I haven't seen Into Darkness but a lot of this review covered what was painfully realized in the first movie: no longer is Trek about philosophy, ethics, tolerance, gray areas and real world problems. It's mostly absolute good versus absolute evil. I think the driving force behind the bad guy in the first movie was largely a misunderstanding
... which is incredibly boring. His motivation was confusingly laughable.
Unsurprisingly I'm pretty sure I heard JJ Abrams tell Jon Stewart that "he never liked Star Trek" on The Daily Show. Well, now he's had a chance to kill it by turning it 100% into a modern day blockbuster action flick and shirking any attempt to tackle an interesting philosophical or ethical dilemma as the main plot. As the modern reemergence of comic book and super hero movies have shown, those films are a dime a dozen that anyone can do. Tackling something deeper while still holding our attention is the hard part. The Watchmen was a good candidate for it but fell short. I'm sure JJ Abrams would rather cover up the complicated parts that question good versus evil with another lens flare.
Yep. I made the mistake of watching the 2009 Star Trek. It was a disaster of a movie. A lot of people have told me they think it's a good movie, just not a good Trek movie, but I don't think it's even a very good movie on its own rights. Horrible plot. Horrible characterization. Horrible product placement.