‘Insurgent’ Delivers an Amazing Sequel | Review of ‘The Divergent Series: Insurgent’

By: Cynthia Ayala

‘Insurgent’ starring Shailene Woodley & Theo James
Summit Entertainment

Insurgent stars Shailene Woodley as Tris Prior, the Divergent protagonist who is on the run from the power hungry Erudites lead by the ruthless Jeanine (played by Kate Winslet). Alongside Four (played by Theo James), her friend and love, the two search for allies in the unlikeliest places of all in the futuristic ruins of Chicago. Together, they must find what Tris’s mother gave her life to hide, what Jeanine want’s so badly, the secret of the past that may be the key – or destruction – of the future.

Incredibly fast paced, this film delivers a punch and evaluates what it means to be a part of something, a community. Separated into factions – Dauntless, Candor, Erudites, Abnegation, and Amity – society has put up walls to differentiate themselves. However, those who fit more than one faction are Divergent, a quality that puts everyone, especially Tris, in terrible danger. The film goes beyond the first to evaluate who these characters are and where they come from. A fast-paced film jumps from scene to scene as it follows these characters who are being hunted down by Jeanine who discovers that soon; she needs the daughter of the woman she killed, she needs Tris. Talk about the irony. Kate Winslet plays the villainous so spectacularly.

Kate Winslet’s character hungers for knowledge, power, and control all of which have warped these otherwise good qualities. There is no question of her acting ability because she will blow the audience away with her stiff yet threatening demeanor. Then there is Shailene Woodley. As a young actor, she is incredibly talented. As Tris, she has to carry around the death of her mother, the death of her friend. The fear, strength and sadness that she exudes is so overwhelming and could overwhelm anyone who would let them, but not Tris. Theo James just doesn’t measure up unfortunately, and the chemistry between the two actors is off. While they both fill their roles very well, they do not connect. It is hard for the audience to see these two as something more than friends when their chemistry is just that, banal.

The story follows a simple pattern of a hero on the run that eventually turns themselves in to protect the ones they love. It is not a complicated story, but the events that govern the film, the dark undertone and action make it something more than the basic story would allow. The film submerges the audience into the psyche of Tris, showing off who she is as a person and how everything has affected her giving her character a deeper substance than in the first film. Her character has grown so much, making her the hero people want to see and can relate to a human hero who has survived by relying on her inner strength.

The film, overall, has excellent appeal. It presents a very realistic and plausible future, one that makes the viewer’s think about the world and its social conventions. Nothing is incredulous making it an excellent action packed film.

– Film Credits –

Directed by Robert Schwentke

Screenplay by Brian Duffield, Akiva Goldsman & Mark Bomback

Based on Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Starring: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Octavia Spencer, Jai Courtney, Ray Stevenson, Zoë Kravitz, Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Maggie Q, Naomi Watts & Kate Winslet

Distributed by Summit Entertainment

Genres | Rating | Length: Science fiction, Adventure, Action | PG-13 | 1 hr. 58 min.

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