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Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials - Not Quite as Good as the First

January 12, 2016

                                          “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials - Not Quite as Good as the First”
                                                                                Jason Zarge
    The Scorch Trials, the next chapter of the epic “Maze Runner” series, is an adventurous, action- filled thriller that will surely keep you on the edge of your seats. Written by James Dashner and  directed by Wes Ball, this Sci-fi film features a group of teen (Gladers), that after having to escape the Maze, later find themselves making their way across the Scorch, a desolate landscape filled with multiple obstacles. Starring in this film among the teenagers are Dylan O’Brien as Thomas, Kaya Scodelario as Teresa, and Ki Hong Lee as Minho.

    The film starts right off from the last movie with the group of teenagers being transported from the Maze by some unknown organization. When they arrive at the remote fortified outpost, Thomas and his fellow friends find themselves in trouble after uncovering a diabolical plot from the powerful organization WCKD (World In Catastrophe: Killzone Department). Next, these Gladers find themselves staging a daring escape into the Scorch, infested with dangerous obstacles and zombie-like virus-infected Cranks. These teens spend the rest of the film hoping to find the Right Hand, a group of resistance fighters who may be able to help the battle WCKD. While watching this film, you will never find yourself bored as it is full of excitement and suspense.

    Even though the film was action-packed, it still seems to lack a sense of originality. It seems to be almost the same as any post-apocalyptic zombie movie. Looking more in depth, the film can’t manage to show the backstory concerning the catastrophic deterioration of earth. The evidence that connects to the spread of this deadly virus is very vague and leaves the viewers with many questions. “The Scorch Trials” also offers pretty much no character development and only provides hints of plot advancement. It kind of just shows a group of kind of motivated characters who move from one place to another without giving much idea of where the whole thing is going. The hero who emerged at the center of part one, Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), remains the quietly courageous leader in part two. He does not develop much personality along the way and it almost seems if he is hiding away his emotions. Wes Ball attempts to add visual diversity, by incorporating the techniques such as horror, thriller, and drama all into one film. However from watching, one can tell that these don’t really all go together too well which actually takes away from the film as a whole.

    The first “Maze Runner” at least managed to build a believable plot of teenagers who worked together after being confronted with a mysterious obstacle. In “The Scorch Trials, there really isn’t any real sense of group dynamics. If you are the type of audience that wants to see a dramatic and stimulating film, then “The Scorch Trials” is probably for you. However, if you are looking for a movie that is substantially detailed, meaningful, and is great in all criterias, then maybe not. Even though this film did not quite live up to the same level as the first, it’s still a fun watch that is well worth your time.


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