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Slight Plot Divergence, but Holds True to Book

Lauren J. Mapp, Staff Writer

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A movie review on ‘Divergent’

In its pilot emergence onto the silver screen, “Divergent” pulls viewers in for a wild, emotional journey into a dystopian, futuristic world.

Based on the first book of the trilogy by Veronica Roth, “Divergent” opens with a flyover view of the city of Chicago in a post-apocalyptic setting. The city’s inhabitants have lived within the security gates there for several generations, locked in from the dangers of the outside world.

Having sectioned themselves off into five factions, each group values its personality trait over all others in keeping the peace among society: knowledge for Erudite, honesty for Candor, peace for Amity, bravery for Dauntless and selflessness for Abnegation.

Beatrice Prior (played by Shailene Woodley) is a member of Abnegation who has been second-guessing her societal placement for years. Upon taking her aptitude test, which is supposed to determine what faction she truly belongs in, she finds out that she is Divergent – meaning she shows qualities from more than one faction (in her case, Abnegation, Erudite and Dauntless).

During the Choosing Day ceremony the next day, Beatrice is still undecided as to which faction she will choose, especially after her brother Caleb (played by Ansel Elgort) defects to the Erudite faction. In a last minute decision that is sure to hurt her father’s pride, Beatrice chooses to defect to the Dauntless faction.

Despite having family structures within factions, the deeply engraved idea of “faction before blood” means that Beatrice must move away from her family and live within the Dauntless headquarters. Initiation into her new faction is full of dangerous acts of bravery and violent fights between initiates, but during her initiation period, the newly changed Tris finds love in her instructor Four (played by Theo James).

Director Neil Burger is fantastically successful in shaping the world that the “Divergent” film series will live in, and while parts of the film veer away from the original (as all book to film renditions do), the plot changes are minor and enhance the story for the better.

The film has already earned more than $95 million in sales since its release on March 21, according to the Chicago tribune. The book series and its overwhelming popularity have even inspired the creation of a “Divergent” summer camp, where teens and tweens will be able to learn about each of the five factions.

Though it lacks the same caliber of chutzpah seen in the “The Hunger Games” book and film series, it is a great substitute to watch while awaiting the release of the first of two “Mockingjay” films, set to be released this November.

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Lauren J. Mapp, Staff Writer

Lauren J. Mapp is a journalism student in San Diego, CA preparing to transfer to San Diego State University in the fall 2013 semester.

Mapp is a former...

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Slight Plot Divergence, but Holds True to Book