The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
A friend of mine requested me to do the review on this film, so here I am doing it. This entry in the hunger games franchise, is a good one and in many ways felt like a good film, which I couldn’t enjoy, that is a reason I will share with all of you and many of you who have read the books and didn’t enjoy the final entry are on par with me. It is so hard to actually like a film in which you know how it will end. Yes, I have read all the three books in the franchise and I dislike the idea that they are splitting the final book (which is as big as each of the previous two entries) into two parts. These complaints should be kept aside for another blog entry. Now moving on to the review.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is the second installment in the The Hunger Games franchise.The film is about Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark embarking on their victory tour on account of celebrating their victory in The Hunger Games (pretty much, a game where you are sent into an arena and fight unto death until there is one victor, or two in the previous film’s case), where Katniss is unable to recover from the previous film’s events and is trying to cope up with her so called “celebrity life”. Things are going on as they have to (for the films first half by the way) until the president of the Capitol Mr.Snow announces that on the third quarter quell, the participants who won the previous hunger games (don’t forget this the 75th hunger games we are talking about) will be chosen to participate and Katniss, who is the only female victor in her district, realizes that she will have to participate.
Now, let’s get to the basics of the review
What didn’t work ?
- Nearly 2/3rd of the film takes place in the victory tour and the preparations for the 75th hunger games, so you are in it for at least a rough hour to 90 minutes. I know many will disagree with me on this part, but although it is true to the book in those sequences, it doesn’t really matter because it is a film, and for it to be a good one, it has to be engaging, which I felt it slightly lacked in doing so.
- When the film enters in the arena, we do not see much bloodshed as much as we saw in the first film, which added a huge sense of fear to the situation and this film really doesn’t give me that.
- Now for this complaint, even if there is a huge attack either on the comment section or anywhere else (except physically), I really don’t mind, so here it is, THE LOVE TRIANGLE, between Peeta (Josh Hutcherson), Gale (Liam Hemsworth) and Katniess (Jennifer Lawrence), who do their roles well I should say, that romance exists for the entire film, which I dare say was not nice to watch (I dislike romance on a major scale at times).
- The hunger, the dehydration,etc. I was never able to notice that in the films. The books captured these topics quite well. The hunger is not really captured (seriously, the actors look very well fed) and when they are thirsty, you can see their lips are watery (as far as dehydration goes, I would presume your lips are dry, which isn’t). PLEASE, get some good makeup for those scenes, hopefully they would do that in the next film.
- This is a complaint that won’t affect my rating, but something I had to question. Why is Peeta the character who doesn’t get to have ANY bad ass scenes, or some good fights, nothing, he is literally saved by Katniss or Finnick every time, he is a character that should be given some more seriousness, he is only there for the emotional scenes, many a times
What worked ?
- The performances by the all-star cast, which includes Jennifer Lawrence’s near flawless portrayal of the protagonist Katniss Everdeen. Woody Harrelson’s convincing performance as the drunken mentor Haymitch Abernathy. Liam Hemsworth as well as Josh Hutcherson do a good job, even though I hated the love triangle. The newcomers who deserve recognition is definitely Sam Calflin’s performance as Finnick Odair. Donald Sutherland’s villainous performance as President Snow was cold and good as hell.
- Unlike the first film, this film showcases the cruelty of the Capitol in a more global scale. They show true sides of many characters you hate, which makes them better villains and ends with a good cliffhanger for the audiences who loved this film.
- The film was directed by Francis Lawrence, who took the chair from Gary Ross, who directed the first film and thankfully the awful shaky cam that all of us hated in the first film is not there in this one. It is a well directed film, despite the rather risky decision to change the director. He is proving to be a good decision.
- The picturing of the Capitol is exactly what I hoped for, a similar praise from my side on the previous film. I like with what they did with the look of the capitol (although everyone are dressed like second rate lady gaga’s-it was a good joke when I first heard it), it is a good picturing of a city that looks good but is infested with bad people.
- The idea of taking Katniss as a symbol of a mocking jay in the film was well captured as well just as it was done in the books.
On the whole, if you liked the first film and didn’t read the books, watch it, it will be a good film for you, and those who knew where the story was going (like me), wouldn’t really be excited with this film at all, I wanted to love this franchise just as much as everyone else is doing right now but sadly I can’t. Not with how the third part ended. Don’t get me wrong, this is a good film, I wasn’t able to enjoy it and the book should be given the blame for that. Either way, your in for some nice time if you would like to have one and the plot has a good solid ground that can prove to be a better stand out for next year’s Mockingjay-Part 1. All I can do now is hope that they will take the story of the third book and squeeze a better climax out of it and moreover a better thoughtfulness in capturing it’s themes. I had mixed after watching this movie and I am going with……………………3/5 stars for Catching Fire. For what I can say to the makers of the two part finale “May the odds be ever in you favour”.
Please tell me how my review is and should take down any valid points to argue my opinion of this film if there are any.
Until the next blog.