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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

The Maze Runner movie review: a terrible feeling of deja vu

The Maze Runner yellow light

Bland and generic beyond the small pleasures of its theme-park-ride-esque thrills and its half-intriguing, half-infuriating mystery.
I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

I have not read the source material

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

The Lord of the Flies. Lost. The Hunger Games. Cube. The Truman Show. The Matrix. For starters. The list of — well, let’s be kind and call them “influences” — on the latest young-adult dystopian adventure is a litany of puzzle adventures-cum-existential mysteries, none of which The Maze Runner fares well up against. Thomas (Dylan O’Brien: The Internship) wakes up in a mysterious, if pleasantly verdant, Glade surrounded by a massive, constantly shifting maze of hundred-meter-high concrete walls. Like all the other teenaged boys there — including leader Gally (Will Poulter: Plastic) and his lieutenant, Newt (Thomas Brodie-Sangster: Game of Thrones) — Thomas remembers nothing but his name: not why they have been imprisoned here, not who could have done this, nothing. Oh, and the maze is inhabited by something big and roaring that ensures that “no one survives a night in the maze.” The characters are the very definition of bland and generic, defined purely by their roles in the Glade — Thomas, as the New Guy and the Rebel, will dare to try to find a way to escape that the others haven’t yet thought of — and the dialogue consists mostly of tedious massive info dumps. Still, there are some small pleasures to be found in the theme-park-ride-esque thrills that comes from Thomas and Minho (Ki Hong Lee) running the maze while it shifts around them, and in the half-intriguing, half-infuriating mystery of what is going on… which has only deepened by the film’s end, all the better to whet your appetite for the 2015 sequel. The biggest mystery, and the one I fear will not have a satisfying explanation, is this: Why is it all boys in the Glade? Even the best in-context reason will have a hard time discounting the fact that pop culture does not require yet another tale of an all-male society, not that this one even makes any special use of its own. Unless the story’s point — what with the first girl ever, Teresa (Kaya Scodelario: Now Is Good), appearing in the Glade — is this: As if the world weren’t scary, unknowable, and full of monsters enough, then girls show up! *groan*


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The Maze Runner (2014)
US/Can release: Sep 19 2014
UK/Ire release: Oct 10 2014

MPAA: rated PG-13 for thematic elements and intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, including some disturbing images
BBFC: rated 12A (intense scenes, threat, violence)

viewed at a semipublic screening with an audience of critics and ordinary moviegoers

official site | IMDb
more reviews: Movie Review Query Engine | Rotten Tomatoes

If you’re tempted to post a comment that resembles anything on the film review comment bingo card, you might want to reconsider.

  • Drew

    It’s an all boys society because it’s a controlled experiment. There are other groups that feature all girls, mixed, etc… Throwing a girl into the mix is a variable.

    Anyways, this review laughably biased. I almost considered exiting out after that first sentence, because your attitude towards this movie became predictable.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    This is a movie so exposition-heavy it loses track of it’s own plot points.

    Minor Spoilers:

    Case in point: Griefers only come out at night, after the door to the maze have sealed. No Runner has ever survived a night in the maze, nor has any Glader seen a Griefer and lived to tell the tale.

    So, how do the Gladers know what happens to someone who’s stung? They have a plan in place, and the tools built to carry out that plan.

    (For that matter, what does happen to someone who gets stung? Presumably the Griver stings are infecting the boys with the Flare virus, so they ought to just die. But if that’s what happens, why do the Gladers feel the need to exile sting victims?)

    But, the various plot inconsistencies aren’t what bug me most. What did bother me was the fact that, by the end, the audience doesn’t seem to know everything Thomas knows. Or at least, if there are still gaps in Thomas’s knowledge, they exist only to allow for additional reveals.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    There are other groups that feature all girls, mixed, etc…

    This isn’t evident in the movie.

    Also, your comment is laughably fanboy-ish.

  • There are other groups that feature all girls, mixed, etc…

    Oh? Where were those in the movie?

  • CeruleanCielo

    Biased review, what else is new. Oh, and they don’t tell you about the control groups of the experiment because Thomas doesn’t remember. Did you forget that the movie is told through his eyes? Just like the book is. He is not suppose to know about the other groups until Books 2 and 3. Or did Bryan Singer show in the beggining of The usual suspects that Verbal didn’t really have any physical deficiencies so people could “understand better” the ending. The whole movie we only know what Verbal tells, except for the end. The Maze runner is a trilogy, answers will only come in the next 2 movies. Wes Ball won’t spoon feed you the answers just cause you don’t feel like watching the rest. That shows his integrity as a director and his loyalty to the book. And I still don’t get why a girl showing up was a bad thing since they stayed away from love shit.

