MMT Quick Review: ‘THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART I’

Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (photo: Lionsgate)

What’s new MMT Family?  I know some of you may be surprised I didn’t post a quick review sooner for this one, however I really wasn’t certain I was going to until this morning.  Why you ask?  First off, the film is part of a serial juggernaut, and being it’s the third installment you’re either a fan or you aren’t – so surely you don’t need me to twist your arm.  And mostly, this film was going to be huge regardless of my meager offering – it pulled in 17 million with its Thursday night opening alone. But a fellow writer reminded me that with as much excitement as I’ve shared while anticipating the film, I needed to give my thoughts about this penultimate entry in the franchise. Shout out to LeAnne Lindsay of the film and food site Tinsel & Tine – see her review in link.

Now, unlike my good friend LeAnne, I really enjoyed Mockingjay  – for reasons very similar to fellow writer and friend Sharon Abella of One World Cinema whose review can be found here (some slight spoilers, but not bad ones). If you haven’t read any of the books – like myself – by author Suzanne Collins, who also worked on this film adaptation, Mockingjay Part 1 may be the hardest of the three to simply follow.  It doesn’t have the speed of the first film, nor the grandeur of the second, and you should have familiarity of characters and plot to aid you in being engrossed – though for me I have my sister Tomeka that I rely on to answer my questions after I’ve viewed each installment! However, if you’ve enjoyed the first two films and don’t mind that the final book has been split into two parts for the big screen, Mockingjay serves as a great setup for the climax due out November 2015.

The film’s cast was dynamic and both Elizabeth Banks (Effie) and Woody Harrelson (Haymitch) give much-needed comic relief in a few scenes, as this one is the most grim of the series by far.  Jennifer Lawrence as lead character Katniss literally carries much of the film – as the audience is taken through the journey of her being shell-shocked from the Quarter Quell, rescue mission, and the subsequent district destruction to her decision to fulfill the role of Mockingjay and be the face of the Panem rebellion.

Highlights for me include the score – which has Lawrence singing a tune entitled “The Hanging Tree” that she reportedly was hesitant to do (see RadioTimes interview with director Francis Lawrence discussing here).  The scene with the district rebels singing the song while heading into an attack was haunting and I’ve literally had the tune in my head since I’ve screened – check out Jennifer Lawrence singing in below video. I was also on the edge of my seat during the film’s victor rescue mission – and I’ll just leave it there because you know how I do! 😉

Lastly, it was bittersweet to watch the late Philip Seymour Hoffman (Plutarch Heavensbee) in this film, and he is given a nice acknowledgement at the end – so heads up if you tend to get that little something stuck in the eye corner! 🙂  Oh, and another heads up for the non-book reader – pay attention to Finnick’s camera speech, particularly the info shared about President Snow.  I’m told this will be extremely handy for Mockingjay 2.

Okay family that’s my take!  Did you see the film this weekend?  What were your thoughts? What do you think about my friends’ reviews?  Let me know in the comments!

Until next thought, Thomasena

5 responses to “MMT Quick Review: ‘THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART I’

  1. Thanks so much for linking T&T’s post and for the shout out! I’m glad you did decide to post about the movie, I feel good that I got you motivated to share!

    But I didn’t pay attention to Finnick’s speech, so you and Tomeka are going to have to fill me in next November!

    • Hey LeAnne! Finnick’s speech was hard to pay attention to solely because it was juxtaposed with the victor mission, but I did note one thing in particular – but it is a juicyspoiler if anyone hasn’t read book. Tomeka said Snow is the part you really needed to focus on.

  2. Pingback: MMT Quick Review: ‘THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 2’ | Music Movies Thoughts·

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