Hello, Movie Buffs! My name is Lucy and I am a HUGE movie buff with 700+ movies, so I decided to write a blog. Ask Lucy: Movies is a blog review dedicated to movies both new and old. Here I review movies as unbiased and spoiler free as possible, as well as rate the film on whether its worth buying or not.
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January 26, 2018
The Maze Runner (2014) --- "Late To The Party But Makes A Maze Game Seem Interesting."
Thomas (Dylan O'Brien), a teenager, arrives in a glade at the center of a giant labyrinth. Like the other youths dumped there before him, he has no memory of his previous life. Thomas quickly becomes part of the group and soon after demonstrates a unique perspective that scores him a promotion to Runner status -- those who patrol the always-changing maze to find an escape route. Together with Teresa (Kaya Scodelario), the only female, Thomas tries to convince his cohorts that he knows a way out. (1)
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Hello, Movie Buffs!
The Maze Runner (2014) is a post-apocalyptic film adapted from the five-part YA novels, of the same name, by James Dashner. I’ve never read the books so this review is based solely on the film and considering the general trends of YA films The Maze Runner has some big shoes to fill. The story is nothing new but there are some unknown elements and suspense that keeps audiences hooked to the end and beyond. As the film progresses along a good pace you will try to uncover the end goal amidst all the twists and turns, and despite knowing the basics of the story the end is still surprising.
It's rare for a studio to trust the future of a potential blockbuster franchise to a new director such as Wes Ball; you'd think there’d be too much at stake. But when you get right down to it, Wes Ball does the job quite well and with more talent to spare. The Maze Runner is a confident and thrilling blend of action scenes and character performances that it’s hard to believe that this is Ball’s first big film. Although the narrative gets a little away from Ball at the end, I believe that this has more to do with the source material than it does with Ball’s skills as a director. The Maze encircling the Glade – where in which the characters primarily reside – is a massive enclosure of stone grey, and the Grievers are odd combinations of flesh and machine. Ball’s direction for the film is clear, a vastly PG version of Lord of the Flies that creates beauty in its simplicity. There is no informative scene regarding the futuristic world, futuristic dialect, an unfair class system or government changes. The story is just simple and yet expansive and full of twists.
The story’s theme is fascinating. The Maze Runner is about running for your right to survive, that life is sometimes like a giant maze but it also raises questions about one’s identity and integrity. Sometimes safety and security are worse than knowing the truth and having a choice. By adding a horror element it made the film follow a more traditional monster-film route which allowed for the Grievers to be pretty terrifying and made the film that much more interesting. At first, the multitude of unanswered questions keeps the audience wondering what’s in store next and while these elements are integrated quite well with character developing moments, this also allows for moments of drawn-out vagueness that make everything confusing. It would be nice to get some questions answered at certain points in the film rather than keep piling on the questions. The action is fun and entertaining, the maze scenes are intense and haunting while the glade scenes are reminiscent of Lord of the Flies. Despite some savagery and gruesomeness, the struggle to survive helps justify the action without any need for unnecessary flare.
The Maze Runner uses young up-and-coming actors rather than the mature and obvious choices; their chemistry as a group is great. Dylan O'Brien (Teen Wolf)is great as the newbie Glader Thomas; he passionate without being overacted and melodramatic. Ki Hong Lee (Wish Upon) as Maze Runner Minho also delivered a nice supporting character by bringing the wing-man role to life and grounding Thomas’, sometimes, flamboyant attitude. Will Poulter (We’re The Millers) was solid as Gally but some of the writing gave him forced dialogue that ultimately led to him doing some really stupid stuff. Kaya Scodelario (POTC: Dead Men Tell No Tales) as Theresa is good but she’s not my favorite character, often times she came off as a bit annoying. The rest of the characters were pretty good and filled their roles adequately for the film.
Overall, The Maze Runner (2014) is a good film. There are nice special effects, good character development, and the story follows as a more traditional monster film; the film has more horror elements than the book, or at least that’s what I’ve heard. Although the story provided some vague solutions to the unknown by leaving us more questions than answers, the film is an accomplishment especially for new big-film director Wes Ball who leaves viewers excited for the sequel film, The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015).
"This place... it's not what we thought it was. It's not a prison, it's a test. It all started when we were kids. They'd give us these challenges. They were experimenting on us, and then people started disappearing, every month, one after the other, like clockwork."
Worth Seeing: 7.8of 10 stars
Worth Buying: 7.8of 10 stars
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After Earth (2013)
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The Divergent Series 4: Ascendant (TBD)
The Divergent Series 2: Insurgent (2015)
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Ender's Game (2013)
The Giver (2014)
I Am Number Four (2011) The Maze Runner 2: Scorch Trials (2015) The Maze Runner 3: Death Cure (2018)