The Maze Runner was a surprisingly entertaining little movie that probably never needed a sequel. But, this is a post-Harry Potter and -Hunger Games era and everything needs to be a trilogy. Much of this was pre-determined before the original film hit theaters, as the books were written as a trilogy and Fox picked them up, hoping they’d have their own teen-oriented, dystopian future movie. And, now they do. Today, we have our first look at the Maze Runner sequel, The Scorch Trials, which looks like it’s missing almost all the charm of the original film.

While The Maze Runner was a mostly self-contained suspense film about a group of kids trying to survive the existence of a mysterious maze, The Scorch Trials expands that universe. In this latest trailer, there’s touches of The Matrix, Alien, Divergent and pretty much every other geeky property (even Littlefinger shows up). It could very well be entertaining, but it still looks wholly unnecessary.

The Divergent franchise tried to go bigger with Insurgent, but that sequel proved that bigger isn’t always better. The second film in that series opened to middling reviews and a box-office take that was $25 million less than the original. Can The Scorch Trials buck that trend?

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.

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials opens in theaters on September 18.

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