Marketing for next month’s release The Divergent Series: Insurgent has been somewhat all over the place, in terms of its focus. Case in point, the film’s original teaser dropped Tris (Shailene Woodley) into a Matrix-like simulation – without any explanation or context provide for those watching the preview – while the full trailer feautres power-mad Erudite leader Jeanine Matthews’ (Kate Winslet) and some unexplained MacGuffin that motivates her to track down the remaining Divergents.
The more recent trailers for Insurgent have better combined these plot elements, outlining the growing uprising against the Erudite faction from beyond the reaches of post-apocalyptic Chicago. One final trailer has dropped for the Divergent sequel; this time, placing the emphasis on Tris’ emotionally volatile state (in the aftermath of her parents’ death), as well as how her relationship with Four (Theo James) continues to mature – even as the revolution moves clsoer to a boiling point.
Insurgent hasn’t scaled the artistic heights of fellow YA sci-fi dystopia novel-based property The Hunger Games (in most critics’ eyes anyway), nor has it proven quite so lucrative at the box office. Nonetheless, the first Divergent movie installment was a box office success ($289 million worldwide on an $85 million budget) – and seeing as the sequel appears to be a step-up for the franchise, it might earn more good will than its predecessor while also matching (or eclipsing) the first chapter in terms of ticket sales.
That being said, Insurgent director Robert Schwentke (RED, R.I.P.D.) can be hit-or-miss as a director; the same goes for the film’s Oscar-winning screenwriter Akiva Goldsman (Batman & Robin, A Beautiful Mind), though the latter co-penned the script with Mark Bomback (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) and Brian Duffield (Jane Got a Gun). In terms of filmmaking (action, CGI), Insurgent appears to be a step below that of Francis Lawrence’s work on the last two Hunger Games installments, but potentially still respectable on its own terms.
Rounding out the Insurgent cast are new additions in Oscar-winner Octavia Spencer and Oscar-nominee Naomi Watts, along with several returning cast members from the first Divergent installment. That includes Ansel Elgort, Zoë Kravitz, Miles Teller, Maggie Q, and Jai Courtney, among others.
The Divergent Series: Insurgent opens in U.S. theaters on March 20th, 2015.