Into Darkness Opens As Best Critic-Ranked Wide Release Of 2013 – Open Wkd Predictions $100M+

With today’s release of Star Trek into Darkness in the US American reviews been arriving on an almost hourly basis, ticking up the Rotten Tomatoes ranking to 87% – the highest for any 2013 wide release. See below for more details and some excerpts of some of the praise (and pans) from the top US critics. We also have a Box Office prediction update. [UPDATED: RT rating went up 1% during Thursday]


Into Darkness Opens As Best Reviewed Wide Release Of 2013

UPDATED: Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes currently rates Star Trek into Darkness as 87% fresh, based on 181 reviews. The rating has fluctuated a bit in the last few days, but 87% is the same rating the film had on May 8th when we reported the last summary (based on only 37 reviews, mostly from UK and Australia). At 88%, Into Darkness is the top ranked wide release of 2013 so far, beating out films like Iron Man 3 (78%), The Great Gatsby (49%), and Pain and Gain (47%) – currently ranked 1, 2 and 3 respectively in the US. Into Darkness is also ranking ahead of the early reviews for Fast and Furious 6 (open next weekend), which is currently tracking at 81%.

However, Into Darkness is ranking behind the 2009 Star Trek movie which had a 95% fresh rating. The story is the same with the Metacritic aggregator site, ranking Star Trek Into Darkness at 73, compared to Iron Man 3 at 62; The Great Gatsby at 55; and Pain and Gain at 43. Metacritic scored the 2009 Star Trek at 83.

So to summarize the scoring, Into Darkness is ranking very well (especially vs. its 2013 competition), but not as well as the 2009 Star Trek film.

Praise from big US reviewers

Here is what some of the top reviewers from America are saying about Star Trek Into Darkness…

”It’s a knockout. Trekkers won’t be alone in cheering.”

– Peter Travers RollingStone

"it bombarded me into happiness.”

– Scott Edelstein, CBS

”’Star Trek Into Darkness,’ directed by J. J. Abrams, is a great thundering cudgel of a movie, set to stun.”

– Anthony Lane, NewYorker

"Into Darkness is a sleek, thrilling epic that’s also a triumphantly witty popcorn morality play. It’s everything you could want in a Star Trek movie.”

– Owen Gleiberman, EW

”The summer blockbuster season has only just begun, but any of the upcoming releases will be hard-pressed to surpass the detail, excitement to sheer adventure of ‘Star Trek Into Darkness.’”

– Justin Craig  Fox

"Spectacular special effects, superbly crafted action sequences, plenty of humor and terrific performances render it a cut above most summer blockbusters.”

– 3.5 stars. Claudia Puig, USAToday

"Star Trek Into Darkness’ does everything “Iron Man 3” tries to do, in the realm of global terrorism imagery reprocessed for popcorn kicks, but with a little more style, a dash more brio and invention.”

3.5 stars. Michael Phillips,  ChicagoTribune

"When ‘Darkness’ goes for the heart, it lands beautifully.”

– 4/5 stars. Greg Evans Bloomberg

”So intensely personal does it become, you may find yourself moved in unexpected ways. In this way, ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ really does boldly go where no man has gone before.”

– 3.5 stars. Betsy Sharkey LATimes

Some reviewers were left with mixed feelings

Of course, it isn’t all praise for Into Darkness. Some of the top US critics were less impressed with JJ Abrams’ second Trek feature and had mixed feelings about the film. Here are some examples…

”’Into Darkness’ does a fine job of carrying a venerable franchise into a flashy, splashy new millennium. It’s slightly empty at its core, but that’s a complaint that only a few old-guard fans are likely to make. The needs of the many must prevail.”

– 3 stars. Rafer Guzman Newsday Newsday

”The nervy reboot of the “Star Trek” franchise by action impresario J.J. Abrams can be summed up, quite simply, as a triumph of casting.”

– 3/5 stars. Ann Hornaday Washington Post WashingtonPost

“With its emphasis on its hero’s adolescent anger, the movie turns this venerable science-fiction series — one that prided itself on addressing complex issues in a nuanced and mature fashion — into its own kids’ version: Star Trek Tiny Toons. At times, the viewer is almost prodded to mutter, ‘Grow up!’”

