Last night, I finally made my way to the theatres again. This time its with my girl friends. We gathered to go see The Maze Runner. 3 of us (myself included) are avid readers so we’ve heard or read the book. I actually reviewed it right HERE if you’d like to check it out. I actually liked it so much that I went to look for the trailer and was pretty intrigued by it so I went off and did a post in my other blog, Days Nights and Daydreams for my Out of This World Travels (which unfortunately hasn’t had a new location yet) but that post is right HERE!
Now that I’m shamelessly linked up all that I could, its time to head over to one of the book to big screen adaptation that I’ve been desperately anticipating (and hoping that gets it right) since I finished reading that book, while holding back from reading the next one because I don’t know how the movie will end. Keep in mind that despite the anticipation, I really didn’t know what to expect.
Lets check it out!
Director: Wes Ball
Cast: Dylan O’Brien, Aml Ameen, Ki Hong Lee, Kaya Scodelario, Blake Cooper, Will Poulter, Thomas Brodie-Sangster
Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) wakes up going up a dark elevator and at the top is welcomed by a bunch of boys called The Gladers and a enclosed area surrounded by a maze. Every boy went through the same thing: they have no idea what this place is, how they got there or anything else except their names. For the last 3 years, the only ones allowed are the Runners and they explore the maze outside between sunrise and sunset when the doors are open to find a way out, except they haven’t had any luck. Thomas’s arrival changes a lot when things start happening out of order and a few days after, a girl, Teresa (Kaya Scodelario) sent up saying that she is the last one ever and wakes up calling Thomas’s name. Together with Alby (Aml Ameen), the leader of the pack; Newt (Thomas Brodie-Sangster) the second in command; Minho (Ki Hong Lee), the keeper of the Runners; the maze and the Glades dynamics start changing and Thomas convinces the boys that the only hope for them now is to find a way out and maybe get some answers along the way.
The Maze Runner, as mentioned before, is based on the book with the same name written by James Dashner. It is part of a trilogy and from my research of the director and actors, they seem to be in pre-production for the sequel. Movie adaptations of books are pretty tricky especially since you are trying to appeal to the reader’s imagination of what they have interpreted. The Maze Runner does shift a few details around to help the story flow better as a movie and also the ending has a few changes. I’m really bad with remembering details so if you remember something differently that was changed, you can always share that with me. I never expect a movie to be a carbon copy of the book so to be honest, I really enjoyed The Maze Runner. The changes they made, the cast and the whole set-up of The Glades and even the Griever may not have been reflected exactly as I had expected but it all worked well together. I read the book only 2 months before and still I was still feeling the danger in the situation even if I knew where all this was headed. That is a very good thing.
One of the best points of the movie is The Glades. If anything, that should fulfill the imagination of the readers because its fairly close to the book (at least how I interpreted it). The Glades is simple and the mechanics of it all. It really gives a good idea of how things are. As Thomas goes into the maze (because you know he will or The Maze Runner wouldn’t exist), the maze also matches a lot of how the book describes it. Pat on the back to the production team for having this set because for me, when you adapt any source material, the one thing that should stay the same is where it was set. You can swap anything around but at the very least, keep that. The Glades were gloomy but simple and self-sustaining while the maze was dark and mysterious. Those are the feelings you should have when you see it.
The cast are fairly unknown to me, with the exception of Will Poulter. Everyone does fairly well and falls into believable characters. The main guy is Thomas played by Dylan O’Brien and he does a great job. For some guy that I’ve never seen before, he picks up this role, doesn’t exaggerate and delivers a pretty good character. Thomas is the key to the puzzle and we watch as he mans up to the unknown that he’s tossed in but he also knows that somehow he is connected to the whole situation along with Teresa, the leading girl played by Kaya Scodelario, who is also unknown to me. Funny enough, I think that Kaya Scodelario’s Teresa still needs a little work because her character didn’t do much for me, just like something was missing. It could also be that she was introduced fairly later in the movie. However, thanks to the rest of the boys especially Minho (played by Ki Hong Lee), Newt (Thomas Brodie-Sangster) and Chuck (Blake Cooper), who are fantastic characters both on screen and in the book, they all bring a touch of something different to balance out the whole story. And then we have Will Poulter who is something of the opposition/resistance of change (some would say the antagonist) of the story and he does a fine job as well. In this whole crowd, I think the best performance goes to Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Dylan O’Brien followed closely by Ki Hong Lee.
The Maze Runner is another dystopian story set in the future when the world has literally collapsed. However, it also holds a dangerous and thrilling premise that has been adapted quite well onto the big screen. With a good adaptation, strong performances and a dark and mysterious setting and a handful of unanswered questions plus an ending ripe for a sequel, it proves to be one of the better adaptations I’ve seen in the recent years. It shows a lot of promise (despite some minor flaws) and it was a pretty thrilling movie experience to be absorbed into this story. I definitely hope that the sequel does happen because I look forward to it. Meanwhile, I’m going to be getting that sequel in the trilogy to read 😉
As a closing thought, one we discussed with the girls, if our world were to be completely in dystopia in the future, doesn’t the future of teens look so grim? They always get thrown into this life-threatening ordeals from The Hunger Games, Divergent and now the Maze Runner. They never catch a break, eh? But then, I guess it is the target market, right? Its helps young adults bond with the characters more. Maybe?
Have you seen or read The Maze Runner? What did you think about it? If you haven’t seen it, does it sound appealing to you?