While there was much buzz going around about how the new movie Divergent was going to be too much like the well known trilogy The Hunger Games, as soon as the movie came out, those thoughts were stopped dead in their tracks.
Although the concept of a dystopian society is a similar theme in both movies, that’s about as far as the similarities go. The new Divergent movie is based off the the first book of the series written by Veronica Roth.
Taking place in futuristic Chicago, Illinois, Divergent is about a teenage girl named Beatrice Prior who feels like she doesn’t fit in anywhere. With her society, this is a real issue. The city is broken up into five factions – Abnegation, Candor, Amity, Erudite, and Dauntless. Beatrice, later known as Tris, starts off in Abnegation with her family but when she takes the aptitude test – a test that is supposed to tell her what faction to choose – her results are inconclusive, labeling her as Divergent. So in the end, the story is about Tris discovering where she fits in and learning about who she wants to be.
While some people may just go to see the movie for no reason, others have been waiting for it to come out because they read the book. It’s often suggested that you read a book before you see its film version to get the more authentic experience. Comparing Divergent the book to the movie, the directors did a good job capturing the spirit and feel of the story. There are minor details here and there, however, throughout the movie that are different from the book.
To give an example that won’t give away any key parts, during the capture the flag game, in the book they used paint ball guns which showed the fun side of the Dauntless members, but in the movie, they used these high tech guns that stimulate the feeling of a real gun shot that wears off in a minute. It’s something so simple, but for the people who loved the book, it’s enough to leave some unhappy.
Also, although only the first movie is filmed and out, it can be assumed that there will be a second one following the path of the trilogy – Insurgent. If Insurgent is to become a movie, there’s going to be much recapping of things that happened in Divergent.
This was another flaw in the movie – there were many things missing that reappear in the second and third book. So the issue is going to be how they introduce characters or issues in Insurgent that should have been shown in Divergent to begin with.
Again, an example that doesn’t spoil anything would be the characters of Uriah and Zeke. They were not introduced the the Divergent movie even though they had a fairly large role in the first and second books. It’ll be interesting to see how they work around these issues if they do make Insurgent into a movie.
Altogether, while there are some movies that are so far off from the book they are supposedly based off of that they ruin it, this movie did not ruin Veronica Roth’s Divergent. The characters were well cast and scenes were well thought out. Shailene Woodley does a great job capturing Tris’ character from starting off quiet and intimidated to developing into a confident and strong woman. Theo James is the heartthrob of the movie, playing Tobias Eaton, also known as Four, Tris’ love interest.
Both Woodley and James are fairly new faces to the movie land, and with Divergent, they have made a name for themselves. Woodley will from now on be thought of as Tris, just as Jennifer Lawrence is tied to the character of Katniss from The Hunger Games.
Divergent isn’t Woodley’s first time acting, though. As the main character of ABC Family’s original series The Secret Life of an American Teenager, Amy Juergens, Woodley has acting experience under her belt. Although Amy and Tris are two completely different characters, she’s played them both successfully.
Woodley also has another movie that has just hit theaters as well, The Fault in Our Stars, which is also based off a novel. She plays the main character, Hazel. So for now, Woodley’s face can be seen all over, from the theater screen, to commercials, and to magazines as a hot new star.
Since Divergent has been out since March 21, that’ll soon be dwindling down to an end and leaving theaters. Therefore, unless one wants to wait until it comes out on DVD, people need to hurry on over to the movies to see it before it’s too late. But before doing so, give the book a read.