Film Review: The Maze Runner

THE MAZE RUNNER

The Maze Runner is an entertaining action thriller which only suffers with being too reminiscent of other recent films in this genre.

When Thomas wakes up in a cage with no memory of who he is and how he got there, he quickly learns that he and many other young boys are trapped in a maze. The only hope to escape is through the mapping of the ‘runners’. Thomas hopes to join them and escape the maze…

Based on James Dashner’s novel, The Maze Runner is a dystopian action film aimed at a teenage audience. The premise of the film offers viewers enough of a hook. The central question of why these boys have been sent to such an environment sustains the audience’s attention for a good portion of the film.

Protagonist Thomas is strong enough to carry the film in that it is immediately clear that there is more to him. The Maze Runner offers an ensemble of young characters. Many of these are archetypes. Thomas and Gally are suitably developed to make them appear authentic, although Gally’s transformation does seem accelerated at the very end of the film. The Maze Runner is well paced for the most part, even if the ending feels a bit melodramatic in contrast to what has preceded it.

Themes in The Maze Runner are redolent of other recent dystopian blockbusters such as The Hunger Games. There is a preoccupation with teenagers being made to suffer unduly, which underlines both this film and recent others. Moreover, that the film will continue on to something else seems almost mandatory. Art direction in the film is good, particularly the industrial look of the maze. Dylan O’Brien, Ki Hong Lee and Will Poulter offer decent performances.

Ultimately, any lack of success endured by The Maze Runner will be likely down to the fact that it feels unoriginal in the scope of its sub-genre. Really, the film misfires only in its release so soon after similar pictures.

Stuff To Look At

Plenty of trailers this week, with Mortdecai, The Maze Runner, Maps to the Stars and more…

Mortdecai

Here is the first trailer for Mortdecai. The film stars Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor. Depp plays Charlie Mortdecai, an art dealer on a mission to recover a stolen painting. The film will be released in January 2015.

The Maze Runner

Above is an introduction to the characters in upcoming action thriller The Maze Runner. Based on the best-selling novel, The Maze Runner is set in a post-apocalyptic world. The film will hit UK screens on 10th October 2014.

Maps to the Stars

David Cronenberg’s latest Maps to the Stars is about the celebrity-obsessed culture. The film features an enviable cast, including Julianne Moore, John Cusack, Robert Pattinson and Mia Wasikowska. Maps to the Stars will be released in UK cinemas on 26th October 2014.

Love, Rosie

Love Rosie is a new British comedy starring Lily Collins and Sam Claflin. The film focuses on best friends Rosie and Alex who decide to attend university together in the US. Love Rosie is scheduled for release on 22nd October 2014.

Planes 2: Fire and Rescue

Planes 2: Fire and Rescue is out in cinemas now. The above video shows how to draw protagonist Dusty. No matter how good the instruction, mine would still turn out looking nothing like that. Although I did draw a good Mrs Potts once.

Horns

Well this looks unsettling. Supernatural thriller Horns stars Daniel Radcliffe, Juno Temple and Max Minghella. The film hits UK cinemas on 29th October 2014, just in time for Halloween.

Stuff To Look At

Plenty of cinematic delights, including the last Amazing Spider-Man 2 trailer, the latest X-Men: Days of Future Past trailer, Maleficent, Noah and more!

The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Above is the final The Amazing Spider-Man 2 trailer. Spider-Man is basically fighting everyone. Everyone. He really needs his Amazing Friends. Starring Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Dane De Haan and Jamie Foxx, The Amazing Spider-man 2 hits UK screens on 18th April 2014.

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Here is the latest trailer for sequel X-Men: Days of Future Past. The film features characters from the original X-Men series as well as the younger versions from X-Men: First Class, taking place over two time periods. X-Men: Days of Future Past is released in the UK on 22nd May 2014.

Maleficent

The latest trailer for Maleficent suggests the film will be much more action packed than the standard fairy tale. Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent looks deliciously wicked, yet the trailer indicates that the film will show another side to the iconic character. Maleficent is released in UK cinemas on 30th May 2014.

Noah

I’m sure there are more than two of some of these animals in the latest clip from Noah. Just how big is this ark going to be to fit them all in, with sufficient provisions so they don’t start eating each other? I guess we will find out when Noah hits UK screens on 4th April 2014.

Pioneer

Well this looks tense and interesting. Based on true events, Pioneer is the story of a team of divers going to lay a pipeline in the North Sea. Reportedly due for a Hollywood remakePioneer is released in UK cinemas on 11th April 2014.

Snoopy and Charlie Bown: A Peanuts Movie

With Postman Pat and Paddington Bear getting big-screen features, it is not really a surprise that Snoopy is following suit. This teaser does not reveal too, much other than Snoopy is as cheeky as ever. Snoopy and Charlie Brown: A Peanuts Movie is due for release in 2015.

The Maze Runner

THe latest film to be based on a best-selling young adult movel that I haven’t read, The Maze Runner is an action thriller set in a dystopian world. I like the look of the maze in this film, but with my sense of direction I wouldn’t last too long. Starring Dylan O’Brien and Will Poulter, The Maze Runner is out in UK cinemas on 24th October 2014.

Rio 2

‘It’s a Jungle Out Here’ is one of the songs from the upcoming Rio 2. The animated sequel sees the return of Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Leslie Mann and Jamie Foxx. Rio 2 hits UK screens on 4th April 2014.