  • CeruleanCielo

    I won’t say that The maze runner doesn’t have plot holes, because a movie without plot holes is impossible. As such I’m aware TMR has plot holes. But talking specifically of the points you mentioned.
    How do they know what happens to people that got stung?
    1. they said that people who got stung don’t speak coherently, thus they can’t tell the story or describe a griever
    2. They said clearly that who gets stung dies. So is very much possible that a runner found a stung body or a stung incoherent agonizing person.
    3. The director Wes Ball released a companion Comic book, about the early days of the Glade. This comic may answer your questions. TMR is not the first movie to use Transmidia to help tell aditional story (Matrix, Heroes, etc.)

    Other point, Ben was banished not because he was stung, but because he broke their main law: Never harm another glader. Ben tried to kill Thomas, so thats why he was banished.

    As for what do the grievers sting people with, the virus or not, I’m sure if it’s relevant it will be adressed in the next 2 movies.

    As for the audience not knowing what Thomas knows. That was exactly as the book, by the end we know all Thomas knows, but he doesn’t have his whole memory yet.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    1. they said that people who got stung don’t speak coherently, thus they can’t tell the story or describe a griever

    No, that’s not correct. Thomas is told, quite explicitly, that no one had ever seen a Griever. Also, the runner who was stung had numerous moments of lucidity, doubtless to make his expulsion resonate emotionally.

    2. They said clearly that who gets stung dies. So is very much possible that a runner found a stung body or a stung incoherent agonizing person.

    What’s possible can’t trump what’s shown on screen. Also, if they know he’s going to die anyway, why banish him too? Seems redundant.

    3. The director Wes Ball released a companion Comic book, about the early days of the Glade. This comic may answer your questions. TMR is not the first movie to use Transmidia to help tell aditional story (Matrix, Heroes, etc.)

    Color me decidedly unimpressed by filmmakers who expect their audience to do homework. That kind of supplementary material should expand on an already complete story, or tell new stories in the same world.

    Other point, Ben was banished not because he was stung, but because he broke their main law: Never harm another glader.

    Again, that is not stated in the film. And as I mentioned, he’s dying anyway.

    That was exactly as the book, by the end we know all Thomas knows, but he doesn’t have his whole memory yet.

    It would have annoyed me just as much in the book as in the movie. I’m willing to buy that their memories are removed before they’re sent to the Glade. I’m willing to buy that the magic blue juice both cures Griever stings and restores memories. I’m far less willing to buy that said memory restoration is quite so convenient for the storyteller. From the audience perspective, we’re subjected to (yet another) infodump, but with just enough info to get the characters to the next story beat. My suspension of disbelief only goes so far.

  • CeruleanCielo

    “No, that’s not correct. Thomas is told, quite explicitly, that no one had ever seen a Griever. Also, the runner who was stung had numerous
    moments of lucidity, doubtless to make his expulsion resonate emotionally.”

    Thomas was told no one survived a night in the maze. The dead people sure saw the grievers and sure got stung. Runners went through the maze everday, it is no stretch to think they saw the bodies since they have a tomb that was found by Thomas in the movie.

    No, Ben had no moment of lucidity. Alby states quite clearly that Ben didn’t speak a coherent word since the attack. I don’t mean to sound like I’m bragging, I’m really not, but I read the books and watched the movie 6 times. So details are strong in my head, that’s all.

    “What’s possible can’t trump what’s shown on screen. Also, if they know he’s going to die anyway, why banish him too? Seems redundant.”

    Implied knowledge is used in movies all the time because they don’t have time to show everything. Exemple: Again with The usual suspects, when they show the piece of broken labeled porcelain on the floor, the director is supposing the audience understands that Verbal was lying about his lawyer’s identity all through the movie. It’s implied knowledge. Again they didn’t banishing Ben because he was stung. Alby was stung and wasn’t banished. Actually in the beggining of the movie it was stated very clearly they only had 3 rules and if Thomas wanted to stay in the Glade he had to respect them. Never to harm other glader was 1 one the mentioned rules. After Ben’s attack on Thomas he broke the law and stablished himself as a potential threat to all gladers, thus he couldn’t stay, thus the banishment.

