The 5th Wave is the latest Young Adult franchise based on a popular series of novels, and where The Hunger Games had dystopian states and Twilight had vampires, The 5th Wave tackles aliens. Earth has been invaded and the population is being killed off in a series of ‘waves’ such as earthquakes and disease.
The story follows Cassie, played by Chloe Grace Moretz, as she tries to survive in this new world, searching for her young brother who has been recruited by the army to fight the invading aliens. She meets the mysterious Evan (Alex Roe) who seems to spend his time chopping wood and bathing in lakes, and he agrees to help find her brother. The chemistry between the two of them is just about there, and the movie nicely sets up a love triangle for the next film with Cassie’s old high school crush Ben (Nick Robinson), now a soldier with the army.
The three main characters are all various shades of nice – Cassie is a fairly bland heroine, and whilst Evan and Ben are pretty to look at they don’t have a lot of personality between them. The only character with a bit of spark is Ringer, played by Maika Monroe, who stomps around in a ludicrous amount of black eyeliner, giving the boys what for and proving that she’s a Strong Independent Woman. It’s by no means subtle, it’s even pretty annoying, but at least it makes a change from every other flat character.
The film is silly: a lot of the plot just isn’t logical and the script is quite naff. By the end of the film characters have a tendency to keep appearing at just the right moment – dropping out of the ceiling to save the day or pulling up in a car to make a quick escape – and these kind of lazy plot devices just aren’t good enough. The 5th Wave is another teen franchise with not an awful lot going for it – it’s not terrible, but the series has a lot of work to do if it wants to rival the other young adult juggernaut franchises.
Image: Joella Marano; Flickr.com