ByWalter Ng, writer at
I love great characters, solid plots and an intriguing story line to pull me in. There's also nothing better than a visual medium that makes
Walter Ng

The 5th wave is a movie that certainly hits on familiar notes.
Not sure what I'm talking about?
Stop me if you've heard this one.

A person in an environment turned apocalyptic because of a certain something that turned their worlds upside down, and then they have to survive given their odds, and what more to their list of hurdles? Adolescence dilemma of course. Who to choose to fall in love with.

Had enough? I have too.

Now given movies should stand alone. I should warn you there are spoilers in this editorial.

SPOILERS. Please do not proceed if you have not watched/read;

Divergent, Hunger Games, Maze Runner,and 5th wave.

Familiar Plots

Now, let's start with all three that have a female protagonist, which are Hunger Games, Divergent and the 5th wave, and before you say anti-feminist I'm not.
I respect Katniss and Casey, but Triss not so much, because as I've said time and time again, a character should pull me in and develop themselves, and Triss I hardly remember, instead I only remember the controversy because the actors of Triss and her brother were both in Fault in Our Stars.

Case in point(Shailene Woodley and Ansel Ergot)
Case in point(Shailene Woodley and Ansel Ergot)

And both Katniss and Casey are polar opposites, one is fighting a war and the other is just trying to protect what's left of her family.

Obviously, Katniss and Casey have that in common which is they have a love for their family, but I just feel Casey is a little more relatable in a sense.

Story lines that focus on pandering

And another thing is I'm really sick of the adolescence dilemma especially in Hunger Games and the 5th wave, I know in Hunger Games it was more of who do you go with because their both certain representations of Katniss' self, but 5th wave even though not explored too much had that undertone with it too, and, Maze Runner has that too, the love triangle, but in the books, Thomas is just torn in between every thing because he doesn't know who to trust.
And honestly I feel Divergent borrows a little too much from both Maze Runner and Hunger Games just because you feel like your watching something familiar.

And that's the number one problem with these types of movies, which is that 'young adult future dystopian' theme is that they all tend to blend in and seem familiar.

Especially with apocalyptic/dictatorship themes and that kind of comes hand in hand with certain troupes and therefore, certain pandering cliches, that has to be done just because it's been done before and proven to generate revenue for the producers and directors of these types of movies and I certainly think one of those underlying problems tend to be very obvious and already you already tend to connect the dots to other movies.

For example, in 5th wave there was a scene where Casey leaves her brother on the bus to get what the brother wanted and you just sit there and already guessed that the bus is going to leave.

Similar Characters

And to the connections, I think that was my biggest problems with Pan as well just because I could pin point what they were obviously ripping off that material, and in 5th wave it was that kind of zombie kind of alien vibe. Especially that scene with Evan being the sniper, I immediately thought of Left 4 Dead, the Last Of Us,and all those zombie movies and video games.

And maybe I am biased because I only read the Hunger Games series and the Maze Runner series, but really they should stand alone as movies, because movies are supposed to be adaptations, you don't want to hit too many familiar notes, and because Divergent was right after Hunger Games there are just too many undertones of it that seem familiar too the Hunger Games, like Factions=Districts, and then her "representations" of uncertainty and those flash backs.

It certainly sets themselves out to be tired of themselves and unsure of what to do with their themes anymore.

If you're still not convinced since they're doing fairly well in the box offices still, I'll give you another example, Percy Jackson.
Now Percy Jackson might not be future dystopian, but really it hits those notes too, and Percy Jackson might feel more action adventure, but really it's supposed to be about the mythos and the environments and the other conflicts with characters, and it's just that little edge given from the mythos and that adventure, that lets Percy Jackson be it's own thing.

If I were to put it with all of these Percy Jackson would still stand tall because it's much more interesting to see him be kind of like a modern Harry Potter in a way but more of a better environment then Harry Potter, and honestly I'm glad that Percy Jackson had it's two movies earlier on, just because if it came out the same time as all of these, it probably would be more ridiculed just because, at least to me, it's really tiring and a task to watch these types of movies.

It's saddening but I think definitely Maze Runner would benefit from stopping early and maybe after a certain period of time, just come back and give us a fresh new look on the genre .

Really it's all about timing and it's really a time for adaptation movies, but it's getting a little tiring for these movies because they're all blending into one big blob, and you're finding it more difficult to distinguish characters and plots, and storylines are. Because one of the biggest things about movies, are their characters, plots and storylines and if no one is invested, or if everyone is starting to get tired of investing in these types of movies, then the movie fail.


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