The Maze Runner (film)
The Maze Runner is a 2014 American neo noir dystopian science fiction action thriller film directed by Wes Ball, in his directorial debut, based on James Dashner's 2009 novel of the same name. The film is the first installment in the Maze Runner film series and was produced by Ellen Goldsmith-Vein, Wyck Godfrey, Marty Bowen, and Lee Stollman with a screenplay by Noah Oppenheim, Grant Pierce Myers and T.S. Nowlin. The film stars Dylan O'Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Aml Ameen, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, Will Poulter, and Patricia Clarkson. The story follows sixteen-year-old Thomas, portrayed by O'Brien, who awakens in a rusty elevator with no memory of who he is, only to learn he's been delivered to the middle of an intricate maze, along with a large number of other boys, who have been trying to find their way out of the ever-changing labyrinth – all while establishing a functioning society in what they call the Glade.
- This place. it's not what we thought it was. It's not a prison, it's a test. It all started when we were kids. They'd give us these challenges. They were experimenting on us. And then people started disappearing. Every month, one after the other, like clockwork.
- I remember water, feeling like I was drowning. These faces staring at me. And this voice, this woman's voice saying the same thing over and over. [Thomas: "WCKD is good."]
- We only have three rules: First, do your part. No time for any freeloaders. Second, never harm another Glader. None of this works unless we have trust. Most importantly, never go beyond those walls. Do you understand me, Greenie?
- [Last words] Thomas, get them out.
- Alright. It's like you've heard, yeah? Every month, the Box sends up a new arrival. But someone had to be first, right? Someone had to have spent a whole month in the Glade alone. That was Alby. I mean, it can't have been easy. But when those other boys started coming up, one after the other, he saw the truth. And he learned that the most important thing is that we all have each other. Because we're all in this together.
- "She's the last one ever." What the hell does that mean?
- It doesn't matter. Any of it. Because the people we were before the Maze, they don't even exist anymore. These Creators took care of that. But what does matter is who we are now, and what we do right now. You went into the Maze and you found a way out.
- I think, in all the time we've been here, no one's ever killed a Griever before. When I turned tail and ran, this dumb shank stood behind to help Alby. Look, I don't know if he's brave or stupid, but whatever it is, we need more of it. I say we make him a Runner.
- Everything started going wrong the minute you showed up. First Ben, then Alby, and now the girl. Everybody saw she recognized you. And I'm betting you know who she is.
- [Last words] We all do.
Dr. Ava Paige
- [In a recorded video] Hello. I'm Dr. Ava Paige. I'm Director of Operations at the World Catastrophe Killzone Department. If you're watching this, that means you've successfully completed the Maze Trials. I wish I could be there in person to congratulate you, but circumstances seem to have prevented it. I'm sure by now you must all be very confused. angry. frightened. I can only assure you that everything that's happened to you, everything we've done to you, it was all done for a reason. You won't remember, but the sun has scorched our world. Billions of lives lost to fire, famine. Suffering on a global scale. The fallout was unimaginable. What came after was worse. We called it the Flare. A deadly virus that attacks the brain. It is violent, unpredictable, incurable, or so we thought. In time a new generation emerged that could survive the virus, suddenly, there was a reason to hope for a cure. But finding it would not be easy. The young would have to be tested, even sacrificed, inside harsh environments where their brain activity could be studied. All in an effort to understand what makes them different. What makes you different. You may not realize it, but you're very important. Unfortunately, your trials have only just begun. [Sparks shower from a door across the room behind Paige. Ragtag soldiers dressed mostly in black break in and start gunning down the white-coated lab personnel as she speaks] As you'll no doubt soon discover, not everyone agrees with our methods. Progress is slow, people are scared. It may be too late for us, for me. But not for you. The outside world awaits. [The armed intruders are firing at the glass panels separating Paige from the rest of the lab: Paige raises a revolver to her temple.] Remember: WCKD is good.
- Well, I think it's safe to say the Maze Trials were a complete success. I wasn't expecting so many survivors, but the more the merrier. Thomas continues to surprise and impress. And for now, they seem to have taken the bait. It's too soon to say. but they could be the key to everything. So let's move forward. It's time now to begin Phase Two.
- It's basically the same story for all of us. We wake up in the Box, Alby gives us the tour. then here we are. Don't worry. You're already doing better than I did. I clunked my pants three times before they got me out of the Pit– [Sees Thomas walking towards the Maze] Oh, come on! [Runs after Thomas]
- [Last words] Thank you. Thank you.
- You mean, besides a Griever pancake?
- Yeah, what if Thomas is right? Maybe he can lead us home.
- Hey, Chuck. New Greenie, huh? How does it feel to be promoted?
- Gally, It's doesn't feel right, man.
- Alby: My name is Alby. Can you tell me anything about yourself, who you are, where you came from? Anything at all. [Thomas is visibly confused and distressed; he looks around distractedly, rubbing his hands together and giving no response] Can you tell me your name?
- Thomas: [Visibly frightened] I– I can't remember anything. Why can't I remember anything?
- Alby: Hey, relax. Relax. It's normal. Happens to us all. You get your name back in a day or two. It's the one thing they let us keep.
- Thomas: What is this place?
- Alby: [Holding his hand out] Let me show you.
- Newt: You hear that? That's the Maze, changing. Changes every night.
- Thomas: How is that even possible?
- Newt: You can ask the people that put us in here if you ever meet the bastards. Listen, the truth is, the Runners are the only ones that really know what's out there. They're the strongest and the fastest of us all, and it's a good thing, too, 'cause if they don't make it back before those doors close, then they're stuck out there for the night. And no one's ever survived a night in the Maze.
- Thomas: What happens to 'em?
