And we’ll run for our lives
Well. They do run. A lot. I happened to watch this movie while making time for another commitment. But I expected much more. While I haven’t read the books, I enjoyed first installment of ‘Maze Runner’ saga. This huge amount of teenage heroes sagas in dystopian futures were drying out with dreadful exponents like ‘Divergent’. ‘Hunger Games’ is recently better because sudden J-Law stardom forced the producers to top the notch. So when I sat to watch ‘Maze Runner’ I wasn’t really expecting to be amazed. And I wasn’t, but I was surprised that the writers gracefully pulled some ‘Lord of the Flies’ out of their sleeves. This sequel however could have been named ‘Maze RunnerZ: We know our running’.
MOVIE: Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials
PRODUCER: 20th Century Fox / Gotham Group
Have Heart, My Dear
Our six pack, the ‘Gladers’ are welcomed to the base by Janson who is played by Aidan Gillen (Smallfinger on Game of Thrones), so obviously he is up to something fishy because that bastard won’t ever play a good guy. Our boy Thomas (Dylan O’Brien looking so much like Percy Jackson) feels that’s something not quite alright when Teresa (Kaya Scodelario) is taken to testing and doesn’t come back. Aris (Jacob Lofland) shows Thomas what the soldiers that ‘saved’ the crew are up to.
Apparently, they all work for WCKD and their leader: Ava Paige, that’s still alive. That red headed whore!
Thomas, Teresa, Aris and the rest (Newt, Minho, Frypan and Winston / Thomas Brodie Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, Dexter Darden and Alexander Flores) manage to escape the facilities while running, and then they get to the huge desert. Thomas overheard Janson talking about ‘The Right Arm’, a rebel’s army that WCKD is currently battling. So there’s where they have to go. By running.
In the middle they will encounter with many setbacks that they will solve. By running.
They run one, two (I’m actually counting), three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Eight or nine times during the 132 minutes of the film. Brother, that’s a lot of running.
If I make memory, I can say that what bothered me the most about ‘The Scorch Trials’ were the zombies. Whaaaaat? Yes. Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials has zombies. They are infected with the virus WCKD allegedly is trying to find a cure. I had enough with zombies and running corpses like back in the second season of ‘The Walking Dead’ and that was five years ago. So when the ‘Cranks’ appeared, the humans infected by the ‘Flare’ virus, and they were fucking zombies, my mind took a detour and I found myself watching another movie. ‘Twelve Angry Men’ or ‘Citizen Kane’. Whatever. I didn’t care anymore. Zombies are a dickmove. The Gladers are already facing a lot of trouble between fighting the WCKD soldiers, escaping the mercenaries commanded by Jorge (Giancarlo Esposito) and Brenda (Rosa Salazar), and their road trip to the mountains to find the Right Arm. Zombies, sorry, Cranks, are a bit too much.
Even when the movie is directed with all the pageantry of this kind of movies, it certainly feels that the main theme –finding the Right Arm?- is lost between a videogame movie. We get to point A: enemies. Boss. We get to point B: enemies and a bigger boss. From point A to point B, you run.
It’s boring. This movie is boring. And it’s a shame, because in 2015, dystopian future, bunch of good looking kids fighting, ZOMBIES, and mercenaries, are a good combo to at least become something fun. The transitions are mediocre and fast because why make the characters grow through dialog if you can… ern… they actually don’t evolve like ever. So good luck with that.
If you enjoyed the first ‘Maze Runner’ it’s probable that this one feels a lot like a bad sequel. The director, Wes Ball (who only directed this two Maze movies) failed to make this movie an entertainment. John Paesano, the composer (Daredevil), didn’t take too many risks and the music is completely forgettable.
The cinematography is actually quite good for a guy whose most important work was at ‘The Duchess’. Gyula Pados makes a good job in making the desert and the destroyed environment a gloomy landscape. It’s far behind of John Seale accomplishments on ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ but still. Kudos for trying.
The acting, overall, is ok. Dylan O’ Brien has two acting stances: standing serious and running while yelling or yelling while running. But he is not a bad actor or we can’t really say that with Maze Runner saga as evidence. The script is what it is. Aidan Gillen is playing his usual, ‘I’m a bad guy but you don’t know that yet’, and it’s fine. Acting is definitely not the problem in ‘Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials’. The main issue is the name, like, 132 minutes and I don’t really know why the movie is named like that.
I should probably read the books.