Photo Credit: Lionsgate
To the faithful readers of the Divergent series that have been anticipating the release of Insurgent in theaters this past weekend, I have something to say: Beware.
On the other hand, if you are a faithful reader of the Divergent series, and fell in love with the story like I did, then I am sure that your tickets for the midnight premiere were purchased way in advanced and you have probably already seen the movie. So I think I speak for the general public in saying that the movie, although a great film, is a far cry from actually replicating what exists in the 500 page novel written by Veronica Roth.
I left the movie theater this weekend hot-headed, trying to explain to my friend the serious changes from book to film that were so vital to the story. I left with so many questions. Why was Marcus not a bigger part of the story? And why, oh why, is there a "Divergent" box?
My thought was to come straight from the theater and spew out the venom I felt about this film, but then I decided to give Insurgent a second chance. I did some research.
First, I turned to The Hollywood Reporter. According to Roth, she was very aware of the changes that were being made in the movie. The purpose of many of the changes were to give the movie a smoother arc. At first, this makes sense to me. Many people walking in to the theaters probably haven't read the books, and have no idea how in-depth Roth gets with Tris's emotional state throughout her novels. They use different scenes and different lines in order to incorporate it, but to fully grasp the emotions of the novel, the movie would probably have to be way more than 119 minutes.
This, however, does not explain the purpose of that "Divergent" box. So I kept looking.
In a sneak peak trailer that was released in January, Roth explains that the purpose of the box is to try and mend together many scenes of the book. In the book, there is a lot of talk about the "hard drive" and how Tris goes behind Tobias's back (she calls him Tobias in the book, not Four) in order to retrieve this type of information. But to go that route would mean adding on more minutes.
Although I am shocked at the many differences in this movie, I would have to say that at least the viewers without previous knowledge of Insurgent were still able to get a majority of the story. But for those of us who have read the series, and are anticipating Allegiant (the final book), I think there is reason to worry. The ending of the final book is a shocking one, and I am curious if Roth will uphold the standards of that book. Or will she concede to letting the filmmakers create a story that the audience will like instead?
I guess we will have to wait another year to find out.