A film, food, travel & lifestyle blog by Sophie Elizabeth

16 October 2014

Film Review: The Maze Runner (Wes Ball, 2014) ★★★

Having been deposited in to a community of boys, Thomas (Dylan O'Brien) finds himself submerged in to a glade at the centre of a vast maze. With no memory of their past lives, and led by Alby (Aml Ameen), the boys have built a functioning civilisation. Together, they grow their food, look after one another and each day the runners enter in to the maze in the hope of  one day escaping. However, when Teresa enters the glade, the status shifts and the clock is ticking to find a way out.

In recent years, it appears teen genres have entered in the wilderness of dystopia. The hot teen films seen previously where the only concerns of the young protagonists would have been to lose their virginity before homecoming in a series of half-baked banter, now centre themselves in a post-apocalyptic narrative where survival is the goal. In the spoiling wake of The Hunger Games comes this bleak adaptation of James Dashner's ominous novel, a well-produced, yet sometimes mediocre, attempt to launch another post-apocalyptic franchise.

Like all heroes, our lead protagonist is typically one for the young girls in the audience. The film opens with Thomas' decent in to hell as he is taken in to a lift-type vessel, in to the open where a large group of boys await his arrival. On regaining conscientiousness, Thomas makes a run for it - only to find that the grass land is surrounded entirely by a towering maze, crawling with spider robots named grievers. Living in a Lord of the Flies-esk environment, there is a hierarchy and high-school-esk vibe to the groups' dynamics; The Runners - aka the jocks and athletes who run the maze, mapping it daily. The Slicers, the average kids who collect the meat from the woods to eat, your cooks and so fourth and finally the greeners. Greeners (aka the newbies) are the sophomore of the glade and therefore the lowest of the ranking. In true high-school style then, Thomas being a greener, soon proves himself worthy of being a jock/runner when he risks his life to save Alby.

The first  ever to survive a night in the maze, Thomas artlessly enters the world of the jocks but it seems with consequences to his actions. Having also slayed a griever within the maze, the powers-that-be change the rules and the group is left in turmoil when the next box only delivers a girl. Now, the strongest runners must undertake a new strategy in order to find a potential way out. **This, of course, has all happened within three days which makes you wonder why no one has successfully attempted this previously** But despite some plot holes, the post-apocalyptic underlying message is an interesting one - the premise that perhaps they are safer in the maze and some of the boys reluctance to change their ways of life if it means being 'free'.

To conclude then, the film itself is stylishly shot and with a host of aspiring Hollywood superstars, naming Will Poulter (School of ComedyWe're the Millers) and Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Love Actually, Game of Thrones) The Maze Runner has plenty of promise and, inevitably, sets itself up entirely for the sequel. it falls short, however, in it's hollow inability to grip it's audience with its predictable plot and character stereotypes which makes for easy viewing. With this all said, The Maze Runner gets a Sophie star rating 3 out of 5.

Enjoy movie goers,



  1. Great review, I really enjoyed this film but there was such a build up to the maze which in my opinion was a let down xx
    Chloe <3

    1. Agreed! It was good over all but lacking a bit. Glad you liked it :) thank you x

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