– Richard Corliss, Time

…and some top critics just aren’t into Into Darkness

Here are some excerpts from top reviewers who panned Into Darkness

”It’s also an excessively derivative what-if rehash of themes and interactions that came before, most of the characters lesser copies and even caricatures of the originals. The scenario’s been hijacked and rejiggered from better “Trek” plots of decades ago, the best verbal exchanges lifted nearly verbatim from past adventures.”

– 2/5 stars. David Germain, HuffingtonPost

“’Star Trek Into Darkness’” does not quite stand by itself as a satisfying movie, but then again it doesn’t need to. It is the leg of a journey that has, remarkably, lasted for nearly half a century. I hope we never tire of Kirk, Spock and the others. I also hope that they stick around long enough to find a new civilization, since the one we have now does not fully appreciate their gifts.”

– A.O. Scott, NYT

$100M+ Domestic Weekend?

Previously TrekMovie has reported how Hollywood insiders were predicting Into Darkness to bring in $75M-$80M for its opening domestic weekend. Now that Paramount extended its release one day, Box Office Mojo reports that Paramount is upping their forecast to $100M for the opening (including Wednesday fan sneaks and Thursday screenings). Paramount has already reported $3.3M from Wednesday night’s IMAX fan sneaks and midnight showings.

And the box office prognosticators are even more optimistic. Mojo’s own forecast is predicting $117M for the four day opening. is predicting $112M for the same period.

Into Darkness 80% of Fandango Sales – Tops in ‘Fanticipation’

Earlier in the week we reported that Into Darkness was accounting for 71% of ticket sales at Fandango, now the ticketing service tells TrekMovie that the new Trek feature represents 80% of Thursday’s sales, with showtimes for this weekend selling out across the country.

Into Darkness also garnered a 96 out of 100 score on the company’s "Fanticipation" movie buzz indicator that measures fan sentiment around the weekend box office line-up. Into Darkness outshone Iron Man 3 and The Great Gatsby, which are still top-of-mind with moviegoers, scoring 85 and 83, respectively. Fanticipation scores are calculated based a proprietary analysis of Fandango’s advance ticket sales, website and mobile traffic, and social media engagement.


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$3.3 mil is not the best opening, but hopefully it was a factor of the changed release date and being a Wednesday.

After Seeing the Movie. I thought it was great. I do have to give Star Trek Into Darkness a B Plus.

This is really exciting and incredible really. I hope this movie does the number- though of course, figures are going to be inflated because of 3D, I do wish we could get a ‘butts on seats’ comparison.

Seen the movie today. I enjoyed it. I give it 8.5 out of 10. Not bad at all.

#3 – Agreed. The movie industry clings to this bizarre financial score keeping. How many albums sold, how many books sold. THAT’s how o measure popularity.

For fans box office results are important as they factor into how Paramount will treat the franchise moving forward. So it matters

here’s hoping after Bad Robot’s #3 is done they’ll keep all the sets and maybe push for a TV show. Will help keep the costs down from starting over and his approach seems to have garnered the non-typical trekkie appeal.

Now to stay away from spoilers for a few more days. We’re going to the IMAX 3D in Cleveland on Monday.

#5. Is that sarcasm? How is it that a business “clinging” to financial score keeping bizarre. Business is about money.

I went and saw it last night and really enjoyed it! My partner, who is definately not a sci-fi person like I am, enjoyed it too. When we were leaving and on the way to the car, I said there would be some diehard fans who just hate it because of what they did with BC’s character and a couple of the scenes, and he put it best: “this isn’t the 60’s and they just have to get with it. Nothing is ever the same as we remember it or want it to be, so they can either not enjoy it and just complain, or they can get on board with this new version.” Yes, I did have a couple of minor quibbles with it, but I could not have said it better myself!

I loved it and have already seen it twice and will see it again on Saturday, The film had some really great moments and some that had my wife in tears. But I have to admit that this is the first movie that my wife wants to see a second time. I urge everyone to keep an open mind and sit back and enjoy this film.

