(Does contain mild spoilers!)
The rotten apple of the bunch.
Picking up almost immediately from the last scenes of Mockingjay: Part 1, Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) is rescued from the Capitol, though brainwashed, as proved after attempting to murder Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence). Meanwhile, Gale is wasting no time in trying to win Katniss back. The fight continues, though Katniss has something different in mind – to seek revenge and kill President Snow. The question is, will it all go to plan? After an interesting journey in Mockingjay: Part 1, which focused heavily on the psychological aspects of the game, Mockingjay: Part 2, does quite the opposite. Though The Hunger Games target audience age demographic was slightly younger than my own, I have nonetheless enjoyed this saga, which contrasts greatly against my dislike for the teen dystopia genre.
The main issue here was, Mockingjay: Part 2 is big, but not big enough, sadly over-hyped to say the least. The cinematography played a huge part, conveying the heated feel of the revolution, contrasting with the intimate feel of Katniss’s personal journey. However, quite a few mistakes were made on the director’s behalf, one being the glossing over of characters’ deaths. Primrose’s death was a matter of 2 seconds, soon to be zooming in on Katniss, having no significance at all. Nor was the death of Finnick Odair, which wasn’t dwelled on in the slightest, the characters merely walked on. The film moved at a tedious pace, proving there wasn’t enough substance to successfully make two instalments from the one book, making it all the more monotonous. The first explosion was shocking in terms of CGI, and resembled something of a cheap iMovie effect. Arguably the most violent instalment of the franchise, yet not the most exciting, containing very little humour. But the film isn’t a total drag, the fight scenes still prove to be energetic and tense.
In terms of acting, Julianne Moore (Coin) and Natalie Dormer (Cressida) had to grapple with unfavourable hairstyles, but nonetheless perform to a satisfactory level, but this wasn’t Julianne Moore’s finest hour. Josh Hutcherson (Peeta) gave a convincing performance, almost matching to that of Jennifer Lawrence, who was pre-eminent. Likewise, Donald Sutherland excels in portraying the tyrannical President Snow. ‘Tigress’ didn’t excel in her field, but nonetheless, she certainly represents the extravagance of the Capitol. Stanley Tucci (Caesar Flickerman), who played a solid, recurring role previously, was only featured for a rushed two minutes, and to make it any more downgrading for him, on a grainy television screen.
And as for the ending, cliché upon cliché ruins what could have been a satisfactory ending, convoluted in the most unnecessary fashion. If anything, Jennifer Lawrence is the only element that carries the film, stopping it from falling completely on its face, similar to that of Julianne Moore in the finale…minus the arrow. Though, the ‘hardcore’ Hunger Games fans will take to it more, presumably. The franchise certainly doesn’t soar as high as Harry Potter, but there is no doubt that this saga, primarily high-quality films, will have a lasting impact on popular film culture.