I am actually really glad that MAZE RUNNER – THE DEATH CURE ended the trilogy on a pretty WCKD action packed high note. Well, at least to me. Not to the critics it seems. Maybe I was just ultimately disappointed with The Scorch Trials after the memorable first film that anything better would lift my spirits. Maybe I appreciate how this movie wasn’t split into two parts like all the rest of the YA novels turned into movies have been. Maybe my expectations were low. A bunch of different reasons. I just know that this last film in the trilogy really entertained me, was visually stunning to look at, and the action was more than decent. The film is not without its flaws of course (mainly dialogue) but we’ll get to those in a minute.
To just forewarn most of you. I haven’t read the novels and I don’t plan to. I also heard that the movies deviate a crap ton from the novels, so if you are a fan, I don’t know how you are going to take it, it’s just a warning. But if you’ve been following the movies at all, the whole thing is that the world doesn’t have many survivors left due to this disease that basically turns people into these fast zombies (I am intentionally staying away from calling all these nouns proper names because I want to tell it like it is). The government had been setting up these experiments with people they thought were immune to the virus, trying to find a way to extract a cure from them (it’s complicated how they explain this without just trying to turn their blood into a serum, just watch the movie, I’m not going to explain here). Thomas, played by Dylan O’Brien, is our main protagonist, who we see in the first movie sent up to the maze, where we learned his memory was partially wiped and he had worked for the government he is now fighting against (Bourne anyone?). He gets out of the maze with a handful of survivors in the first movie, and in the second movie they lightning dodge and also dodge the creatures…you know what? I don’t remember if there was even a plot in the second movie other than going from point a to point b. I know that they girl he likes, played by Kara Scoledario betrayed them, and took one of the main survivors, Minho, played by Ki Hong Lee, back to base to re experiment on him to get serum.
This movie’s plot is basically two fold: a. Rescue Minho and b. finally take down WCKD. Of course it being the final film in the trilogy there are reveals (like how a character that supposedly died in the first film isn’t dead, I did like how they kept the well known actor out of the marketing campaign for the surprise reveal but if you read his name on the poster it wouldn’t surprise you), more reveals, showdowns, and other predictable things to wrap things up. Needless to say, it wraps everything up the way it should. Yes, it is predictable, and a lot of the dialogue is cliched, “You aren’t going to do this without us,””You can save everyone,””I can save her,””You can’t save her,””This is where it ends,” so on and so forth. The journey is actually very entertaining and the action, spectacle and visuals made it actually a treat to sit and watch in the theater.
Director Wes Ball has a flair for action, he proved it in the last two films but he really proves it with this one. Give him a meaty script and something different and this guy could direct wonders. No joke. The opening train sequence is expertly shot and then when shit goes down in the WCKD city, the action is better than Michael Bay’s incoherent shit. And while the dialogue is bad the acting is at least on par. Dylan O’Brien just needs better movies to display his talent, actually, you know what, every one involved in this need better films to fully show their talent. Walton Goggins has a cool almost unrecognizable minor role as a WCKD city outsider who has plans to get into the city himself and take the government down. And Aiden Gillan, always fantastic in Game of Thrones as Littlefinger, plays a half-way decent villain here, if only he were given more to do and say.
At least this movie went somewhere, unlike The Scorch Trials.The movie drags just a tiny bit in the middle, but the beginning and last hour were spectacularly done. I was fully expecting this to be a Mockingjay ho hum affair, but I actually enjoyed myself, and although I didn’t explain the plot really well above, the movie does a fine job re explaining everything to you. My problems were with the dialogue and I don’t care so much for that this disease basically turns people into zombies, even though they don’t use that word. So here is my final stance on the trilogy. If the first movie hooked you, but you didn’t like the second one, the third one should redeem everything for you. If you aren’t a fan of the series at all, this film probably won’t change your mind. And if you haven’t seen the other two, don’t see this one as you’ll really have no basis for a lot of what goes on other than a minor rehash in some of the characters dialogue. But yeah, I enjoyed this final part of the maze, and while I enjoyed the first part, but was a little lost in the middle, I would say it is a half way decent trilogy, maybe to be remembered as one of the better YA adaptations that ultimately made the Divergent series look like absolute shit.