…and those words: Space, the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Her five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no one has gone before.

David Edelstein, not Scott.

Nitpick – sorry. Trekker.

I enjoyed it and think it’s gonna do well enough to say that Star Trek XIII is gonna be a great one to look forward to, if not the best of the new 3.

@11…that was one of my favorite moments of the film. Been a long time since we heard a James T. Kirk talk about the five year mission. Loved it.

Say what you will about the new films, but I’m just happy as can be that there are new adventures of Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Scotty, Uhura, Sulu, Chekov and the Enterprise…that’s STAR TREK to me.

I wonder if they will find Darth Vader on the “5 Year Mission”?

@6, which “franchise”?
I can hardly call the sh*t they are making the “franchise”.


Just so STID today for the first time with my wife. We both enjoyed it very much (she even said it was better than ST’09), however we both agreed that STID was about an hour too short. :)

Actually towards the end of the movie I thought to myself “This should be at least 150 hours longer = at least 7 26-episode seasons longer”. There were just so many great things used in STID that should be put in the TV show. Well, I can dream, can’t I, since only the “Space” is “The final frontier…” :)

Next Thursday we are both planning to see it again and this time we will take our two nephews along (our children are a bit too young to watch certain scenes). :)

“Just saw STID…”, not “Just so STID…” :)))

@ 17 The Boss

I agree with that assesment. The movie could have benefitted from a longer run time.

Grreat movie….the biggest most over the top popcorn action flick ever made….jj mr orci n company have upped the ante yet again……not a perfect movie…..but damn good…..and i never wouda thought that our beloved franchise could be this spectacular…this epic….its so over the top it can almost seem to be too much action…..but plenty of character n humor as well……fun on the bun……remember raiders of the lost ark had more action in first five minutes than most movies…..well stid has over two hours of that kinda action….wow….

Star Trek 2009 was far more imaginative than Into Darkess. At least in the first movie the Enterprise didnt take it in the rear shuttlebay doors. You had planets imploding, time travel, and pretty cool space combat. Into Darkness does excel with acting and better relationships. Imo… 2009 was a better movie but into darkness is a good movie. Nothing to this day beats TWOK

I asked for 2hours45mins!!! Only thing from my wish list that wasnt granted by boborci!!!

I would wait to Monday to see what the numbers look like (compared to ST09). I’d venture to say that most North Americans (who plan on seeing the movie) have not seen STID yet. The current numbers are a good sign and I can only see it getting better. But to say (based off of current stats) that ST09 did better (so far), after all of the advertising they’ve done…I think we need more time to see.

Benedict Cumberbatch puts asses in seats. Expect him to be back.

Will see it with my kids over be weekend, can’t wait.

I am happy to read that they seem to included the Kirk 5 year mission monologue. Very disappointed that they evidently used the incorrect TNG “no one” instead of the Kirkian “no man”. Sigh

Hey Trio, orci kurtzman lindeloff and of course abrams

the critics can sod off ….man you guys blew me out of the water so allow me to break the prime directive.

**at the oscars**


Figures I look at my local movie times and the last showing started a minute ago tonight

Guess I’m gonna have to wait till sunday as it’ll be jam packed for the next two days

I dont know with What Rick Berman did to the series, anyway to get trek back and back on the tv is welcome, especially after such offensive episodes as Tattoo, Innocence and Dear Doctor.

and I did like Alias back in the day, anything is better than what Rick did to it.

Hmm Doctor Who had John Nathan Taylor, we Had Rick Berman, funny how that happens,

although what Scott C said pretty much confirms my suspicions and actually given what I thought of the man in the tv show that approach does make more sense and is worthy of him.

I dont know I just wish they could have done something better with the ship and the bridge set lol

ah well new minds new ideas, be taught Mr Scott.

Just got back from seeing the movie with my daughter. Incredibly moving in parts, funny in parts, lots of action in parts — and the result is an all-around fantastic movie that is greater than the sum of its parts.

Well done!

It was so much fun to see how the little bits and pieces we’ve been teased with over the months came together, how the meaning became clear within context, and how even some of the important revelations (that unfortunately some on other sites have blurted out and spoiled) took on a new freshness once I saw them for myself.

