If the grossly tedious and nearly unwatchable “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” is meant to be an epic finale to the popular young adult series, it fails on all accounts. If the sheer boredom from this bloated sequel doesn’t get you, the repetition will.
The film carries the assumption that viewers will remember minor characters and plot points from the previous films in the franchise and does little to remind us who’s who and what’s what. I kind of, sort of, recalled a few things mentioned in the film but folks who aren’t diehard fans will find themselves more confused than not. The plot is basic, as Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) leads a team of escaped Gladers (Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Rosa Salazar, Will Poulter) on a mission to break into a WCKD controlled city, rescue friend Minho (Ki Hong Lee), and destroy the evildoers. There’s not a lot of substance to the story as the film is mostly a series of poorly choreographed action sequences with a heavy reliance on dreadful looking CGI and lame special effects that are interspersed with scenes of characters you don’t care about dying long, drawn out deaths that leave little emotional impact.
The acting ranges from flat to ridiculous, the action scenes are far from thrilling, and the ridiculous love story between Thomas and Teresa (Kaya Scodelario) seems even more forced than usual. Not helping matters is that half of the uninspired plot doesn’t make any sense and even the whole explanation of why the maze existed in the first place is dumb.
The whole movie looks brown, dusty and dirty, and it’s downright ugly. (Want to see a dystopian future in brown that looks gorgeous? Check out “Mad Max: Fury Road”). The film is so dark that I found myself squinting in a couple of scenes because the computer generated backgrounds appeared blurry when used as a backdrop for equally brown costumes and lighting.
I’m glad this is the supposed end of the post-apocalyptic franchise because as this film suggests, everything about the “Maze Runner” series feels old, dated, and slightly pathetic.