Film Review – The Divergent Series: Allegiant
Shailene Woodley and Theo James return to save dystopian Chicago as the Tris and Four in the third instalment, The Divergent Series: Allegiant.
After the death and downfall of Jeanine (Kate Winslet) and her regime, Evelyn (Naomi Watts) takes control of the citizens of Chicago and assumes the responsibility of holding trials for Erudite and Dauntless conspirators. With the collapse of the faction system and the shocking news of the mystery behind the wall, Tris (Shailene Woodley), Four (Theo James) and their friends escape and journey beyond the wall and discover a whole new society, one that may threaten the entire existence of humanity.
Director Robert Schwentke returns with a screenplay written by YA author Stephen Chbosky. Based on Veronica Roth’s highly popular young adult trilogy, Allegiant borrows some of its topical themes from the final book in the series. Following the steps of fellow YA adaptations Twilight and The Hunger Games, the third book is split into a two-part film adaptation – this year’s Allegiant and 2017’s Ascendant.
Like its predecessors, Allegiant spends most of its screening time detailing the complex storyline of the Bureau and the theoretical details of genetics and being “pure”. In this third film, the concept of being “Divergent” has significantly expounded and become even more tedious and uninteresting. Elaborating on the illicit faction and Tris’ destiny for mankind, Allegiant gets overcomplicated and shifts the tone from dystopia to sci-fi. However, Allegiant proves to be more visually stunning with high definition special effects of the Bureau and the pink dusted, Mars-like outer Chicago.
Interestingly, the most improved element of Allegiant are the character developments that occur throughout the journey. Woodley and James display noteworthy performances, both as a romantic tandem and as well as individually. Whilst Tris and Four have predominantly been an unwavering duo, this third film has showcased their ability to shine as individual characters and diverging from the confines of their relationship. As Four, James demonstrates his acting capability and portrays Four as a crucial character, more than just the stereotypical YA love interest. Miles Teller reinforces his standout wit and sarcasm as the notorious Peter, a character that is solely responsible for all the humorous elements in the film. Likewise, Ansel Elgort’s Caleb is tolerable this time around, redeeming himself and proving to be an unlikely ally to the group.
With an already approved fourth and final film, high hopes can only be wished for a better film next year.