Over the last few years we have seen many YA adaptations hit the big screen with varying levels of success, but one of my personal favourites to date would have to be Wes Ball’s take on 2009 novel The Maze Runner.
Based on the first installment in the popular book series by James Dashner, the story follows Thomas (Dylan O'Brien) as he finds himself trapped in the ‘Glade’ with no memory of who he is or how he got there. Up until his arrival the Gladers, or other boys living there, have been trying to find a way to escape the maze with no success, but can Thomas help them find freedom?
The film, which was shot in just 42 days, is an impressive feature-length directorial debut from Wes Ball, who is best known for working in other areas of film such as the art department. As a fan of the books I really enjoyed seeing the Maze itself come to life and thought his creative background seemed to shine through onto the screen with a spot on visual representation of the Glade, Maze and of course the Grievers. Just like the books the adaptation follows Thomas' point of view meaning that it is an intense watch as you're thrown into the action alongside the characters.
If you’ve read the original novel then you’ll know that although the outline is the same, the film adaptation does tell somewhat of a different story when it comes to the details. Even important parts of the story such as the method the Gladers use to go about solving the maze were changed in the adaptation and whilst some fans have criticised this factor I found that I actually really enjoyed both versions of the story, feeling that each worked well in it’s own way.
I’d highly recommend checking out the film version of The Maze Runner if you haven’t seen it yet and am really looking forward to seeing how Wes brings the Scorch to life in sequel The Scorch Trials, due for release in September.