When Books Become Movies: Divergent

Divergent Movie Poster

Divergent just came out on DVD. Not sure why I never did a review on the book series (maybe I will after I finish the Four short stories), but I did give the first book a 5. I saw the movie on opening night and just got the DVD.

Book Accuracy

The story was all there, but there were pretty many changes. Some of the minor changes were things like having to climb up to the train when they left the choosing ceremony, the darts in the flag game simulating the pain of a gun shot, and the way winning the flag game went down. Some of the more major changes were things like the scene with Edward missing, the way Tris and Four went through his fear landscape which lead to a big change in the way she did her final test, and what Tris’s mother tells her when she comes to see her. Some of the little changes like the darts in the game, I thought added a bit, and the fear landscape fixed what, for me, was a huge plot hole in the book. But some of the other changes, like what Tris’s mom told her when she came and, therefore, the reason why Tris goes to see Caleb, just didn’t make sense.

Characters

I loved the casting of this movie. The trailer was already out when I read the book, so I did have the actors in my mind while reading it, which always helps, but I thought the actors did a wonderful job at bringing the characters to life. Especially Four, because who doesn’t love Theo James? I think my biggest complaint, character-wise was with Al. And not so much for the actor or anything, but his storyline with Tris didn’t come through, so when the big thing happens with him, it doesn’t seem as big of a deal to Tris as it was in the book.

Plot

Mostly the same as the book, which was great. The way the ending happened was a bit different, but I thought it pumped up the action, which is likely why they did it that way for the big screen. All the major plot points were hit and aside from what I mentioned with Tris’s mom’s visit and Tris’s visit to Caleb, there were no slow parts.

Overall Entertainment

The ruined Chicago was perfect. One of the greatest things about seeing a book with a futuristic setting is getting to see the world come alive. I loved the zipline scene and the ferris wheel scene. There were some fun little details, like the faction symbols being acted out and revealed in the beginning. The whole thing was visually pleasing and well done.

Movie Trailer

Nails

Here are the nails I wore for the movie :) It’s the faction colors, with an accent nail for Dauntless.

Divergent Nails

 

Did you see the movie? What did you think?

 

My Review
  • Book Accuracy
  • Characters
  • Plot
  • Overall Entertainment
4.6

4 thoughts on “When Books Become Movies: Divergent

  1. I agree, the casting was great, and it followed the book pretty well overall. Funny though, I was the most disappointed with the change in the way Tris and Four went through Four’s fear landscape. For me, the way Four reacted to his fears was a HUGE part of what made me love him in the book, because it showed vulnerability. He needed Tris in order to get through it. She made him stronger. In the film, it’s the complete opposite. And the way they changed how Tris ended her test – it was a big change in character that kind of bummed me out. I felt like there was a ton of emotional impact that was missing because of those tweaks. As a whole, I liked it. But it’s a lot like Hunger Games – you get way more emotional impact reading the books than you do watching the movie. And for me, the strength of emotion is what draws me to stories like these.

    1. I was also disappointed with the fear landscape part. It was weird how they changed the tests. Sometimes I see a movie and I can find no reason for the changes other than creative license. Insurgent looks to be quite from the book as well.

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