Sunday, September 21, 2014

My thoughts on The Maze Runner Movie

               This weekend another book to movie adaptation was released and I was there to check out The Maze Runner.  I have been excited for this movie since I first saw pictures for it.  Now this movie was supposed to be released back in February but it got moved back, I understand they needed more time to finish the product and not rush it, I'm glad.  You don't want to rush something with a huge set and a lot of moving parts.  Now I admit I had a lot going on and I did not have the chance to do what I normally do and reread the book to have it fresh in my mind so book specifics I was a tad bit hazy on but the overall plot/story was still there. I didn't watch a lot of trailers beforehand because if I wasn’t going to get to reread then I wanted to go in fresher.  I saw them once or twice and saw a lot that I remembered.  So these are my thoughts on the movie.          

See how similar they are
                The first real pictures I saw about the movie were ones that reminded me of the book cover and that has to be a positive thing right, to associate a photo of the movie with the cover itself.  I was a bit leery of how they were going to bring a story like this to life and not make it super cheesy.   Being hazy and all I know they did change some things and how it came into play or was relayed.  I get it and I feel the overall plot of the book and the story being told was provided to the audience very well.  I didn't feel like I was missing anything or that I was confused about what was happening at all, which sometimes with movies involving new worlds can be an issue that is usually explained with an info dump.  But with the characters arriving and having no memory, it worked out perfectly because as our main character Thomas arrives they have to explain things to him and in turn to the audience.  You got a feel for The Glade and the boys in it with their own type of language and the community they built for themselves.  The characters easily came back to me and I was so happy to see some of them come to life and to see them played by the cast chosen, Thomas, Newt, Teresa, Minho, Alby, Gally, and little Chuck.  They each had their own little things that made them unique in the books and that shown through with just how different they look and are built and the rolls they took on in the culture of The Glade.  Kudos to the actors for great performances. 

               The story is packed full of action and mystery as the Gladers try and figure a way out and deal with the changes happening around them.  When I saw action we get to see the Grievers and they were just as icky as I imagined when reading.  Something is constantly going on and moving there isn't any dull or dead space.  They packed the almost 2 hours with everything it needed and nothing it didn't.  I felt the time just flew by.  I also liked the change to the mazes and how it made a little more sense for the audience and the 3D map was way cooler.  Also there is a lot of running in this film, running for answers, for safety, for escape, basically I wouldn't survive in this world but it did make me want to start doing cardio again, so that's pretty nifty also.

                If you didn’t know The Maze Runner is book 1 of  a trilogy (with a prequel companion novel), and I really hope we get to see the other movies.  They left it like in the book where you want more and are anxious for it.  Trust me.  I originally read The Maze Runner shortly after it first came out.  I really enjoyed it and was counting down the days until book 2, there was a cliffhanger afterall.  Then on that day I planned my shopping trip around it, as at the time I lived 30 miles from the closest Walmart or Books A  Million.  I went in all happy and no one in my area had it, neither Walmart (there are 2), not Sam's Club (where I got book #1 originally), or the only actual book retailer Books A Million.  I was in shock and in need of this book, I'd been waiting for it after all.  So thanks to smart phones I was able to locate a B&N about an hour from my apartment (opposite direction of where I was at the moment), and called to confirm they had it in stock, even made the guy go get it and physically hold it in his hand for me to make sure it was not a computer error.  Hey it was a long drive for a book. 

                Well I went to my apartment dropped off my groceries, because yes I still did get those while searching for my book, and asked my friend/co-worker/neighbor who knew about my plan to purchase that book on release day to come with.  She said yes, even though she teased me a bit about my determination for a book, and we went off on our little mini road trip for a book.  Yes I drove over 3 hours in total looking book 2 but I found it and I had a good time on my journey.  We ended up doing some early Christmas shopping at shops we don’t normally see, plus being B&N is huge bought more than the one book, as well and had dinner and a pretty amazing time driving around someplace new. 

The Scorch Trials is the one I went on my adventure for.
                I admit these books have a special spot in my heart and some great memories to go with them.  I will always associate this series with good times.  I find I have some memorable stories about obtaining or reading the majority of the books I have and I think that makes it special.  That when I look at my bookshelf I have nothing but happiness and fond memories for the experiences themselves but also with the stories and pretty covers. 

                Due to work schedules and jazz I was unable to get my friend up to come see it with me, being she was off the previous weekend for my Birthday (she's an awesome friend).  But I have advised her she will be seeing it so we can discuss.  In the movie, being alone I was also able to people watch.  I could tell that the majority of the people in there did not read the book, everyone seemed shocked by the end saying they left it open for a sequel.  I helpfully advised it was the first book in a trilogy by James Dashner and to check them out.  Everyone seemed to enjoy the movie and clearly they were unfamiliar with the books.  I think the best book to movie adaptations are the ones that don't leave non-readers feeling like they didn’t understand it completely.  That being said I give this movie 5 Stars for both the movie and an A+ for movie adaptation.  Anyone can enjoy this movie so if you didn't get into the book or haven't had the chance yet you can still enjoy the movie.

                So Greenies share your thoughts.  Have you already seen the movie?  Read the series?  What did you think?

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