Maze Runner Movie Review

Malak Ghazal

The Maze Runner released Friday September 19 and had a brilliant box office result of $32,512,804, and which was well deserved.

For all of those people who think that this movie is a knock-off of The Hunger Games, let me assure you, that’s far from the truth. Frankly, The Maze Runner touches on more dystopian and apocalyptic themes than the Hunger Games could ever suffice.

The movie opens up with a young man named Thomas, played by Dylan O’Brien, arriving in a strange place surrounded by kids. This is called “The Glade,” an outdoor landscape surrounded by a stone maze to keep them inside. Every morning, Runners try to find a way out of the maze, which fills with robot-monster-spiders at night. Every month, a new boy is delivered in the lift.

The runners feel as though the maze is unsolvable, until Thomas starts figuring out clues on the way out.

At first, the kids in the glade seem like a giant cult where the only source of entertainment is watching kids wrestle each other and build Lord of the Flies houses for protection. Then the movie picks up pace as people start disappearing, getting stuck in the maze, and turn on each other.

Then a girl shows up, Teresa, (what’s a young adult movie without some love interest?) and starts helping the “Gladers” discover the mysteries of the maze and advance their endless search for the way out.

Although this is an adaptation of a young adult novel, it doesn’t have the girlyness of many other titles in the genre. It’s not a “dystopian romance” like The Hunger Games or Divergent. It’s not the “worn-out-coming-of-age-tale” like The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and it’s most definitely not the creepy vampire romance like Twilight. It’s purely apocalypse dystopia.

This movie is fresh and raw, with heart pounding and intense moments that will have you clutching your popcorn bucket, and dying to know what happens next. Thankfully, it isn’t centered around getting Thomas and Teresa together, typical for a YA movie. But, it does something that hasn’t been seen in movies since Wall-E back in 2008. It makes you think about the fate of humanity, our planet, and our ethics. These kids were put in the maze for scientific discovery on saving the planet from an apocalyptic disease, like rats in a lab, touching on what’s ethical in scientific research and what’s not.

As a fan of the books myself, the ending is EXACTLY like it is in the book, leaving viewers with plenty of questions and craving a sequel (trust me, the second book IS better than the first), The Maze Runner is not to be missed.