- Newt: Well, we call 'em Grievers. Of course, no one's ever seen one and lived to tell about it. But they're out there.
- [Thomas has run into the Maze as Minho, Keeper of the Runners, struggled to make it back with an unconscious Alby before the doors of the Maze close for the night. Not even a second after he makes it to Minho the doors slam shut behind him.]
- Minho: Good job. You just killed yourself.
- Thomas: W– what?
- [Thomas examines Alby, who has various cuts and a bruise on his forehead]
- Thomas: What happened to him?
- Minho: What does it look like? He got stung.
- Thomas: What happened to his head?
- Minho: I did what I had to do.
- [An unearthly screech echoes through the Maze; Minho gets up and starts moving away.]
- Thomas: Alright, help me get him up.
- Minho: We gotta go. The Maze is already changing.
- Thomas: Hey, Minho! [Minho looks back at him] We can't just leave him here.
- [Later, as Minho and Thomas are dragging Alby through the Maze, another eerie screech is heard in the distance. Minho puts Alby down against a wall and goes to leave.]
- Minho: This ain't working. We gotta go. We gotta go!
- Thomas: Wait, wait, what're you talking about? We gotta do something, we gotta hide him!
- Minho: Where?
- Thomas: I don't know– Minho, just think. Are you telling me there's not a single place we can take him?
- Minho: [Growls angrily and grabs Thomas] Listen to me, shuck-face. Alright? Take a look around! There's nowhere to go! [There are more screeches and wails in the distance; Minho stands and looks towards the noises] You don't get it. We're already dead.
- [Gally arrives to escort Thomas to the Pit, a set of separate holes dug in the ground and covered by a wood shelter and bamboo cage doors, and lock him in for the night.]
- Thomas: Hey, what is your problem with me?
- Gally: Everything started going wrong the minute you showed up. First Ben, then Alby, and now the girl. Everybody saw she recognized you. And I'm betting you know who she is.
- [Thomas goes into the Pit and Gally fastens the ropes that "lock" the Pit shut.]
- Thomas: Gally, you know we can't stay here forever, right?
- [Gally looks expressionlessly at Thomas, picks up his torch, and leaves. Later, a torchlight comes into view as someone approaches the Pit.]
- Thomas: Who's there?
- Chuck: It's just me.
- Thomas: Sorry, Chuck.
- Chuck: [Handing a water bottle and food down] Here. You'll run better on a full stomach.
- Thomas: Thanks, Chuck. [Noticing the object in Chuck's hand] Hey, what've you got there? [Chuck shows it to Thomas; it's a small carved stone figure] Oh, that came out pretty damn good. What's that from?
- Chuck: It's from my parents.
- Thomas: Do you remember your parents?
- Chuck: No. well, I mean, I know I must have them. And wherever they are, I'm sure they miss me. But I can't miss them back because I don't remember them. [Looks out towards the walls of the Maze] What do you think you're gonna find out there tomorrow?
- Thomas: I don't know. But if there's a way out, Chuck, me and Minho are gonna find it.
- Chuck: Here. [Hands Thomas his figurine]
- Thomas: Chuck, why would you give this to me?
- Chuck: Can't remember them anyway. But maybe if you can find a way out you can give it to them for me. [Gets up to leave] Well, get you some sleep.
- Thomas: Hey, Chuck? Come here. [Chuck comes back] Hold out your hand. [Chuck does; Thomas presses the figurine back into his hand] I want you to give that to them yourself. We're gonna get out of here. All of us. Okay? I promise.
- [Gally comes striding out of the smoke as the Gladers' gardens burn after a mass-attack by the Grievers, the first time they have openly attacked the Glade at night; Alby was taken in the attack and many others are missing.]
- Thomas: Gally–
- [Gally punches Thomas hard, knocking him down and causing shouts of protest to break out]
- Gally: This is all you, Thomas! Huh? Look around!
- [Several Gladers restrain Gally and start pulling him away]
- Minho: Back off, Gally! It's not Thomas's fault!
- Gally: You heard what Alby said! He's one of them!
- Newt: One of who?!
- Gally: He's one of them, and they sent him here, to destroy everything, AND NOW HE HAS! Look around, Thomas! Look around! This is your fault! He's one of them, and they sent him here to destroy everything that we've built!
- [Gally continues to fight the boys holding onto him, shouting furiously at Thomas, but the Gladers manage to move him farther away.]
- Thomas: What if he's right?
- Teresa: Thomas?
- Thomas: I need to remember, Teresa.
- [Before anyone nearby can stop him, Thomas rams the Griever stinger he is holding into his leg; the venom makes him collapse almost instantly.]
- Teresa: Chuck, get the other syringe!
- [In the WCKD labs, after watching Dr. Ava Paige in the recorded video]
- Chuck: Is it over?
- Newt: She said we were important. What're we supposed to do now?
- Thomas: I don't know– let's get outta here.
- [The surviving Gladers all start for the hallway that leads outside, but halt suddenly.]
- Gally: No.
- Thomas: Gally? [Starts forward, but Teresa holds him back]
- Teresa: Don't. He's been stung.
- [Gally has, in fact, been stung by a Griever, he holds a pistol in his right hand.]
- Gally: We can't leave.
- Thomas: We did. Gally, we're out. We're free.
- Gally: Free? You think we're free out there? No, no, there's no escape from this place. [He raises the pistol and aims it at Thomas]
- Thomas: Gally, listen to me. You're not thinking straight. You're not. Now, we can help you.
- [Minho silently grips a spear, looking at Gally, and getting ready to throw it into his chest]
- Thomas: Just put down the gun.
- Gally: I belong to the maze.
- Thomas: Just put down the gun.
- Gally: We all do.