SPOILERS BELOW. STOP READING IF YOU DON'T WANT SPOILERS. SERIOUSLY. IF YOU ARE MAD AT ME FOR SPOILING ANYTHING BECAUSE YOU KEPT READING AT THIS POINT THEN YOU HAVE NO ONE TO BLAME BUT YOURSELF.
Ok so here are my thoughts on the plot, and also some minor quibbles with the film.
- First off, the name of the Klingon homeworld is Qo'noS, not Kronos, although they are pronounced the same. I did like the different look of the Klingons though, with the one Klingon we saw without a helmet on.
- I really liked the many shoutouts to the Original Series, such as the tribble, the Mudd incident, Qo'noS' moon looking like it exploded (I guess in this timeline it went boom earlier than in the original timeline?), as well as the incorporation of the DS9 idea of Section 31. Also, I loved the unexpected cameo from Leonard Nimoy.
- I really liked the reveal of who Harrison really was. The way Cumberbatch delivered the wham line when he revealed his real name sent chills down my spine. Unfortunately, if you go to imdb.com before seeing this movie, or are still reading despite my spoiler warning, you now know that Harrison is really Khan, i.e. the bad guy from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.
- I also liked how in this timeline, Khan was found much earlier than in the original timeline. I wonder what other sorts of changes to the timeline we're going to get in future films. I also wonder how long they'll be able to keep this great cast working together and how many more films they can make in the series. Hopefully we'll get several more.
- No, it doesn't bother me that Khan is being played by a Brit, and not someone with a darker skin tone. I thought Cumberbatch was 100% outstanding in the role. Besides, although it was not stated in the film, it is entirely plausible that Starfleet could've given him cosmetic surgery to alter his appearance so he'd not be recognized by historians. It would've been nice if that was clearly spelled out though to appease the enraged fanboys out there.
- I do like the reveal also of how Khan was not the only villain. Peter Weller's Admiral Marcus was also a major villain here, wanting to use both Khan and the crew of the Enterprise to start a war with the Klingons. It is interesting that in this alternate timeline, the world seems to be getting a little bit more militant. I wonder if this will lead to more war-like events taking place in any upcoming films in the series.
- I was impressed by Admiral Marcus' ship, the Vengeance. Whoa that thing looked like a beast. I wonder if we'll see more ships of that class in future films in the series. Maybe the Enterprise-A in a few films down the road?
- The fight sequences in this film were brutal. Khan, thanks to his superhuman abilities, really can take a hell of a beating. I also liked how they show him pretty much dispatching 50 Klingons by himself, with one heck of a huge cannon that he's wielding single-handed.
- It's amazing to me how the apparent spoilers in the trailer weren't actually spoilers. What I mean is that the trailer shows a ship that looks a lot like the Enterprise crashing into the San Francisco bay, and a similar looking ship rising out of the water, making it look like that is a part of the same sequence, and making it look like the Enterprise crashes. Really, it's the Vengeance crashing into the water at the end, and the Enterprise rising out of it from a sequence back in the beginning of the film. Trailers always lie!