The Divergent Series: Insurgent is out on Blu-ray/DVD today! Read our review of the film and bonus features, plus enter to win one of TWO Insurgent prize packs, courtesy of our friends at Lionsgate!
[Major Plot Spoilers]
My Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Here at We So Nerdy we’re massive fans of Veronica Roth’s Divergent Series. I remember the first time I read the Divergent and Insurgent novels in 2012, and how I was instantly invested in these stories. In particular, I had so much love for Tris and Four. Immediately after reading Insurgent (my favorite novel in the series), at that time I said the following:
I ADORE Tris. I love her and I trust her completely. I spend a lot of time wondering why she does what she does, but I implicitly trust Tris’ instincts. What I love most is how, in this book, we really come to understand how Abnegation, Dauntless, and Erudite characteristics are all infused in her. These predilections interact with one another, inform one another, and allow Tris to see and discern things which others cannot…
…In Divergent I fall in love with Tobias, but in Insurgent, my love for him grows by leaps and bounds. He is AMAZING. One of the things I love most about Tobias is how he instinctually works to preserve Tris’ life. Whenever there’s a fight or an attack, his first inclination is to find Tris and to physically shield her WITH HIS BODY. *FAINTS* And how Tobias’ only selfish request is that Tris not throw her life away because he can’t survive without her. I really want to know when Tobias falls in love with Tris. When does Tobias decide he won’t leave Dauntless and he’ll stay and be with Tris? Is it love at first sight? On Choosing Day, when Tris makes the first jump and Tobias is helping her out of the net and their eyes meet…is it then?
Even though they argue and are often at odds, I know Tris and Tobias will be okay. NOTHING else is ok, but they ARE.
So, this past March, when I went to my local IMAX theater to see the The Divergent Series: Insurgent, I had pretty high expectations. Though I hadn’t read the book since 2012, I still had a good idea of major plot points. Plus, like fellow Initiates, I’d watched all the sneak peeks, clips, trailers, and interviews and was super excited about how EPIC this film already seemed to be.
Unsurprisingly, I really enjoy the Insurgent movie. Just like with the novel, Tris, Four, and their growing relationship remain my favorite aspects. Tris is so haunted, feeling extremely guilty about losing her parents and Will. At the same time she’s vengeful and ANGRY. Shailene Woodley is spectacular at bringing those heightened emotions to the screen and really taking the viewers on a bitterly emotional and physical journey.
Then there’s my darling Four *SWOONY SIGH*
From the time he tells Tris that “We’re good, you and me,” my admiration for Four continues to escalate. I LOVE the way Theo James portrays InsurgentFour and his protective nature. Four is a badass and the fiercest of warriors, but he’s 100% HERE for Tris.
Interestingly, I expect more conflict between Tris and Four, especially about whether or not Evelyn can be trusted. But most of their conflict surrounds Tris’ desire to sacrifice herself to Jeanine for the greater good of their community.
As with any book-to-film adaptation, the Insurgent movie has several noticeable changes from the novel. Like many of you, I’m curious about the various decisions. When I watched the Insurgent blu-ray, I made sure to view it with the audio commentary from producers Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher. I found the experience to be very informative, especially in terms of learning more about production’s choices, filming in Georgia vs. Chicago, Veronica Roth’s set visits, the awesome relationships between cast members, and more.
For example, we learn that Jai Courtney is a really good bar tender, and that, while Theo James is an incredibly smart student of philosophy, he’s not at all pretentious. 🙂
We also learn about the choice to include the “box” as a narrative device to physicalize Edith Prior’s message that comes at the end. Production believed that adding this would condense and clarify several scenes in book. This makes sense. At the beginning of the film, Jeanine (Kate Winslet) quickly reminds us of the threats Tris and Divergents are facing—however, the fact that she wants to uncover the message in the box (unlike in the book where she wants to keep the Edith Prior message hidden) is odd. It would have been interesting to get a little more clarification on this change as well as the decision to have explicit percentages/degrees of divergence.
With that said, I do really enjoy the final scenes with Tris and the five faction simulations. One of my favorite parts of books is watching Tris try to reconcile the Abnegation, Dauntless, and Erudite parts of herself. Of course, this also manifests in the Tris vs. Dark Tris fight, where she eventually comes to forgive herself. She and the rest of their society finally learn that Divergence is nothing to fear: “You were wrong about us. We were never the problem. We’re the solution.”
So… the Edith Prior video means freedom, yes? Well, those of us who have read the books know that isn’t quite the case.
I think the scene where Evelyn (Naomi Watts) kills Jeanine is insane and well done. BUT, even before she dies, Jeanine warns Evelyn about the dangers of Edith Prior’s message. Can the Factionless manage to keep everyone from exiting the city now that they’ve all seen the video? I mean, the Evelyn and the Factionless are organized, self-interested, and manipulative…this will of course be most evident in Allegiant.
According to Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher, The Divergent Series: Allegiant Part 1 picks up exactly where Insurgent leaves off with people marching towards the wall, so we shall see!
If you’d like to read more details about the blu-ray’s FOUR hours of bonus content head over HERE for more details. You can also learn more about the Target, Walmart, and Best Buy special editions of the Insurgent blu-ray HERE.
Thanks to our generous friends at Lionsgate we have TWO Insurgent prize packs to give away! Each prize pack comes with one (1) Insurgent Blu-ray + Digital HD and one (1) limited edition The Divergent Series: Insurgent Google Cardboard VR viewer. Follow the Rafflecopter instructions below and good luck! (Open to Initiates in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Central America, and South America.)
Many thanks to Lionsgate Home Entertainment for providing us with an early review copy of the Insurgent 3D blu-ray combo pack.
[Featured Image Courtesy of Lionsgate]