Recently a friend and I saw the movie based on the popular young adult trilogy called Divergent. Having read the first book some time ago it was a little difficult to remember what all went on in it, especially little details that dedicated or more recent readers would’ve been angry about the filmmakers missing. The movie stars Shailene Woodley as the main heroine, Tris, and Theo James as Four. Woodley is also in The Fault in our Stars that comes out on June 6th, a day that I think that I will never be emotionally prepared for (really, go read the book). She did a decent job of playing Tris, a shy girl that ends up being a major player of the rebellious faction called Dauntless. If you need a refresher of the plot you can go to my posts here and here. I say she did decently because she just seems like a meek person overall and I didn’t really see her playing a character that risks it all to join a faction that jumps off trains. However, she had nice hair and that’s really all that matters. Theo James played the love interest, Four. I honestly think he was cast because of his sex appeal because that boy was fine. He played the part well, though and I liked how caring he was with Tris even though he wanted people to think he was all tough (typical). Since I haven’t read the book in a while, the movie seemed to follow it pretty accurately but some have said major characters are left out. According to Flixster, the next installment of the trilogy Insurgent is set to come out on March 20th, 2015 so I’ve got a little time to read the other books and find out what happens to the dystopian society that Tris and Four are revolting against (Hunger Games reference, anyone?). The movie theater I work at had a big promotion for the movie coming out. We had faction bowls like they had in the books where people could submit their names to win prizes. We also had a big board where you could anonymously write down your fears. Some people were less-than-intelligent and wrote twitter usernames or inappropriate things but others wrote clever things like “oblivion” or “daleks”. All the employees got to dress up according to what the factions in the book wore. The first day I was Dauntless and I wore leather leggings and combat boots, along with some temporary tattoos I got at Hot Topic that were identical to the ones Tris gets in the book. The second and last day I was Erudite, and I wore a blue dress. A lot of the employees participated and it was a really good promotion overall, regarding participation. Did you go see Divergent when it came out in theaters?
Lately it seems that a lot of movies that are based on books are usually split into two parts. Take the Harry Potter series, Hunger Games, and Twilight for example: every last movie in those franchises was split into two parts. This is mostly done because the books are so long and important that they need all the content. However, it is probably a marketing gimmick as well. To make a series last longer and to gain more profit on it, splitting a movie into two parts seems ideal. You get the best of both worlds: a fandom lasts a little longer and people make money. For some reason, the split movies make my mom angry. I find this kind of funny, though. Personally, I like when movies are split up because it gives me more to look forward to, even if I have to wait a while. For example, I am reading the third book in the Hunger Games series, Mockingjay. The movie comes out this year on November 21st. However, this is only the first part of the movie adaptation and the second part will probably come out sometime next year. I guess this does give people time who haven’t read the books to catch up, though. This gets me to thinking about other movies like this; Gone With the Wind is a movie I have on DVD and it is split into two parts just because of the tremendous length of the feature. This is how it would’ve been played in theaters in 1939 as well, with an intermission in the middle. Titanic, starring Leonardo Dicaprio, isn’t based on a book but it is also one of those really long movies that didn’t fit on the tape so it had to be split into two parts. I believe the Divergent series will be this way. Even though I’ve only read one of the books, I think that the last one will probably be split into two parts for entertainment and monetary reasons. Do you think movies based on books should be split into two parts?
Continuing from my previous post on the first installment of this series, Divergent definitely left me wanting more. The main character, Beatrice, or known as Tris later on, switched her factions from Abnegation to Dauntless. In the society that the reader soon figures out is based in Chicago, the five factions basically rule your life. A repeating mantra throughout the book is “factions before blood.” The Dauntless recruits go through initiation and are ranked according to their skills and development during the trials they are up against. During the novel, a romance ensues with Tris and one of the instructors, Four. The last phase of initiation is the fear landscape, where the initiates are required to face everything they fear in a simulation. Meanwhile, another faction called the Erudites, the faction of Tris’ brother, is planning war against her home faction of Abnegation. To be honest, following all of the factions and the relationships between them got a little confusing during the course of reading this book, but that is nothing a little Wikipedia can’t fix. The entirety of the Dauntless members are turned into sleepwalking murderers the night after the evaluations after the last test, overrunning the Abnegation compound and killing anyone in sight. Because Tris and Tobias are divergent, the serum that the Erudites used on the Dauntless to make them become killers without even knowing it. However, the leader of the Erudites, Jeanine, has figured out how to create a serum that works on divergents as well and injects Tobias with it making him the controller of the simulation. In the end, through the sacrifice of her parents, Tris saves Tobias from his trancelike state and the Dauntless refugees escape to the Amity compound where they hope they will be accepted. However, I believe as Tris does, that this is not the end of the conflict between the factions in this series.
This book can actually be comparable to the Hunger Games in many ways, the most obvious being that it’s a trilogy. I really did enjoy this book, and while I don’t feel as invested in it as other fandoms that I’m involved with (ahemDoctorWhoahem) I will finish the other two books and watch the movies. Have you read Divergent? What did you think about it?
Working at a movie theater is a great opportunity with many perks. Free popcorn, soda, 25% discount on everything else along with a free movie with a guest every week is beyond awesome. However, this also spoils a TON of movies for me. I saw at least half of Frozen in bits and pieces during theater checks before I actually had the time to sit down and watch it all (and even then I have the overwhelming urge to tell people to put their phones away during the movie because my job is weird and addicting). A few weeks ago, I realized that a movie called Divergent was coming out and it was based on a book. After my coworkers basically shunned me and freaked out about how I hadn’t read the book, I gave into the peer pressure and checked out the book at the library. So far, it’s a pretty good read. I’ve always been a fan of dystopian novels and this is just that. This book is about a society that puts you into factions for life based on your personality and choices that you make in a test that you participate in when you come of age. I am not that far into the book so the factions are a bit hard to follow, but I found a website here that helps make sense of them and what they stand for. Abnegation (the main character’s faction since birth) is the group of people that are plain and selfless. Candor people never lie. Amity people are peaceful and calm. The Erudites are smart and clever. The Dauntless are the rebels of society and they are very daring. The test that everyone takes at the age of 16 helps them choose which faction they want to be in. Some people deviate from the factions they are born into and that faction no longer recognizes them as their own, even their families don’t speak to them. Some, however, remain in their factions. Those who diverge from any faction whatsoever are societal outcasts. The main character is one of the factionless and the story is about her choices and how those affect her and her society, as well as how people view her. I can’t wait to read the rest of this book and the two that follow it before the movie comes out in March. Stay tuned for the second part post of this book later on in the week.
(Book cover photo from http://bookriot.com/2013/10/14/beyond-bestsellers-youve-read-divergent/)