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January 29, 2018

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015) --- "Be Sure To Wear Protective Gear When Testing The Sun's Heat."

Plot Summary
Transported to a remote fortified outpost, Thomas and his fellow teenage Gladers find themselves in trouble after uncovering a diabolical plot from the mysterious and powerful organization WCKD. With help from a new ally, the Gladers stage a daring escape into the Scorch, a desolate landscape filled with dangerous obstacles and crawling with the virus-infected Cranks. The Gladers only hope may be to find the Right Hand, a group of resistance fighters who can help them battle WCKD. (1) 

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Hello, Movie Buffs! 
     To begin with, I have not read any of the books in this series so this review based solely on my opinion of the film. And if you were expecting the film to be just like the book (by James Dashner, of the same name) then think again, after reading some reviews concerning the film's similarities to the book many fans complained that this film is not exactly like the book. Big shocker! Movie-goers should know by now that book-to-film adaptations are never done 100% the same. I am a huge book reader and I have read books that were later adapted to film but neither were exactly the same. Making changes from book to film does not always mean that the film is a total flop unless you're talking about the Percy Jackson films but that is another story in itself.
     The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015) stays true the original film, which is how I believe sequels are supposed to be made. This film is a full-on action sequel of Maze Runner with a good plot and plenty of twists despite being a little predictable concerning one character at the end.  Unlike the first film, there is a lot more violence and death in this film, the Scorch is harsh and brutal while the Cranks are new versions of zombies. The excitement builds while the characters are in the Scorch but once the Cranks start to overstay their welcome things tend to slow down. The horror scenes are effectively creepy but often times become repetitive and the hallucinatory party scene is a bit confusing regardiitst’s purpose. The final act starts building the suspense and intensity right before we come to the film’s ending climactic cliff-hanger, minus the last minute info-dump. The action scenes are exciting and well choreographed with a feel of realism. It is clear that the actors gave their all especially Barry Pepper (Saving Private Ryan, Monster Trucks) as Vince who filmed his action scenes with a broken ankle. 
     The visuals are probably the best part about the film, besides the thrilling action and good acting. The cinematographer took plenty of risks and there were also some interesting shots in terms of composition. Director Wes Ball and cinematographer Gyula Pados (Duchess, Predators) beautifully balanced the visuals with the emotional arcs of the characters that make the audience feel like they are taking part in this journey alongside the characters. The special effects are also well executed; they could have easily ruined the realness of the Cranks and the environment. The acting was great for both old and new characters. The only problem is that this amazing cast was not exactly given a worthy script, in fact that were very much limited in some scenes that almost went nowhere. However, there some of the clich├ęd lines have been removed and the characters have more of a backbone, partly because they came to the realization that the only people they can truly trust is each other. But by the end it seems like even that concept is not always for certain.

     Overall, in comparison to the first film The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015) was more satisfying and proved that despite the film’s focus on the Maze it can still go beyond what the title implies. The characters are more developed and their emotional arcs blend well with the visual effects. Director Wes Ball does his best to make this labyrinthine dystopian world that James Dashner hatched in his novels easy to understand. While still creating an exciting and entertaining film with complex plot, some well-executed action scenes, and more developed characters. The films’ ending leaves a pretty shocking, yet predictable, cliffhanger that implies that you can’t trust anybody, not even those you thought were on your side. I am super excited to see the next installment soon. 

"I know what I'm supposed to do now. It's not just about Minho. It's about all of us. It's about everyone WICKED's ever taken, everyone they will take. They'll never stop. They'll never stop, so, I'm gonna stop them. I'm gonna kill Ava Paige."
- Thomas 

Final Vote
Worth Seeing:  7.9 of 10 stars
Worth Buying:  7.9 of 10 stars

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