Movie vs. Book: Insurgent

**Spoiler Alert: Because of the popularity of both this book and movie, this review does include spoilers. 

Insurgent picks up where author Veronica Roth’s Divergent left off — with Tris, Four, Caleb, Peter and Marcus living in the Amity faction, waiting to decide their next move after narrowly escaping the attempted takeover and attack lead by Jeanine. Tris is still reeling from the death of her parents, and tensions continue to run high between Four and Tris and Peter. But when Erudite and Dauntless traitors arrive to search for Abnegation, Tris, Four and Caleb escape and meet up with the Factionless. After that, all hell breaks loose as factions try to combine to either fight off or fight for Jeanine and whatever plans she has. But Tris learns Jeanine has an important secret that involves her parents — one that she must find while also protecting the lives on the innocent.

That general story holds true in the movie version of the bestselling novel. That said, I have never seen a movie that veers so differently from the novel upon which it’s based. First of all, the movie leaves out Marcus almost entirely. As Four’s father, Marcus is the one from whom Tris learns how important her parents’ secret is. Much of the book involves Tris backing Marcus and working to get her hands on that information — a move that causes some friction between Tris and Four. But with Marcus barely in the movie, all of that friction is gone.

Not to mention, the movie objectifies that secret into a box, which Jeanine is working hard to unlock. It seems like we’re to believe that Jeanine doesn’t know what the secret is and needs a Divergent to open it by passing simulations for all five factions. In the book, Jeanine does make Tris do simulations, but it’s not to unlock a box of secrets. In the book, the reason is so she can figure out a serum that will actually affect Divergents.

The way the secret comes out is completely different in the movie than In the book. In the book, Jeanine has the secret information hidden on her computer. The information is accessed near the end of the novel as part a team effort between Tris, Christina, Marcus and several others infiltrating Jeanine’s facility and computer. But that entire section is left out of the movie.

On top of all this, three of the four major deaths in the book are either left out or changed in the movie. Lynn’s death is left out entirely. Four kills Eric in both, but in the book, Eric is put on trial and then killed. There is no trial or Dauntless leaders in the movie. Then there’s Jeanine’s death.  In the book, Tori kills her, despite Tris trying to fight Tori on it. But in the movie, Evelyn kills Jeanine, with no fight from anyone.

These are just the major changes. There are lots of other minor ones. Not having read the third book in the series, Allegiant, it’s hard for me to determine if and how these changes may affect the third movie. And granted, the movie was still excellent, action-packed and exciting. But it was so different from the book, I found myself having a hard time cheering at the end.

Get Insurgent in paperback for $10.68.

Or on your Kindle for $3.99.


Filed under Movie vs. Book, Reviews

6 responses to “Movie vs. Book: Insurgent

  1. I saw the movie a few hours ago and was shocked by how much change was made in the adaptation. o_O You touched excellently on the major points. Another major point was Jeanine sentencing Tris to death and deciding to test Four instead.

  2. shihonna

    Omg! THANK YOU! Someone else who agrees the movie left out a bunch! No one else seems to realize why the movie didn’t exactly hit the bar for me. I was furious to only see marcus in maybe 2 scenes. He was essentially one of the biggest characters in this book! Another thing that missed for me was how Candor did the truth serum. in the book it isn’t four’s idea to do the serum. And also which under the truth serum theh are asked to reveal a secret basically and Four tells how he is ashamed about how he was cowardly towards Marcus which only causes more drama involving Marcus who, again, was barely even in the movie..ugh i was very upset after seeing the movies interpretation. Ohh and also how when in the sim Tris realizes Four isnt really there and Jeanine flips out.

    • ekihartari

      I don’t know why, but I prefer the movie than the book.. I love scary Four in the book, but I like Four are “respected” in the movies -without revealing his problems with Marcus, of course-.
      And Four in the movie looks smarter by assuming he will be exploited by his mother, rather than Four in a book which is always wrong to make decisions -and Tris always right in her prejudice-.
      Yeah, over all.. I love Four and Tris in the movie 😀

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