    “Color me decidedly unimpressed by filmmakers who expect their audience to do homework. That kind of supplementary material should expand on an already complete story, or tell new stories in the same world.”

    I am sorry to hear that because the future is transmedia. Midia researcher Henry Jenkins has a great book called Convergence culture and he Studies The Matrix exemple, Jenkins speaks also of how new generations think and create using transmidia tools. It makes the world creation a lot richer.

    About the last point I won’t bring it up, you draw a line in the sand and I’ll respect that.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    Thomas was told no one survived a night in the maze. The dead people sure saw the grievers and sure got stung.

    When someone says “No one has ever survived X” or “No one has seen Y and lived” the clear implication is that those who do attempt X or see Y die before they can tell anybody about it. And what Thomas is not told (but could have been) is, “A few runners made it back in the morning, but the Grievers stung them, and they died later.”

    No, Ben had no moment of lucidity.

    Yes, he does. He tries to apologize and begs forgiveness when he’s captured, and then again as he’s being forced through the door. So, Alby is wrong. (Or at least, Alby’s dialog is contradicted what we see onscreen. So who should I believe: Alby, or my lying eyes?)

    I’m not sure I’m on board with your usage of “implied knowledge” here. I’m also not sure how the reveal scene from “The Usual Suspects” applies.

    Again they didn’t banishing Ben because he was stung. Alby was stung and wasn’t banished.

    Thomas is told that Ben has to be banished because he’s dangerous due to being stung. No one mentions attacking Thomas as the reason for the banishment, just as evidence of his dangerousness. His banishment is presented as a standard practice – the boy’s holding the poles have clearly done this before. Newt explicitly decides not to banish Alby, which is significant, because it means Newt is willing to break Alby’s rules under the right circumstances, which puts him on Thomas’s side against Gally.

    Anyway, even if it was about attacking Thomas, that still doesn’t adequately explain the banishment. Ben was going to die anyway. Easier to tie him to a tree and let the poison/virus take it’s toll. (Frankly, banishment to certain death at the hands of the Grievers is a cowardly method of execution, something else that bothered me about the story.) And the next time anyone is threatened with banishment, it will be an act of desperation by a less-than-rational character, not a logical application of the rules.

    It’s entirely possible that this all plays out differently in the book. But this isn’t book, it’s the movie.

    There’s a difference between extending properties across the media landscape to enhance the experience of a movie, and doing so to plug plot holes. The former is an excellent use of emerging technologies. The latter is shitty filmmaking. :)

  • CeruleanCielo

    To end the discussion on how do they know about the sting. I looked up and yes, the comic book tells the story of that tomb on the glade and the first boy stung. Here are a few pages of it:

    http://comicbastards.com/sdcc-14-fox-commissioned-boom-to-make-a-the-maze-runner-comic/

    I will quote once again that Alby said that if Thomas wanted to stay in the glade he had to respect the rules. Ben attacked other glader, thus stablishing himself as a threat to other people and breaking the rule by which they lived. From their point of view he could attack anyone again, because he already attacked a glader once (at that point in the movie Thomas was nothing more than the new glader)

    The lucidity of Ben is subjective. You believe that because he was begging he was lucid. I don’t believe that because drug adicts cry and beg, insane people cry and beg, drunk people cry and beg. To me is not really a proof of lucidity. That’s my opinion, you think different, that’s ok.

    I mean implied knowledge as the knowledge the director assumes you have to connect the dots. Like the tomb, if they had tombs is easy to assume at one point they had dead bodies.

    “Thomas is told that Ben has to be banished because he’s dangerous due to being stung.”

    No that was never said. What Alby told Thomas was “He is a dangerous to others”. They never said he was being banished because he was stung.

    “His banishment is presented as a standard practice – the boy’s holding the poles have clearly done this before.”

    The banishment is not usual practice. Yeah they probably discussed this event before, they had time before the banishment and a “builders squad” to creat the poles. But it is never mentioned that this happened before. You were unwilling to believe that they have probably seen a stung dead body before, even when the movie showed a tomb, but you are willing to assume they made banishments before because they had poles. This is not coherent.

    “Newt explicitly decides not to banish Alby, which is significant, because it means Newt is willing to break Alby’s rules”

    I am sorry, I really don’t want to be annoying, but I really did watched the movie 6 times, there is no such scene. There is NO scene in which they state that banishment is the punishment for getting stung. This statement, or Newt actually deciding to not banish Alby, neither of this scenes exist. Not in the movie, not in the book.

