It's time for the last Hunger Games part, its finale part: THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2. Did I wait for this film? Oh, yes, I waited very much, and I actually had some expectations. Like the first three parts, this movie based on the trilogy of the American author Suzanne Collins. The engaging story of a utopian world where the cruelty flourishes but full of true friendship and self-sacrifice has captivated millions of spectators around the world to film screens.
So, let's watch the fourth and last film directed again by filmmaker Francis Lawrence. He noisily ended one of the most exciting movie projects of recent years. The director invites all the movie and book lovers to meet with all loved personages for the last time and see the grand finale where the forces of good and evil finally fight for the future of the world and the freedom of society.
Did the ending turn out to be so grand, and did the idea to cut one movie into two was successful? Let's talk.
Explosive, mostly true to the text, complex and chock full of action, "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2" should more than satisfy the franchise's many fans, - Tom Long, Detroit News
The Short Story of The Movie
The Panem rebels are finally ready to attack the Capitol. Katniss Everdeen, the face of the uprising, must stay in the rear and keep up the spirits of revolutionaries. But the girl has other plans. She wants to kill President Snow with her own hands, who has brought so much grief to her and her friends.
So, the symbol of the Revolution - Fire girl Katniss Everdeen along with her companions decisively march to the Capitol for a single goal. With the help of closest friends, Gale (Liam Hemsworth), Finch (Sam Claflin), and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson), and risking her life, Katniss is ready for most difficult part of her life mission. She wants to kill President Snow, who became an evil manifestation, and who wants to get rid of Katniss and destroy all her followers.
Presidential forces meet at the Capitol, and a large rebel army is approaching from the other side. However, Katniss has a completely different plan to conquer victory over Snow and his helpers without risking the lives of soldiers. Finally, the end of the revolution is close, and a fateful battle starts.
Again we have the arena where personages have to fight to the death. Just now, the entire Capitol filled with deadly traps becomes the battlefield. There will be explosions, burning rays, and fights with monsters in underground tunnels. In terms of entertainment, the second part of “Mockingjay” definitely overshadows the first part. Yes, and the emotional tension was there too. The culmination was very strong, although in the first part it was clear what was going on.
THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 - Photo credit: images-free.net
The Content of The Movie
When a long-awaited first part of the Mockingjay appeared on the cinema screens, I joyfully watched this movie, because the first two parts were practically perfect. However, I did not feel such a great disappointment for a long time that I experienced watching the first part. The large army of the franchise's fans shared the same opinion as well as film professionals who reviewed extremely cold that movie.
But, as we all know well, last book's division into two films usually means one - the authors all the grand scenes left for the last film. Such happened in The Twilight Saga. The same was with Harry Potter, so my frustration was not very painful. Finally, we got the last film that, by its quality, is far ahead of the first part.
We also know that when it comes to the finale of the story, we usually expect it will be epic, gigantic, and just so bright that we can say WOW after leaving the cinema. Unfortunately, this was not the case. The film was reminiscent of the previously existing part, which boring storyline made me close my eyes a few times thinking what happened with the majestic finale?
Hollywood film THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 - Photo credit: vox.com
Here, most scenes produced the same effect as in the first part of Mockingjay. The difference is that there are some strong action scenes, which keep the tension well and prevent to move your sight from the screen. It is thanks to the director who managed to squeeze at least several high-quality episodes of the new film.
In my opinion, good scenes: a great escape from the sea of black resin, and still a very good scene with the monsters attacking Katniss and her companions underground. Looking at those monsters, I immediately remembered my adolescent and the video game Doom 3. Whoever played it will really understand what I am talking about here.
Not banal and many times heard dialogues or a politicizing are the biggest disappointment in the review of this film, but the battle for Capitol.
I really did not expect such a bad vision. I think the creators tried to show everything in an abstract way to save money, but this is not an excuse. Even in The Twilight Saga's last movie, the fight between the vampires seemed cooler, and it's really hard for me to admit it as I just disliked the whole franchise.
Scene of the movie THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 - Photo credit: goingtothemovies.wordpress.com
The characters in the films do not evolve, as we saw in the first parts when each character was able to surprise and unexpectedly show himself. Katniss looks the same as in all the films. She is powerful and at the same time fragile and kind, but also tries to resist the system.
