So, as I’ve said before, I’m a huge fan of The Maze Runner series of books, so here is my review of the movie adaptations of the first book in one of my favorite series.
I’ll start off with saying I enjoyed the movie, while it did stray from the book in some ways it didn’t do it in such a way as to ruin the adaptation as some other book series have (I’m looking at you Lightning Thief). Like with LotR most of the changes I noticed were made more towards improving the pacing of the movie and giving more oomph to the action. Most of the changes I noted weren’t such a big deal, but there were a couple that irked me.
So, as to the changes, among the most notable I will point out is the difference in the opening of the doors. In the book the Grievers as I recall were slowly picking the Gladers off before the rush into the maze, which in my opinion would have created much more tension than the grievers just swarming out and slaughtering everything in sight. But again, I can see the purpose in speeding it up due to the limitations of movie screen time, still annoys me somewhat though. Another big change I noticed was the method by which the maze was solved, because of the change in the Runner’s information collecting (building a model instead of making maps) it was necessary to change the deactivation code for the maze as well as the method by which it was solved. I honestly preferred the mapmaking leading into the word deactivation code found in the books over the sequence code given in the movie. It also took away somewhat from Thomas’s problem solving abilities as well in my opinion, since he helps to decipher the original code in the books. There is also the matter of the serum already being present in the glade rather than it being brought in with Teresa when the is sent up. There is also the difference between the endings in terms of what happens after they leave the maze. I am mixed on the changes made to the movie, but I don’t take to much issue with them since they didn’t really harm the story that much, the overall story remains intact.
As to the characters in this movie, I say they worked pretty well. Alby especially was done quite well, and the actor for the MC did his job well. Overall the actors were quite good, but I must say, my favorite ‘actors’ were probably the Grievers(If you would call CG monsters actors that is). The Grievers were extremely well done, the designer behind these monsters did their job extremely well. The Grievers were horrifying, as they should have been.
So, I would consider The Maze Runner to fall into ‘The Good’ category. Though it had issues it remained relatively true to the book in terms of the overall story. Furthermore, it continued the overall story correctly. It didn’t kill off important characters for shock value, it didn’t introduce brand new antagonists or remove other major characters, and it followed the plot. What else can one ask for in a book to movie adaptation?