Saturday, 5 April 2014

Divergent Film Review

Rating: 5*

If you have been following my blogs, you are probably super-aware of the fact that I am in love with Veronica Roth’s Young Adult Dystopian Series: The Divergent Trilogy. It is extremely high up on my “Best Books Ever” list that I recommend to almost everyone, and there is a very strong chance that I will judge you – very, very harshly – if you are a teenage girl and have not read at least the first novel in the Divergent series. Veronica Roth is one of my most highly acclaimed authors.

Given the above information, it’s probably not a shock to you that I have been counting down the days to the release of the Divergent film for a very, very long time. The hype created by my friends and me around the film was pretty phenomenal, so by the time it was finally released yesterday, we had already stalked the cast, gone onto several spoiler websites that leaked some of the photographs from the set, drooled – several times – over Theo James, and engaged in various heated debates over whether he and Shailene Woodley would live up to our expectations of the characters of Four and Tris.

As a person who strongly believes in reading the book before seeing the movie, I have pretty much trained myself to go through a process of severely lowering my expectations in the weeks leading up to the movie release, and therefore pretty much undoing all of the excitement and self-hype it took me so long to subconsciously build up. However, after losing myself in towering mountains of school tests, essays and assignments, I was astounded to realize that the release date of Divergent had completely snuck up on me, and I only had about a day to prepare myself for the worst.

Luckily, my expectations did not need to be lowered.

Divergent was incredible. From the moment Shailene Woodley’s voice introduced the story, to her last monologue of the film, I was in a state of absolute and utter elation. I believe the film was a perfect mixture of exact scenes from the book and the director’s “artistic license.” In fact, I could not have imagined a better version of the film. Sure, there were parts where I compared it to the book and wasn’t completely satisfied, but hat is the price every author and reader has to pay when a great novel is converted to a movie. No movie will ever be able to live up to its book, and that is something I believe we need to accept – even cherish – as readers.

For those of you who have not yet read the books, or even the synopsis of the film, Divergent is a action-adventure that tells the story of sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior, who lives in a world divided into factions based on personality traits. As she approaches her own choosing ceremony, in which she must decide the faction in which she will spend the rest of her life, she discovers that she is Divergent – her personality is suited to more than one faction. She is forced into a life of secrecy as her Divergence begins to threaten both her own life, and those of the people she loves.

To be perfectly honest, I do not believe the film would’ve been as successful without Veronica Roth’s intervention as co-producer. In this, she was able to include her own vision in the creation of the film, and satisfy her readers who were going to watch the film, as well as viewers who had not read

Overall, I highly recommend watching Divergent – and reading the series. I guarantee you will not regret wasting time on the novels, although you may be an emotional mess by the time you’ve finished Allegiant, much like I was. But of all the ways to ruin your mental stability, reading and then watching Divergent is probably the most enjoyable (and I mean that in the best possible way – it’s so good you’ll go a little bit crazy, in a good way of course.)

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