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Series: The Maze Runner

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Movie Thoughts: Maze Runner

Posted by Irish in 5 Stars, Movie Thoughts, Rated PG-13, Review, Young Adult3 Comments

Maze Runner Poster

Official Movie Poster

Title: The Maze Runner (Official Facebook)
Tag Line: Get ready to run.
Release Date: 19 September 2014
Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 113 min
Genres: Action | Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller | Dystopian
Series or Standalone: Series
Where Seen: Movie Screening
Production Company: 20th Century Fox
Distributed By: 20th Century Fox
Director(s): Wes Ball
Writer(s): Noah Oppenheim (screenplay), Grant Pierce Myers (screenplay), T.S. Nowlin (screenplay), James Dashner (novel)
Stars: Dylan O’Brien (Thomas), Aml Ameen (Alby), Ki Hong Lee (Minho), Blake Cooper (Chuck), Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Newt), Will Poulter (Gally), Dexter Darden (Frypan), Kaya Scodelario (Teresa), Chris Sheffield (Ben), Joe Adler (Zart), Jacob Latimore (Jeff), Alexander Flores (Winston), Randall D. Cunningham (Clint), Patricia Clarkson (Ava Paige)

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Earlier this week I was able to go see a movie screening for The Maze Runner which was based off of James Dashner’s novel of the same name which was released in 2009 (my review). There was Maze Runner 4much to like in the book and I was very curious to see how these words and descriptions were going to be brought to life by Hollywood. Just looking at the initial movie stills I knew I was going to be in for a visual treat as the images of the maze were very similar to the cover image of the book only better as now there was more of it. The entire movie was such a visual treat for the eyes and I was totally sucked into this crazy world and believed that it existed. I also spent most of the movie on the edge of my seat as it was non-stop action almost from the moment that Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) wakes up in the box.

As with most book to movie adaptations there were some small changes made from page to screen Maze Runner 2but most of these differences are negligable. For one, timelines were shortened (if my memory serves me right) but this only makes the action sequences all the more intense. Then there were some things that were revealed that I don’t think were mentioned until the next book but even that was just a minor quibble. In many ways I almost liked the movie better than the book as it can be so hard to picture certain things in your head from a loose description in a book. Case in point, the grievers. Oh my stars did the visual effects team come up with a total win on these terrfying creatures. These beasts that live in the maze made most people in the audience jump when first introduced and even made a few others scream out loud. This is how real they appreaed and we didn’t even see this in 3D. Add to this the amazing score and your heat is pumping almost as fast as that of the runners throughout the entire movie.

In the book, two of my favorite characters were Newt (Thomas Brodie-Sangster) and Minho (Ki Hong Lee) and I loved what the actors brought to their characters. I love them both even more now and I look forward to what Brodie-Sangster and Lee will do with them if The Scorch TrialsMaze Runner 1 gets greenlighted. Which after seeing The Maze Runner I don’t have any doubts will happen.  I was also really excited to see what Dylan O’Brien would do with the character of Thomas, especially after what he did with his character Stiles on last season of Teen Wolf. And while Thomas isn’t as intense as a possessed Stiles there is a seriousness to him and O’Brien managages to show so much expression without needing to vocalize his thoughts. Of all the people in this movie the only one that I had issues with was Kaya Scodelario who played Teresa and that was mostly because she kept reminding me of a young Kristen Stewart though less mopey and more expressive. But this thought kept popping into my head whenever she was on screen and it took me out of the false-reality of the movie for a few beats.

The best part of this movie though was the ending. Those that have read the book probably know Maze Runner 3to which scene I am referring to and I just have to say that Wes Ball did an amazing job with it. There were a few moments when I wasn’t sure if they would go there and when they did the gasps of the audience were audible. I think I might have gasped myself and I knew it was coming! Overall I was really impressed with The Maze Runner movie and those its been years since I read the book I felt that it was very true to my memory of it. The maze was amazing to see on the big screen and the cast was just phenominally chosen. I went into this screening with low expectations, just as I always do when a book I’ve read was turned into a movie, but I’m happy to report that this adaptation blew me away. As I said above it was visually stunning and for that alone I have to give this movie props.  Even if you haven’t read the book this is a movie worth seeing I don’t think that you will be disappointed.

My recommendation: Worth seeing on the big screen.



Saturday, June 13, 2009

Review: The Maze Runner by James Dashner

Posted by Irish in 5 Stars, Review, Young Adult5 Comments

Review: The Maze Runner by James DashnerThe Maze Runner by James Dashner
Series: The Maze Runner,
Also in this series: The Maze Runner
Published by Delacorte on 06 October 2009
Genres: Abduction, Action & Adventure, Adolescence, Death & Dying, Dystopian, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, Health & Daily Living, Mystery & Detective, Sci-Fi, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Survival Stories, Young Adult
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
Source: Book Expo (BEA-ALA-et al)
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository

Place(s) Traveled to: The Maze //  The Glade

First Line(s): He began his new life standing up, surrounded by a cold darkness and stale, dusty air.

The Maze Runner by James Dashner is the start of a new series published by Delacorte Books. This is the third book by Dasher and regular followers of my blog know that I read and loved his first book Journal of the Curious Letters….I have the second book, The Hunt for Dark Infinity, staring at me from high up on Mt TBR. I had plans to read it when it came out but it took forever to get my hands on it that I just haven’t had the time to squeeze it in. =( Though everything I’ve heard about it has been amazing. So with all those good things comeing from Dashner’s other books I was so excited to be able to get my hands on a copy of The Maze Runner at the Book Expo America. Such much so that I pretty much dragged several of my blogger friends along with me to his signing and made them all get copies. (Hopefully they are liking the book as much I did!)

Maze Runner starts off in an eerie way, a boy is trapped in the box and the box seems to be moving. When it stops and the top opens he is dragged out by a group of scraggly looking books all around his age. The only thing this boy can remember is his first name, Thomas. First names are all anyone can remember. And this mysterious place that Thomas finds himself in is called the Glade, which lies in the center of a maze. A maze where the walls are always moving and deadly creatures roam at night looking for a Gladers who didn’t make it back “home” before the doors closed. There is a set routine to life in the maze…runners run out daily looking for a way out. The boys are almost happy, that is until the unthinkable happens and a girl appears and she brings a horrible and cryptic message and life for those in the Glade will never be the same.

This book left me breathless. I was sucked in from the first page and couldn’t put this book down. I love Dashner’s imagination and the fact that he incorporates mechanically beasties into his stories. These creatures seem so real that I can pratically hear them moving about as I read. I wizzed through this book because I needed to know what happend. Why were the boys in the maze? Would they find a way out? And that ending?!?!? Gah!!! Such a bloody cliffhanger that I was cursing James Dashner (just a bit) because I NEED to know what happens next. My only consolation is that there is a next but as THIS book isn’t out until October I have a long wait ahead of me. *sobs* If you like dystopian novels then you will like this book. Its a fast paced read that keeps you engaged with the need know. I think that this is far and away Dashner’s best book to date and I can’t wait to see what else he has up his sleeve.