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Movie Breakdown: Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

September 17, 2015


The Impression:

I only saw The Maze Runner because for a while it was on HBO every two to three hours.  I thought it was okay.  The Scorch Trials looks like it features even more young adults running and yelling, so I guess I’m in.

The Reality:

The somewhat odd thing about Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials is that it’s essentially just the first film without a maze.  This probably would have been fine, but the new scorched (get it?) open world setting is really uninspired, and that makes watching a bunch of kids complaining about being oppressed/abused/trapped/whatever by the man (a big corporation with the least scary name possible – W.C.K.D.) a lot less entertaining and/or tolerable.  Sure, scattered throughout the dystopian walk-a-about are moments where people do heroic things, make grand statements and all that jazz, but I couldn’t get myself to care.  At least in the initial entry in the series there was something for everyone to focus on and figure out (what’s the deal with this crazy maze, man?).  In The Scorch Trials, there is a mission, but it’s nothing more than a convenient way to shift all of the characters from Point A to Point B so that the third film gets properly setup.  I understand that approach (Hollywood gotta get that sequel money), but because of it the movie feels flat and is ultimately a fairly forgettable effort.

Only catch The Scorch Trials if you’re a fan of the first movie (or maybe just the YA genre in general), but keep your expectations fully in check.  It’s clearly not meant to be anything but a serviceable bridge to the next flick.

The Lesson:

The whole YA thing is becoming tiresome.  Let’s just wrap The Hunger Games series and call it quits on the whole genre, yeah?

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