Thursday, November 19, 2015

MOVIE REVIEW: THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 2 (2015)

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From IMDB:

As the war of Panem escalates to the destruction of other districts by the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant leader of the rebellion, must bring together an army against President Snow, while all she holds dear hangs in the balance.

Ratings: 7.1/10 from 47,031 users Metascore: 65/100
Reviews: 211 user | 297 critic | 44 from Metacritic.com

From Rotten Tomatoes:

MOVIE INFO
The second half of Suzanne Collins' final Hunger Games book is adapted in this Lionsgate production. ~ Jeremy Wheeler, Rovi

Rating: PG-13 (for intense sequences of violence and action, and for some thematic material)
Directed By: Francis Lawrence
US Box Office: $198.5M
Runtime: 2 hr. 16 min.
Lionsgate Films - Official Site


TOMATOMETER 71%
Average Rating: 6.5/10 | Reviews Counted: 214
Fresh: 152 | Rotten: 62

Critics Consensus: With the unflinchingly grim Mockingjay Part 2, The Hunger Games comes to an exciting, poignant, and overall satisfying conclusion.

AUDIENCE SCORE 72% liked it
Average Rating: 3.8/5 | User Ratings: 173,220


OPENS ON THE 18th OF NOVEMBER AND PLAYING NOW IN A CINEMA NEAR YOU. IF IT ISN'T FIND OUT HERE.

So this man is still a thorn in Katniss's side. ©Lionsgate

So the adventures of Katniss Everdeen come to an end...

Right, so first off a little disclaimer. I am not a fan of The Hunger Games nor of the genre and truth be told I’m not even sure I’ve seen the first two or was it three films prior to this one. Also I tend to mix The Hunger Games series and the Divergent series in my head every once in a while. Not the stars or anything like that, not the main cast anyway, but the details, minor ones mostly.

Here’s what I know of this latest one off the top of my head. It’s the last one and there probably won’t be more of it unless the studio execs see so much money pouring in from it that they’ll get someone to come up with a script to continue it or make a prequel out of it. As for it being the last one though, it pretty much wraps up the whole franchise. What started with Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) being selected to represent her district in The Hunger Games then on to her surviving those games despite the powers that be represented by President Snow (Donald Sutherland) trying to kill her and the other participants, to her being the champion of the games and a symbol of the games then to her leading a rebellion and of course now trying to take down the leader of Panem. Or that’s what I’m thinking it all is. Like I said I’m vague on the details.

And this man is still around to tell her what to do. ©Lionsgate

Anyway, on to the movie. So it takes place immediately after the last one and Katniss is of course recovering. Peeta is not well in the head due to what Snow and his henchmen have done to him and Coin, Plutarch and Haymitch are preparing Katniss for the next step in the rebellion which is of course to front Katniss for the fight against Snow and the Capital City. But Katniss isn’t too keen on being the face of the rebellions propaganda machine, in fact all she wants to do is put an arrow in Snow’s chest. But she goes along with it anyway biding her time and opportunity until she can slip away and do what she really wants to do.

Katniss and Gale get assigned to a team and off they go into the war zone but instead of being at the front they stay in the back and make nice little propaganda videos but even then things aren’t all lights, camera, action. The city is riddled with traps and eventually their little walk towards Snow takes them underground and into the sewers. Somewhere along the way Peeta joins them too.

The film of course ends at the home of Snow and although Snow is eventually captured things don’t end with his demise. Suffice to say that things end with everyone living happily ever after.

Hope I didn’t give too much away but then if you’re a fan of the books and have read them all none of this should come as a surprise, right?

Meanwhile this woman here wants to be the next thorn in Katniss's side. Also she's the same shade as Snow. ©Lionsgate

Well, story wise it wasn’t too hard to follow even for me who hardly remembers watching the previous films. Most of the story, the core stuff like character development and story plots and premise have already been established by the previous films but even so for those who haven’t followed the franchise it shouldn’t be too hard to follow. As with other films in the genre or with the same storyline this too is pretty predictable for the most part but that being said it wasn’t too bad. It was still entertaining in my opinion. Then of course there’s that twist in the end which was entertaining.

The story unfolds at a goodly pace save for a few moments where it lost a little momentum. The performances given by the cast were pretty good but then they’ve been through several films understanding and refining their characters. Lawrence did a pretty good job as did Hutcherson and of course the other more experienced actors.

Notice how many arrows she has? Then try to remember how many she actually uses. Archers in movies have magic quivers with an unlimited supply of arrows. ©Lionsgate

The action was pretty good too. Unique to the franchise I guess what with the Hunger Games being nothing more than a game show trying to creatively kill young people. People say this film and the other films in the genre stole their idea from a certain Japanese film from the 90’s but I don’t remember them having an entire Metropolis rigged up to kill let alone an atrium in the middle of a bunch of high rise rigged to flood with oil.

Camera work and visual effects looked pretty good too. Loved the city. Nothing to complain about visually but nothing all that impressive either. You’ve seen similar or better in other sci-fi films.

There has to be a scene in the sewers. Why? ©Lionsgate

The only thing I probably have any issue with is the prologue, the bit at the ending which was a tad too long and only served to drag the movie on a bit. It could have been much shorter. There were slow moments in the movie but it was okay since it was sandwiched between the action but the end was a little too long for me.

Overall, I did enjoy the movie. I’m sure the fans of the franchise will for the most part find it a satisfying end to the franchise. But for those who aren’t fans then it’s still a decent action flick. It may not be great but it’s still better than some others that have been put out there. So I’m going to be giving this one a 3 out of 5 since I’m not a big fan of it. I’m sure if you’re a fan you’ll be giving it a lot more.

Check out the trailer below if you haven’t

video


The Hunger Games: Mockingjay is distributed in Malaysia by TGV Pictures which actually has been doing it since the very first Hunger Games movie, so if you’re itching to find out how Katniss winds up in the end then head on over to TGV.com.my to get your tickets.



And while you’re at a TGV cinema enjoying Mockingjay be sure to grab their Limited Edition HungerGames: Mockingjay Part 2 Double Wall Tumblers it comes filled with the soft drink of your choice and a regular popcorn for only RM19.90. Why is it limited? Well it isn’t available at all TGV Cinemas so there’s not a lot of it going around. If you want to know more just head on over to their website.



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