    I never said the banishment wasn’t a coward act. IT IS! Just like in Leo DiCaprio’s The beach they took the wounded to the middle of the forrest so the rest of them didn’t have to hear them slowly die.

    The plot holes are intentionally put there so studios can use transmidia resources. That is the ESSENCE of transmidia. It only is transmidia if it is to plug plot holes. It has to be new information complementing others to be called transmidia. That’s not crappy filmaking, that’s the future of midia. Marvel does it, Matrix did it, and now The maze runner is doing it. Otherwise is multimidia, that’s when it brings no additional information to the universe of the story, is just the same universe in different kinds of midia.

  • rwmcgee

    Hollywood has certainly done plenty of dumb things in it’s time, but I can’t believe studio executives or creatives would really think it was a good idea to force people to go to outside resources to plug plot-holes in a movie. The 95% of people who have no interest in doing so would only see a movie with terrible plot holes. This would create poor word of mouth, and lessen the chance of sequels in an increasingly franchise driven medium. Marvel in no way does this; they may use varying media forms to supplement films, or to add additional information…but they don’t use it to fill plot holes. The first Matrix movie also did not require any additional media viewing to make sense…and I can’t imagine any amount of additional media untwisting the two sequels.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    I don’t really want to pay to sit through this movie again just to settle this argument. I’ll simply say this: I may be inferring different things from the implications in the action and dialog than you are, while you may be bringing in outside knowledge that I don’t have.* But for a movie to spend as much time on exposition as this one does, and still leave so much unclear and unexplained is remarkable in it’s own right.

    We’re definitely using a different definitions of “lucid”. Mine means that the subject is alert and aware of their surroundings, and of what’s happening to them, and is able to communicate clearly. Ben exhibits this state at least twice, contrasted with non-lucid moments (such as the attack on Thomas) where he behaves rather rabidly.

    Incidentally, I just pulled up the reveal scene from “The Usual Suspects” on youtube (here) because while I remember the visuals of the scene, I could remember if their was a voice over flashback of previous dialog. There is. If Singer is asking the audience to connect the dots, he’s holding our hand and pushing it where he wants it to go. Also, I don’t have to connect any dots to know that what’s in the tomb. the film gives us explicit information that several of the Gladers have died, and not all by Griever attack.

    This is not coherent.

    You’re right, it’s not. But it’s not that I believe contradictory things about the movie, it’s that the move is asking me to believe contradictory things.

    The plot holes are intentionally put there so studios can use transmidia resources. That is the ESSENCE of transmidia.

    The essence of “transmedia” is to screw around with the audience and hinder their ability to make fundamental, plot-level sense of your product, let alone enjoy it? I’m sorry, I’m calling bullshit on that, even if true. Because from a business sense, it’s unbelievably stupid. And from an artistic sense, fuck anyone who does this. If I enjoy a film, I might seek out some ancillary materials. As far as “The Maze Runner” goes, I’m not interested in looking any further than the books’ plot synopses on their Wikipedia pages, and then only to feel like I didn’t completely waste 2 hours of my life.

    * For instance, if Alby told Thomas that Ben was dangerous, I read the implication there that he’s dangerous from being stung. Alby might not say he’s being banished for being stung, but he doesn’t say he’s being banished for breaking rules, either. Anyway, your explanations just ending up inviting more questions from me: why not let Ben die from the sting? (I know, I’ve asked that before.) Why does no one come to Ben’s defense, since the attack is clearly not his fault? Have no Gladers gotten into a fist fight since Alby solidified control? Why include the banishment scene at all if it has no thematic impact on the rest of the film?

  • Good list of things at the beginning. Personally, I was thinking of the Swiss Family Robinson the whole time, while my friend was thinking of Portal.

    Also, did the outfits the kids were wearing distract anyone else or was it just me? I normally don’t pick up on stuff like that but the costuming somehow just didn’t feel right.

    [SPOILERS]

    The whole idea of the experiment just didn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. What are they testing that has anything to do with resisting disease? How the hell did the protagonist and discount Kristen Stewart come to work as scientists if they were teenagers?

    And please don’t say it’s explained in the books. A movie should be able to stand on its own. I think a book would have to be incredibly famous for the movie to get away with presuming audience familiarity, something at the very least in the neighborhood of Dracula, fame-wise.

