The Divergent Series: Ascendent: Straight To TV?!


One of the more popular novel franchises read by young adults today is the Divergent series. I never read those books, but I’ve seen all the movies. The first one was great and had slick action, likable characters, and superb dialogue. I honestly liked the second one better, that one is Insurgent. The movie was not as great in terms of screenwriting and there was kind of a hole in the story with Tris and her hairstyle being different than her first movie, but I thought a lot of the visuals were excellent and it felt like the movie utilized the green screen to high potential. Now, they split the final book into two parts (rolls eyes). I saw the first part, “Allegiant” on opening weekend and it was an atrocity. Keep in mind, I’m not the only one who thinks this. The movie currently has 13% on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert’s website gave it a 1.5/4, Metacritic gave it a 33, and I even remember my sister saying she wasn’t a fan of the movie. Not only did the people who got the chance to watch the movie mostly end up disliking it afterwards, but they were part of the small chunk of people who even viewed the movie in the first place.

Based on brief research, one thing noticed about each Divergent movie is that for each movie, the earnings from each opening weekend progressively declines as we get further in the series. In terms of US earnings, the first movie made $54,607,747, the second one made $52,263,680, and the third film dropped dramatically to a disastrous total of $29,027,348. For a big budget film, the first two totals are OK, not the best for an opening weekend but certainly not bad. However when your total is as low as the third one, you may have problems. Why did the film get as much as it did on its opening weekend? I don’t have enough research, but I have some assumptions towards this. There were plenty of other movies to see that were out at the time of this movie’s release and it was rather unusual for the month of March, which is one of those months where movies aren’t worth seeing as much as they are in the summer or the holidays. These movies included Zootopia, Deadpool, and 10 Cloverfield Lane. One more thing I can imagine is that some people were mad when they heard the final book would have a movie split into two parts, which I’ll be honest, kept me from seeing the final two Hunger Games movies to this day. For the people who did see it, I imagine they mostly consist of hardcore fans of the Divergent books, people who liked the previous installments of these movies, and people who goes to the movie theater throughout a significant course of their lives. I belong in the last two classifications (despite not liking Allegiant). Out of all of these assumed folk, I’m willing to bet some saw bad reviews of this movie and didn’t care about seeing it, some wanted to wait for the home release so they can text during the movie, some probably didn’t care at all, or some probably forgot or was unaware this movie even existed. According to Wikipedia, Allegiant has a total of around $179.2 million in the box office, therefore it made higher than its budget on the movie, which was around $110 million. Despite that, it’s possible that the guys behind the movie may not have as much to work with as they have before to create the perfect movie. It’s not surprising, Lionsgate said the poor box office performance is why they want to make a TV movie.

Also, something that lowers my anticipation for this movie, is that they are going to make a TV show after the movie is over. If you’ve ever watched almost any movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, you may notice that they all have scenes setting up another movie during the end credits. Unless there is a scene in the credits that sets up the TV show, or no setup for the TV show at all, or if the universe is set up in a spontaneous or compelling manner throughout the film, I’m not going to be pleased. It just goes to show what is happening with many movies today. Instead of being actual movies, they are setups for other movies or stuff along those lines. Granted a lot of setups I’ve seen were exciting, but if I see another setup during this movie, I’m willing to bet my reaction will be something along the lines of “That is so forced!”

Can't see it here - NO Can see it here - YES

Even with all of the data I’ve given, I’m personally not happy with the TV movie motive, and I imagine some people can agree with me. I’m the kind of person who thinks that going to the movie theater is the best way to see a movie, no matter how good or bad the movie is, the experience is usually one of the redeeming qualities of the movie. When I watch the movie from home, despite how I have an awesome Blu-Ray player and a 4K TV with a built-in Roku smart player, it’s just not the same because it’s not as huge as a movie theater screen, and the sound doesn’t surround you (depending on your setup) like it does in a cinematic auditorium. What’s worse is that I saw two of these movies in IMAX, so that shrinks the screen and it makes the results disheartening. I didn’t like Allegiant, I’d personally give it a 2/10, but it breaks my heart to see this final installment not go into theaters. Not only that, but since a lot of teen girls like this movie, I imagine it’s just go on the so-called MTV channel. There are men who like this stuff too, and teens, and I mean teens, not just girls, are in your target audience. So if I were you, I’d put this on Syfy. I’m not going to explain much more, but if I had any suggestions to everyone behind this project, you can still put it in theaters as long as you reduce advertising, make the CGI feel less bloated, and not put the movie in large format theaters. Perhaps you could also shrink the runtime in the movie, maybe do a movie that is less than a couple hours long. Some fans of the source material may get a little mad but it may be worth it in the long run. If it were me, I would release the movie in theaters on a strict budget, but if you like this TV movie idea, good for you, it’s just not my thing. Stay tuned for more posts and reviews, I’m trying to see Suicide Squad as soon as I can, but my pals have a tricky schedule so it’ll be hard to go and see it right on the dot. Scene Before is your click to the flicks!


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