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So here it is at last: 'Mockingjay Part 2' is about to open worldwide
and Katniss Everdeen's epic, tragic journey finally comes to an end.
The good news: the film is much better than what many "professional"
critics give it credit for. But if you're among those who didn't much
care for the last film and its politically charged human drama and grim
tone, you might want to prepare yourself. While the gut-wrenching
conclusion to the Hunger Games saga does bring the action back
(although of a far grittier kind than what we saw in the first two
films), its tone and themes are a perfect continuation of 'Mockingjay:
I've never read the books, but I guess I'm in the minority among the non-book-readers, because I actually liked the third film. I liked it precisely for its not primarily action-based narrative and hard hitting portrayal of a fascist system including all its horrific oppression and propaganda tools. And while I had hoped the final instalment in the series would continue to explore the human drama the way 'Mockingjay: Part 1' did, I was not prepared how far Part 2 would exceed my expectations. The emotional impact this film has tops what came before in every conceivable way: 'Mockingjay: Part 2' is a gut punch of a film, and it may very well be the least "popcorny" popcorn film and least likely blockbuster ever to receive that label.
This is supposed to be a spoiler-free review, so I won't go into any story details, but I felt the most impressive thing - especially compared to the beginning of the saga - was how layered 'Mockingjay: Part 2' is. This is not the good-against-evil story anymore: this is a really smart study on how propaganda works and how one fascist system is about to be replaced - albeit with the best intentions - by another. Where the first two movies show how apathy turns into peaceful protest and peaceful protest gives way to open rebellion, the last two films show how that rebellion becomes more and more radical until the lines start to blur. A very wise person once said: "War makes Fascists of us all" - I believe 'Mocking Jay: Part 2' does an excellent job at getting that point across. Apart from the delightfully evil President Snow (who remains a believable character - not a caricature - thanks to Donald Sutherland's performance), there are no mere black and white characters here; instead, we get a story that - for once - hasn't been dumbed down and functions as a sincere and complex exploration of an escalating civil war that threatens to consume everyone. And unlike most YA adaptations, the film doesn't shy away for a second from showing what that means: the audience is left in no doubt about the human toll this revolution will take in the end.
Maybe the current situation in Syria made this film resonate more with me than it should have, but I was surprised at how un-Hollywood-like and really, really well this was done. With its well-drawn characters (portrayed by an outstanding ensemble of actors), credible dialog and a story that takes its time, this felt like so much more than just your usual popcorn movie. And I can't stress this enough: Jennifer Lawrence MAKES this film; the whole franchise, really. The emotional intensity she brings to Katniss feels so real; it's the kind of performance that, in this kind of film, sadly often gets overlooked, but I sincerely doubt a better Katniss could ever have been found (and I hope Lawrence wins her second Oscar for this).
So my final verdict on the film: 'Mockingjay: Part 2' is intelligent entertainment that doesn't have to rely on special effects and one mindless action scene after another. It's a fitting ending to Katniss' journey and a satisfying conclusion to the saga, but it's also a heartbreaking, emotionally exhausting experience that will stay with you long after viewing (even the champagne-fuelled premiere crowd in Berlin was eerily quiet for a short while when the credits started rolling). 8 stars out of 10.
Favorite Films: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054200841/
Lesser-known Masterpieces: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls070242495/
Favorite Low-Budget and B-movies: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054808375/
I watched the Hunger Games and Catching Fire movies before reading the
books. The story was so captivating that I had to read the books.
Mockingjay part 1 was already a slight disappointment because they
dragged out the final book into 2 parts. As such, I already didn't have
high expectations for part 2.
But even my low expectations were not met. In my opinion this is the weakest of the 4 movies in the franchise.
Firstly, the movie trailer practically summarizes the entire movie with all the major scenes.
Secondly, the pacing was all over the place. Sometimes it felt too rushed. At other times it was just too slow. At least in part 1, the pacing was much more even.
Thirdly, this is one instance where being true to the book did this movie no favors. Some storyline or dialogue changes from the book might have helped.
Fourthly and I think most importantly, I felt that the movie was not made with as much care and attention as Catching Fire or even Mockingjay part 1. To me, the editing was not done well and the actors' didn't give me the impression of full commitment.
Lastly, I think that Jennifer Lawrence has totally outgrown this role. She is a good actress with great emotional expression however I just could not emphatize with Katniss here. In my opinion, she expressed Katniss best in The Hunger Games/Catching Fire. But here I just felt like a spectator, watching from a distance. This emotional disconnect together with a poorly edited and paced finale led to disappointment!
