Film Review: ‘The Divergent Series: Insurgent’ appeals to more than just the fans

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Summit Entertainment

Isabella Blair, Staff Writer

“The Divergent Series: Insurgent,” the second film installment to the popular novel-based “Divergent” Series, has the perfect amount of details to satisfy both readers and nonreaders alike. The movie takes out many of the novel’s unnecessary scenes, leaving viewers with a great sequel to “The Divergent Series: Divergent.”

“Insurgent” picks up pretty much where “Divergent” leaves off where Tris (Shailene Woodley), Four (Theo James), and Caleb (Ansel Elgort) are running away on train to Amity because Dauntless soldiers working for Jeanine (Kate Winslet) are chasing down all Divergents.

Throughout the film, Tris and Four are constantly escaping the Dauntless soldiers. They come across several factions and the Factionless, headed by Four’s supposed-to-be-dead mother, Evelyn Eaton (Naomi Watts). Once Jeanine gets her hands on the top-secret device that the leaders of Abnegation tries so hard to hide, she starts putting the Divergents to the test to unlock the secret message that is the foundation of the faction system. When other people’s lives are at risk for hers, Tris makes a decision that may disappoint Four, but saves the lives of many.

The movie, unlike most other novel-based movies, depicts complicated parts of the film really well for people who have not read the book. When bringing simulations to the screen, viewers get to see the obstacles that Tris is forced to get past.

Tris Prior is bold, selfless, and daring. She does not let her boyfriend, Four, fight her battles. Woodley has perfected the role of the selfless heroine in this dystopian film with death glares, caring smiles, and risky stunts. Four is strong and very selfless, probably due to the fact that he was raised in Abnegation. James plays the role of Four pretty well by constantly acting silent and brooding in the film.

The two lovers share several intimate scenes throughout the film, however, Tris always seems like she is holding back. This might be because of her fear in the first film, where she is scared of intimacy with Four. In that case, Woodley plays that part very well.

In “Divergent,” Tris had to compete against Peter (Miles Teller), a boy from Candor to be in Dauntless. They become rivals that are forced to work together in both “Divergent” and “Insurgent.” Peter is hilarious. He is very witty, sarcastic, and selfish, which is highlighted by Teller and have the audience laughing in almost every scene he is in.

Jeanine, the leader of Erudite, is obstinate and determined to do anything to get what she wants. She wears the label of Erudite very well, and Winslet does a great job of showing poise and attitude throughout the movie.

While some minor characters do not have as much character development as a lot of readers would like, one character who is developed in “Insurgent” is Uriah (Keiynan Lonsdale). He starts to become a good friend of Tris’s in the Divergent novel; however, readers were sad to find out that he played no part in the “Divergent” movie. Many of the readers were ecstatic to hear that he plays a role in “Insurgent” the movie. Uriah is Divergent and plays a huge role as Tris’s friend throughout the series.

Due to the exceptional representation of each of the five factions, “Insurgent” is a delight to the eyes. The people from Erudite wear electric blue and dwell in immaculate buildings, Candor wear black and white in balanced patterns, showing how fair and unbiased the characters from that faction are. The people from Amity wear earth-toned, flowy cloths that represent their easy going personalities. The Dauntless wear black, and the Factionless wear ragged clothes to symbolize their poverty. The clothing of each of the factions, the faction areas, and the personalities that accompany each person from each of the factions all help viewers distinguish the five factions.

Overall, “Insurgent” is great for people who haven’t read the book. While lots of details were taken out of the plot for the movie, there are still tons of details having to do with main characters, factions, and complex concepts that are the base of the film. It is understandable that the movie could not include as much character development as the book, so “Insurgent” deserves an A for being a great movie for both non-readers and readers.

“The Divergent Series: Insurgent”
Our Grade: A
Rating: PG-13
Duration: 119 minutes
Director: Robert Schwentke
Cast: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Kate Winslet, Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Naomi Watts, Keiynan Lonsdale