The Divergent Series: Allegiant

Lionsgate Films Rated PG-13 for intense violence and action, thematic elements and some partial nudity. Running time: 120 minutes. One star out of four. The confused look on the faces of all the characters in the above photo pretty much tells you everything you need to know about “Allegiant” — I’m sorry, “The Divergent Series: […]

The 5th Wave

Sony Pictures Rated PG-13 for violence and destruction, some sci-fi thematic elements, language and brief teen partying. Running time: 112 minutes. One and a half stars out of four. “The 5th Wave” plays like a Wayans-brothers spoof of movies based on dystopian Young Adult novels. Seriously, it could have been called “YA Movie” the way […]

RogerEbert.com — The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2

It’s the final film in the “Hunger Games” saga — no, really it is this time! With the exception of a couple of truly dazzling action set pieces, “Mockingjay – Part 2” provides more of what we saw in “Mockingjay — Part 1”: a lot of wheel-spinning and repetitive imagery. But the stakes are higher […]

RogerEbert.com — The DUFF

Mae Whitman dazzles as the title character — which stands for Designated Ugly Fat Friend — a brilliant and quick-witted high school senior who takes that derogatory label and makes it her own. This breezy comedy is Whitman’s “Easy A”: the movie that will make the longtime supporting actress a star. At RogerEbert.com. Read the […]

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1

Lionsgate Films Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some disturbing images and thematic material. Running time: 123 minutes. Two stars out of four. Despite its action and revelations, its substantial political allegory and its strong performances from a tremendous cast, “The Hunger Games: Mockingkay — Part 1” still feels like one long […]

What the Flick?! — The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1

The first half of the film adaptation of the third book in “The Hunger Games” trilogy feels like a stretched-out placeholder for the real finale. Jennifer Lawrence is strong as always, though, as Katniss, who’s now the reluctant symbol of hope for the revolution.

RogerEbert.com — The Maze Runner

In a rigidly structured dystopian future, one plucky teenager dares to think for himself, shake up the status quo and start a revolution. This is a story that has never been told before! Actually, “The Maze Runner” distinguishes itself from the many other YA adaptations we’ve seen lately with a strong cast and a pleasingly […]

RogerEbert.com — If I Stay

Chloe Grace Moretz’s grounded, naturalistic presence goes a long way toward making mushy material palatable. Director R.J. Cutler adapts the Gayle Forman young adult novel about a teenage girl trapped in an ethereal realm between life and death. Don’t even try to hold back the sobs. My RogerEbert.com review. Read the review here

What the Flick?! — If I Stay

Alonso and I were both pleased to find that this was better than the average teen weepy. Chloe Grace Moretz stars as a cello prodigy trapped between life and death after a devastating car accident. Should she stay or should she go?

What the Flick?! — The Giver

Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep add heft to this derivative but well-made sci-fi thriller based on Lois Lowry’s Young Adult novel. In a rigid and seemingly perfect futuristic society, one plucky teenage boy dares to shake up the status quo. It’s beautifully shot but it goes off the rails in the third act.