powers – more on those later. And do note the Klingon he’s about to land by, and whup on.
What’s the big super-fat rocket launcher-looking thing that he’s swinging around? Something he’s stealing from the Klingons, maybe? A weapon he used to break in?
Note the scarves, suggesting we are in the same sequences as the flag-top thing – unless they’re different scarves, which they look like they might be. The only thing this trailer has more of than scarves is hoods, it would seem.
It’s much easier to see it when the image is moving but there’s either snow or ash or similar blowing in the breeze here.
And, yep, we’re down with Kirk…
…looking up at the villain.
And more ash here too, so it seems that these shots and the “Klingon fighting shots” all take place in the same overall sequence.
This pair of shots (above and below) seem to show Mr. Bad Guy has Kirk and Uhura in his sights. How does this go wrong for him?
The grand entrance of those infamous Star Trek lens flares… are in a title card containing nothing buy JJ Abrams’ credit. They must have thought this was hilarious.
Here’s Spock. We saw behind the scenes images from this sequence, so I’ll pop one below. He’s apparently wearing some kind heat-proofed suit for a descent into a volcano.
And here he is, galavanting around in the belly of the beast.
Here’s Uhura in the location of the Klingon fight. We’re looking up her. Stops us confusing her with that Kirk chap anyway, huh?
Spock with a gun.
Is this The Enterprise? Or isn’t it? If it is, we’ll later find out how it got down there. If it isn’t, add underwater spacecraft to hoods and scarves on the list of repeated tropes.
I think it is, though.
Okay, maybe not. I’m pretty sure we can make out the NCC-07 labelling. Just about. That would make it the Poseidon, appropriately enough.
Spock stands in the centre of the volcano as it errupts. I think he’s come down here to trigger this – that’s the purpose of the device he was carrying. But why? Why would you want to make a volcano errupt?
Continued on the next page.