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Review: Divergent, or Why It's Different From The Hunger Games

I wasn't really keen on watching Divergent. I didn't read the book by Veronica Roth. I'm not particularly a fan of any of the leads—except I find Brit gents generally and naturally more appealing. In fact, I watched this because it had an earlier screening time at the mall on my way home and I didn't want to stay up too late (yeah, I just gave away my age). But I can say it was not a complete waste of time.

I'm going to put this one sexy back out now to get it over with.

Divergent is a young adult book-to-movie adaptation about a young heroine Tris (Shailene Woody) making tough choices that will ultimately decide her fate in their "dystopian" world. She also likes this mysterious brooding boy named Four (Theo James). Sounds familiar already, I know. But every story is different in some way. So what makes it different from The Hunger Games?

Weapon of expertise: knives.

Their "dystopian" world feels like a false utopia.
Sure, their version of Chicago looks like a wreck, but they have some kind of order or government, and technology! (I would love to get tattooed like they do.) I'm not really sure how the people ended up there, but it really feels to me somehow like it was all prearranged. Let's just say it's a gut feel.

Not at a rock concert.

The heroine has eyes for only one guy.
Thank God Tris isn't weighing the pros and cons of being with this guy or that, but rather how would it be like to really be with that one someone, or be in love, or whether it's even real. It's a different kind of romance compared to the similar books/movies I've read/seen (only a handful, maybe). It feels good... fresh. You can really invest in their story because there's really just them.

He, too, only has eyes for her.

The two leads have chemistry.
I don't know if it's because Tris has really no other boy prospects other than Four, or because Woodley and James really get along off-screen. (Spreading rumors of an off-screen romance is a mandatory tactic in promoting this kind of film, so...) But I think a big part of the kilig factor in every movie with romance is chemistry. It makes you root for them, butterflies-in-the-stomach and all. And trust me, this film has it—thanks to "Sheo."

Yes, it's a big thing.

The story is different—well, yeah it is kind of different, but it's still within the young-adult formula, maybe more. I would say that Divergent can stand on its own, as proven by numbers and Tumblr. It has a good story, a good director (Neil Burger), and a great cast (Kate Winslet, Maggie Q, Ashley Judd, Miles Teller, Zoe Kravitz, and more), plus an awesome soundtrack. It's a film that banks on its design and its leads, but kind of lacks consistent buildup to the real conflict. It also does not gratuitously escape to bad-ass tattoos on sexy backs and collarbones or passionate kissing scenes—which is good, actually. I'm not complaining. Well, just a little. Hah!

Divergent gets a 7.2 out of 10, for being a bit different and fresh and for being "Dauntless" in an already saturated young-adult genre.

It got me to pick up the book. Let's see if there's more meat in there.

photos and gifs from divergentthemovie.comdivergentlife.com, weheartit.commovieboozer.com

Sue Denim still has issues with online anonymity.

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