Cassie (Chloë Grace Moretz) is the all-American student athlete, partying, huge crush on the star of the football team type of girl — the typical teen story. Her life is devastated when an alien invasion occurs, causing four waves of increasingly deadly attacks that leave most of the Earth in ruin. Separated from her little brother Sam (Zackary Arthur), Cassie is on the run and desperate to find him before the inevitable fifth wave occurs.
The 5th Wave starts off with tons of promise. In the opening scene, armed, Cassie faces a man sitting on the floor who is also armed. Both are scared out of their minds and tell each other to put the guns down. Cassie is reluctant to do so. As the man tries to show her his other hand, she shoots him out of fear. It was an amazing way to start the film because it really pulled the audience in — at least for the moment.
The movie is based off of the novel The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey. I, for one, love novel-based movies; however, they are hit or miss. I would call this one a miss. The character development was poor and the plot didn’t flow together very well. It was hard to care about the characters because we did not really know them. For example, in The Hunger Games when Rue was killed, I cried as if I had been her friend for years. That was because we knew Rue. We knew where she was from, her poor quality of life, and the fear of her imminent death. And she wasn’t even the main character.
Overlooking the poor character development — because I can understand how difficult it is to turn a 500-page novel into a 2-hour movie — the “aliens,” also known as “The Others,” were not actually aliens. They were humans who had an alien bug-like thing attached to their brains! They carried guns and fought with their fists like humans as well. I think this aspect of the movie was a missed opportunity for the director to get creative and blow our minds with some graphics. While in the movie we were presented with what one of their brains looked like, it reminded me of something from Danny Phantom (if you remember that show from Nickelodeon). Very cartoonesque.
All in all if you’re between the ages of 13 and 17 and love the book series, The 5th Wave is a decently great movie. If you are older and have a more critical eye for a novel-turned-movie, then save your money and wait for it to come on TV.
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The 5th wave review photos courtesy of: Sony Pictures Entertainment
Chloë Grace Moretz Fights for Her Life in ‘The 5th Wave’