The faction for “Divergent” would be successful

The faction for Divergent would be successful

As “Divergent” hits theaters, avid book readers are caught in between feeling angry in that it didn’t quite fit the book and awe in that it arguably worked even better than the book itself. Having read the book myself, I was impressed that the changes they made flowed and made the storyline more believable. Granted, the changes were severe and noticeable. However, the cast, music and intense action made up for it.

The storyline follows a 16 year old female, Beatrice “Tris” Prior (Shailene Woodley) in a futuristic Chicago that has to choose a faction to be her home. The factions are separated based upon personalities: Amity for the playful, Erudite for the intelligent, Candor for the honest, Abnegation for the selfless and Dauntless for the brave. Tris, and all other 16 year olds in their society, must decide whether they will return to their family or chose a different section to call their new home. Encountering many plot twists, viewers are caught in suspense right up to the end of this film. The movie starts off in misalignment from the book. Seeing this, I moved to the edge of my seat, ready to pounce if they dared to mess anything else up. There are other various changes from the book that only a tedious reader would notice. Probably the biggest change of all was the end. One of the biggest rules in adapting a book to screen is whatever you do; don’t change the end, because if you change the end, you change the entire story. Overall, the ending was just OK. Of course, I thought the book’s ending was better, because the movie was supposed to be based on the novel. I suppose that all changes were made in an effort to condense time, explain better and make the movie more believable. However, I wish they had kept true to the book; little changes I saw were unnecessary and could have easily been the same as the novel.

For people who didn’t read the book, the 139 minutes of the movie might be filled with confusion. There are lots of names, descriptions and plot twists to remember. Readers like me, who are able to keep up with the fast-paced action and camera motions, are generally pleased that the storyline is brought to a more visual, believable form.

The dynamic duo of Tris and Four worked brilliantly. Woodley (Tris) and Theo James (Four) have great chemistry that matches the book precisely. Other casting decisions worked very well, showing in detail the emotions that the characters were facing. I was curious to see how the fighting scenes worked with the acting; thankfully, they worked well and were extremely realistic. These scenes were very graphic, and it felt like it was actually happening: not just in the movie. The music for “Divergent” enhances the mood dramatically. From start to finish, the music doesn’t overpower the movie, which is key to the flow. Each dramatic part was heightened by the music in the background, while each romantic or peaceful moment was equally dramatized. The movie is violent, something that it must be to keep to the book’s plot. The music during the fighting scenes was well executed, still allowing the viewer to hear the impact while getting excited with the music at the same time.

Overall, I enjoyed the movie. Some changes I viewed as unnecessary could just be my prejudice toward the book. As reader, I would recommend this movie: just beware of some changes before entering the theater.

  • Chemistry between actors
  • Plot
  • Music
  • Filming quality
  • Extremely violent
  • Some changes from the book were not  executed well