Movie Reviews

Maze Runner: The Death Cure – A Decent Finale (but at least it’s not two films)

Just in case you didn’t know, there’s still another Maze Runner film left.

Synopsis: In the epic finale to the Maze Runner saga, Thomas leads his group of escaped Gladers on their final and most dangerous mission yet. To save their friends, they must break into the legendary Last City, a WCKD-controlled labyrinth that may turn out to be the deadliest maze of all. Anyone who makes it out alive will get answers to the questions the Gladers have been asking since they first arrived in the maze. (20th Century Fox)

Starring: Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, and Thomas Brodie-Sangster

Writer: T.S. Nowlin

Director: Wes Ball

Rating: 14A (Canada)/PG-13 (United States)

Running Time: 142mins

Trailer: 

For showtimes and more, check out Maze Runner: The Death Cure on movietimes.com.

When it comes to most YA film series, the film based on the final book is usually split into two films but this wasn’t the case here. However, watching this film felt like watching two films as it was stuffed to the brim with enough story for two films. It also didn’t rush with it’s story which also happens to be the worst part of the film as it is a little too long, clocking in at nearly 2.5 hours. It easily could’ve cut some scenes out and been more concise with others, more on that later. Ultimately, this is still a better option than having the end be made into two films.

For those who don’t remember (and there may be many), near the end of the previous film in the series, The Scorch Trials, WCKD abducts Thomas’ (O’Brien) friend Minho (Ki Hong Lee), presumably to continue performing experiments in order to find a cure to the virus that had been plaguing the human race. The moral question was still there but it took a backseat to the rest of the story.

Not wanting to leave anyone behind, Thomas and a few of his fellow Gladers set out to rescue Minho from a WCKD stronghold known as The Last City. While the previous film felt empty plot wise with a tone that was all over the place, this installment had a more focused story that better utilized its characters thus made it much more compelling to watch.

It may have been compelling to watch, however, the story offered absolutely nothing new whatsoever and was somewhat predictable. While this was the case, Thomas’ adventure was still entertaining to watch if you can forgive some of the mindlessness. What made it more fun to watch was its utilization of its side characters, featuring more camaraderie compared to the previous film which wasn’t nearly as fun. This film wasn’t as much of a Thomas show as several side characters had arcs of their own including Teresa (Scodelario), Newt (Brodie-Sangster), and Minho himself. 

The long running time created many opportunities for action and there was plenty to be had here, even more than the first two films. It was well done for the most part and came fast and furious and was made even more impactful because of the stakes behind it. The previous film made it problematic to care about these characters but this wasn’t the case this time. This was also one of the elements that affected the running time as many sequences were dragged out unnecessarily. Another part of the film that was dragged out unnecessarily was the end which took away some of the impact from the ending.

The acting was good across the board with the best performance coming from O’Brien as Thomas. He may not be the most original character but O’Brien’s charisma kept him engaging to watch while handling himself with the physicality of the role (which you get a better appreciation of because of his earlier injury that delayed the production of the film). Scodelario did a solid job of depicting Teresa’s inner conflict, stuck in between two sides, fueled by wanting to do the right thing. Brodie-Sangster as Newt holds his own with O’Brien’s Thomas and was the most compelling character to watch, considering his arc from the first film to now. Lee does the best he can with an increased role but his plight felt like an afterthought.

Overall, this was a decent finale for a decent YA film series. It may not be the most original but was still entertaining to watch thanks its compelling, fast-paced, action-packed story that runs a little too long. At least it’s better than having the end told in two films.

Score: 7.5/10

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