The film, based on the Veronica Roth novel, is set in a near future Chicago in which society has been divided into five factions, each upholding a different virtue: Abnegation (selflessness), Erudite (intelligence), Dauntless (bravery), Amity (peacefulness) and Candor (honesty). Citizens are tested as teens to determine which faction they should align with, but when heroine Beatrice “Tris” Prior (Shailene Woodley) is told she doesn’t fit into any of the five, she leaves home to pledge the Dauntless.
With a jam-packed sneak peek full of can’t-miss moments, we break down the five key scenes from the “Divergent” clip.
When Abnegation-born Beatrice undergoes her aptitude testing (a requirement for all 16-year-olds), she’s delivered unsettling results by administrator Tori (Maggie Q): “You’re different. You don’t fit into a category. They can’t control you. They call it Divergent. You can’t let them find out about you.”
“And what if they already know?” Beatrice asks.
“Then you’re already dead,” Tori warns.
Those words haunt Beatrice, and instead of staying with her friends and family in the faction she knows, she decides to pledge the Dauntless.
Taking A Flying Leap
Of course, being an initiate in the most fearless of factions is no mean feat. One of Beatrice’s first tasks is to jump from the roof of a seven-story building into Dauntless headquarters — through an ominous black hole. Here we see her, still clad in her Abnegation gray, make the perilous leap, proving her mettle to both the Dauntless leaders and her fellow initiates.
Going To The Mat
Initiation begins with physical training. Tris (renamed and in her Dauntless black) takes her punches from rival Peter, and later we see her face down hurtling knives, with one whizzing perilously close to her face, nicking her ear and drawing blood. What you don’t see here is that it’s her mentor/love interest Four who’s doing the throwing. (Those Dauntless have a funny way of showing their affection…)
Getting A Better Vantage Point
In what will probably become one of the most iconic scenes from the film, Tris and Four climb the dilapidated Navy Pier Ferris wheel during a game of Capture the Flag to get a superior view of their competition. It’s a pivotal moment, not only because Four overcomes his own fear (heights!), but because the two share a palpable moment of sexual tension that will soon pay off.
Kissing Her Hard
And, speaking of pay off … Tris and Four kiss! Tris and Four kiss!
James, who stopped by MTV’s VMA All Access Experience ahead of Sunday’s ceremony, described the smooch thusly to Josh Horowitz: “I just went at it hard, to be honest, because I thought that’s how she wanted it. I thought to assuage any awkwardness I would just go for it. She was kind of batting away my hands. It was kind of nice because we had Miles as Peter literally in the background as we were kissing. He was making hissing noises which actually added to the sexuality.”
“Divergent,” also starring Kate Winslet, Ansel Elgort and Miles Teller, opens March 21, 2014.