Allegiant (2016)

AKA Allegiant part 1, or part three of the Divergent series – a trilogy in four parts, as is so popular with YA adaptations (see Hunger Games, Twilight (or Harry Potter’s 7-in-8)). The twist here being film 4 is getting a new title, Ascendant, so the ‘part 1’ is missing from the title here – which is a bit of a cheat, given it really only is half a story. So be warned: there is no resolution to be had from this movie.

That aside, I was surprised by Allegiant. The YA adaptation train has been trundling for a while, and I confess it’s now boring me a bit. The books were great; the movies are increasingly samey and disappointing (hello, Scorch Trials and Mockingjay). Even this series’s previous installment, Insurgent, didn’t feel as good as first. So my expectations here were pretty darn low – and I was very pleasantly surprised!

Which isn’t to say this is perfect. For a start, it seems to have strayed quite far from the novel, and not for particularly good reasons that I could see. I’m also still finding Tris a somewhat annoying character, and her actions here don’t do much to help that. None of the characters get a desperately good time here, and I don’t just mean in plot terms: development has more or less ceased for the main cast (although Peter still gets the best and funniest lines), and other characters, particularly Evelyn, are bafflingly stuck in their single-trait motivations.

On the plus side, the action remains high and some of the visuals are quite stunning. The story still held my attention (even though I do remember what happens next!) albeit with the caveat that there is another half of this movie to come – argh!

Released: 10th March 2016
Viewed: 11th March 2016
Running time: 121 minutes
Rated: 12A

My rating: 6/10 – better than expected, but suffers from ‘half missing’ syndrome

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