Young adult novels, and the movies they inspire, have all but taken over the notion of the futuristic sci-fi dystopia. Once the domain of Brazil and Blade Runner, the landscape has instead become home to sagas that use the background of an oppressive future to explore universal themes like the importance of individuality — with a love triangle or two thrown in for good measure. When the pieces come together just right, the result can be The Hunger Games, a series that reaches beyond younger audiences, becoming a cultural phenomenon in the process.

The latest stab at building a new YA film franchise is Divergent, based on Veronica Roth’s best-selling novel. At first glance the film checks all the right boxes, but despite some impressive visual world building and a strong lead performance it’s never able to find the groove it’s so clearly looking for.