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FILM REVIEW: THE DIVERGENT SERIES: ALLEGIANT (12A)

And the award for the film of 2016 ‘where very little really happens’ goes to Allegiant.

The first instalment was okay, the sequel just about passable – and the third movie in this four-part series is pretty darn dull.

Again, falling foul of splitting the final novel adaptation into two – see Mockingjay, Breaking Dawn and to a lesser extent, The Deathly Hallows, as recent references – this simply never gets going.

ALLEGIANT-POSTER-2The story just gets more and more convoluted as Allegiant offers ‘less’ of the same – thus slowly dissolving any excitement that may have been accrued from the previous two instalments.

In fact Shailene Woodley’s ‘pure’ divergent Tris Prior is relegated to a quite mundane role as Theo James’ Four at least has his time to erm, come to the fore.

After the aftershocks felt at the end of Insurgent, it’s time for Tris, Four, Peter (Miles Teller), Caleb (Ansel Elgort), Christina (Zoe Kravitz) and Tori (Maggie Q) to leave the only home they’ve ever known in order to find a peaceful solution to their embroiled city.

But with Naomi Watt’s Evelyn and Octavia Spencer’s Johanna’s factions starting to battle against each other in Chicago, the group are taken into protective custody by a mysterious agency known as the Bureau of Genetic Welfare – led by Jeff Daniel’s leader David – who want to run tests on Tris, which leads to a disconnect between her and Four.

And when they’re at the institute they get to use these ‘probey’ things that defend you and look for stuff – which are probably the highlight of the movie.

And in line with teen dystopian stereotypes – see The Hunger Games and Maze Runner – not everything is what it seems, and with lots of zany sci-fi special effects and science ‘hokum’ Allegiant is padded out as the bridging game before next year’s final part Ascendant.

Apart from Woodley doing little of nothing, Miles Teller continues to battle against the bad script and the ‘will he, won’t he’ dynamic between good and bad (just wish he could actually make his mind up and stick with it), and Elgort just prances around with one-liners that are a far cry from his headturning performance in A Fault in Our Stars.

Fortunately James comes out of it with his head held relatively high after starring in Allegiant’s few highlights – and of course there are the cool probes that have previously been mentioned.

Bar that, there’s very little to pledge your allegiance to here – leaving you with two hours that you’ll never get back.

Gavin Miller

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Visit www.showcasecinemas.co.uk for the latest up-to-date showtimes for movies at Peterborough Showcase. You can also join the chat on Twitter @showcasecinemas or on Facebook by searching for ‘Showcase Cinemas UK’.

Cast: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Jeff Daniels, Miles Teller, Naomi Watts, Ansel Elgort, Zoe Kravitz, Jonny Weston, Bill Skarsgard, Octavia Spencer, Maggie Q, Ray Stevenson, Daniel Dae Kim & Mekhi Phifer

Running Time: 2 Hrs 1 Mins

Director: Robert Schwentke

Legend

Written by ESP Magazine

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