Review: ‘Divergent’ series latest ‘Allegiant’
Pessimists reign in the latest installment of the Divergent series “Allegiant” in which a Trump Tower-less Chicago has become the perceived center of a post-Apocalyptic world where young people are classified and separated based on strong personality traits. Naturally, this so-called perfect society (think “Hunger Games”) has crumbled as the different factions gradually recognize some factions live better than others.
“Allegiant,” which will be split into two parts, explores the futuristic ruins of the Second City as the rowdy residents now seek an inquisition-styled punishment for former followers of Janine. Mobs chant for Evelyn (Naomi Watts), the apparent new ruler, who hesitates, while her rival Johanna (Octavia Spencer) continues a dystopian equivalent to the barbarism of the Roman coliseum.
Beatrice Prior (Shailene Woodley) a.k.a. Tris and her friends pick up where “Insurgent” climaxed – heading for the electrified concrete wall that surrounds the city. Not to be confused with “The Maze Runner,” the “Divergent” series has taken the inevitable totalitarian rule as surrounding a smaller sphere and accompanied by females elevated into the ruling class.
Woodley accents her Tris heroine with more identifiable traits than Jennifer Lawrence’s Katniss Everdeen, who’s popularity has diminished her individualistic desires. She ensures that Tris retains ‘just a young woman’ traits, including rich and powerful temptations swirling through love, family, compassion, and other loyalties.
Once this gal’s crew ‘gets to the wall’s other side.’ the film’s not unlike others that depict devastated surroundings (the red hues of radiation are effective), though, its a logical leap to accept their trudging only leads them to an alleged oasis that was once an airport.
“Allegiant” incorporates small flying machines and lasers for a couple of “Star Wars” inspired encounters ( Tris learns to fly one quickly . I don’t need to tell you where that came from!). However, the script becomes more comic-book artificial as the red Fringe section past the great wall leads to the Bureau of Genetic Welfare (run by just ‘David’) and a brief look at Providence.
Label this as young adult fiction, if you will, but the under roots of Divergent, Maze and Hunger Games flow to franchises such as “Mad Max” and “Planet of the Apes,” which have their foundation adapted from George Orwell (“1984”), Aldous Huxley (“Brave New World”) and H.G. Wells (“Time Machine”).
Theoretically, they have all spouted the tenants of an ‘equality’ found by ‘working together’ that resulted from various paths to destruction. Those perfectionist societies that have has emerged reek commonality : The rich , smart, those born into powerful families, and athletically inclined control the masses, who are in some stage of discovering that ‘equal’ has been defined in a means to maintain class separation.
Contact Tony at