- Author's Saving Throw:
- Book fans criticized Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials for removing the one aspect that made the cranks completely unique from any typical zombie: their ability to speak. This is added here, including the "Rose took my nose, I suppose", a moment which was originally from the second book.
- A few fans were also miffed about Newt's iconic line "Great, we're all bloody inspired" being left out of the first film. He says it in this one, much to the fans' delight.
- One aspect of the first two films that is often complained about by fans and critics is that they focus almost entirely on Thomas, leaving little room for development for fan favorites like Newt and Minho. This film gives both, (as well as the other characters for that matter) more dynamic character arcs and memorable moments, as well as more opportunities for Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Ki Hong Lee to showcase their great acting skills.
- Moment of Awesome: Everything Lawrence does in the third act, from his Rousing Speech to the rebels, to blowing a hole in the Last City's wall, so that his group can destroy the city."Don't be scared. I may not be pretty, but we all know who the enemies are, cowering behind those walls! They have a name for people like us in there. They call us Cranks! But I say that they are the monsters. They're the ones who started this war, but tonight, we will finish it. Follow me. Follow me, and we will show them the faces of the people that they have chosen to forget! Follow me and this city is yours!"
- Awesome Music: The whole score is fantastic, but these standouts come to mind:
- "Rescue", the piece that accompanies the opening scene, is 7 minutes of pure, propulsive awesomeness.
- "Teresa's Plea" and "Visions of Thomas" are hauntingly beautiful and poignant piano pieces that are sure to tug at the heartstrings of any Thomesa fan.
- Then there's "Please Tommy, Please", "I'm Sorry", and "Goodbye" the three biggest tearjerkers on the soundtrack. The former perfectly portrays all of the emotions in that scene, from the simple but haunting minor key strings as Thomas drags a terribly sick Newt through the city, the desperate and painful sound of the fully orchestrated section as Thomas and Newt wrestle in the square, and oh, gosh, that final piano section, recalling Chuck's death in the first film... Goosebumps. "I'm Sorry" is an emotional masterpiece, and try not to cry as you listen to "Goodbye" play over Newt's letter at the end of the film.
- Complete Monster: Janson really comes into his own here. See here for details.
- Critical Dissonance: The film received mixed to negative reviews from critics and has 44% on Rotten Tomatoes, the lowest of the three films. However, fans of the series love it, praising the cast's performances and the emotional stakes, and many consider it the best in the trilogy.
- Funny Moments: The bus scene. To get away from surrounding WCKD police, Frypan uses a crane to lift a bus containing Brenda and the other imprisoned WCKD kids out of the Last City. He drops the bus onto a safe area, causing the bus to land tail-first. And when he releases the hook, the bus falls down, causing its "Out of Service" sign to suddenly light up.
- Heartwarming Moments: Most of Gally's interactions with the Gladers. When not Ax-Crazy and cured from his Griever sting, he is willing to help them save Minho stop WCKD once and for all.
- Newt and Frypan refusing to let Thomas go alone to rescue Minho, reminding us how strong a friendship has been developed since their days in the Maze.
- He Really Can Act: Both Dylan O'Brien and Thomas Brodie-Sangster manage to deliver an emotional performance as Thomas and Newt respectively during the infamous page 250. And the bonus thing is that the latter was mostly typecasted as clam/stoic characters and barely gets to do anything for two movies, despite playing one of the most beloved characters in the series. But he pours his heart and soul into this final film, delivering all of the intensity, desperation, and resignation we see in the book. Talk about a child actor growing up beautifully.
- Just Here for Godzilla: Many critics consider the plot to be the weakest element of the movie, especially since it made a couple of changes to the original story, so many audience members watch the movie for either the admittedly well-done action sequences or Newts dreaded death scene.
- Memetic Mutation:
- Panicked novel fans posted comments about the fact that due to this movie, the infamous page 250 (Thomas pulling a Mercy Kill on Newt, who has become a Crank) will be adapted. It also helps that there was foreshadowing of this moment in the second movie, where Newt as a Crank was seen by Thomas, while the latter was suffering from the effect of hallucinogenic drugs. And then the second trailer came out, ending with Newt's Famous Last Words. This only amplified up the worriedness of book fans.
- Also, jokes about Littlefinger (Aiden Gillen) still being alive, due to Game of Thrones's seventh season containing Littlefinger having his throat slit and dying. Though Janson is later killed by Cranks.
- Nightmare Fuel: Janson.
- The tunnel scene.
- Signature Scene: The aforementioned page 250, now adapted on the big screen, more painfully drawn out with an emotional soundtrack and amazing performances from Dylan O'Brien and Thomas Brodie-Sangster. See He Really Can Act above.
- Gally's survival being revealed. No one saw that coming.
YMMV / Maze Runner: The Death Cure