Cumbersome allegorical sci-fi fantasy spends almost two and a half hours on the struggles of a headstrong young woman named Tris (Shailene Woodley), in a totalitarian future, trying to decide whether to conform to – or rebel against – the rigidly hierarchical society. It’s an adaptation of Veronica Roth’s young-adult novel, which is probably why Tris’ furtive romance with her basic training instructor (Theo James) eats up so much time. Director Neil Burger (The Illusionist, The Lucky Ones) does what he can with the material, and the special effects are fine, but the story is trite and the denouement looks hasty. Woodley and James perform their action-figure love moves with a little style. The rest of the cast (Kate Winslet, Ashley Judd, Miles Teller, Maggie Q) is pretty much wasted. The predictable screenplay adaptation is by Evan Daugherty and Vanessa Taylor (139 min.).
Director: Neil Burger
Producer: Douglas Wick, Lucy Fisher, Pouya Shahbazian, John Kelly and Rachel Shane
Cast: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Ashley Judd, Jai Courtney, Ray Stevenson, Zoë Kravitz, Miles Teller, Tony Goldwyn, Ansel Elgort, Maggie Q, Mekhi Phifer, Kate Winslet, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Christian Madsen, Amy Newbold and Ben Lamb