SYNOPSIS: THE DIVERGENT SERIES: INSURGENT raises the stakes for Tris as she searches for allies and answers in the ruins of a futuristic Chicago. Tris (Woodley) and Four (James) are now fugitives on the run, hunted by Jeanine (Winslet), the leader of the power-hungry Erudite elite. Racing against time, they must find out what Trisís family sacrificed their lives to protect, and why the Erudite leaders will do anything to stop them. Haunted by her past choices but desperate to protect the ones she loves, Tris, with Four at her side, faces one impossible challenge after another as they unlock the truth about the past and ultimately the future of their world.
Itís often said that the sequel of a popular movie is always worse than the original. There are some exceptions that come to mind, but in general people seem to find that to be the case. However, what if part two of a movie out-does its predecessor and really brings the ďAĒ game? Well such is the case here. Director Robert Schwentke (R.I.P.D., 2013) and writers, Brian Duffield, Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind, 2001) and Mark Bomback (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, 2014) delivers a most riveting sequel that is sure to exceed expectations.
I really like the way this latest release basically kicks off precisely where part one ended. Tris (Shailene Woodley), Four (Theo James), Caleb (Ansel Elgort), Peter (Miles Teller) and Marcus (Ray Stevenson) are pretty much on the run and brings the action front and center, in the opening scenes. Added to this release is the introduction of Octavia Spencer (Black or white, 2014) and Daniel Dae Kim (Lost Ė TV series) giving memorable performances.
On a less positive note, the film spends more time spinning out or setting up story points than delivering them. And, in many scenes where characters where relying on flashbacks to deal with the scenarios in which they faced, the movie doesnít really give audiences the pleasure of visual flashback scenes; hence, causing the viewer to guess what was being referred to within the particular context/dialog. Quite frustrating, I might add. Needless to say, it makes few concessions to casual viewers who may not recall the details of Trisí world which was laid out in the first film.
Additionally, the ending of the movie might feel a little too rushed for most viewers and could leave some scratching their heads about what itís strange climax. Nevertheless, those decisions could be viewed as very stylistic choices that may be the smarter approach, in the grand scheme of things. I do believe the movie will continue to make up for any shortcomings in the next release.
All in all, this latest effort is very much on point, bringing realism to the storyline, but not overdoing with blood and gore. It certainly isnít a perfect continuum, by any means, but the positives here, undoubtedly outweighs the negatives and do I think the franchise will even continue to present us with bigger and better surprises. What we have here is a pretty solid story in the sequel and four and a half stars out of five is a good assessment. I believe it is well worth the theater visit with likeminded friends and popcorn.
By Movi-Man Stan
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