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September 19, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

The Maze Runner is aimed squarely at those who make up the motion picture industry’s principal audience — dating teens. And most critics seem to agree that it hits that target dead-on. "Teens should eat up this fantasy’s scenery-chewing angst and doom, and the hopeful tale of survival and empowerment (to be continued in the inevitable sequel or sequels)," writes Ethan Gilsdorf in the Boston Globe. Elizabeth Weitzman in the New York Daily News remarks that the film’s "deft pacing and urgent action scenes … seem smartly tailored to the movie’s teen audience." And Jake Coyle of the Associated Press notes that "all of the recent young-adult formulas are adhered to here: the teenage rebellion against tradition, the coming-of-age metaphors, the heavy sequel-baiting." In fact, there are so many elements from other teen-targeted franchises in the movie, San Francisco Chronicle critic Peter Hartlaub observes, that the sequel ought to be called, Maze Runner 2: Lord of the Hunger Games. That’s a more economical way of saying what New York Times critic Ben Kenigsberg writes in his review: The Maze Runner, he writes, "is a perfectly serviceable entry in the young-adult dystopian sweepstakes. It combines elements of Lord of the Flies with the Minotaur and Orpheus myths, but it plays as something closer to The Hunger Games experienced through a dissociative fog. Much suspense comes from wondering which favored Hollywood twist the movie will employ." For all of that, he concludes, "the movie "remains compelling."