first part of what was adapted as the final and epic conclusion, was again
something I dawdled seeing. As is my usual standard, I picked up a DVD on its
release week and these many months
later, on the eve of “part 2” and its debut, I finally sat down to watch this one.
Lawrence). She is shattered and broken by what she saw and did. Leaving Peeta
behind has been her undoing. This is why when she recoups in District 13, she
desperately awaits news of Peeta’s survival. No news comes. What does come is
13’s President Coin (Julianne Moore), wanting to recruit Katniss as their
Mockingjay, the face of their revolution.
in the surviving districts that incites revolution in all their hearts. Joining
their fight is the equally broken Finnick (Sam Claflin) and a handful of 13’s
residents including newcomer Cressida (Natalie Dormer), who is hired to produce
Katniss’ propo’s, and then there is Effie (Elizabeth Banks). Returning, she
follows Katniss around to again ensure she looks the part. Everything is
going according to plan until a news broadcast reveals that Peeta Mellark (Josh
Hutcherson) is in fact, still alive and he’s being used as President Snow
(Donald Sutherland) and the Capital’s weapon against Katniss.
enjoy a love-hate relationship with this series. The premise of this is so
frightening and to see the act of young people fighting just for a hierarchy’s
personal pleasure never sat well with me. After reading one book and seeing
three movies, my opinion that the films are better than the books remains unchanegd. The story
here is no different. It’s freaking fantastic and could even be the best in the
franchise to date (at this writing, “part two” is still a few hours away so
I’ve not had a chance to see it).
perfection. There is fantabulous costuming and no matter my personal opinion,
the layers to this world-building are intricate and complex. That’s to say
nothing of the cast which is sensational. I really liked all of the new faces
and the actors who played them including Cressida and Coin. The leading men
continue to impress though I was most delighted to feel more about Gale in this film; he’d been too insignificant for
me in the prior outings. Here, he’s a living, breathing character who I
genuinely felt a roller-coaster of emotions for, not the least of which was his
unrequited love. Then there is Josh as Peeta, who gives a startling performance
despite his limited screen time.
talented Jennifer Lawrence. The girl again proves she can take origin material
and make this character something altogether different. Her Katniss summons so
much more than Book Katniss ever did.
The movies have gone through different directors and writers, but through it
all, they somehow each compliment their counterparts, strengthening as they move
along. The filmmaking in this is unusually effective. Overlapping many scenes
are voiceovers and sharp cuts to the tense, action scenes unfolding yet they’re
all used to the great advantage of “Story,” or in other words, the editing and
filming of this is, plainly put, dazzling.
to say circles back to one thing: fans of this franchise are missing out if
you’re putting off seeing these films. I had nearly reached the halfway mark in
the book when watching this (which is approximately what this film does span)
and was innately impressed with this both as a film and an adaptation.
Everything was molded and shaped into this, and because of that, I think these
deserve any and all adoration they receive as versions of a universally loved
young adult series. All that said and I’ve really said nothing everyone else
hasn’t said a million times prior. But know this: Mockingjay is an excellent book-to-film adaptation and if you’re
not into reading, it’s a great production on its own. Only be warned, if you’re
not a theater goer, don’t watch this one yet. That ending is sure to not only
make you tear up, but startle you back to reality when you realize
the end is as shocking as it is quiet.
reasons for the PG13 rating; there
are multiple casualties as districts make a stand and are murdered by Capitol