The Maze Runner

themazerunner (1)

Vampire Owl :: We are here at the exact time.

Vampire Bat :: How many times do I have to tell you that we have to reach the theatre before the movie begins?

Vampire Owl :: I am punctual with an awesome timing. So we should be here only when the movie starts. Otherwise, we will be bombarded with stupid commercials.

Vampire Bat :: There are no Vicco ads at this multiplex. This is Vicco-free

Vampire Owl :: There will still be a Katrina Kaif with a juice or chocolate.

Vampire Bat :: Stop solving the maze. You haven’t even seen her bathroom ad yet.

Vampire Owl :: What? You don’t tell me anything. You didn’t even talk to me about the uncensored version of 300 part two.

Vampire Bat :: But you did notice in the theatre that something was cut.

Vampire Owl :: Damn. I thought it was the blood and the flying body parts that they cut.

Vampire Bat :: This is why you are never promoted in the vampire ranks. You solve the maze before it is ever built.

[Gets the tickets].

What is it about? :: A boy wakes up in a box carrying supplies in an elevator, and is joined by a group of other boys who welcome him in an open area and makes him a member of their group. This boy whose name is discovered as Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), soon finds out that they are all trapped in an area surrounded by a maze with just one opening. They are all trapped in a rounded area filled with vegetation, which they call the glade. A new boy is send up in the elevator with supplies every month, and only when it is emptied that the elevator goes back down. Now they have started a small civilization there, and remembering only their own names, the boys are hoping that they can one day find a way out through the maze which is filled with dangers, including the consistently shifting mechanism of the maze which can squeeze whoever is inside, and the creatures of the night known as Grievers who roam around inside the structure. They train runners and make them travel through the maze during the day to be back at night, hoping to find a way out.

The defence of The Maze Runner :: The movie has the strength of some scares, especially with that great environment that it creates, and it is a significant thing that it is generated even without much strain but from the premises. The situation is about being locked in the middle of a maze, with no contact with the outside world, or the hope to escape and see what happens around. In the case of an escape, there is painful death awaiting, and that much they make clear. The maze is nicely designed with the addition of scare elements and the creatures which look a lot like mechanized spiders, and the atmosphere is a success. The suspense element stays strong too. The progress of the tale is nice, with the maze and the glade nicely explained and the incidents happening like they should. The best thing is that even as there is only one girl in the glade, there is the absence of a love triangle (or even rectangle) – not going there itself is a gain, and there is no romance as one would expect from a movie like this, keeping its mystery and terror alive without side-effects. The actors do their job, but almost everything is about the central character.

The claws of flaw :: The movie leaves with more questions than answers with which it struggles to provide, something which can get better only with the sequel. We don’t know much about most of things in this movie, and also about what is the right information, and what the wrong one is. The emotional side is pretty much weak, with no real attachment between the characters other than what is implied. Most of the characters including the heroine remains less interesting characters, and there are parts of the plot where things are rather rushed; the fans of book will surely complaint about possible deviations too. The movie could have used the maze more, especially in providing more mystery as our people unlock parts of it as we come to know about it. The scary stuff could have also had some boost with the darkness and the trees better twisted. There should have been more running in the maze suiting the title, and the need for more theories about the maze, its working and surprise attacks from the creatures, all would have boosted this movie, especially when it has that shortage of steam in the middle.

Soul exploration 1: Dystopian world :: The Maze Runner leaves us with a maze to think about. It is a lot like that labyrinth which was built by Daedalus for King Minos of Crete, which had that mythical Minotaur waiting to claim its victims. The half-man half-bull creature was slain by Theseus with the aid of Ariadne, and here, the story of monsters lives on. But what remains outside is the story of a dystopia, like what we had seen in Divergent and The Hunger Games, as a group of people are left in a world detached from the rest, controlled by some unknown people. There is also something from the Lord of the Flies as the boys struggle between themselves and their beliefsThey fight for survival here too, somewhat like in the games, but supporting each other and fighting an external force. Here, the divergent is the protagonist called Thomas, and he finds a way even as he is another newcomer like Beatrice Prior who becomes dauntless, and also showing the courage of Katniss Everdeen. Another fact is that there is another possible dystopia waiting for them outside, or is it extinction? Only those who have read the next books will know.

