Thursday, June 18, 2015

Movie Review - The Maze Runner

The Maze Runner (2014)
Starring Dylan O'Brien, Aml Ameen, Ki Hong Lee, Blake Cooper, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Will Poulter, Kaya Scodelario, and Patricia Clarson
Directed by Wes Ball

At a certain point, all of these teen-centered dystopian fantasies start to blend together what with The Hunger Games, Divergent, and now The Maze Runner all of which take place in a future where teens are placed in perilous situations the likes of which seem too outrageous to really be believed thanks to some overriding governmental entity.  Here, Thomas (Dylan O'Brien) wakes up to find himself in the middle of a giant maze inhabited by a group of teen guys -- none of whom know how they got there or have any memory of who they were prior to being placed into the maze.  Every night, the maze shifts and while many have tried to find a way out, most who attempt wind up dead thanks to spider-like bio-mechanical creatures known as Grievers that inhabit the labyrinth.  Someone put these kids here for some reason and Thomas and his fellow runners of the maze will stop at nothing to find out who is behind their captivity.

Although the film finds itself getting a bit repetitive as it progresses, the overall concept of this dark tale is quite intriguing -- perhaps the most interesting of all the aforementioned similarly themed teen flicks.  With a game cast of actors (most of whom I'd never seen before) who all do a solid job of making us believe their plight, The Maze Runner has the makings of something promising as it continues on its way in future films.  Once again, though, similar to the Divergent series, I have serious doubts as to whether it can maintain its "reason for existence" past Movie #1.  All of these teen series feel drawn out as they progress and I worry that The Maze Runner will fall into the same trap.  For now, however, it's unique enough to warrant a look.

The RyMickey Rating:  B-

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