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Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

Yet another Young Adult movie about the heroic teens against the evil grownups.

Our Rating: 6.5 out of 10

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Cameron Bolton, Staff Reporter

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WARNING SPOILERS BELOW:

Here’s the basic mythology of Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, sequel to the 2014 film The Maze Runner. It’s based off the series of novels by James Dashner.

A sun flare created a virus that turns people into zombies, or Cranks as they’re called in-universe. This outbreak of zombies caused civilization to collapse.

Following which, a  company named WCKD (pronounced wicked) sets out to find a cure. Noticing that several children were born with a special brain enzyme that makes them immune.

The best way to harvest said immunity would be to take all the kids, throw them into a maze, and—just screw with them for—science? Kicks? Character test?

That’s the main problem with this series. The plot hinges on an elaborate scheme that makes no sense whatsoever. I haven’t actually read the books so maybe it’s better explained there, but here—a few extra minutes of clarification wouldn’t have hurt.

The plot follows Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), the leader of a group of previously mentioned immunes as they seemingly escape the WCKD maze. Winding up at a facility under the leadership of Janson (Aidan Gillen), who is so obviously evil it’s surprising that they don’t decide to escape directly after meeting him.

Janson’s, of course, a member of WCKD and the facility is, of course, draining the brain enzyme from the immune kids. Thomas and a small group of friends find out, escape, and the chase threw the Scorch is on.

As far as YA dystopian movies go, this one isn’t half bad. The cast is decent and the action okay. Nothing particularly special or original, but the movie is entertaining enough.

I actually prefer this movie to the first one. Although the main reason for that is mostly because here, WCKD has decided to stop screwing around and just harvest the brain enzyme directly. What it lacks in style, it makes up for in common sense.

Something missing that would have made this a great movie is if they dedicated more scenes to the antagonists.

Let’s look at the big picture. The antagonists want to cure a zombie virus for the good of mankind. The only problem is it’s at the cost of several innocent lives. The protagonists are said innocents who just want to live, but at the cost of all the others who are infected and may become infected. There’s a lot of moral grayness on both sides and the film never really touches it, which would have been really interesting to see.

All in all, this movie’s harmless enough. I recommend to wait for this movie to come out on DVD, rent it from Redbox or Netflix, and watch it one late Saturday night with a group of friends or family. You can also read the books, maybe they’re actually better. Based of these movies, it’s definitely worth finding out and since the last book is most likely going to be unnecessarily split into two parts, you’ll have plenty of time.

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Free of Bull, Full of Bulldogs
If Katniss Was a Boy