Divergent (quick movie review)

Each time I saw the trailer for this flick, my brain would go, “Divergent! So Divergent!” Is it just me? It’s probably just me.

Anyway, in the grand scope of young adult novel adaptations, Divergent was a better movie than Ender’s Game and Twilight, but that’s not exactly high praise. If you can get through the first 20 minutes or so, I think action/adventure fans will be pleased with the flick.

I wasn’t feeling the premise – at least not initially. Shailene Woodley (…sorry, I’m not familiar with this young lady) is about to be placed as a Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff or whatever via an arbitrary test which determines the rest of your life… that she can ignore and just choose whatever she wants anyway. The test is administered by Maggie Q (Who has a gig on the side administering tattoos? Her character will do any job where the customer lays down… I presume she’s also a masseuse.), which begins pushing the plot as her results show that she’s (wait for it) DIVERGENT, meaning she doesn’t naturally fit with any faction – and should never tell anyone this because divergents are a threat to the system. If this society sounds really dumb, that’s because it is, and if you think they’ll abolish this system at the end of the series, I tend to agree… but whatever, the movie gets better eventually.

The protagonist chooses to join the army faction because she likes the fact that they run everywhere and they are “so free.” This means she has to leave her mom (Ashley Judd) and dad (some dude) behind at the… I dunno, run the government/feed the poor faction. At the army faction, she meets Four (the chosen name of Theo James, who was in one or two episodes of Downton Abbey), Jai Courtney (A Good Day to Die Hard) and Zoë Kravitz (X-Men First Class), where the movie really steps it up and becomes fun. So, if you can make it past the Sorting Hat ceremony and to the point where all of these characters are around, I think you’ll be OK.

Oh, and there’s an unrecognizable Kate Winslet as one of the antagonists – she’s great, as always.

Ashley Judd ex machina!
In keeping with my recent study of all things CinemaSins, I’m trying to get a better handle on deus ex machina, and I think I’ve finally got it… Anyway, if you’ve seen this movie and are familiar with the term, you know exactly what I’m talking about when I say “Ashley Judd ex machina.” (End of aside.)

There’s no surprises in this flick and the beginning is silly, but once it gets going, the movie does a decent job of creating tension and keeping the pace up. I’m giving Divergent a 7 out of 10 – it’s at least two points better than I thought it would be and it’s worth a look, but certainly not a must see.

About Jamie Insalaco

Jamie Insalaco is the author of CreativeJamie.com, BomberBanter.com and editor in chief of ComicBookClog.com

Posted on August 18, 2014, in movie review and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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