4.5 out of 5 stars — I plan on seeing it again this weekend and probably next weekend as well and a few more times after that!

Kirk, Spock, McCoy, and the rest — along with the good ship Enterprise — are all in good hands.

Saw the movie Wednesday and i was a lot of fun to watch. I am maybe planing to see it again. It is clearly designed as pop flick movie and it works and i think non treks will love this movie. Improvement over st09 and villian in this movie kicks ass.

I know I’m committing heresy here by saying it, BUT- TWOK, in retrospect, is NOT that great a movie! I’ll take these last two over ANY of them. And I’m a classic Trek purist! Give me entertainment, dammit, and I got it with STID, warts (budgineering) and all!

BobOrci, you guys NAILED it!! Yes, there was tons of action, but there were so many great character moments in there. A 43 years old now, I’ve been loving every incarnation of Trek since age 3 and there’s no doubt in my mind that as #28 just said, these characters and the Enterprise (you had me worried there for a minute) are in great great hands.

I loved the moments where you can see the Kirk-Spock-McCoy bond building; love the evolution of Spock/Uhura. You’ve breathed new life into these characters and you’ve still got the freedom to do anything you want.

And I’m still blown away by the actors. I just never thought it would be possible for new actors to capture these characters so perfectly without being caricatures. Perfect, every one of them.

I just want more now and I want it fast. Can’t wait for the next one and I really wish Paramount would unleash Pocket Books now and let them write novels in this universe. Because I want to be immersed in new adventures of these characters and watch their relationships build. That’s the only thing frustrating about Star Trek on the big screen; there’s simply not enough of it.

Thank you, everyone involved!!!

I just saw the movie, and went into the theater slightly skeptical considering some of the reviews I read. Aside from the trailers/teasers, I stayed away from most spoilers. I walked out of the theater pleasantly surprised. The movie is a great action ride for sure, and visually it was more appealing to me than ST 2009. For the most part, the script was well written, and pacing was pedal to the metal “JJ Abrams centric.” I really enjoyed this movie, and don’t see how most of us could be disappointed. The acting is more than I expected, and I appreciated the wide range of emotions portrayed and how well the cast executed their roles. The movie was a good time and a nice break from the everyday grind.

@25. Gene L. Coon was a U. S. Marine. Stand at ease.

‘Very disappointed that they evidently used the incorrect TNG “no one” instead of the Kirkian “no man”. Sigh’

That’s because half the human species is female, and in Star Trek (and in the here and now) they actually go into space too…

I for one would be disappointed if ‘no man’ was used in this day and age. Some things do have to change.

I’m so nervous and eager to see the final box office numbers! This is shaping up really well at first glance though!

I was going to go see the film again tonight but got distracted by free food and beer at a street festival after work. However, I’d purchased tonight’s ticket like 6 weeks ago so no harm done to the box office take! LOL

Eh, I’ll consider the unused ticket as a charitable donation to the Trekkie cause. I mean, free food and beer, man. I couldn’t pass that up and I saw the film last night and I bought a ticket for the IMAX dome tomorrow afternoon so I don’t feel too guilty for skipping out. I’m 29 and a graduate student so free food and drink trumps ALL.

Really liked it. Went to the 8pm Wed. showing, got the poster.

No spoilers.

I think Cumberbatch did a fantastic job as the villain. Brilliant actor.
Absolutely nailed his key scenes. You’ll know them when you see them.

Also, because the characters are much more clearly established this time, the writers were able to give them much better dialog. The writing was perfect. No need for any more awkward get-to-know-me chit chat . Some of the throwaway lines are incredibly funny. And some of the more serious situations firmly establish the classic relationships we all know from ST:TOS.

I’m going to see it again. ASAP. In 3D. And I usually detest 3D.

ObsessiveStarTrekFan – oh give me a break, your making a mountain out of a mole hill, its just a figure of speech and your being over sensitive and silly to boot.

To where NO MAN has gone before, there I said it.

