The Maze Runner (2014) Review

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The Maze Runner (2014)

Directed by Wes Ball

Based on The Maze Runner by James Dashner

Starring:
Dylan O’Brien
Kaya Scodelario
Thomas Brodie-Sangster
Will Poulter
Ki Hong Lee

Running time: 113 minutes

Plot Synopsis: (via Wikipedia)
The Maze Runner is a science fiction dystopian action thriller film. The story follows sixteen-year-old Thomas, portrayed by O’Brien, who awakens in a rusty elevator with no memory of who he is, only to learn he’s been delivered to the middle of an intricate maze, along with a slew of other boys, who have been trying to find their way out of the ever-changing labyrinth β€” all while establishing a functioning society in what they call the Glade.

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My Opinion:

I actually quite liked this movie. As I said in my review for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part I, I do love my “YA post-apocalyptic dystopian sci-fi books” but I’ve not read The Maze Runner or Divergent. Of those two movies, I definitely enjoyed The Maze Runner more than Divergent and will possibly read the books now. So, obviously, this review won’t be comparing the movie to the book (which will be a relief as I can get pretty picky if I’ve read the book first, as you can see in my review of The Giver. Not too happy with that adaptation!).

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I liked that this was some sort of sci-fi Lord Of The Flies. I liked the mystery of the maze & not knowing who had put these kids there and why. If I had any complaints, they’d probably be that I’d liked to have seen even more of the maze and its mysteries (I’m assuming it’s even more complex in the book?) and that I’d have liked more character development of the girl, who doesn’t seem to have much to do in this film. Other than that, I liked the relationships that formed between the characters and that they each had very distinct personalities. There’s a pretty generic “bad guy” but that’s to be expected as you need two different groups wanting to deal with their predicament in different ways. It just seemed to work as a movie much more than Divergent but I’m not sure why.

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Summary:

I actually enjoyed The Maze Runner a bit more than Mockingjay even though I think Mockingjay is the superior film. I assume the following books & films will suffer from the same problems as The Hunger Games in that the first book has a great and original idea that you can’t exactly repeat in book 2 (well, except for The Hunger Games having yet another Hunger Games in book 2…). πŸ˜‰ I mean, I’d assume there’s not a second maze, which is the cool thing about this first movie. But instead it’ll turn into this big fight against the evil powers in control and blah blah blah. Right?? Well, it’s the only direction these sort of stories can ever really take so I’m not really complaining – I’m just hoping it’s a more satisfying conclusion than in Mockingjay. I’m at least intrigued enough to probably read this series.

My Rating: 7/10

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41 thoughts on “The Maze Runner (2014) Review

  1. Great work here lady! I have to see this, but I am uhming and ahing about whether I should read the book first or go straight into it… guess we will see!

    • Thanks Zoe! πŸ™‚ Well, I’m certainly interested in the books now whereas I really had no desire to read Divergent after seeing that movie so… I’d maybe suggest the book first?? I’ll be asking for it for Christmas so will let you know if I actually manage to read it anytime soon. πŸ™‚

  2. Back in my youth, way back in like 2007, I was working at a talent agency where Wes Ball was a writing client. Nice guy. Nice to see good people have success. Glad this movie was good!

    • Thanks for the comment, Tim! Glad to see others enjoyed this one too. πŸ™‚ Yeah, I’m a girl so of course don’t mind all the YA stuff with girls as the main characters but it was a nice change to see a YA film with a group of boys for a change. It WAS pretty thrilling. Will be interesting to see the direction the next film takes…

  3. I didn’t expect to like this, but decided to give it a go. I liked it way better than Divergent; it’s not flawless but there were factors that specifically worked for the movie. It’s no Hunger Games either, but it leaves an intrigue (for non-readers, I haven’t read the books myself) to wanting to know more about their situation and the deal with Thomas. Hopefully the succeeding movies will live up to expectations. Great review!

    • Thanks for the comment! πŸ™‚ I totally agree – I wasn’t expecting to like this one as much as I did. If I’d read the book, I’m sure I’d be more critical of the movie. Am looking forward to the next movies but I’ll probably read the books now, which I’m sure will hurt the “movie experience” for me a bit…

  4. Good review. I just watched this the other day, and I thought it was pretty entertaining, but am I the only one who was confused by the ending? Maybe I should’ve read it first.

    • Thanks for the comment! πŸ™‚ Yeah, I thought this movie was pretty fun. What part of the ending were you confused by? I don’t know if I was confused – just left “hanging” as always with these YA films that are part of a series. It’s a shame we never exactly get a good “conclusion” to these films as there’s always a sequel on the way…

      • Yeah I guess maybe a lot of my confusion has to do with it being the first in a series. I was confused on why they would throw two kids who supposedly worked there into the maze. And also, I didn’t get if whether or not the virus was a real thing, because I know the scientists were faking being dead and everything, I didn’t know if it was some conspiracy they made up. But after reading up on it I guess it is real, seems odd to build the premise around it though. Building this large maze and killing off perfectly healthy children just to test brain function or something to find a cure? It just left me with an odd feeling, haha.

      • Lol. That’s okay – don’t worry about spoilers. I don’t have many people go back & read my older stuff. πŸ™‚ I agree that I found some things odd too. I also didn’t really get why they would put the kids who have the most potential to be of use in this maze that is very likely to kill them?? Didn’t fully make sense. I do hope things are explained more when I read the books. Although it was a fun movie, some of the plot seemed a bit “iffy”. πŸ™‚

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  6. Yaaayyy! Glad to see you liked this one, too, lady! It really is just a fun film. I agree on your points about the girl character and the villain–not nearly enough done with the girl (she just seemed like a token character, which is unfortunate) and the villain is pretty meh. I’m getting the impression the girl will be more important in the future, so we’ll see. I wanna read this series, too! Asked for the first book for Christmas, actually. We’ll compare notes. πŸ™‚

    • Yay! We can be book buddies! Although I’m asking for Game Of Thrones to read as well so we’ll see which I start first. The more lightweight Maze Runner may be better to begin with. πŸ˜‰ Yeah, I’m assuming the girl becomes more important later…

      • Oooh you’re starting GoT too?! Huzzah!! I’ve only read the first book, but I definitely want to read more. It’s on my shelf, just waiting for me…P.S. You don’t happen to have a Goodreads account, do you? I’ve been meaning to ask Zoe that too. We can all be movie nerds AND book nerds together. πŸ™‚

  7. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this one because the book was a bit meh. I think the simplified movie version of the story actually works a lot better.

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