Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials Review
Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials is a 2015 science fiction action film directed by Wes Ball and starring Dylan O’Brien. It is the second installment in this franchise and it is infinitely inferior to the first one.
The plot follows Thomas and his friends who must face the powerful organization behind everything. They go to the Scorch which is a dangerous desert filled with many obstacles. This story is my major issue here. It is just so incredibly bland. Whereas the first flick was exciting and even interesting to follow, this one is never like that as it is mostly boring and tired. The story itself is so unoriginal, being a mix of many other ideas taken from other franchises. And it is always lifeless and never particularly engaging.
But the very worst approach here have to be the zombies. Wow, how unoriginal and just plain stupid and uninspired this is. I was never a fan of these ridiculous creatures and I am certainly not a fan of them here as they are used rather poorly and are not explained whatsoever. The whole first act was a bit more interesting, but is still too vague and also too familiar. And the third act has its moments, but is mostly mediocre as is the whole picture.
The character development is simply awful. Thomas is a somewhat interesting character and is definitely likable, but still lacks the distinct personality. And his friends are all pretty forgettable once again. As for the new characters, Brenda gets at least some development, but is still not memorable and not particularly likable. The same goes for Jorge and Jansen who are both boring. And what they did with Teresa was pretty stupid in my opinion.
Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials is solidly acted. Some performances are weak, but most are at least okay and Dylan O’Brien is good as a lead and is definitely the highlight, particularly in action as he steals every scene he is in. Speaking of action, it is the singular reason to see this blockbuster as it is admittedly pretty entertaining and very well executed. Some scenes are exciting and all of the action scenes here are very well shot and from great camera angles.
The film is definitely overlong as the pacing is so poor with the first half being just one overlong action set piece and the rest of the film being slow with some action, but mostly filled with slow moments and dialogue. But that dialogue is weak and the emotion they try to put here is never real and I never root for any of the characters as they are so weakly developed. The score is nothing special, but the sound effects are good and the visual effects are pretty good.
This second installment is an immense disappointment and so much worse than the original. The Maze Runner had great action as well, but it also had at least some character development and the whole story was really well done and filled with many entertaining moments, mysterious and dramatic. But here nothing like that is ever felt, instead you get the overly present boredom and plain unoriginality.