Soul exploration 2: Need for travel :: The glade is more like home, and we can see that there is reluctance from some members of the group to leave the place and enter the maze of troubles, which reflect what we see in out world. The maze of life is a difficult place to be, as we struggle to go through the same and nobody gets out of life alive, as we know it. The dangerous place that is life, calls us, but our reluctance to go into the world will only save our lives from the trouble that awaits us. Meanwhile, the glide protects its inhabitants and provides the people with the much needed safety of home. But can we be sure about the same? What if something better awaits us on the other side of the tricky and dangerous maze? It is only by travelling that we come to know about the same. Yes, the movie somewhat reflects the same, as we have the chance to go out there and explore, and only then, there will be choices. Such an uncertainty awaits us, and if we wait like the boys in the glade, we will never know; it is the risk factor that will define us.

How it finishes :: The Maze Runner ends the season of English movies coming late to this part of the world, along with A Walk Among the Tombstones which was my first preference for the weekend due to the presence of Liam Neeson. But thanks to the stupid timings that the multiplexes have kept for this movie, I might not be able to watch it, but I might still think abut giving it a try if circumstances are more favourable. For now, The Maze Runner seems to be the only movie of the week for me, and I am pretty much happy that I had chosen to watch it. It has also inspired me to read The Maze Runner by James Dashner some day, as there have been talks about some differences which are there and has affected the movie both positively and negatively. Lets also wait for that sequel which has a lot of things to tell us – here we await those answers to the questions which naturally springs up in the mind and leaves us not satisfied enough. Lets hope that this won’t get degraded like the Mortal Instruments and Twilight franchises or even as The Host.

Release date: 19th September 2014
Running time: 113 minutes
Directed by: Wes Ball
Starring: Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Thomas Brodie-Sangster,Will Poulter, Ki-hong Lee, Blake Cooper, Chris Sheffield, Aml Ameen, Alexander Flores, Jacob Latimore, Dexter Darden, Randall D. Cunningham, Joe Adler, Patricia Clarkson

themazerunner

@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.

We’re the Millers

werethemillers (1)

It was a delayed entrance that this comedy movie made to the theatres here and there was a bigger delay in me watching the same. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters and The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones had taken over the last weekend, and it was necessary that I had to wait, and therefore I did and took this pill of comedy which is We’re the Millers. The Hangover Part III was the last full-time comedy of this nature which I had watched in the theatre last. Now, here is this movie which overtakes the final movie of a series of a solid fanbase even with its highly predictable setup which comes up with no surprises or moments of absolute brilliance. It is more of a disadvantage of that movie rather than the capability of this movie. But the difference in rating is negligible and the effect is also not that much of a variation, as you can check right here: https://moviesofthesoul.wordpress.com/2013/06/01/thehangover3/ except for the well-known fact that it was The Hangover, and was to be respected for the first movie of the franchise, which was just another Dude, Where’s My Car? if we look at it with eyes uncovered of the glorified mist.

David Clark (Jason Sudeikis) is a drug dealer of a smaller level, a chronic bachelor and still a happy one until he is robbed of his money and stock, on a night of stupidity. His boss, a rich drug lord and gangster Brad Gurdlinger (Ed Helms) forces David to smuggle marijuana from Mexico to the United States in order to clear his debt to be him as well as gain some good carrier fee. As he is known enough as a drug dealer and one man crossing the border is going to be more suspicious, he hires a stripper named Rose (Jennifer Aniston) who is having heavy financial difficulties and loses her job, an arrogant runaway teenage punk girl named Casey (Emma Roberts), and his eighteen year-old neighbor Kenny who is afraid of kissing a girl (Will Poulter) to pose as a typical American family called the Millers travelling in an RV, with that random family name he came across. They are a strange group, but still manage to get through into Mexico and also get the needed goods from a Mexican drug-hold, despite almost getting shot by the gangsters and being caught by the Mexican police.

Due to the presence of a heavy load of marijuana on the RV, the automobile breaks down. They are helped by a family called Fitzgeralds whom they had encountered at the border, and it consisted of Don (Nick Offerman), Edie (Kathryn Hahn), and Melissa (Molly Quinn). As they take the Millers’ RV to a repair shop, Kenny falls further for Melissa. It is then revealed that Don Fitzgerald is a DEA agent as he comes across his badge and the gun. After Edie seems to be highly interested in Rose, and Melissa finds out Kenny kissing both Casey and Rose (as they were trying to teach him the same), a holy mess breaks out and despite the husband and wife being reluctant to leave them, they finally get to the shop only to be greeted by the real drug lord whose package they had been carrying over. But they try to convince him that they are not a real family, and Rose is a stripper, as she strips down to her underwear and do some pole-dancing and attacks him with a steam vent which sets them on the escape route with an angry drug lord and his men behind them. As they try to settle their differences, they are followed by one of the most dangerous gangs and it is to see if they can survive and finish their mission, earning the much needed money.

