It was about frickin’ time I watched this movie. In all honesty, I was trying to wait to read the book before watching the film, and I have bought the book and everything – but I am currently reading A Dance with Dragons (GoT book) and it’s taking about a year to finish so…
Back to the movie, W-O-W. I expected a solid watch, but I did not expect THIS. Everything, from the actors/actresses, cinematography, editing, pace, was perfect. Divergent did not just meet my expectations, but exceeded them – and I will tell you why.
First of all, I was a little nervous about watching it – because with all these other-worldly trilogies/series (Harry Potter, The Hobbit, The Hunger Games, even Game of Thrones), I found that for the ones I hadn’t read the books for prior to watching the film, I was left satisfied, but slightly overwhelmed and confused until I finally read the books – and for the ones I had read the books for, I found myself having to explain every single detail to my friends beside me who hadn’t read them yet. Divergent however, supplied a perfect intro sequence where Shailene Woodley‘s voice clearly explained pretty much everything you had to know.
In terms of cinematography, screen direction, and editing, I was blown away. One thing that I absolutely HATE and have observed in every action movie I have seen thus far, is the super fast cuts and dark sequences where you have absolutely NO IDEA what the hell is going on, on the screen. I understand that to create the excitement that comes with an action film, there must be a lot of movement and rapid editing onscreen. However, it is also important to be able to interpret what is actually happening, and know what you are watching. Refreshingly, the editing and screen direction in Divergent captured the perfect speed of editing, where I was excited and nervous throughout the action scenes, but could also see what the characters onscreen were doing.
Ok. The acting. Shailene Woodley, OMG. I have recently reviewed her performance in The Fault in Our Stars (2014), noting her tremendous improvement from her Secret Life of the American Teenager days. While she was amazing in the romantic drama, I surprisingly think I actually prefer her in the action genre. She REALLY surprised me in this. Unsure of how she would do at first, she really got into character, and I must say – she looked extremely badass in all black, with her hair slicked back in a high pony. I don’t care about all the stories that the media publish about her, or whether they are true or not – I just care about her performance as an actress and I really think she nailed this one. She achieved the “divergence” so to speak, of her character well – without overdoing any specific characteristic of her role.
I must say, it was weird at first seeing Ansel Elgort as her brother – after freshly seeing The Fault in Our Stars, but I quickly got over that once I saw Theo James appear as his character, Four. Fan-girling all over again – and despite their real life large age differences, they had great chemistry. It wasn’t forced at all. Additionally, while Woodley and Elgort’s onscreen relationship was cute, beautiful and inspirational (and I am not saying anything bad about it) – Woodley and James together seemed a little more sophisticated, dark, chemical. I’m not necessarily saying one was better than the other, they were just different – and I think that also helped me get over the whole Elgort-Woodley incestuous feeling.
Kk moving on from Theo James… I absolutely cannot wait for the next 3 films to come out – officially announced, Insurgent, and Allegiant Pts 1 and 2, but I really must get on with reading now…
Also, one more bonus. THAT SOUNDTRACK. So much yes.
just my rating: ★★★★