Divergent's wins by a landslide. I rarely even notice a movie's soundtrack, unless it's phenomenal, but I repeatedly found myself thinking, "Man, this song makes this scene badass." I couldn't remember a song from Hunger Games if I tried, and I still dream about the tunes from Divergent. Big props to Ellie Goulding for that.
Since I'm not in the mood for a public stoning, I'm not going to take sides here. I'll take my opinion on Jennifer Lawrence-versus-Shailene-Woodley to the grave, and you'll have to pry it from my cold, dead typing fingers. But, really, I think both Katniss and Tris are spectacularly acted by strong, talented women. And, just like THG, Divergent's secondary characters are a great mix of watchable newcomers and veterans that look hilarious in the futuristic garb.
For the first 45 minutes or so of Divergent, I kept waiting for the stakes to arrive. Sure, the plot is interesting, but where's the danger? The choosing of factions isn't so much tense as it is joyful — kind of like the Harry Potter sorting hat. With The Hunger Games, the danger is there from the start; you're literally going to watch kids kill each other. It takes a little longer for Divergent to warm up, but once it does, it really does.
I hope that public stoning I mentioned earlier isn't still on the table, because I have something to say: I don't care about Katniss and Peeta. And, I don't care about Katniss and Gale. I only care about Katniss. It's not that I wish ill upon the men of THG, but I just couldn't compel myself to care about them as romantic interests. These love stories feel forced — and I think the characters should spend more time trying not to die and less time deciding who's in love with whom.
I seriously can't say enough about these lovebirds. Immediately after I finish this story I'm going to go back to making my Four + Tris 4Eva T-shirts. The sexual tension starts building from the very beginning of the movie. The audience (of jaded reporters, no less) literally cheered when Four finally took his shirt off. (And, ladies, it was worth the wait). I don't know if I've ever wanted two people to make out more — and to do so to a soundtrack of Ellie Goulding? Well, that's just the dream. Never has a non-sex sex scene been more satisfying. If you have no other reason to see Divergent, go for the shirtless Theo James.