Peeta personage revealed best in the film - indeed, the most interesting hero in this film, who is able at least somewhat surprised by both his choices and emotional change. At the end of the film, President Snow also reveals himself, but Haymitch, Gale, Plutarch or President Alma got stuck somewhere in the roles of earlier parts and did not attempt to move from the place.
The film also includes drama, which the director is trying to impose so that more sensitive viewers can squeeze out a few hot tears. Of course, I am talking about the death of some heroes. However, they are so abstract and pointless that they are not convincing me. In the book, they are described much more reserved. I'll admit, I love to get teary in movie reviews, but not this time.
In the beginning, people met the screenplay by Suzanne Collins enthusiastically, because it was somewhat counterbalanced by this terrible Twilight psychosis. But soon these films became pioneers of the new Hollywood films fashion. The language, of course, goes about the sub-genre of young adult films. It has sprouted in the past year with a kind of weed in the field. Everything is simple, understandable and very profitable. It is so profitable that studios in the latest films of the series now even split it into two parts.
The main problem of both the first part and this part of THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY came from dividing the movie into two parts. Both parts simply have too little action. Very often I got the feeling that the films look stretched artificially. Obviously, the Mockingjay would look better as one film with a length of a couple of hours. Of course, twice as shorter films mean twice less profit, so we have what we have.
Now we have enough tedious result. It's very funny, because THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY should be exciting, intriguing, full of drama finale of the franchise. However, the truth is that we do not find any of these elements in the film. It's hard to understand how the film's creators achieved such a result.
Peeta and Katniss in the Hollywood film THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 - Video credit: p3.no
Panem is approaching the final point of a civil war, revolution, and the main character of the film determines personally to kill the dictator, but the film has a minimal emotional strain. Filmmakers played very safely. They did not want to insult or refuse anyone. The film should have been for everyone. The movie achieved this goal. The film is tolerable, but it does not attract.
There is a war, a revolution in the Panem, but we absolutely do not see it. We are constantly hearing that insurgents are somewhere fighting with the powers of the Capitol, that there are battles and dead people, but we never see it. All this is somewhere far away, not experienced and not understood. Instead of the tragedy and heroism of the battles, we have to watch an absolutely pointless and non-decisive mission of Katniss and her team.
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The Technical Side of The movie
For the first time, Hunger Games movie appears in 3D space, which is, of course, a smart move that brought developers billions of dollars in revenue all over the world. But we do not talk about money. The 3D effect is really good and is able to create a gloomy tone of the narration. The deeper image of the movie, due to the three-dimensional space, involves even more to the visible world of Katniss. Also, the effects of the movie, which are definitely a lot, look better than the avalanche of special effects in the past parts. The only resin stream scene looks very effective and expensive.
As in the earlier series, much attention is paid to the work of the camera, which again performed by Jo Willems. Due to the excellent angles and certain maneuvers, the film at least for a moment creates a small miracle in action scenes. We see extremely appealing and vivid imagery starting with mimics of heroes and panoramic images which decorate the post-apocalyptic world.
Jennifer Lawrence in THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 - Photo credit: businesses.com.au
The music, written by James Newton Howard, leaves a good impression though not too memorable. But the atmosphere of the film is definitely suitable. Worst of all, it's not enough just musical compositions. It is missing what was in the previous movie. I am talking about such song as a The Hanging Tree by Jennifer Lawrence. This would give the epic impression to the film.
The film editing and sound editing work are of high quality, so it makes no sense to discuss what looks well.
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The Collective Work of The Actors
The actors' team is also known: the main actress Jennifer Lawrence, whose role in this epic film has become a powerful discovery, Donald Sutherland, Woody Harrelson, Jeffrey Wright, Josh Hutcherson, Jena Malone, Julianne Moore, Stanley Tucci, Elizabeth Banks, and others.
I do not want to talk too much about the actors and their performance since almost everyone played the same roles as in the past, so there's no progress. Well, at least quality has not been getting worse.
Peeta, played by Josh Hutcherson, looks pretty good. In this part, he is playing the best, and his character reveals himself the most expressive. Also, legendary Donald Sutherland is surprising. His performed president Snow finally shows his true face.
Other actors like Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Liam Hemsworth, Jeffrey Wright, Julianne Moore, and Stanley Tucci are not bad. However, the most annoying was a lack of respect for Philip Seymour Hoffman. His character is very irresponsible shown at the end of the film, although the studio promised that using the latest technology would be able to complete the actor's latest scenes. You will see yourself how cheaply the creators of the movie bid farewell for the Oscar winner.
THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 - Photo credit: gettyimages.com
Jennifer Lawrence is the most earning young actress, and movie producers simply catch her. Indeed, Jennifer is not only a very talented, brave, but an incredibly beautiful girl. In particular, we notice her appearance changes in the last few years, when from a simple, little-known actress she became a genuine movies' queen.
I think it will be pretty bizarre when the movie is finally out and we’ve finished this press tour and everything is officially done. I think that’s going to be a pretty weird feeling, just on a personal level. These movies have been my life for so many years. -Jennifer Lawrence
It's done. We may say that Jennifer Lawrence even said the same thing after finishing TTHE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2. Sometimes it happens when the actor works on a single project for so long - in the eyes of the audience he even identifies with the character he played. It looks such could happen to Jennifer Lawrence. She probably had to run away from such an epithet after The Hunger Games franchise. She might never be able to escape completely from Katniss name, especially if you did fit so perfectly to the role as Jennifer Lawrence.
Performance of Jennifer Lawrence is great again. She is capable of staying strong, but showing a variety of emotions in the right places - anger, disappointment, fear, joy. But it was clear that she has grown from this franchise already, and on the other hand, she has worked with the material that she has been given.
Jennifer Lawrence - Photo credit: imdb.com
The Strong Protagonist Role
At the end of the franchise, some words about the main protagonist - brave young girl Katniss Everdeen.
Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), named a fire girl, has fought for her life. She has not been able to withstand violence and death, and she finally realized that a new, more fierce struggle is inevitable. It will be a deadly battle not because of her own survival but because of the entire Panemos nation, and this fight will surpass all the Hunger Games series that have been held so far.
Katniss - the main Mockingjay, the symbol of the revolution, the defender of the disadvantaged, and the enemy of evil. She has her own opinion, her own goal, and she would never turn from her intended path.
We are clearly shown that war is blood and death, it cripples people and disfigures the souls of the representatives of both sides. With the help of properly selected words, we can prove any meanness, show enemies as real beasts. The main thing that distinguishes Katniss from her surroundings is an ability to see opponents as humans.
Katniss Everdeen - Jennifer Lawrence - Photo credit: dailymotion.com
Of course, in the book, Katniss was a very skinny girl dying of hunger. And she a little outwardly does not correspond to the on-screen image. But the character, the rebellious spirit, and the inner strength, which is enough for millions, was passed on by the actress very authentically. This is the perfect Mockingjay. There is no such second one.
On the Final note
Summing up the film and the last chord of The Hunger Games franchise, I can say that I was hoping for a different finale. It was a bit dim and boring image, worth watching in the cinema just because of the last scenes that became our farewell to the heroes of the first films. And although the last scene is too sweet and too bright, similar to which never shown in any of Hunger Games' series, we could smile looking at this lovely image and say big thanks to the franchise.
The message that always resonated and that I think is pretty strong is about standing up for what you believe in, and how one person has the ability to affect something. One person can stand up and get behind a cause or what they believe in, and then fight for it. I think those are pretty strong messages that I hope the fans take away, and I think they have. I think that’s why they’ve connected with it, in a way. It gave them a sense of empowerment. And the consequence of war. - Josh Hutcherson
THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – Part 2 movie is not so majestic finale of fantasy franchise as we could expect. Only the high-quality technical side, which includes a good soundtrack, perfect operator's work, high-quality special effects, and meaningful use of 3D space, rescues this film. However, even these highlights do not hide that it is a fairly dim and not memorable story.
In fact, this movie is definitely not as bad as it might seem from this review. Basically, there is nothing insulting to do with the "Mockingjay" or the entire franchise. It is a well-directed, performed, and featured piece. The fact is that this series could have been better, but people who worked on it simply were afraid to take risks, played safely, avoiding or saying something wrong. So, we got not fulfilled promises of a majestic finale.
The end of The Hunger Games franchise - Photo credit: youtube.com
Books are always better than movies. But if the film already exists, it must be great by itself, and not as an addition to something.
Special thanks to the wonderful Susan Collins, who presented the world with such an amazing trilogy, a base for great The Hunger Games franchise.
My rating: 7.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 70% ( of 100)
Critics average: 66/100
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