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Mockingjay Part 1 & 2

Mockingjay is the third book in the Hunger Games series and frankly my least favorite one. So it made no sense (besides financial reasons) for the third book to be split to two. I had to wait for a while before watching the two movies, and I will be reviewing them as one. Each movie was a bit lengthy and it could have trimmed down a few scenes, but I thought the movies were good in a general sense.

The movie picks up days after the Quarter Quell that has Katniss and the remaining citizens of District 12 take refuge in District 13, an area that they all knew didn’t exist. The district was led by Alma Coin and has been persuading Katniss to become the face of the revolution. To add to that, Peeta has been taken by the Capitol and besides defeating President Snow, Katniss wanted to rescue him. The second part is mainly focused on the war zone, uniting fronts and trying to get to President Snow. 

This was inferior to Catching Fire; its predecessor was able to capture the essence of the book in one sitting, and prolonging this does not do wonders to the franchise. Having a two-part flick allows more actors to have more screen time as their scenes are used to prolong the parts. However, watching the two movies together can be a bit tedious, as it really could have been trimmed down into one. 

It was hard to like Katniss here, as she was weepy most of the time. Jennifer Lawrence was still very much into the role but when you’re watching four hours of weepy Katniss, you start to not pay attention to the character. Even some of her scenes were a bit unconvincing and lost. What caught my attention was Josh Hutcherson, as he really brought a different level to his character. He had a few excellent scenes, and played his role differently compared to the previous movies. Liam Hemsworth has gotten ample amount of screen time in this installment as his character is no longer pushed aside and he took advantage of it. He did have more onscreen presence and was noticeable when pinned against Lawrence and Hutcherson. Despite limited screen time, I really liked Elizabeth Banks here. Her character is still the same, but the transition and adaptation of her character was very evident, particularly through her choice of clothing. Her clothes in the previous installments were very vibrant and wild. While she kept to her style, it was quite subtle for Effy, showing a bit of growth in her character. Philip Seymour Hoffman was also great here; I liked his scenes with Julianne Moore because it showed the tension their characters had. 

Both movies did have a bit of momentum, but had anti-climactic endings. The ending of part 1 reminded me a bit on where Deathly Hallows decided to cut the film, but while that had quite an intensity, I didn’t get it from this one even if it was possibly going for the same effect. I think if I watched both movies separately I will be disappointed, but watching one after the other allows the build up to immediately carry over, resulting in a much put together film. 


Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth
Director: Francis Lawrence
Year: 2014, 2015

Comments

  1. I think I'll watch the two films together just to finish up this franchise though I'm still upset that Jena Malone's role as Johanna Mason got cut drastically for the last 2 films. Fuck that shit and fuck that overrated bitch J-Law.

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    1. I think it's best watched together but it can be so straining because a lot of scenes could have been cut. Jena Malone's not here much, she barely appears in the second part.

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  2. I wasn't a huge fan of the Mockinjay novel either and the movies were pretty underwhelming. They had their good moments, but the rest, like the book, was pointless filler.

    At least Screen Junkie's "Honest Trailer" was hilarious. Great write up!

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    1. This really should have been just one movie; nothing really happens in the book.

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  3. Nice reviews! Mockingjay Part 1 was like watching Katniss try to talk to Snow via skype on a '90s dial-up connection. lol I've been meaning to watching Mockingjay Part 2 but there's not that much momentum right now. The split to make one book into two movies can really stall a franchise and story too much.

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    1. That's true. It's also partly the reason why I just waited for the two movies to be released instead of jumping the bandwagon.

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