This young adult movie based on the bestselling trilogy by Veronica Roth – due for release in Oman soon – is being heralded for its striking similarity to The Hunger Games and coincidently, is produced by Lionsgate-Summit, the same production house as The HG trilogy. Shailene Woodley takes the lead as Beatrice ‘Tris’ Prior living in a dystopian future in Chicago, where society has been divided into five factions based on virtues: abnegation, amity, dauntless, erudite and candor.
Every year, 16-year-olds have to take an aptitude test that will tell them which faction they are best suited for. Tris tests equally for three of the factions making her a divergent, which would mean certain death if anyone found out.
She chooses dauntless and during the initiation process into her new tribe, falls in love with the mysterious instructor, Four, played by Theo James. As the movie progresses, havoc breaks out among the factions and Tris faces a race against time to find out why being a divergent is dangerous. With technically advanced stunts and, more importantly, a strong teenage fan base for the books, it promises to be a visual treat.
While it may have parallels with the Jennifer Lawrence blockbusters (such as a futuristic setting with a strong female lead), the movie distinguishes itself by inspecting the core values that divides society today.
Whether it repeats the phenomenal success of The Hunger Games, however, remains to be seen.
Reviewed by Shishira Sreenivas
Mr. Peabody and Sherman
Charming, witty and engaging. Not what you would expect from an animation movie with a boy and dog that wears spectacles as its lead characters. The story centres on hound Mr. Peabody (Ty Burrel) going back in time to fix a tear in the universe when Sharman uses a time machine to impress his girlfriend. The adventure begins when they dabble with history’s most notable events and people, and create problems. Great fun for little ones and big kids.
This rom-com chases the most repeated Bollywood plot of all time – parental opposition to a budding romance between two young lovers. The only commendable twist is the ongoing insecurity between the couple and the girl’s father (Rishi Kapoor) because of the boyfriend’s unemployment situation. It’s watchable over a tub of popcorn when you have nothing else to do but if you went in looking for heartwarming rom-com, this movie falls very flat.
Need For Speed
After a breakthrough role in Breaking Bad, you can now see Aaron Paul swerve and drift in Need for Speed, which is based on a popular video game. Paul plays Tobey, an upstate New Yorker and a fervent gearhead (petrolhead) who is wrongly suspected of involvement in his friend’s vehicular death and imprisoned for two years. After his release, Tobey seeks revenge against the antagonist (Dominic Cooper) by entering a million-dollar underground street race. In the passenger seat is the very pretty Imogen Poots. The movie echoes the overused plot by the Fast and The Furious sequels with speed and swish cars hogging all the attention.
Mother’s Day Choice: We Bought A Zoo
Inspired by a true story, We Bought a Zoo follows single father, Benjamin Mee (Matt Damon), who decides his family needs a completely new start as he struggles to cope with the recent loss of his wife and the mother of his two children. The new start turns out to be a dilapidated zoo that he buys after impulsively quitting his career as a journalist. With big carnivores like lions, tigers and bears to care for, Mee completely relies on the pretty but no-nonsense zoo keeper played by Scarlett Johansson to repair, resurrect and reopen the zoo to the public. The journey is filled with touching scenes of the father reaching out to his adolescent son and the sweet realistic way Mee treads into the world of love and dating again helped by, of course, the zoo keeper. A perfect film to watch with your mum on her special day, subtly showing the effect the absence of one mother has on a family.