In 2011, I was one of the first UK book bloggers to read and review an unknown novel entitled DIVERGENT by debut author Veronica Roth and back then, I knew it was something special. The book was so compelling that I spent a whole day reading without showering, dressing or even brushing my teeth. I realise that sounds somewhat gross but I could. Not. Put. It. Down. Fast forward to the present day and the movie has just been released in the UK. I went to see it on Saturday night (one day after the official UK release) and with all YA book to movie adaptations that have come out recently, I admit to having been slightly nervous. Would the movie live up to my expectations? Would it be true to the book? Did they get the casting right? Ultimately, would I be disappointed? The answer is this...
DIVERGENT IS THE BEST YA BOOK TO SCREEN ADAPTATION YET.
The casting was SPOT ON for all the characters, and Shailene Woodley and Theo James were surprisingly PERFECT as their respective characters, Tris and Four. There was one particular scene where Shailene almost had me bawling. I only held it back because I hate crying in public but it was hard!
Every single scene in the movie looked exactly like I saw them in my head when I read the book, and I might have squealed when I saw Veronica herself make a cameo in the movie (if you’re wondering where, I believe she was in the zip lining scene). Just as an aside, I’m going on holiday later in the year and have the opportunity to do a bit of zip lining myself. I’m terribly afraid of heights, we’re talking deer in the headlights kind of afraid, but I’m hoping to channel my inner Tris to conquer my fear.
DIVERGENT was pretty much perfection and there was nothing I would change particularly apart from the very last scene. In the final scenes of the book, Four spoke one of my most favourite lines ever but sadly, it wasn’t used. I can see why that wouldn’t work so well on screen but that’s the only criticism I have.
DIVERGENT was outrageously good, I’m desperate to see it again and whilst I haven’t actually bought any of the other YA adaptations on blueray/DVD, I will DEFINITELY be buying this one. In fact, I’m pre-ordering RIGHT NOW.
My advice to you is go and see this movie, even if you haven’t read the book because it’s highly entertaining and not just “another teen movie”. DIVERGENT asks a lot of questions about choice, leadership qualities, what it means to be brave, and if it’s possible to create an idealistic society. It doesn’t do the thinking for you, it makes YOU think. DIVERGENT had an impressive opening weekend in the states, so much so that the sequel INSURGENT has already been given the green light to be made by Summit and quite frankly, I can’t bloody wait!
DIVERGENT was published in the UK on 23rd April, 2011. The movie was released in the UK on 4th April, 2014. To find out more about Veronica Roth and her books, please click here. If you’re interested in my book review of DIVERGENT, please click here and if you want to read about the time I met Veronica Roth (and Shailene Woodley walked into the room) then please click here.