The long wait is over as the girl on fire, Katniss Everdeen once again soars as she is plunged into the horrifying world of The Hunger Games and this time, the games are much dangerous because of the Quarter Quell. Fans of Suzanne Collins’ books will surely find that The Hunger Games: Catching Fire movie will meet the expectations and the anticipation it built since last year. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Sam Claflin and Elizabeth Banks. So without ado, check out the latest review below:
“The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Soars and Skewers On The Big Screen
Wait, what? Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around? It certainly was with 2012’s “The Hunger Games,” an acceptable but impersonal big-studio adaptation of Suzanne Collins’s hit young-adult novel. As is often the case, that first film was cautiously directed (by Gary Ross) in order to protect the hoped-for movie franchise and attendant profits.
Mission accomplished, and with the sequel, the gloves come off. “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” is a muscular, engrossing, unexpectedly bleak epic of oppression and insurrection, directed with dramatic urgency and a skilled eye by Francis Lawrence (“Constantine,” “I Am Legend”). Set in the fascist future state of Panem, the movie takes pains to show its young mass audience what living under a totalitarian dictatorship might look and feel like. But the sharpest aspects of “Catching Fire” — the parts that sting — play as an allegory for today. Very few people will take in this spectacle of a society amusing itself to death, of “reality games” and the vapid media hysteria that surrounds them, and not draw a parallel to our own televised bread and circuses. At its best, “Catching Fire” is a blockbuster that bites the culture that made it.
And all this before the actual games get started, an hour into the sequel. If you haven’t seen the first film or read the books, all you need to know is — well, a lot. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), the brooding teen huntress from District 12, won the annual killing contest of the title by threatening a suicide pact with her teammate Peeta (Josh Hutcherson), and President Snow (Donald Sutherland, quietly malevolent) is not pleased. The new film opens, as the book does, with the foxy old dictator appearing in Katniss’s living room for a threatening chat on the eve of her and Peeta’s victory tour of the districts. Convince the populace you’re in love, Snow orders, and distract them from open revolt. Fail, and Katniss’s mother (Paula Malcomson), sister (Willow Shields), and Gale (Liam Hemsworth), the man she really loves — sort of; it’s complicated — will die.
Everything about the sequel feels bigger, more charged with import.
The victory tour is the first evidence that “Catching Fire” will be more weighty and unsparing in its depiction of a militant future than “The Hunger Games.” A visit to the largely African-American District 11, home of the first film’s Rue, underscores how symbolic Katniss has already become and how dangerous it is to acknowledge that symbolism; the sequence ends with an image that searingly reaches back to photos in our own national memory banks.”
Read the rest of the review at The Boston Globe.
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