Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

Critics Consensus

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials is an action-packed sequel at the cost of story, urgency, and mystery that the original offered.

46%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 147

54%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 62,111
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Movie Info

In this next chapter of the epic "Maze Runner" saga, Thomas (Dylan O'Brien) and his fellow Gladers face their greatest challenge yet: searching for clues about the mysterious and powerful organization known as WCKD. Their journey takes them to the Scorch, a desolate landscape filled with unimaginable obstacles. Teaming up with resistance fighters, the Gladers take on WCKD's vastly superior forces and uncover its shocking plans for them all. (C) Fox

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Critic Reviews for Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

All Critics (147) | Top Critics (29) | Fresh (68) | Rotten (79)

  • If it sounds like there isn't an original thought in The Scorch Trials' scripted head, you're right. But at least you won't be smacking yourself in the head trying to figure out what's going on.

    Sep 24, 2015 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Jim Slotek

    Toronto Sun
    Top Critic
  • The teen dystopian franchise continues to play rough, and now even rougher, with satisfying results.

    Sep 18, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

    Rafer Guzman

    Newsday
    Top Critic
  • With minimal plot development and far too much running around in dark corridors, The Scorch Trials has a poor story:filler ratio. And much of what happens is poorly thought-out.

    Sep 18, 2015 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • The sequel is terrible and all my original criticisms for the first film still stand, but at least it's a more entertaining kind of awful.

    Sep 18, 2015 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • This story was better off back in the maze.

    Sep 18, 2015 | Rating: C- | Full Review…

    Tom Long

    Detroit News
    Top Critic
  • There's no flare of strangeness or freshness here, just a pile of images and ideas stolen from smarter people's second-hand bin banged into each other for a numbingly dull 132 minutes.

    Sep 17, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    James Rocchi

    TheWrap
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

  • Nov 14, 2016
    The Maze Runner trilogy was one of the best book series I've read since the Hunger Games, but unlike the Hunger games, the transition to the big screen has not been an easy one. The first film in the series, was nothing like the book, as it completely failed to demonstrate the comradery among the boys, as well as eliminating key elements from the story. Apparently, I wasn't the only one who noticed this, as The Scorch Trials made sure the same mistakes didn't happen twice. Of course the same elements that were ignored in the first film had to still be excluded for the sake of continuity, but the rest of the film was dead on. In the second film, the boys learn that their rescue was only short lived, as they are still under the control of Wicked, and are about to face their second test. The group is to be dropped into the most unforgiving part of the earth, a place where the disease runs rampant, and cranks are everywhere, the Scorch. If they can survive the Scorch, the boys will have a better idea of what they are up against, and Wicked may just be able to get what they need from them to finally find a cure, that is if they make it to the end. Unlike the first film, Dylan O'Brian finally embraces the leadership role that Thomas is supposed to play in the series, and gives the film the hero to root for that it was sorely lacking. The additions of Jacob Lofland and Rosa Salazar further move the story along, as the film starts to pursue the side angles much in a way the novels did, something the first film also ignored. The narrow focus of the first film, combined with it's rushed nature, and missing elements, made it seem like a cliff notes version of otherwise terrific novel. The sequel however takes the time to properly tell the story, explore the angles, and was much closer to the original story. If you're not a reader and you were turned off by the first film, I don't blame you, but give the sequel a chance, it's a much more accurate depiction of the story.
    Todd S Super Reviewer
  • Jul 14, 2016
    As a surprising fan of the original Maze Runner film, I was quite excited to see where the story would take me. It turns out, the sequel doesn't have much to do. It runs out of gas with a series of endless chase scenes and a bland plot. Surprisingly too, the film is almost relentlessly bleak and while there are exciting moments, there isn't much character development or humor. While the first was solid, this follow-up doesn't reach Catching Fire levels of dystopian smarts. Rating: 50
    Bradley J Super Reviewer
  • Feb 14, 2016
    Okay. Could have been much worse considering the horrendous state of most Young Adult book adaptations these days. The Scorch Trials adaptation improves upon the book in a lot of ways, but misses the mark in many others. This is really unfortunate, because the end product could've been something really special instead of just mediocre.
    Stephen S Super Reviewer
  • Jan 24, 2016
    I will say that this is, admittedly, a step down from the first film and I think the consensus here pretty much hits the nail on the head as to why. What made the first movie so good was that there was a good deal of intrigue and mystery as to what the maze was and why these kids were forced to be in there. Understandably, however, when you take the characters out of that element then what was special, or different, about the franchise is gone entirely. So I will say that the fact that there's no real mystery about WICKED, you find out what they're after fairly quickly, is one of the reasons this film is a bit of a step down from the first one. The story is also not that great, I think they do just about enough to avoid falling into all the trappings that all these film adaptations based on young adult novels often fall in. Much like the first movie, this movie, in parts, is a straight up horror movie and that's something that you don't see often in these types of films. It might be different from all the adaptations of YA novels, but it's still fairly standard post-apocalyptic fare. With that said, however, the movie does introduce some new elements and character, along with enough story twists to still keep me invested into where this franchise is going, particularly with how everything ended up. But I must say, though, that the entire WICKED organization feels like a toned down version of the government from The Hunger Games and Thomas a much less effective Katniss Everdeen. That, literally, just came to my mind right now. Perhaps that wasn't even the intention, but that's how it comes across. Hunger Games might not have been the first movie to play with this concept, but in the mind of audiences then that's gonna be first. This is far more of an action-heavy sequel, so, as mentioned, the movie sort of loses some of the story elements that were so strong in the first one. I thought that was a bit of a mistake, because if the story elements had been better developed and you had the action, then this could've been something really special. It was not to be, sadly, but the movie does maintain a quick enough pace that you don't really think about what it's lacking until after the movie is over. The movie also has some good addition in characters like Jorge, Brenda and some people in the resistance movement, additions that give the film a little more mileage heading into, what I'm assuming is, the final film in the franchise. Here's the thing, as much as I thought the movie was flawed, if I'm invested in the world and the characters then that's all that matters, at least with films like this. You can have an average movie and if I'm intrigued or invested, then I'll want to see where the story is heading. Though I will say that I thought that, at least as an overall film, this was fairly solid. It might not have had as many strong elements as the first film, at least it's something different than the first one, both its blessing and its curse, but it's still a fairly solid movie. I can't give it a wholehearted recommendation, this is a solid rental at best.
    Jesse O Super Reviewer

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