The Maze Runner

Inciting Event: One of the tribe is stung by a Griever, a half-mechanical monster that roams the Maze surrounding the relatively safe Glade, in which the young men live out their days. Due to the Griever venom, he becomes violently crazed, and the tribe forces him into the Maze where it is expected the Grievers will finish him off.

The fact that one of the Runners, who searches the Maze for a way out, was attacked during the daytime by a normally-nocturnal Griever, is cause for even greater concern.

Thomas has a dream about his past and remembers a girl he used to work with.

First Plot Point: The tribe’s leader, Alby, is stung by a Griever while trying to find the boy exiled into the Maze. He fails to make it back into the Glade before the giant doors shut for the night. Thomas rushes out to help, defying the tribe’s rules that only Runners can go through the doors. While inside the Maze, Thomas encounters a Griever for the first time. He manages to kill it using the Maze itself—something no one has ever done before. Later, the boys figure out that a piece of the Griever indicates that the people who put the boys in the Maze also made the Grievers.

The tribe is divided over whether Thomas is causing the new problems, with the Grievers attacking during the day, or if the changes he brings are offering them some hope of escaping the maze.

First Pinch Point: A girl is put into the Glade for the first time. She’s the one from Thomas’s dream-memory. She carries a note that says: “She’s the last one–ever.” She has two syringes of antidote for Griever stings, but no memories.

Thomas tries a syringe on Alby, and it cures him. As Alby wakes up from his venom coma, he tells Thomas, “You were their favorite.”

At night, the Maze doors open, and a horde of Grievers attack the Glade. Many of the boys are killed. They obtain part of a Griever’s stinger tail and discover that its venom syringe restores their memories. Thomas stings himself to get answers.

Midpoint: Thomas remembers the Maze is a test. Everyone in it is a subject. He and the girl Teresa were scientists in charge of the project.

Alby’s second-in-command orders Thomas and Teresa to be executed, but the tribe is divided, and some of them side with Thomas and Teresa, freeing them.

Second Pinch Point: Thomas and his followers enter the Maze, determined to escape or die trying. They overcome the obstacles and kill many of the pursuing Grievers, but lose a few people along the way.

Third Plot Point: The group escapes the Maze into a very normal-looking office environment, where they find a video recording of the leader of WCKD. She reveals that the planet was devastated by the Flare disease and that the group that was put in the Glade for testing is humanity’s hope for finding a cure. The leader, Ava Paige, is then shown to be killed by a group of militants.

Climax: The tribe’s second-in-command has followed Thomas’ group through the Maze and wants them all to go back to the Glade. He will kill Thomas to make it happen.

Climactic Moment: Chuck, the youngest member of the group, takes the bullet for Thomas and passes a figurine on to him, to give to his parents if he should ever find them. Thomas refused to do this earlier, because he wanted Chuck to take it to them himself.

The Climax is very short in this movie, but definite, because it marks the end of the overarching conflict, which is whether our heroes will escape the Maze or succumb to it.

Resolution: The militants from the video grab Thomas’s group and take them out of the building into a desolate world.

Ava Paige is revealed to have faked her death as part of a ruse to escalate the successful test subjects to their next stage.

The remaining unanswered questions, which are now more numerous than at the beginning, provide us a definite To Be Continued…

Comments: I have been told the movie is very different from the book, so bear that in mind.

(Submitted by Aaron McCausland.)

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