    So maybe the reason why it’s all boys in the experiment is a secret until books 2 and 3, but it would have been so easy for there to be a bit like, “why is it all boys?” “we don’t know. That’s just another thing they’re keeping from us” or whatever. In my opinion something like that would have tided the audience over because at least it’s being addressed.

  • CeruleanCielo

    I am not trying to make anyone like Transmedia storytelling. I am saying that that is the road studios are starting to follow and with the advance of technology they’ll do it more and more.
    Matrix could stand alone, the other 2 movies couldn’t, because they decided to use transmidia storytelling. You can’t fully understand the universe of The matrix without watching The animatrix. You don’t know the importance of the character Niobe if you didn’t play the videogame. That’s how transmidia storytelling works. Marvel does it all the time. You can not fully understand Marvel’s Agents of Shield if you didn’t watch the other Marvel movies.
    Not only Marvel, more and more stories are built that way (Walking dead, teen wolf, Maze runner, BBC’s Sherlock, Heroes, etc.). The studios are interested because instead of selling just a movie ticket, they can sell the ticket, the game, the companion comic book, etc.

    If you want to check it out an exemple “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries” is a good one.

    Anyway, if you don’t like transmidia storytelling is totally cool. But if you are interested, by any chance, in reading more about it I suggest Henry Jenkins’s “Convergence culture: where old and new media collide”.

    http://nyupress.org/books/9780814742952/

  • CeruleanCielo

    I think the only thing we can agree on is that this discussion is taking too much time. Time I don’t have, and time you probably don’t have too.
    I read the books and watched the movie six times. Based in the knowledge of what really happened in the book I explained my arguments. If you don’t accept my arguments there’s really not much else I can do. I can only say that if you read the book AND the comic book, you will get the answers to your questioning. They are there if you ever feel like looking for them.
    You won’t change your mind, I won’t change my mind. So that’s that. It’s king of pointless to go on and on over the same points that we disagree on again and again. It will be a waste of our time.
    We just have to agree to disagree. I honestly wish you all the best.

  • “Love shit.” Yeah, that’s the only thing girls are good for.

  • Except *nobody* making movies thinks it is in the slightest bit odd that the story is populated almost entirely by boys, so it would never occur to anyone that it’s something that needs to be explained.

  • Liz

    What do you mean the review is biased? Biased how?

  • Because it fails to coincide with his/her opinion to a sufficient degree.

  • RogerBW

    What’s the point of “mapping” the maze if it changes every night?

    Eh, this looked so much like something deliberately set up to press the buttons of the target audience that I took the trailer as a big “GROWN-UPS NOT ALLOWED” sign. After all, it takes some sort of talent and effort to make a film that appeals to kids and adults.

  • Tom

    Why is it important, the book was about a male tribe, with a woman inducted as a paradigm shift, argument please…

  • RogerBW

    The film has to stand on its own, or what’s the point of it?

  • Tom

    Oh I agree, don’t get me wrong. In that respect the film was good, however adding politics into a teen Sci Fi is unnecessary, considering it follows the first novel well. Women are illustrated as a juxtaposition to the male society, not as a detriment of.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    Spoilers:
    *
    *
    *
    *
    *
    *
    *
    *
    *
    It will turn out that there’s a pattern to the changes, and that the runners have mapped out every iteration of the maze, without ever finding a exit. This information will lead Thomas to a Scooby Gang-esque solution to another puzzle later on.

    Anyway, there are some nods to some intriguing ideas throughout, but unless the screenwriting improves dramatically for the next two installments, you won’t miss much skipping the whole thing.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    Making the whole enterprise yet another story about boys, for boys, with girls cast as “the alien other”. Wheee… -_-

    Ironically, both you and Drew are wrong about what the introduction of Theresa does to the story. It doesn’t introduce a “variable”. There’s no “juxtaposition” or “paradigm shift” caused by her “induction” [sic]. I suppose we could be grateful to note that she doesn’t even introduce an obligatory romantic subplot.

    The only thing interesting about Theresa is that she vaguely recognizes Thomas. (But, somehow, no one else, even though they were all a part of the same experiment.) Even if that fact lead anywhere (it doesn’t), she doesn’t have to be a girl to be given that information. Consider, if the note found on Theresa had been directly addressed to Thomas, “the last one ever” thus referring to only supply shipments rather than both supplies and people, what would have changed about everything that happened after that? Answer: nothing.

    There’s simply nothing in this story for girls*. It’s about boys as “default human condition”. There’s nothing inherently wrong about that. It’s just a tired mode of storytelling. It’s been done to death.

