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'Insurgent' - Shailene Woodley shines on (IANS Movie Review)
Film: "Insurgent"; Cast: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Naomi Watts, Kate Winslet, Octavia Spencer, Ashley Judd, Jai Courtney, Mekhi Phifer, Ray Stevenson, Zoe Kravitz, Maggie Q, Daniel Dae Kim and Tony Goldwyn; Director: Robert Schwentke; Rating: **1/2
Based on Veronica Roth's second novel from the Divergent trilogy, "Insurgent" is a technically brilliant film, packed with slick, high-action drama. But unfortunately it lacks the novelty factor in terms of the oft seen and trite visuals and the plot is frivolous.
For the uninitiated, Divergent Trilogy, is the story based in a class-crammed, dystopian society in the barricaded city of Chicago. The divisions are based on the personal characteristics.
They are: Candor - the honest, outspoken opinionated types suited for legality and politics; Abnegation - the selfless, simple folk who are the only ones trusted to hold public office; Dauntless - the brave risk-takers used for policing and military service; Amity - the peaceful working-class who would not tread on others' shoes and Erudite - the intelligent and brainy who love knowledge and logic.
Now, 200 years after the terrible war, according to the founders of the city, "Peace is indeed attainable". But this peace is now being threatened by a group of people who do not fit into any specific class, read Divergents.
Jeanine Mathews, the leader of the Erudite, who has taken over the city from the selfless Abnegation clan, finds an ornate box hidden by Tris' late mother Natalie. She believes that the box holds the secrets of power which can be opened only by a 100 percent Divergent.
So she passes an order, to eliminate Divergents.
Borrowing from the previous edition, Tris is the prime suspect because she has a strong divergent personality and does not fit into any class.
"Insurgent" is Tris Prior's convoluted journey from being a suspect to being hailed as a saviour of her society. Though the director has stuck to the source material, the premise is laid on a razor-thin edge, making it less convincing and thus difficult to digest.
Shailene Woodley, like in the previous edition, shines as Tris Prior. The film majorly focuses on her and she is effective, in both emotional, as well as action scenes. She is ably supported by; Theo James as Tobias Eaton aka Four, Miles Teller as the Dauntless traitor Peter Hayes, Ansel Elgort as her brother Caleb, Kate Winslet as the ambitious Jeanine, Naomi Watts as Tobias mother and leader of the Factionless Group.
With emphasis on strong design elements and fine quality visual effects, the film is dazzling to view. The action scenes too are jaw dropping with set pieces that are slickly and elegantly choreographed.
The only issue is the editing. With some abruptly ending scenes, the visual jerks are evident and the end product looks a wee bit tacky.
Overall, the film may appeal to those who have seen "Divergent" and are cued into this dystopian society.
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