Review: The 5th Wave

Posted on 29 January 2016
By Roisin Gordon
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After the huge hit of the Hunger Games movies, there has been many dystopian Young Adult fiction copycats trying to repeat the same success but have failed whilst doing so and sadly the same case goes here for The 5th Wave which looked promising but didn’t quite live up to expectations.

Based on Rick Yancey’s sci-fi novel, about aliens invading earth and taking out the world’s population in four different waves of destruction, the aliens -also known as “The Others”- are now living amongst them disguised as humans and are taking out the rest of the population so they can take over the earth- Yes that old chestnut.

Our heroine of the story is Cassie Sullivan (Chloe Grace Moretz) a teenage girl who is one of the few human survivors left on earth and is on the run to rescue her younger brother who has been taken away to a military camp that has been set up by The Others, to survive she must stay alone and trust nobody… That is until she meets hunky farm boy Evan Walker (Alex Roe) who seems to be her only hope of reuniting her with her brother leaving Cassie torn over whether she should trust him or not.

Oh and nd what would a YA movie be without a fight to the death story? But this time instead of teenagers fighting each other to their death, they are working together to fight off The Others to their death, as we see Cassie’s younger brother Sammy being trained as a soldier alongside Cassie’s former high school crush Ben Parish aka Zombie (Nick Robinson) and tough girl Ringer (Maika Monroe) one of the few interesting characters in the film who suffered from lack of screen time, could we be seeing another love triangle/square here? Who knows?

This had potential to be a really good film as it was based off an already popular and interesting novel and had a talented cast but instead the film ended up with a rushed plot that cut scenes too quickly, lackluster action sequences and a weak narrative which jumped back and forth between the focus of several characters, which was trying to tell the story from different viewpoints like the novel did but instead made a complete mess of it.

Let’s not get started on all the YA cliché’s that we are faced with in this story: a teenage girl facing a life or death situation, a battle that is a huge threat to society, a love story sub-plot and an evil organisation that tries to kill off the protagonist, we’ve seen this so many times before isn’t it time for something new now?

Chloe Grace Moretz has proven to be a more than capable actress in the past in films such as Kick-Ass and Let Me In, and she was a good choice for the role of Cassie balancing the strength and vulnerability in the character, although not the best written protagonist she did her best with what she was given.

Alex Roe and Nick Robinson were obviously put in as eye candy to steal the hearts of teenage girls across the world but that really seemed like the only use for them there, Maika Monroe was another strong actress in this film showing as a complete opposite to Moretz’s character as a sarcastic and tough as nails but ended up with little screen time.

The film has gotten off to a disappointing start but there is a good story to it and if they do decide to film the sequels, then there is hope for improvement.