Jennifer Aniston who seems to look better and better, steals the show in this movie, as the stripper and still the caring supposed-to-be-mother. I haven’t watched many of her movies, and the only one I can remember right now, is Bruce Almighty, possibly because the genres of the films she acted in rarely was part of my to-be-watched list. May be I could find a few more of the movies with her in them, sooner or later. The absence of big male leading actor is solved by her presence, and even as this is more of an opportunity for her to get into her character and look awesome. But it is to be noted that her acting skills as a comedy actress also gets its due, and she never looks out of place and even her character’s job in the movie seems to help her performance highly. She has her charm working out throughout the movie as she triumphs in what she does. Most of the better moments of the movie has her as part of it. She is the biggest star in the movie, and the next one is Ed Helms, the Stu of The Hangover franchise with quite a small screen presence. He comes, make a short impact and then makes small appearances.

Jason Sudeikis as David Clark makes a good central character, and he has his own good moments in an everlasting screen presence. He remains funny throughout, as his dynamic character evolves from the drug dealer who keeps seeking money to a responsible father-to-be. Will Poulter’s Kenny Rossmore is undoubtedly the funniest of all characters in the movie. He is instantly likable even with all the nonsense that he come with up with, adding to the funny side of the movie. Emma Roberts as Casey Mathis, and she provides the right dose of energy or the lack of it at the right moments, creating the much needed contrast with Kenny on one side, while also with David on another side. She is the bad kid, a strange and never caring girl who ran away from her home due to small differences. Nick Offerman’s Don Fitzgerald and Kathryn Hahn’s Edie Fitzgerald are the next funnier characters. Molly Quinn as Melissa Fitzgerald has a cute, beautiful, innocent presence throughout the time she spends on screen. She might even be the best-looking person around in the movie. Tomer Sisley is a fine Mexican drug lord and Matthew Willig makes a good henchman.

The strength of this movie is its cast, as one might expect even before watching the trailer of this movie. But the question remains if they could have had a better, less predictable plots with not much of the repeated comedy scenes. Some of them are too silly and stupid for the common movie watcher who has had a long season of watching comedy movies. It might be more than just okay for the viewers from this part of the world, as adult-comedy is not something you get to watch in theatres too often here, and even if it does attack the big screen or the television channels, there are more to cut than to show, making the whole thing a lot more shorter than what it really is. Jennifer Aniston surely had some of her stripping and pole-dancing cut from the totality, and there has been a lot of dialogues by both the male and the female lead which has been removed. The movie surely felt quite short compared to its total running time given in the internet, but one can also think that it was more because it was funny and entertaining enough, with subtitles to make sure that none of those terms are missed by the usual audience who don’t get to see movies of this genre every day, every month or even every year.

The Heat and Grown Ups 2 hasn’t come to our theatres, but The Hangover Part III had quite a good time here. We’re the Millers also had quite an okay time here, but Jennifer Aniston can’t create that much of an effect here and there all the collection this movie makes here comes from the trailer which was shown before Indian movies, and that trailer was pretty good rising the bar of expectations. The fact that Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters is having a better word of mouth, and still staying on to have more shows, and Riddick coming to make an impact with a superstar who is loved in this part of the world, the only hope for this movie is to fill the void which The Conjuring might leave next week after scaring enough people. But that might also be filled by new releases in different languages, as the Onam celebrations are coming up and families shall flock into both the normal theatres as well as the multiplexes, not for adult-comedy, but for the family movies, mostly in Malayalam followed by Tamil and Hindi in that order. So the time of this movie has almost ended here, but it has surely created enough impact outside here. For now, I hope that they don’t steal from this movie to make a road trip flick in the form of a Hindi or Malayalam movie, as a whole or in part, as that won’t be tolerable at all.

Release date: 7th August 2013 (United States); 31st August 2013 (India)
Running time: 110 minutes
Directed by: Rawson Marshall Thurber
Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Jason Sudeikis, Emma Roberts, Will Poulter, Ed Helms, Nick Offerman, Kathryn Hahn, Molly Quinn, Ken Marino, Matthew Willig, Tomer Sisley, Thomas Lennon

werethemillers! copy

@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.