Not to mention well they do try and keep them separate in the military because of that boys and girls thing and all the complications that arise from it and it makes sense

especially on long voyages in a very compact and tightly fitted with small passages nuclear submarine when your out of port for 6 months

Damn political correctness, always ruins everything it gets into and takes the edge off it.

sometimes literally.

cant even say god on tv anymore for god sakes, they’d be bleeping me a mile a minute with there crazyness, the bunch of narrowminded wackos.

Sorry but seriously stop making a mountain out of a mole hill and to where no man has gone before has a better ring to it. kinda like lock and load even though its supposedly wrong and the opposite of what you do in that regard.

Actually to where no one has been before doesnt make sense either.

given well there is supposed to be other life out there that is already traveling the stars and it kinda diminishes that fact IN universe and it sounds kinda stupid when you think about that point

To where No man or Woman has gone before makes a hell of alot more sense in that regard actually and would please both parties.

and not sound xenophobic, hell in the way its rigged up now it sounds like something the klingons would bring up at that dinner in star trek 6 really

instead of that inalienable rights thing

@36. & 37. Kev

Never mind, I understand your frustration at having to wait until Sunday to see the movie. I’m sure you will love it provided you don’t allow yourself to get too bogged down on some of the details. Take it for what it is – a rollicking action packed ride with a true TOS heart, despite some plot holes.

If it performs well, we may get to see more Trek.

I’ve seen it 5 times now, and I think it’s great.

Forbes’ review kind of nails it for me. I enjoyed the movie but it all felt a bit off as Star Trek:

“Abrams has set his films within the Star Trek universe timeline so he has the narrative blessing of the Star Trek community by and large, but he has composed his interpretations inside the confines of his own quantum reality. It remains his personal vision, whose treatment of plot, characters and story seems to be somewhat restrictive and limited, and whose vision seems at times inconsistent with the tonal spirit of the rest of the franchise. It is almost as if Kurtzman and Orci took their original explanation of quantum realities and delivered it on the screen. The reality of this film, just like it’s alternate universe, runs parallel to the greatness of all the other Star Trek series, but only approximates the greatness of the prime reality that it is attempting to mirror.”

and it will be the top reviewed until Man of Steel

@24 I’d have to agres with that ass-esment ;) I went to see the movie again today and all 5 people in the theatre were women.

Box office isn’t looking good.
It seems the movie made $14M on Thursday (including Wednesday preview).
In addition to that, I have been monitoring my local IMAX theaters online, and so far the only sold out showing was Wednesday 8:00pm.
I guess a lot of people think the movie is coming out today, so let’s see. But I think at this point there is reason for concerns….

This is indeed bad. 13.5M NA confirmed. :(

A lot of people had the 17th ( originally intended) in mind. Saw the IMAX 3-d sneak peak on wednesday. Really want to see the IMAX 3-d again, because the effects were damned impressive. I would give the film an A
minus only because of some of the plot holes and the kirk/death…spock scream ( Atrocious if you ask me)
Other than that a fun time. For some reason, my favorite scene is the battered enterprise dropping into those clouds and then reemerging.
On IMAX…that scene had the theather gasping. Seriously.
Can we get William Shatner in the 3rd film along with Nimoy ? One more time together with these legends would be awesome.

BO is being called “lackluster”. Estimates down from 100 mil. mentioned in this article to 75 mil. so we shall see. Still, it’s early. And good word of mouth could turn things around.

Most people don’t know the film opened early. I went last night and told co-workers this morning. They plan on seeing the film but didn’t know the release date was changed.

There was a huge line last night in San Francisco.


True. I announced in one of the threads here that the film was opening in all formats (in certain theatres) on Wednesday, 5/15. However, trekmovie did NOT announce it in an article. So most folks thought it was only available in 3D.

STID made $11.5 million on Thursday. Not a bad number for a weekday start!

STID places #11 on all time top Thursday openings:

Again, not bad for the last minute date change!

@Opcode & HubcapDave:

considering the mixed press, current competition and completely botched marketing campaign those are not bad numbers at all.

i’ve heard a lot fans say Friday through Monday is when they plan to see it, so i’m guessing the full story won’t be told box office wise until Wednesday of next week.