“Allegiant,” Part One, is the third film in the “Divergent” series and is the first one that is able to receive our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal. The first two films in the series missed receiving the Seal due to language, violence or both. This one also has several scenes of fantasy violence, but with very little blood. Set against a post-apocalyptic world with hovering military aircraft, laser guns, and other futuristic weapons and fantastic hardware, the violence feels like it is set in a different world. Of course, the film includes fights, punching and kicking, but again, very little or no blood.
In futuristic scenes, war has taken a toll on the planet, and the remains of Chicago have been enclosed with a wall. Tris, Four, and a few others find themselves in this world, and Tris is asked to make some decisions that may leave her friends out of the plans.
The film focuses on trust, or the lack thereof, and the important people in the characters’ lives. For example, Tris (Shailene Woodley) is forced into making a decision when Four (Theo James) asks her to join him and leave her meetings with a futuristic leader named David (Jeff Daniels). Four doesn’t trust him and has seen evidence that David is doing something reprehensible to the children of his domain. Tris’s brother, Caleb (Ansel Elgort), is scheduled to be executed, and Tris can save him at a great personal risk. Will she? In another scene, Four’s mother, Evelyn (Naomi Watts), makes a difficult decision despite her son’s disapproval, and when he pleads, “Mom,” her struggle is evident on her face. You will have to watch the movie to see what she does.
The film has a few slow-moving spots, including extended scenes of futuristic elevators climbing several stories and a few scenes that show off the sets or special effects. However, for the most part, it is an action-packed film with thrilling chase sequences, escapes, and battle scenes. If you see it, don’t take an extended restroom break, or you may miss a lot in just a few minutes.
We are happy to award “Allegiant,” Part One, our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal for ages 12-plus.