The Maze Runner

Excitement Around Every Turn!

BY: EMILY KLINEFELTER

I have not read the best-selling novel and book series by James Dashner, so this review is coming from that viewpoint.

The movie starts off with a good looking teen aged boy waking up trapped in a metal grated elevator which is traveling upward at an accelerated rate. I think my husband and I were just as confused as he was at this point. Why is he in there? Is this going to be like Willy Wonka except, wait, that’s not a glass top that he can bust through… aww cute boy is going to get squashed… what kind of sick movie is this?!!

Spoiler Alert- he does not get squashed like a bug, the top opens.

Thomas (the boy in the elevator) is greeted by sunlight and a community of other teenage boys peering down at him. They seemed to be expecting him but Thomas seems to have no idea what in the world is going on. In fact, Thomas has no memory of anything, including his name.

For the past few years, a new boy has been brought to the surface every 30 days like clockwork; all of them without memories of life outside this large field surrounded by high walls. Their memories all begin with them waking up in the caged elevator. Apparently these boys are expected to live in this grassy field they call “the glades”. It is surrounded by a high wall that opens during the day to the entrance of a maze. Thomas learns that he and the boys are trapped and surrounded by the maze and within its walls are creatures employed to kill the boys if caught in the maze. They call them the “grievers”. They look like cyborg insects mixed with sharp teethed monsters and they are not the only things to worry about. There is also a strange sickness that if the boys catch, when injured, turns them into –my words- zombies!! Boom, zombie movie- bet you didn’t see that coming!

The boys have managed to survive by creating a system of roles. There is one boy named Alby that acts as head of all the boys and makes all the final decisions. He has a second in command named Newt who is one of the head “Runners”. The Runners are a group of boys that have the task of running into the maze and learning and memorizing it in hopes of finding a way to get out. To add to the confusion, the maze walls move, like the staircases in Harry Potter! The Runners seem to be the elite of the boys (most of them are on the council with Alby) whereas all the other boys, though important, fall below in rank. Almost immediately the boys feel that there is something different about Thomas, which causes some conflict within the ranks. Thomas is given one rule- don’t go into the maze, which of course he couldn’t manage to follow. Way to cause friction Thomas! But, it is awesome because you get to see inside of the maze, and it is CRAZY! Ahh!!! So exciting and exhausting.

Things get really messy when one day the elevator comes back up (early) and reveals a GIRL! Which is crazy enough because they have never seen a girl, but the girl comes with a note that reads “the last one EVER!” When the girl gains consciousness she recognizes Thomas! WHAT?? SHE HAS MEMORIES ?? Or does she?

One thing leads to another and Thomas decides – hey gang, we need to get the heck out of dodge – but this idea is not shared by all, especially one of the council members and runner named Gally (who really does not like Thomas).

Do they get out? What is outside the walls? How did they get into the maze? Why are they in the maze?

My husband and I had so much fun watching this movie we immediately rented the second one and watched it. Both movies are a blast- with exhausting moments! We really enjoyed them.

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    By: Emily Klinefelter

    Born in the North and raised in the South, Emily’s fiery passion for film and writing was ignited by her west coast cousin/mentor, a book editor/film director/photographer who took Emily under her wing at the age of 14. Later on she assisted the book publisher whose book became the film ED WOOD, and production assisted on a feature documentary, which further grounded her love of film and the arts. She is a rabid movie watcher. “I love films of all genres. To me they’re all wonderful and empowering. I mean other than books, what else can take you so many different places and help you escape when you’re stuck at home?” – Emily Klinefelter

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