A film so bland and conventional its existence can no longer be justified like its predecessors.
In the world of young adult fiction, each franchise capable of producing multiple sequels often possess its own unique brand of beauty to be appreciated for its distinction, Hunger Games had an epic scale and depth in its dystopian world of young insurgents, Harry Potter had the unmatched sense of wonder and the pure-hearted storytelling, even Twilight to some respects featured stupendous romance in the near-delusional fantasies. This is something that the Divergent series lacks even after three feature films.
Opening with a dystopian visual, which at this point frankly does not need emphasizing nor does it achieve any impact, Allegiant’s cinematography is overall unimpressive and at times somewhat lacking of clarity and pace. Especially in some action scenes one can’t discern the excitement it’s trying to impart. There’s some visual here to be developed here, however contrastingly the plot seems too shallow and naïve to place any emphasis on a secondary element such as this.
Characters appeared incredibly underdeveloped, there seem to be no real progress of emotional growth since Divergent which speaks to the overall pace of Allegiant – where the original was at least in parts fresh and fun and capable of adapting itself as the plot progresses, Allegiant stands still. Similarly the characters here are shallow with actions at times juvenile and illogical, not only being overall unhelpful in pushing forward the story, but simultaneously presenting a lack of personalities for us to root for. Four aka Tobias Eaton as portrayed by Theo James was one of such nonsensical men, being as bland as white sheet, or looking from another perspective he is the stereotypical ‘White Knight’, the exact contrast of ‘damsel in distress’ – both these types of characters play very little role in terms of presenting a real and empathetic human being, but rather just there for the audiences’ sakes.
Developments are too long and not long enough at the same time, on one hand there are many unnecessary scenes suggesting that these should be modified or simply cut out for faster-paced actions, on the other the climax sprung up on the audience with no prior warnings or edge-of-your-seat tensions, which suggest there should have been more foundation building.
The sci-fi elements and many designs seem far too serious for its own good – where many films have achieved stunning effects by providing intelligent or at least whimsically cool technological designs, the stern-face which Allegiant pulls when introducing these somewhat conservative, unremarkable new weapons and aircrafts almost has a comical effect.
A rare pleasure was Miles Teller, who works as the comic relief Peter, yet there’s truly not much tension to relief from.
There’s overall little excitement, just things happening in chronological order that we’re supposed to be thrilled about. The climax, as mentioned had no impacts as the foundation of the conflict was not worked up properly, the villain wasn’t quite convincing or in anyway threatening despite the physical stakes at hand, neither his cruelties or his nature could be realized to its full potential.
The resolution was somewhat of a copout, again anti-climactic.
Something was accomplished in Allegiant, but it does not justify itself to be split apart from Ascendant. The singular objective of the film was not identified and you could feel there’s a point made here somewhere, but the inconsistency just throws you off.
In theatres Australia wide from 14th of April
MPAA Rating: PG-13
ACB Rating: M
Run Time: 121 min
An overzealous film critic wannabe, Henry Pan makes a trip down cinema lane once a week, in order to decrease his ever-increasing massive watch list. You can follow him and hear all about his rants on films, life and pet dogs on Twitter @LifeOfPan.