At first, you get so excited, because you get a chance to see that book be brought to life through live-action on the big screen!
With excitement also comes apprehension. Now is the point where you begin to worry, and start to question everything.
Will the movie live up to the book?
Well, will it?
Now, you’re hit with the dreaded “what ifs”:
What if the casting isn’t how I pictured it in my head?
What if my favorite scenes get cut out of the movie?
What if they take too many liberties with the plot?
This then leads to you stalking IMDb updates 24/7, in hopes of being reassured that the movie studios get it right…But if we’re being perfectly honest with ourselves, this normally only leads us down the path to shattered hopes and dreams. *SIGH*
We’ve all been there.
Book-to-movie adaptations can either be amazing (here’s lookin’ at you, Lord of the Rings), or can be absolute abominations (*glares at the Mortal Instruments: City of Bones*). Well fear not, I’m here to help you get through it, and to point you in the right direction. Why? Cause I’m your friend, and friends don’t let friends lose brain cells while watching terrible movies.
It’s time to ease your mind as I attempt to take the guesswork out of the age-old question:
Theater, or Redbox?
I was lucky enough to score passes to see The Maze Runner movie a few weeks early!
Needless to say, my pals and I were very excited about it. (Photo credit: Hannah from The Irish Banana Review)
Before I get into my thoughts on the movie, I just wanted to briefly tell you my thoughts on the book. I read this book a few years ago, and liked it well enough (I was on the fence with a 3.5-4 Star rating). I loved the overall concept of the book, and as a whole, I love the series a lot. The characters were all compelling enough to help carry the story, but I felt as though my biggest issue I had while reading it was PACING. Considering the darker/dangerous theme of the book, you’d think that it would be jam-packed with fast-paced action sequences. While there were moments that had me on the edge of my seat, or reading with the lights on, there were also moments that had me yawning and just bored. In my opinion, if some of the world-building, and unnecessary banter/dialogue had been cut out, the book would’ve flowed better.
I had one prediction prior to going into the theater: “I have a feeling the movie is going to be better than the book.”
Now it’s time for you to see if what I predicted came to pass…
The movie was better than the book.
Yeah, I said it. IT WAS. The movie was everything that the book should’ve been (pacing-wise). The Maze Runner was a perfect book to adapt for the big screen. There was so much awesome in this movie, and it was great getting to see the book come to life. This movie gets a 4.5 Star rating from me, without a doubt. I can’t wait to watch this movie again!
Check out the trailer, and see what I liked and didn’t like about the movie below!
My goodness, guys. If you saw my movie review for the Divergent film, you’ll know that I am a sucker for visual effects, set/costume design, and cinematography. This book had the visuals down.
One of the things I was most excited to see in the movie was how the Grievers would look like. After I read the book, I had a hard time visualizing what they were supposed to look like. The only thing I could say for sure was that they were terrifying “creatures” that leave death and destruction in their wake. I can tell you for sure that you’re going to have the crap scared out of you a time or two while watching them on screen. Mission accomplished.
Good golly, Miss Molly! This casting was PERFECTION! With exception of Teresa, all of the actors who were cast fit the mental picture I had while reading. The acting helped a lot too. The performances kept me glued to the screen.
Hop into the elevator, and let me tell you about the ‘Gladers’ who stood out to me.
Obviously, Thomas’ character is the most important one in the book, as the story is told from his POV. Naturally, this was going to be the most important casting decision. When I heard they cast Dylan O’Brien, my first thought was: “Who?” haha. (Teen Wolf fans, don’t hate me!) But seriously though, I looked at him, and I thought that he was perfect. Not just because he looked like the description of Thomas in the book, but more because of the fact that he’s actually around the AGE of Thomas. I get frustrated when I see “grown-ups” being cast to portray TEENAGERS. *cough* Theo James *cough*
It also helps that he ain’t bad on the eyes.
Here’s a clip of Dylan in action:
No thank you. I found myself holding my breath on more than one occasion during scenes like that. ^
I think that Newt is in my top 3 favorite characters from the books. I was very invested in the casting decision for Newt, so when Thomas Brodie-Sangster was cast, I was skeptical. I mean, I do like him on Game of Thrones and all….
And he is British, like Newt…but I can’t look at him and not think about the Liam Neeson’s son in the movie Love Actually.
If anything, looking at him makes me feel old! (Love Actually came out 11 years ago! Where did the time go?)
Well, he’s all grown up now…
I REEEEALLLLLLLY liked Thomas in this role. Newt’s character is pretty complex, and I was intrigued to see how it would translate on-screen.
Thomas nailed it.
