Saturday, 28 November 2015
'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2' Movie Review (Spoiler-Free)
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.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the 76th Hunger Games.
It's hard to believe that it's been over three and a half years since the first Hunger Games movie came out. But it's even harder to believe that this franchise - this beautiful, heartbreaking, feels-inducing franchise - is done.
The Hunger Games told us the story of a girl determined to protect her sister from harm. Catching Fire introduced us to the girl determined to keep Peeta alive. Mockingjay Part 1 showed us how the things we love most can destroy us. And Mockingjay Part 2 reminds us that fire burns brighter in the dark.
This movie is pure action, from start to finish, especially since the latter half of the book is dedicated entirely to Squad 451 and their mission to take down the Capitol. Without a moment to lose, Francis Lawrence steers the story back on track and brings us what we've been longing for since the second movie ended: Katniss Everdeen, the girl on fire.
Jennifer Lawrence has some particularly difficult scenes in this one, as do Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth, and I'm glad to say that I didn't see them as anything but their characters for even a second. Even Liam, who's never been my favourite anything, surprised me towards the end.
Some of my favourite quotes from the book have been translated on screen, word-for-word. A lot of scenes are exactly the way I pictured them while reading the series years ago. A few that come to mind include Peeta and Katniss' talk during their mission, the Star Squad fighting the muttation lizards, and (of course) that lovely, lovely epilogue.
James Newton Howard's music weaves in and out of scenes, almost as though it's sewing the entire movie together. I recognised that haunting melody from Catching Fire, the intense score from Part 1, and that romantic tune from the very first Games. His music is probably fifty percent the reason why my tears just wouldn't stop.
Mockingjay Part 2 is easily the most emotionally scarring movie of the lot, as it should be. After all, there are too many deaths, too many betrayals, and too few happy moments... I distinctly remember myself sobbing my heart out during three pivotal scenes, and wiping my eyes every now and then.
Then again, I am a self-professed fandom crier, so don't believe me until you see it for yourself.
On a scale of 1 to Dobby's death, this movie is probably a Dumbledore in terms of frequency and intensity of tears.
I saw this one in 3D - because why would you ever want to watch a movie the regular way? - but in spite of the tremendous amount of action, there wasn't any particular moment when I thought, "Damn, that's some sweet 3D." I actually sort of forgot about the three-dimensional aspect until I had to take off those smudged, scratched, fingerprinted glasses (thanks, PVR).
I'm going to go with 4.5 stars out of 5 for this one.
Mockingjay Part 2 will likely keep you on the edge of your seat, smash your heart into a billion pieces, and then sew them all together with that perfect book epilogue. Movie fans, you're gonna love it. Book lovers, you'll adore it.
Check out the fantastic trailer below, and don't forget to come back from the theatre for my Spoiler Discussion, where I'll talk about my favourite and not-so-favourite scenes, that surprising kiss towards the end, my opinion about the whole 'bomb' fiasco (this isn't a spoiler: it's a movie about war, of course there are bombs involved!) and the one scene that I wish had been a part of the movie.
This franchise was all I'd ever wanted. Real or not real?