    * Well, there’s eye candy, which isn’t nothing.

  • You think eliminating half of humanity *isn’t* “political”? You *agree* that maleness is the default, neutral state of humanity?

    Really?

    In what way are “women… illustrated as a juxtaposition to the male society”? I would *love* to know.

  • Tom

    I’m sorry but I cannot agree. The whole point of the glade was to split both men and women so normal relations would be compromised on the outside.Teresa is characterized as another human apart of the glade,why should she get special treatment? You are complaining entirely about the structure of the novel ‘the glade only has boys’, much like the hunger games has two tributes. Princess Leia is the only notable female of the rebellion, should we question the morality of star wars now? I never said maleness is the default neutral state of humanity, however I will say if you choose a movie inherently on the basis of which sex appears more or gets more screen time is ridiculous and sexist within itself. The Hunger games isn’t sexist, although Katniss is the lead and the majority of our affections lie on the female cast, is it. Overall believing this film is sexist or politically driven is a more overused rhetoric to get views than the films story itself.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    The whole point of the glade was to split both men and women so normal relations would be compromised on the outside.

    There is no evidence of this anywhere in this film. The best we get is the suggestion that the Glade was set up as some sort of “survival of the fittest” proving ground, looking for some sort of resistance to a virus. This makes little sense on its own, and is likely bullsit anyway, since the character who relays this information fakes their own death.

    Princess Leia is the only notable female of the rebellion, should we question the morality of star wars now?

    Hi! Welcome to the 21st century! We’ve been discussing this for a while now!

    I never said maleness is the default neutral state of humanity

    No need, the film implicitly does this for you.

    if you choose a movie inherently on the basis of which sex appears more or gets more screen time is ridiculous and sexist within itself.

    “I know you are, but what am I.” Always a winning counter-argument.

    The Hunger games isn’t sexist, although Katniss is the lead and the majority of our affections lie on the female cast, is it.

    Well, in The Hunger Games, the kids are split 50-50, male-to-female, kinda like the general population. As too are the sympathetic characters: Katniss, Peeta, Gale, and Rue. So, you’re right, not at all sexist. Imagine that…

  • Tom

    Once again, I agree some of the criticism is valid but the sexism isn’t. All of your arguments will be alleviated until when the sequel arrives when I explains what happened to the girls. Kinda like the second novel. Who would have thought a movie following the film. Star wars sexist oh dear god there is no room left for traditional storytelling. Maybe we should have a quota where we need at least 3 female action heroes for it to be green lit, /logic.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    All of your arguments will be alleviated until when the sequel arrives

    This film was made with a sequel in mind, but in no way guaranteed. So, it has to stand on it’s own merits, not as a part of a whole. (The second and, if made, third films will be able to fall back on that.) Also, those sequels have not yet been made. Since adaptations, by definition, make changes to the original work, there is no way to tell, at this stage, what those sequels will or will not address.

    This film*, right now, has problems with gender diversity, and those problems represent fair targets for criticism. They may get addressed, retroactively, to greater or lesser satisfaction, later in the series, but for now, they exist. And, yes, the filmmakers could have addressed this problem now. They could have given a compelling reason why all the Gladers were boys. They could have altered the story to make the Glade co-ed**.

    Star wars sexist

    Star Wars has problems with gender equity. The female characters who appear in the Sage are generally well represented (Twilek slave-girls notwithstanding), but examining the demographics of the films indicates that species in the Star Wars universe is roughly 80-90% male.

    there is no room left for traditional storytelling

    You mean the kind where women are seen but seldom heard, appear in small numbers relative to men, and exist almost exclusively as prizes to be fought over by the male heroes and villains? That kind of “traditional storytelling”?

    Maybe we should have a quota where we need at least 3 female action heroes for it to be green lit

    Wouldn’t that be something? My four little girls would be positively spoiled for stories and characters they can relate to.

    * I haven’t read it, but I suspect the book has the same problems, with the same solution: fix it (kinda) in the next book.

    ** There’s a sexist phrase that should be relegated to the trash bin of history, and certainly out of my vocabulary.

  • Thomas Watson

    Entertaining but never quite thrilling, this actually feels like the second film in a franchise, coasting along, but saving the best bits for the next episode.

  • Danielm80

    On the other hand…

    Spider-Man 2

    The Dark Knight

    The Empire Strikes Back

    X-Men: X2

    Captain America: The Winter Soldier

    The Godfather, Part II

    And even, arguably, Superman II

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