ALBY! ALBY ALBY! Love love love love love love love. Okay, so I may be slightly biased, as I LOVED his character in the book, but seriously though? Aml Ameen was perfect for this role. I loved any and every scene with Alby in it. He commanded his scenes, and Aml’s performance as the leader of the Gladers was spot on.View Spoiler »Not gonna lie…I had a couple tears when he met his end. « Hide Spoiler
I utterly despised Gally’s character in the book, and even though I have these feelings, I think this was the role I was watching closely when they started casting actors. I just knew that when it came down to casting, they needed an actor who would be able to be an utter “a**hole” on screen.
I can tell you that they (casting) got it right! Will Poulter was perfect for the story’s antagonist. He was pompous, hubristic, insolent, menacing, and boorish.
His performance was on point. I actually think that I like movie Gally more than book Gally… Now, let me tell you how much I love me some Will Poulter. I first took notice of him when he played the sniveling cousin in the third Chronicles of Narnia movie. However, last year, after seeing him play the role of Kenny in the We’re The Millers movie, I added him to my long list of actors I love seeing on the big screen. Four words: DON’T GO CHASING WATERFALLS…
(Don’t mind the subtitles…hahaha)
I wish I could see him cast as a Brit so that I can hear his accent all the time, lol. The last two films I saw him in, he was portraying an American. (Sadness!)
My heart grew 10 sizes. *sigh* I love Chuck! Blake Cooper was exactly what I thought Chuck should be. He was hilarious, and just absolutely adorable. I just wanted to hug and squeeze him. (Is that weird? *shrugs* Whatevs…) But seriously though, this kid was great on-screen. View Spoiler »YES. I CRIED AT THE END. THERE, I SAID IT. I AM STILL MOURNING CHUCK ALL THESE YEARS LATER. <—Yes, I’m shouting that. HAHA. Watching Blake Cooper portray Chuck only reopened the wound. :( « Hide Spoiler
Side Note: How cute is his Twitter?
Seriously. I just want to be besties with him.
I saved the best for last:
Warning: Gushfest ahead.
MINHO! MY FAVORITEST (yes, it’s a word to me) CHARACTER!
Does he look familiar to you at all?
If you said yes, that’s cause he’s has a following on the interwebz. If you weren’t familiar with Ki Hong Lee, all you need to do is check out his awesome YouTube channel! (And be sure to also check out his IMDb page, too!)
AND. I. LOVE. HIM.
During filming, he’d do video updates and post it on his YouTube channel. Sometimes he’d even get his cast-mates to join in too:
AND THE OUTTAKES. Too funny! <3
Here’s a clip of Minho showing Thomas the ropes:
I can’t talk about Minho/Ki Hong Lee without talking about his HAIR. It was FLAWLESS throughout the entire movie.
The first thing I said as we were leaving the movie was “Minho’s hair needed to be listed in the credits.”
Minho was a Maze Runner. This means he was running ALL DAY, E’RYDAY. Yet, his hair was immaculate.
Even after all this:
YET his hair…PERFECTION.
He woke up this way. *drools*
Bottom line, I love me some Minho. A LOT of Minho.
The Author Cameo:
Remember that face. James Dashner has a cameo in the movie, and I was really giddy to see him there. Why? Cause I get excited about odd things. HAHA. I love seeing the authors of the books that are being adapted on screen. Want to know where you can see his cameo? (If so, click the spoiler)—>View Spoiler »At the very end, he’s sitting in the conference room in the front, sitting on the left-side of the table. You’ll see him primarily in profile, but he’s still pretty recognizable. « Hide Spoiler
I’m not going to beat around the bush with this one. All I can tell you is: Kristen Stewart dopplegänger. In every way.
This chick’s performance…
She had the same 3 facial expressions through the whole movie.
1.) “I’m about to have a Brain Hemorrhage” face:
2.) “I don’t understand how I got this role” face:
3.) “I’m going to catch flies with my open mouth” face:
I was not impressed. I may have even rolled my eyes a time or two.
Every time she was on screen, I was hoping that a stray Griever would come into the Glade and snatch her up.
In other words, I was not a fan.
THANK GOODNESS she’s only in it for like 30-40 mins.
I would absolutely recommend this movie for fans of the book, and for non-fans of the book. Seriously, this movie is very entertaining. If you’re looking for a romance, you won’t find it here. This is all blood-pumping, heart-stopping action. Great acting (minus TERESA, blech), and gorgeous visuals. Definitely worth the price of the ticket. Parents:I would respect that pG-13 rating. I think that some of the images may be disturbing for kids under 12/13.
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