When it comes to YA novel adaptations, there are typically two types of movie franchises. There are the the wildly successful phenomenons, like the Twilight, Hunger Games, and Harry Potter franchises, and then there are the flops that don't get a chance to conclude their series (or in some cases even warrant a second installment), such as The Mortal Instruments. But there's actually a third category, too, and it's pretty much limited to the Maze Runner franchise. Not gigantic hits, but definitely not flops either, the Maze Runner trilogy is coming to a close on its own terms with Maze Runner: The Death Cure, so learning where to watch the Maze Runner movies before the big finale hits theaters is of utmost importance.
Unfortunately, neither of the previous two films in the series are streaming anywhere for free at the moment. The first Maze Runner film, 2014's The Maze Runner, is only available to rent (or own) from online outlets like Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, YouTube, and Fandango Now. The cheapest rental, available at several of these vendors, is $2.99 for standard definition. After watching The Maze Runner, you'll likely want to check out its sequel, 2015's Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials. It's available at all of the same vendors as its predecessor, generally at the same prices.
If you'd rather buy the movies than rent them, you won't find a better deal than on Amazon. The online retailer currently offers both films for $3.99 each in HD. That's the same price they charge for a rental, so if you're going to watch them anyway, you might as well keep them forever while you're at it. If you're an Apple loyalist, iTunes is also offering a deal if you purchase both films, packaging them together as the "Maze Runner Double Feature" for $12.99 in HD.
As for the new film, The Death Cure, the movie is set to premiere on Jan. 26, 2018, but it had a difficult time making it to theaters. The film was originally slated to debut nearly a year ago on Feb. 17, 2017, but had to be postponed after star Dylan O'Brien — who plays the franchise's protagonist, Thomas — was seriously injured on set. O'Brien sustained multiple injuries including a concussion, facial fracture, and lacerations after he was hit by a vehicle while performing a stunt on March 18, 2016, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Principal photography on the film had begun just four days prior, and the production was delayed significantly to allow O'Brien time to recover from his injuries. His recovery took several months, and it wasn't until Feb. 2017 that the movie resumed filming.
The Death Cure movie is based upon the book of the same name by James Dashner, and it is the third installment in his Maze Runner book series, and the last chronologically. However, it's not actually the final novel in the series. Since the book's release in 2011, Dashner has released two more Maze Runner novels, both of them prequels. The first is 2012's The Kill Order, which takes place 13 years before The Maze Runner and focuses on the cataclysm that leads to the dystopian world of the franchise. That story was followed by The Fever Code in 2016. Its plot takes place shortly before the events of The Maze Runner and is told from the perspective of The Gladers, revealing the training they undergo before entering the maze. There are currently no known plans to develop either of these prequels into films, but if you can't get enough of the Maze Runner franchise after watching all three movies, then these two books are definitely worth checking out.
The Maze Runner franchise will conclude its YA success story when The Death Cure hits theaters on Jan. 26, but before that happens, you really ought to seek out the series' prior two films if you haven't already.