Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials is the second movie in the Maze Runner trilogy. Based on James Dashner's best-selling dystopian young adult novel, the film should attract teens (and adults) who are familiar with book series, as well as fans of star Dylan O'Brien (MTV's Teen Wolf). As in the first film, violence is the main issue, with characters being chased, shot at, bitten by gruesome zombie-like creatures, and more. There's a high body count as the result of shoot-outs, explosions, and even a self-inflicted wound (the suicide happens off screen, but the shot is heard). This installment has more strong language (less "shank" and more "s--t," "son of a bitch," "dumbass," etc.) than the previous movie, and there's also slightly more romance -- two characters even kiss (they're slightly drunk at the time) -- though it's not as prominent here as in the Divergent or The Hunger Games movies.
A character turns another character's head away from watching someone who's changing clothes (viewers only see her arms in the air as she adds a layer). At a club, teens and young adults dance close together, and two slightly inebriated teens kiss.
The survivors face new enemies who use guns and tasers to subdue them. There's a high body count; people die or are injured as the result of shoot-outs (one person is brutally murdered at close range), explosions, and, in one case, a self-inflicted wound. The person who commits suicide does so off camera (the shot is heard but not seen), because they're succumbing to a deadly virus. A man is beaten so severely that his eye is bulged shut; he's bleeding and bruised. Characters are tortured (tied from their ankles and hung upside down). Gruesome, zombie-like creatures eat a rat, pursue anyone in their vicinity, and bite a couple of characters.
Occasional strong language includes "s--t," "son of a bitch," "bastard," "dumbass," "damn," "what the hell," "Jesus" (as an exclamation), and "oh my God!" Also, one use of the middle finger gesture.
This is a story about teamwork, friendship, and identity. The teens may not know their past, but they work together toward a better future.
Drugs / Tobacco /
In one scene, two teens are forced to drink an Absinthe-looking liquor at a club where everyone is drinking; the drink makes them woozy and uninhibited. Young characters are injected a couple of times but are told it's just a "vitamin cocktail."