Review By: Edgar Torres
Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials is the highly anticipated second film in The Maze Runner trilogy. It seems that Hollywood has fallen in love with trilogy adaptations with the Divergent series well into the series and the final installment of The Hunger Games series set to release in November. The Maze Runner adds to the list of Post-Apocalyptic settings and adolescents trying to survive in them. The Maze Runner series however, in my opinion is the better of the three series because the plot is overflowing with twists and turns and you can’t help but be sucked into the movies (and the books, read the books!).
The Scorch Trials begins right where The Maze Runner left off with Thomas and the others having been saved from The Glade and the grasp of WCKD. They are taken to a new facility to where they can be checked up and make sure that they are not infected with the disease that was the cause of the world to collapse into anarchy. In the facility, they find that they were not the only maze WCKD had in operation when they meet many more rescued kids from other mazes. While the others are happy enough to have a hot shower and a soft bed, Thomas is not satisfied with the amount of probing and tests being run on them and ends up finding out that their newest allies may be, in fact, their enemy.
As mentioned in the introduction, this series has a way of throwing curve balls at you and the characters to keep you on your toes. Never are you right on all your predictions and when you are right, the joy of how they get to that point keeps you interested. There are also newcomers to the trilogy with Aidan Gillen (Game of Thrones) and Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad) among others bringing strong acting to their respective characters. I must make note that it was great to have two actors who were previously cast as villains join the cast under different roles (or were they?).
This next bit is more a testament to the books rather than the movie but the story has been written in a way where there are no cliff hangers. No moment where you are mad that the movie has just ended and you will have to wait another year to see what happens. Sure there is an overarching story but the purpose of their journey is completed and you as a viewer are satisfied. I can only hope that they don’t follow the Hollywood trend of trying to milk a series and extend the final book into two movies.
The first problem I will note is that the story between Thomas and Teresa wasn’t that apparent. In the books Thomas thinks a lot about his feelings for Teresa but these thoughts were lost when they adapted the books to the big screen. It made the moment at the end (no spoilers here!) less of a blow to the viewer.
There is also a little problem that is more a problem to me personally than I imagine it is to everyone else but I will mention it. What is up with people wanting to put twists on classic monsters?! In this case we have the mutated humans who they call shanks make their first appearance in the series and they look like zombies or the creatures from the movie I Am Legend. Their movements are all very similar and for a good while they were indiscernible from each other until later in the film where we see how they mutate from humans to shanks. Not at all a deal breaker but it could be something that bugs you.
The Scorch Trials was a great second film to the series and I hope the movie does better than the first installment now that people see what the series is all about. Leaving the theater I was itching to find out what happens in the final part of the story since I have only read the first two books to prepare myself for the movie. Speaking of the movie experience I am not at all upset that they didn’t a 3D option to this. I believe that if you are not comfortable adding scenes with 3D in mind then might as well not have 3D as an option so I applaud their choice of leaving 3D out of the movie. I believe anyone who has seen the first Maze Runner movie will enjoy The Scorch Trials just as much if not more.