Happy Friday MMT Fam! Well, at long last I am writing my final thoughts on The Hunger Games. This is a bittersweet moment – as I’m sure those of you who have followed along, while I excitedly anticipated each movie since the first, can well imagine. It all started with my old college friend, Denise, joining me on my first MS Walk and, upon discovering that I had not seen the original, beautifully summarizing it for me – especially the ill-fated friendship of Katniss and Rue. I was hooked by her narration and made a point to rent and watch the movie as soon as I could. Several months later, I was one of many press/journalists/bloggers at The Hunger Games: Catching Fire screening – eager to find out what was going to happen next (yes, I’ve intentionally refrained from reading the novels until the film franchise was completed).
And now, with the exception of a couple of spoilers I learned within the last year, I and other film fans who hadn’t read the novels know the story in its completion with this final installment – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2. We finally get to see what becomes of Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and her fellow warriors in their quest to free Panem from the tyranny of the capital and President Snow (Donald Sutherland). There is reunion and celebration early on in the film – before Katniss sets out with her team in what could best be described as a suicide mission to kill President Snow.
Now you know I try not to do spoilers – and I certainly wouldn’t do to you what someone did to me very recently by spoiling the death of a primary character that I love – but I will say be prepared. This part two shows Katniss and her team in full-blown war, literally, so expect that some of your faves may or may not make it.
So this is atypical, but I’ll start with what I didn’t like about this final installment. Although I mostly enjoyed the story, I felt that it was a bit rushed at parts. I’m told by my sister Tomeka, whose read the novels and been my informant when needed, that the novel wasn’t as brief with the death of one major character as in the film. Won’t share who, but I’ll say I had a major issue with the brevity of this character’s death and the actions after – oh, and if you’re a softy be prepared.
(Slight spoiler) I also questioned what happened to one of the minor characters – who unfortunately met his end in an underground scene by a means that wasn’t well explained in the film. It has something to do with light and I’ll leave it there! If you read the books, this most likely isn’t an issue, but I needed some things explained after I left the theater.
I believe, since the last two films were shot back-to-back, it would not have appeared so rushed if parts one and two were one movie. Or maybe more of the novel could have been added to part 2 to make some scenes a bit more coherent. Oh, and personally I could have used a bit more screen time with Evan Ross (Messalla) – who said like two words – and Jeffrey Wright (Beetee), but it wasn’t pertinent to the central story needed so I guess I can’t fuss much 😉
I’ve loved this cast of characters, and will especially miss the chemistry between Jennifer Lawrence’s Katniss and Josh Hutcherson’s Peeta – and oh I how love to hate Donald Sutherland’s President Snow, which he so brilliantly portrays in the films. In my part one review I gave isolated props to Woody Harrelson (Haymitch) and Elizabeth Banks (Effie), but in all honesty I’ve enjoyed most of the actors in this franchise – especially the animated ones like the aforementioned and Stanley Tucci as television host Caesar Flickerman and Sam Caflin as tribute/rebel Finnick Odair.
And I actually met and interviewed Elden Henson, who plays the lovable cameraman/rebel Pollux in Mockingjay, on his press tour in Philly. You can read the interview, including what advice he says director Francis Lawrence shared that prepared him for role, at my examiner site here.
In short MMT Fam, I believe this film is great to see in theaters, but you definitely want to adhere to that PG-13 rating where the little ones are concerned because it is the most violent of the four movies. I would also recommend anyone who hasn’t seen the other films, catch up! This one isn’t as easy to follow as say, Catching Fire, if you don’t know any of the story.
Alright, y’all know the drill! Leave a thought or two in the comments when you see it! I love to hear what you guys think.
Until next thought, Thomasena