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New teen heroine emerges from Divergent take on dystopia

Published on Mar 20, 2014 6:24 AM
Divergent starring Shailene Woodley and Theo James. -- FILE PHOTO: GOLDEN VILLAGE/CINEMA STILL

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS) - A futuristic utopia is divided into five communities, each defined entirely by one personality trait - wisdom, honesty, selflessness, kindness and bravery. But can humans be defined by just one? That's the question at the core of new film Divergent, out in United States (US) theatres on Friday. It is the latest movie adapted from a young adult novel series that features a lead female heroine who goes on an epic journey in a post-apocalyptic, dystopian world where people lead dehumanised lives.

While that premise sounds much like the runaway success The Hunger Games led by Jennifer Lawrence, Divergent, based on the books by author Veronica Roth, hinges on a society that attempts to curb human nature with neurological manipulation.

Lions Gate, the film studio also behind Hunger Games and the Twilight saga, is hoping Divergent, with its devoted fanbase, will kick off a new franchise. A second film Insurgent is already in the works for 2015.

The young actress leading the franchise is Shailene Woodley, who plays Tris Prior, no ordinary 16 year old.

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