“Maze Runner: The Death Cure” is the third and final installment in the Maze Runner trilogy. Beginning shortly after the second film left off we once again follow Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) a government scientist turned rebel leading a small band of guerillas against the stronghold of the evil corporation WCKD in an attempt to rescue his friends bring an end to their heinous experiments once and for all. This movie can best be described as a weak yet entertaining action showcase. The franchise has always dealt with themes of two conflicting ideologies; whether immense suffering is permitted if it serves a greater good or if there are certain lines that should never be crossed no matter what. To the Death Cure’s credit, this movie better than any of the previous entries manages to convey this conundrum as you see the perspective of both camps and may even find yourself switching sides multiple times throughout the movie.
However, this is hindered heavily by the fact that we don’t really care about this world or the characters who inhabit it.
The greatest flaw of the Maze Runner franchise is that every characters is written incredibly flat and one dimensionally. In fact, despite watching the previous films I went into “The Death Cure” not able to remember any of who these people were in exception to our main leads. Whether this is the fault of the original source material, as these films are based on a series of YA novels, or the fault of the screenwriters is unknown but regardless the actors, despite trying their best, are given almost nothing to work with. In fact one of the most frustrating aspects of this installment is that multiple times throughout the movie the choices certain characters make can either be described as idiotic or nonsensical.
This includes the main villain who’s secret motivation comes out of nowhere in the third act and was never even hinted at in any of the previous movies.
Where “The Death Cure” does shine though is in its action set pieces of which there are many; from train robberies, zombie attacks and a climactic final battle. This will at least keep you entertained and somewhat engaged with the story. However, you will begin to feel the weight of the two hour and twenty three minute journey as you sit in the theater. Once again this comes at the fact that despite being in desperate and harrowing situations you just don’t care about any of these characters.
The final flaw that I can think of is the predictability of the story. You’ll be able to guess every story beat before it happens right up to a cliché ending that feels ripped off from “Lord of the Rings.”
After three films I’m honestly disappointed to be left with a final conclusion which just feels unfinished and pointless. We have finally come to the end of the maze and found a hollow, nonsensical but action packed mess.
2 out of 4 miners.