I’m going to assume that if you’re reading this blog post, you’ve already read the Rick Yancey book The 5th Wave and have either seen the film, or haven’t gotten to a theatre yet. Partially due to poor reviews, and the snow storm we had two weekends ago, the film’s box office outlook looks dire. Anyway, expect some spoilers.
The film wasn’t bad. The producers had to condense some scenes and eliminate others (like the backstories of the members of Zombie’s squad, for example). But the film pretty much captured the sinister, unsettling tone of Rick Yancey’s book.
The script is credited to three screenwriters, which isn’t always a good sign. The shifts in characters’ POVs is a little more jarring than it was in the book. But director J Blakeson keeps the film’s pace from slackening. (The sluggishness of the scenes at Evan’s farm are pretty much similar in tone to the parallel ones in the book, though.)
The cast, headed by the strong (if slightly one note) Chloe Grace Moretz as main protagonist Cassie Sullivan, is fine. I especially liked Nick Robinson, who captured well the awkwardness of Zombie/Ben Parish’s situation, having himself suddenly ejected from his high school’s BMOC status to one of a nervous (but ultimately resourceful), desperate soldier.
Maika Monroe was terrific as Ringer, but Alex Roe as Evan was kind of blah. (His bathing scene in the woods, while Cassie secretly watches him, is unintentionally hilarious.) And Liev Schreiber (Colonel Vosch) and Maria Bello (Sergeant Reznik) both perfectly captured their respective characters’ slimy underhandedness.
The film’s climax is exciting (the aliens’ army base blows up REAL good!) and sets things up for the hopefully forthcoming sequel. Despite it’s flaws, The 5th Wave is an exciting thriller. Check it out!