The Maze Runner (****)
The maze doors open
Boys run from creepy monsters
The maze doors draw closed
I read The Maze Runner a few months ago when I heard that this movie was coming out. I enjoyed it, but I wasn't in love with it. The adaptation, however, was really good!
The premise is this: A young man wakes up in an elevator, not remembering who he is or how he got in the situation. When the elevator stops, it opens into a large glade, which is populated by a group of other young men. The glade, it turns out, is in the middle of a gigantic maze, and it's up to the boys (or so they think) to find their way out. They thrive on routine and the rules of the Glade. But soon, circumstances change, and all routine is thrown out the window.
Those adults in charge of The Maze Runner were smart to look outside of the standard YA adaptation stars—I'm looking at you, Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort—and cast a semi-unfamiliar ensemble that had great chemistry together. Thomas is played by Teen Wolf star Dylan O'Brien; I've never seen the show, so I don't know what he's like on it, but I think he did well in the role of Thomas, who runs the gamut of from confused amnesiac to solid leader. Thomas Brodie-Sangster—yes, Sam from Love Actually—was great as second-in-command, and he's still as adorable as ever. (But so skinny! Someone get the boy a Kalteen bar.)
Although the adaptation wasn't to the letter of the book, it was quite close. I have a few nitpicky complaints about some of the changes (with the sets, specifically), but I don't feel like they detracted from the movie experience. But I really wish they'd spent a little more on the vines. (If you've seen the movie/once you see the movie, you'll know what I mean.)
I haven't read the second or third book in the series, but a movie sequel has already been greenlit, so I suppose I'll need to move those up on the TBR* list.
Regardless of if you've read the book, if you're a fan of thrillers or dystopian YA adaptations, I think you'll enjoy this film.
*to be read