THE DIVERGENT SERIES: INSURGENT:
SLIGHTLY BETTER IN THE STORY DEPARTMENT THAN ITS PREDECESSOR, BUT THE LACK OF DETAIL AND SUPPORTING CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT DOES NOT MAKE IT A DIVERSE SEQUEL!
By Nico Beland
Movie Review: C (2 ½ stars)
(From left to right) Christina, Tris, Four, and Peter in The Divergent Series: Insurgent
Shailene Woodley (The Descendants, The Spectacular Now, The Fault in Our Stars) and Theo James (Downton Abbey, Underworld: Awakening) return as Dauntless rebels, Tris and Four in the sequel to the 2014 hit, Divergent, based on the novel by Veronica Roth. The first film, which opened to mixed reviews at first felt like a knockoff of the popular Hunger Games franchise, at least when I saw the trailers, and parts of it did feel like The Hunger Games, I’m not going to lie.
Like when Four was training Tris and the rest of the new recruits of the Dauntless Faction, the training felt exactly like a Hunger Games training scenario, except with more physical harm, but near the climax, it felt more
engaging and interesting because it didn’t have a Hunger Games feel and it felt like straight up sci-fi and suspense,
which I enjoyed. Also to the
film’s credit, Shailene Woodley and Theo James’ performances as Tris and Four
were very solid and I enjoyed experiencing their journey through Divergence.
When the first film ended I was very curious to see what was going to happen
next after the events of Divergent,
well that’s where this sequel comes in, The
Diverg ent Series: Insurgent, which was definitely a darker and grittier
story than last time and the Divergent simulations were much more creative this
time around, but the story itself lacks details of the events that occurred
after Divergent and the supporting
characters could have been developed better.
Where we last left our Dauntless fugitives, Tris (Woodley) and Four (James) were laying low from the
elite, led by the evil manager of the fiv e Factions, Jeanine (Kate Winslet-Titanic, Contagion) who are on the hunt for Divergents hiding out and
exterminating them. While on the run they search for new allies to help them
put an end to the Divergent hunt and put Eurudite elite out of commission.
Jeanine and the Eurudite elite continue hunting the Divergents but
now they have to bring them all to
Eurudite to be experimented on so the box can be opened, however the past
Divergents that went through the experiment were killed. She needs someone who
is 100% Divergent (Guess who it is!) to make it through the experiment to get
the box opened that could change the world forever.
So it’s up to Tris, Four, Peter Hayes (Miles Teller-Whiplash, The Spectacular Now), Tris’ brother, Caleb Prior (Ansel Elgort-Carrie, The Fault in Our Stars, Men, Women, & Children), and the Dauntless and Factionless to join together and stop Jeanine’s diabolical plot before all the
Divergents become extinct.
e Divergent Series: Insurgent definitely had more going for it
with its story than last year’s predecessor. Although, this one felt like an Inception style movie, with all the
simulations and things that aren’t actually real that are apparently right in
front of you.
Like the first film, Shailene Woodley and Theo James’ performances are very solid and their characters are developed well, you really want to see how they’re going to get out of these tight situations and you know a film is doing something right when the protagonists are extremely likable and engaging. Kate Winslet as the villain is just as entertaining to watch in this as it was in Divergent, although in this film she was much more intimidating and you have no idea what’s going to happen to her in the end.
It’s mainly the
leads who are
developed well, the side characters were barely ar ound with the exceptions of
Caleb and Peter, even the first film, despite its flaws did develop most of the
characters decently, I honestly wished there was more to them other than the
As is, it’s a moderately entertaining sequel with a fun plot and some exciting special effects and action. If you enjoyed the first film, you might enjoy this fine, but I just hope the story and characters are explained and developed better in the next two sequels, The Divergent Series: Allegiant: Parts 1 and 2.