The 5th Wave

Starring: Chloe Grace Moretz, Nick Robinson, Zackary Arthur, Ron Livingston, Liev Schreiber, Maggie Siff, Maria Bello, Tony Revolori, Maika Monroe, Alex Roe
Directed By: J Blakeson

I’d call this the death of the teen lit craze. It’s basically a sci-fi alien twist on what Hunger Games and Divergent have already been doing, sending kids to fight. Although, this movie pushed the boundaries a bit for me, training six year olds to fight alongside teenagers. There’s a boy that literally can’t live without his teddy bear (It’s actually a major plot point), yet he somehow is being trained to fight a war? He can’t even tie his own shoes. There’s a scene where someone else has to tie his shoes for him, but we’re giving him a gun? What?

The 5th Wave is a frustratingly bad story. I’m sorry if I’m offending readers of the book. Maybe it was adapted poorly. But in the other films, it was more explained WHY the kids were fighting. In Hunger Games, basically when someone reached the predetermined age of being considered for the reaping, they were in the lottery. I even think that age was like 10 or 12. In Divergent, kids weren’t put out until 16 I believe. In this film, if you can walk, you can shoot a gun. There’s actually no explanation to the kids why the adults aren’t doing it, when there are clearly enough adults to do the job. We learn later why, but they never tell the kids why it has to be them, and not the adults.

The saving grace in this film has to be that I really do enjoy the cast normally. Moretz spends most of the film overacting, which is unusual for her. Robinson uses his charm and charisma as always, but is an odd fit as a badass. Siff is wasted. Livingston is wasted. Bello is wasted. The only adult with decent screentime is Schreiber, and we can all agree he’s had better roles.

Unless you just love this type of film, even the bad ones, then this film is not for you. I can’t imagine they’d make a sequel, because this flopped pretty hard. I wouldn’t want to see a sequel anyway.

FINAL GRADE: C-

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