Directed by Neil Burger
Screenplay by Evan Daugherty & Vanessa Taylor
Released: 4th April 2014
Distributors: Summit Entertainment
I don’t want to spoil this film for anyone who hasn’t read the book, or seen the film, so I will sum up my thoughts in a general sense first and then I will warn you to not continue to avoid spoilers. I read the book a few weeks ago (review here) and I have been bubbling away anticipating the release of this film. It did not disappoint! It’s a great film from start to finish.
I was most interested in how the film would explain the society. I thought the book did a great job at making this dystopian world make sense, and I was interested in seeing how the adaptation would explain it. I think they’ve done a fantastic job. I already knew what the society was about, but my boyfriend didn’t and he said he understood completely. They got to the point, and we quickly moved on to what the film was about.
The characters were portrayed well, and I thought Shailene Woodley and Theo James did a great job. I had seen Woodley in a couple of different things, and I think this is her best role to date. I believed her performance and I was very happy with her portrayal. She brought the feisty, independent Tris to screen beautifully. I thought Theo James did a great job as Four. He certainly is a handsome fellow, isn’t he? Apart from his physical charm, he did a solid performance of a complex character and I’m excited to see him in the sequel.
The pace was obviously quick, it’s an action packed novel, so the film would be nothing less. Given the time constraints of every adaptation, I felt this one did a good job of covering the pivotal moments in the plot arc. I was delighted that my favourite pieces of the book were on screen. There wasn’t any moment that I thought I desperately wished were adapted. Some of the friendships weren’t embellished as much as I loved in the book, but I still found them to be prevalent. I really enjoyed the initiation section of the book, and I thought the pit and chasm looked exactly how I imagined it, so aesthetically I was impressed with the quality of the film.
I’m going to discuss more detailed pieces of the film now so continue reading at your own risk. Please go and see this film!
I’m really glad they added the scene with Al and the chasm, granted it’s a pivotal moment in the film, so it would leave a big gap without it. It was one of the most shocking moments in the book for me, and I loved being able to see the audience as shocked as I was.
The only thing I really wished was part of the film was more of the initiation process, and more of Peter. Apart from a few nasty comments, he seemed harmless, and I thought he was evil in the book. As I mentioned, more of the initiation process would have iced the cake for me, but I understand that the time constraints meant some scenes had to be left behind.
There was one thing I was confused about, the film ends with Tris forcing Jeanine to wipe the system. I couldn’t understand what would stop them from recreating the system? Anybody else confused by this, or was that just me?
If you loved The Hunger Games, if you love action, if you like well-made adaptations – run immediately to the cinema!