We are at a moment in time right now when we need heroes more than ever, especially those of the strong and smart teenage girl variety.
Thankfully, that’s exactly what the new dystopian drama The Darkest Minds gifts us in the form of the resourceful and compelling lead character Ruby Daly, played by the equally impressive in real life actress Amandla Stenberg.
With its familiar mix of likeable teenage protagonists, evil government agencies and creepy supernatural undertones, The Darkest Minds will easily be able to tide you over until season three of Stranger Things kicks off on Netflix on in 2019.
The movie takes place in the not too distance future where a disease known as Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration (IAAN) has swept through the United States and killed 90 per cent of all children under the age of eighteen.
The children who are left are now mysteriously endowed with a range of powers and psychic abilities and, with adults now fearing for their own safety, are rounded up by the government and placed in internment camps.
The newly empowered teens are broken down into different factions according to the strength and range of their powers.
Greens are seen as the least dangerous with intelligence and problem solving abilities; Blues are mildly dangerous and have telekinetic abilities; Golds are somewhat dangerous and have the ability to control electricity and Reds are highly dangerous and have the ability to generate and manipulate fire.
Meanwhile, the Oranges are lethal and have the ability to enter and control the minds of others, which is the power Ruby finds herself with. At the age of 10 she is thrown into one of the camps where she remains for six years, until she makes her escape and joins up with a small band of other runaways.
The film, with its themes of strength and skill triumphing over adversity, along with exploring what it feels like to be seen as “other” was a major draw-card for 19 year old Amandla. The talented actress who is quickly becoming the new go to girl for Hollywood flicks and who already has an impressive legion of fans who follow her for her words of wisdom, inclusivity and activism.
Amandla, who first rose to prominence as Rue in the blockbuster film The Hunger Games, said she was attracted to The Darkest Minds thanks to how the character of Ruby came across in the pages of Alexandra Bracken’s best-selling young adult novel of the same name.