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Allegiant (2016) Reviewed By Jay

United States, 25 December 2015


Jay´s Review

Well here we are. I thought we would be wrapping up another Young Adult trilogy (is there any other kind?) but discovered that a fourth (!) chapter is in production, so now we have Parts 1 & 2. Most of the faces and names are familiar to fans, so it won't take much additional information to set the stage. With the big surprises revealed in "Insurgent" so after Tris and Four perilously escape beyond the wall that encircles Chicago, our heroic band has its work cut out for it.

Returning from his "Insurgent" duties, director Robert Schwentke once again takes the helm for this non-stop actioner. Unfortunately, that's all there is: Action. Gunfire and blowie uppie stuff. The story is flimsy and convoluted, the locations are Computer Generated Imaging, and we in the audience are jaded. To me, the only interesting exceptions are a derelict O'Hare Airport and those gauzy translucent bags that envelope our principals once in awhile. Incidentally, Schwentke will not be returning to direct Part 2; maybe he too, is weary.

Here is part of the cast:

  • * Shailene Woodley ("The Descendants") is Tris, the misfit who diverges from the standard attributes that would have allowed her to take her place in one of the five factions that made up her world. Now of course, all of that has been thrown into a tailspin, so she and her cadre of rebels must deal with it.
  • * Theo James ("Insurgent") Four has become central to our heroine's plans and now they are both in jeopardy. Unfortunately, his mother is partially to blame.
  • * Miles Teller ("Whiplash") They say "everyone is worth saving," so Peter gets another chance... against our better judgment.
  • * Zoë Kravitz ("X-Men") Christina has been with our heroine from the beginning and continues to be creative and resourceful. I wish this lovely young actress had more to do but show up on screen occasionally.
  • * Naomi Watts ("Undertaking Betty") Evelyn has embraced the adage: Leaders must make hard choices. A last-ditch effort to secure her position backfires when she jeopardizes her only son.
  • * Octavia Spencer ("The Help") Johanna was a leader when her world was divided into factions. She is still a leader, only now her weapons are commitment and fervor.
  • * Ansel Elgort ("The Fault in Our Stars") returns as our heroine's brother Caleb. He has mad computer skills and is very bright, but he's not brave.
  • * Jeff Daniels ("The Martian") David is in an awkward position. His plans for the future center around Tris, whom he sees as a perfect human specimen. Problem is, she is also smart.

This is rated PG-13, so you can expect very little profanity, no sweaty bodies and only partial nudity. Unfortunately, this movie lasts for 121 minutes, that leaves almost two hours of fisticuffs, running, shooting and blowing stuff up. Oh! and some icky orange smoke... Aarghhh!

These Young Adult series ("Twilight," "The Hunger Games," and "Divergent") have brought us some outstanding young actresses (Kristen Stewart, Jennifer Lawrence and Shailene Woodley), who have managed to anchor their series, survive the rigors of super-stardom and, despite being saddled with twaddle like this, have begun to create respectable bodies of work that will hold up over the long haul. Kudos!

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