Insurgent continues popular tale of struggle

Octavia Spencer (photo: Andrew Cooper)

Octavia Spencer (photo: Andrew Cooper)

The Divergent Series: Insurgent is the film adaptation of the YA novel Insurgent by 26-year old Veronica Roth. This is the middle book of a wildly popular trilogy consisting of Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegient. Roth wrote Divergent while working on a ‘creative writing’ degree at Northwestern University, and it was quickly purchased for publication alongside the subsequent books in the trilogy, completed in October 2013. And like the film versions of Harry Potter and Twilight before it, the finale will be divided into two filmed parts, with The Divergent Series: Allegient, Part One due in spring, 2016 and The Divergent Series: Allegient, Part Two set to arrive in 2017.

The movie picks up where Divergent ends, with protagonist Tris leaving the Dauntless compound. Tris must search for allies with her boyfriend Tobias Eaton, or ‘Four’ as he calls himself, along with her brother Caleb Prior, Peter, and Marcus Eaton (Caleb’s father) after the tragic deaths of Tris’ parents Natalie Prior and Andrew Prior.

While being hunted down ruthlessly by Erudite leader Jeanine Matthews, Tris and Four race against time to figure out what Erudite found that led to the massacre of the many Abnegation that had sacrificed their lives to protect it. Tris and her friends have to fight against all odds—and against time.

Mekhi Phifer (photo: Andrew Cooper)

Mekhi Phifer (photo: Andrew Cooper)

Tris is haunted in nightmares by the horrific choices she has been forced to make, such as killing Will to save herself and her mother. Tris also has one more, huge obstacle facing her: unlocking the truth about why her parents died. She is faced with a cold feeling from her best friend Christina, who was very close friends with Will.

In the stellar cast, Shailene Woodley is Beatrice ‘Tris’ Prior; Theo James is Tobias ‘Four’ Eaton; Octavia Spencer is Amity representative Johanna Reyes; Mekhi Phifer is Max; Naomi Watts is Evelyn Johnson-Eaton; Kate Winslet is Jeanine Matthews; Zoë Kravitz is Christina; Maggie Q is Tori; Daniel Dae Kim is Jack Kang; Ansel Elgort is Caleb Prior; Ray Stevenson is Marcus Eaton; Jai Courtney is Eric; Miles Teller is Peter; Ben Lamb is Edward; Suki Waterhouse as Marlene; Jonny Weston is Edgar; Rosa Salazar is Lynn; Keiynan Lonsdale is Uriah Pedrad; and Emjay Anthony is Hector.

Zoe Kravitz (photo: Andrew Cooper)

Zoe Kravitz (photo: Andrew Cooper)

The visual effects are quite spectacular, and the principal actors, especially Shai Woodley, relished doing 90% of their own stunts. The run time for the movie is only 119 minutes (one hour and 59 minutes), which is 20 minutes shorter than the first movie, which is 139 minutes. The time flows quite well between heart breaking moments and full-on wild action and fight sequences. You will not be bored.

Insurgent is rated PG-13 (for intense violence and action throughout, some sensuality, thematic elements and brief language). The film is directed by Robert Schwentke and opens across the country on Friday, March 20, including your local Carmike Cinema. This is the first film in the series to be available in 3-D.