Review: The 5th Wave Movie Adaptation

 

So today I went to see the 5th Wave. I read the book 2 years ago and really enjoyed it. It was thrilling, suspenseful and had me questing who were the good guys or bad guys until the very end. The first time I saw the trailer for this movie was when I went to see Mockingjay Part 2 on opening night and the trailer surprised me. I thought it looked pretty good. It looked like a good representation of the book to me and the characters all looked like they were supposed to.

Spoilers ahead!

So anyways tonight I went to see the movie. I went with my friend Jess who had just read the books. I liked how it opened with the scene with the crucifix soldier and then went back into what had happened to the Earth. I know it seemed like there were a lot of voiceovers in the beginning, but I think those were necessary to explain things. It’s the same way it happens in the book, with her explaining what had happened.

I enjoyed the added scenes. I liked seeing how the floods affected the coasts. I mean yes it was somewhat terrifying to watch but a nice add in. The scene with the lake flooding and her and Sammy running away from the water was not in the book and felt like some forced drama to me, but not awful. I did like how quickly they moved through the background. They stuck to showing the important pieces of each wave. In the book they drag out the mom being sick for a bit, but in the movie she is alive one scene and then dead.

From there we got to go to the camp. They really shortened the time here. The greasy kid Crisco was not included in the movie but I really thought that was ok. The scenes they cut from her time at the camp weren’t overly important to the plot and of course that book was jam packed with details so obviously stuff wasn’t going to make it and I was pretty happy with what they left out. To me they didn’t leave out anything extremely important.

I also felt like we lost a lot of the Cassie Evan relationship. Cassie is so snarky in the book and constantly questioning everything Evan does. She’s extremely suspicious of him and never fully trusts him. But they also have a lot of funny scenes. We missed all his best stalking scenes where he lurks outside the door and just stares at her. We didn’t get the mayfly reference at all and I felt like their relationship wasn’t anything like it was in the book. 

A few things they changed that I really didn’t like include the fact that Cassie doesn’t see the soldiers blow up the camp. That was what put the idea that the soldiers were “others” in her mind and since that wasn’t included and the shooting started because another guy pulled his gun, I feel like that idea doesn’t really cross her mind. I liked that in the book because then when we see Ben and he’s with the soldiers we really have no idea what’s going on and who’s right until the end.

Another thing they changed that I didn’t like is they change is so that Evan isn’t the one who shot her. He did shoot her in the book and I liked that. I thought it was important for his character development. Also we miss Cassie’s time under the car bleeding out. In the book she’s under there for what feels like a while but then she get out and is all defiant and that’s why he doesn’t shoot her again. I liked that and would’ve like to see that Cassie. Not that she isn’t tough in the movie, but that was really a defining scene in the book.

One more thing that I really would’ve liked to see in the movie was how Evan teaches her how she’s going to get into the base. It’s a little unrealistic that she comes up with this plan to infiltrate it all by herself and doesn’t get caught.

But back to some positives. Let’s talk about the characters:

  • Cassie Sullivan: I really liked Chloe Grace Moretz as Cassie. They reference in the book that she looks young enough that she could get on the bus so I liked her small appearance. I thought all her scenes were good and enjoyed her as a character who was tough but also emotional and scared enough because obviously she doesn’t really know what she’s doing. The only problem I had with her was her hair looked too good the entire movie. I mean come on? No one’s hair looks that good with no running water, sleeping in the woods, and getting shot!
  • EVAN Walker: HOLY SHIT. How hot was that actor? Honestly I never envisioned Evan looking like THAT when I was reading it, but I’m so fine with it. He was out of this world attractive with that rugged lumber jack thing going for him. Any scene he was in I was distracted by his beauty, but I think he played the gentle Evan Walker from the book perfectly, where he was a little awkward sometimes but really sweet. I thought they did a good job of explaining how he’s both an “other” and human. They simplified it nicely and summed it up well with his explanation. I almost died at the scene where he showed up in the base and she had to introduce him to Ben. I was giggling in my seat it was so cute the interaction between Cassie and Evan and it was cute how Cassie was all embarrassed. I didn’t like that Evan didn’t shoot Cassie in the movie. We also missed a lot of the scenes in the house. Instead we got their bonding scenes with them walking through the woods. The fight scene was good between the other “others”, and then of course when he showed up to save her *swoon*.
  • Ben Parish/Zombie: out of all the characters I feel like Ben got gypped (apparently how you spell “jipped”) the most. They really cut down on his story line. We don’t see him being sick, much of the training, how the unit comes together, the pushup scene, all the extra training for being a bad unit, how Ringer comes in and competes for leader, or how they are all fighting to graduate at the top of the class. I’m ok with it because it was a lot reading it. The training scenes were all very similar and story line wise didn’t really move the story forward besides to show how they were improving. What we lost in those scenes getting cut was the character development for the rest of the unit. They didn’t even say the entire squads names in the movie. I appreciated how they simplified the scene where Zombie and Ringer figure out what’s really going on. They didn’t throw Reznik in that scene (also Reznik was a scary lady in the movie instead of a guy which was fine with me). One thing I couldn’t help but notice was Ben was nowhere near as attractive as Evan, and Ben was supposed to be the really cute football player. I mean it’s not that he was ugly but if Ben was a 7 Evan was a 4 million on the hotness scale (can you tell I’m a little hung up on Evan’s looks?).
  • Sam Sullivan: I thought the kid they cast as Sam was perfect. He was so adorable and had that innocent quality about him. We don’t see Sam that much in the book. Not at all after Cassie loses him and we see him during Ben’s training but then he doesn’t go off on the mission. I did love how in the movie it’s not that Sam has to stay behind on the mission because he’s too young, but Ben physically ties him up so he can’t go. I thought it was sweet and enhanced Ben’s character.

Finally let’s talk about the end of the movie. The rescue scene was good. It was simpler that it was in the book, with no capture by Vocsh. And I was fine with that. Although I couldn’t help but notice that Ben and Cassie, who were both shot recently seemed to overpower ever soldier they came across with ease. But like I said I was pleased with the movie. As a movie overall I’d give it B+. If you hadn’t read the book I don’t think you’d feel lost, or like you’re missing too many pieces of the story. As a book to movie adaptation I’d give it an A-. I really feel like they did a job brining the characters and the world to life. I felt like the story was true to itself. In my mind I’m comparing it to Divergent, which I was not a fan of the movies at all, especially Insurgent (way to ruin one of my favorite books). I would highly recommend going to see The 5th Wave if you haven’t yet and now I’m really excited for the next movie and to read the 3rd book when it comes out with THAT Evan Walker in my mind (where can I get one?).

 

And I’ll just leave these here for your enjoyment 😉

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