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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Book to Movie. Rad or Bad? 'The Maze Runner' Edition. Part 1.

The Maze Runner

Based on the best selling novel by James Dashner, The Maze Runner follows Thomas as he is deposited in a community of boys after his memory is erased, soon learning they're all trapped in a maze that will require him to join forces with fellow "runners" for a shot at escape.



I have know Dylan O'Brien since the beginning of Teen Wolf and it is extremely easy to underestimate someone that comes from that background. However with this movie you really got to see his chops. He brought Thomas to life and it was amazing to watch. Thomas was pretty much just what I expected him to be: Courageous, smart, and friendly. The person that everyone could like. BTW I am putting money down that in 5 years Dylan O'Brien will be nominated for an Oscar. It's gonna happen.


Newt is my favorite character so, obviously, I was rather protective about who was to play him in the movie. I thought the director got this perfect with Thomas Brodie-Sangster! Everything that I loved about Newt in the books was present in the movie. His can-do attitude and how he is someone that won't give up. He gave a very nice motivational speech to Thomas about 30 minutes in and I thought it was the best line in the whole movie.


First off, its pronounced Mean-Oh. At least that was what the majority of the characters called him. There was still a few other pronunciations which kind of annoyed me. I was slightly disappointed with Minho, he was a great character he just didn't match the personality of what I envisioned. That is not a diss at Ki Hong Lee either cause I love that guy! Ever since he was in The Nine Lives of Chloe King. I mean, I love him as an actor, I was just disappointed with Minho.


There was something missing with Theresa. Don't get me wrong, Kaya Scodelario did a fantastic job, but there was something missing in the performance. She wasn't as attached to Thomas and didn't remember as much, which in turn through the plot off course. But I still think the spirit of Theresa was the same. I loved the scene where she first wakes up and is throwing things down at the boys! One of my favorites!


I am so glad that the fans brought Blake Cooper to Wes Ball's attention. He was the perfect Chuck! He was slightly sarcastic, a little naive, and had just enough warmth to make the perfect friend. I though his relationship to Thomas kind of took a back burner but you did get to see some terrific moments there. Especially when Chuck talks to Thomas about his parents. SO SAD.


The one thing that really urked me about this movie was that Gally had not gone though The Changing so the maliciousness towards Thomas that comes from Gally straight away was not present. It was more of a gradual dislike. It almost made Gally not the villain of the story, like he was in the book. He was just someone who was being slightly paranoid or whatever. That being said, I think Will Poulter did an AMAZING job!


Alby was really there when he needed to be. He showed Thomas around a little, got stung, and forced Thomas to learn more about his past. That was pretty much the role of Alby and he did it all. I do like Aml Ameen. I thought he was a terrific actor.


The rest of the cast did an amazing job. Whether they were the Med-Jacks or just random extras milling about. They made the whole movie feel really realistic and none of the acting, no matter how small the part was, was bad. 


This was not the best adaptation I have ever seen. It's just a fact. However, even though some plot points were changed around, I still thought this was a good movie. The overall ideas were there and the same feeling you got when you read the book was there. I still say that everyone who is a fan of the book will like the movie. Just don't go in expecting it to follow the book word by word, because if you do, you will be disappointed. I loved it! I want to see it again, and I probably will. As a movie I give it a 9.5, as an adaptation, I give it a 7.

Watch out for more news on The Scorch Trails, the sequel to The Maze Runner, coming to theaters in September of 2015.

Also, look for Part 2 of "Book to Movie. Rad or Bad. 'The Maze Runner' Edition" coming soon.

-Shawnee Smith

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