Divergent Quick Review

Discussion in 'Movies' started by mattCR, Mar 21, 2014.

  1. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    Divergent is the latest gamble by Summit to bring out a dystopian future epic to the box office. With 'The Hunger Games' they had a title that turned into two blockbuster films at the box office. Divergent, the popular book series by Veronica Roth makes it's way to the screen and the best real review I can offer is: passable. I have a lot of mixed feelings about this series because while I thought the first two books were "OK to Good" the third book in this series (IMHO) is just dreck, and that's going to make it interesting to see how they realize this on the big screen. The casting here makes use of a fairly low entry budget - but passable cast that helps sell the narrative. Like the book, though, the biggest problem this series has is that the narrative isn't really all that interesting or really plausible. As a result, it's really hard to buy into the characters who have vague motivations (if any) and seemingly go from situation to situation. Too often the film leans on catch phrases 'But I am DIVERGENT!' instead of giving the audience any understanding of what that even means. That's going to be a problem if they make the later movies, where the differences do matter, and the groundwork laid in the first book pays off. While The Hunger Games had a cast that took command of their roles and a setup that was quickly defined, Divergent never finds that same sure footing. I have a feeling only real fans of the book need apply. C-
     
  2. Tommy R

    Tommy R Second Unit

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    Pretty much my feelings exactly. My wife loved the books, so I gave them a shot, but they went from mediocre (the first) to unreadable by the end of the trilogy.
     
  3. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    I'm trying to figure out how Shailene went from "average next door" to "hot"...
     
  4. Wayne_j

    Wayne_j Screenwriter

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    Just watched this, I seemed to enjoy it more than most. I'd give it somewhere in the C+/B- range. I don't know how much I'd like it if I hadn't read the book earlier this week. Not as good as the movies in the Hunger Games series but then the books aren't as good either.

    Any shifting aspect ratios that would make this worth seeing in IMAX? I didn't hear about the Catching Fire IMAX footage until after that film left IMAX.
     
  5. Todd Erwin

    Todd Erwin Cinematographer
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    Saw it in RPX tonight. Very nice 7.1 mix, but the digital print appeared to be heavily watermarked, something I haven't seen in a dcp, only on 35mm prints. Wondering if anyone else noticed this at their theater.
     
  6. Freddie Z

    Freddie Z Stunt Coordinator

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    For me, the opposite. She went from hot in The Descendants to average in The Spectacular Now and Divergent.
     
  7. Tino

    Tino Lead Actor
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    Exactly.
     
  8. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    She is still only 22, let's see how her looks mature in the next 4-5 years.
     
  9. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    I was more intending her appearance on Fallon...Should have clarified.
     
  10. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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  11. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    I wanted to like this film more, but its premise was so hard to swallow at times, which took me out of the story. On the surface, having the human race split itself up into 5 personality traits might sound like an interesting idea, but it did not make for a compelling society to grok in a post-world-war scenario. It didn't feel like a story unfolding, but rather a story told in a paint-by-the-numbers fashion, so the build-up of tension wasn't as intense or bold or strong for what happens in the 3nd act.

    I give it 2 stars, or a grade of C.
     
  12. Richard V

    Richard V Cinematographer

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    I thoroughly enjoyed it. Didn't read any of the books, but give the movie a solid B+, WAAAAAAAY better than the Hunger Games, which I considered BORING. Just one guy's opinion, YMMV.
     

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