The audience group “young adults” is a major target for moviemakers these days. The category is probably the biggest group to lay out $8 for a film that reflects their interests and sympathies.
The film opens with Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) waking up in an ascending elevator and is greeted at the top by a group of teen boys, welcoming him to The Glade, an area enclosed in the Maze, a giant walled structure.
He has lost his memory but is told it will soon return and that he is now a Glader. He meets the rest of the Gladers and starts work around the Glade.
He finds out that the Maze opens daily so that two Runners from the Glade can go in and search for an escape. But no one else is to go in because if they stay overnight they will die.
The peril in the Maze is the Grievers, hideous monsters that guard the Maze.
Theo a woman appears in the Box (the elevator) with a note that she is the last one, Teresa (Kaya Scodelario who’s a bit aged to mix with the teen cast and she certainly is not the love interest).
Thomas faces Gally (Will Poulter) over his plan to flee the Glade and return to the world.
Thomas then is joined by Minho (Ki-hog Lee, the main Runner) and they explore the maze. They lead a group of Gladers in an attempt to escape. They wind up in a lab where they are told they were part of an experiment to save the dystopian world.
And the movie ends with the obvious intention of promoting a sequel.
Not bad for a sci-fi young adults film. No sex, lots of fantasy and a if not happy at least acceptable ending.
Wes Ball was the director and he made things happen on time; he was helped by three writers and a lot of techies creating the computer images.
Don’t have to be a young adult to enjoy but older viewers more want more complexity.
•Dylan O’Brien as Thomas, the last male to enter the Glade.
•Aml Ameen as Alby, the leader of the Gladers.
•Thomas Brodie-Sangster as Newt, second in command.
•Ki-hong Lee as Minho, the main Runner.
•Will Poulter as Gally, the film’s antagonist.
•Blake Cooper as Chuck, a friend of Thomas and also is the youngest Glader.
•Kaya Scodelario as Teresa, the one and only female Glader.
•Dexter Darden as Frypan, the main chef of the Gladers
•Chris Sheffield as Ben, a runner
•Jacob Latimore as Jeff, the main medic of the Gladers
•Alexander Flores as Winston
•Randall D. Cunningham as Clint
•Joe Adler as Zart
•Patricia Clarkson as Ava Paige
Grant Pierce Myers
The Maze Runner
by James Dashner
Ki Hong Lee
The Associated Press contributed to this report.