On the plus side, the special effects sequences were OK. And, the franchise has finally come to an end.
That's one less YA franchise to deal with
How many we got left now?
Hollywood strikes again with its horrific trend of splitting single books into multiple movies, and surprise! It still doesn't work. Obviously the execs don't care, because we are forced to see two movies no matter how good they are if we want to finish spending time with these characters, but come on guys. Let's stop this please.
As for the actual movie, Mockingjay Pt. 2 did manage to improve upon its predecessor. I was generally entertained with and enjoyed the first two HG films, but MJ Pt. 1 was so slow, boring, and sloppy that it soured my taste of the whole franchise. Part 1 suffered from the usual issue with these films as it was totally focused on the set up, and part 2 was totally focused on the payoff. You can't make a well rounded film when focusing on only one of those two things, but every 2-parter will have this issue.
But the biggest problem was that these two movies added up to close to 5 hours, and still somehow managed to be riddled with confusing moments and plot holes. The first two Hunger Games films were able to create complete cohesive stories in half the time, but in double the time, Mockingjay churned out something that didn't really make any sense. Character motivations were all over the place, and plot points and lesser characters were severely underdeveloped in certain spots. By focusing too much on minor details and random establishing shots, we were deprived of substance, which should never happen when you have 5 hours to tell one damn story.
But there were a few positives of the film. There were some cool traps and set pieces devised by the game makers, and I suppose the ending was somewhat satisfying. And now that I think of it, the acting was much improved in this film, as a lot of actors seemed to be phoning it in with Part 1. It was nice to see Phillip Seymour Hoffman for one last time as well. Glad that they were able to film some of his sequences before his tragic passing.
Mockingjay Pt. 2 isn't much more worth your money than the first one, and you'd be better off waiting to see it on demand. I'd recommend watching the first one in close tandem though as it will clear up some of the fog that the 2-parter creates. That being said, it isn't the worst thing in the world, and HG remains by far the strongest of these new wave YA adaptations
As a fan of both the books and preceding movies I'm afraid to say the
finale was just, dare I say, boring?
I have never been a purist when it comes to adapting established works in film. I am generally fine with filmmakers doing what they must to get the best out of a movie, and admittedly, Hollywood gets it right more so than wrong, with Mockingjay 2, they might have been well served to depart a bit more from the source material. The decision to break the final book into 2 installments is also quite baffling, as this was more a case to somewhat milk extra frames out of a story without adding anything to it.
Without getting into spoiler territory, this film telegraphs far too many twists and has far too many endings, it sacrifices scope for quantity and quality for style.
Terrifyingly, this film may be among the five worst in 2015.
I went to see this movie more for closure than a desire to sit through another poorly written, predictable script. I never read the books and if they are anything like the movie I don't know if I will. The first movie was at least kind of interesting (though I didn't like the violence against children which unfortunately as continued throughout the entire series). I did like some of the side characters better than both the leads. The second film was okay and the third should have been the last as there was nothing in Part 2 that wasn't predicted from Part 1 and couldn't have been included. I agree this some of the critics; I didn't care who Katniss ended up with. I did care about the whole political message but again it was poorly delivered.
As the districts of Panem unite to battle the tyrannical President Snow
(Donald Sutherland) at the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer
Lawrence) prepares for her toughest mission yet. Heading to District 2
as a propagandistic member of commander Boggs' (Mahershala Ali) Squad
451, Katniss joins forces with old and new allies, including Gale
Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth), Finnick Odair (Sam Claflin), Cressida
(Natalie Dormer), Castor (Wes Chatham), and Pollux (Elden Henson).
Following behind the rebel front lines, the group must evade scattered
Peacekeeper soldiers, mine fields, and cunning Gamemakers' pods booby
traps outfitted with all manner of deviously destructive capabilities.
When Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) is thrust into her care once
again, and an unexpected tragedy forces Katniss to take command, she
must make a decision that will impact not only the lives of her friends
but also the very fate of Panem.
The film start mid-scene, which is fitting since the previous installment ended in about the same fashion. It makes no attempt to mask the fact that it's half a movie, half a story, and ultimately just a further adventure for a band of characters that shouldn't have progressed past the first theatrical episode. The shame with this franchise is that even though it kicked off the craze for teen dramas set in dystopian futures, its insistence on stretching out the plot over several pictures means that it has now become just as generic and derivative as the plethora of copycats it inspired.
The only realism to the rebellion is its longevity and its slowness. It makes sense that it takes a considerable amount of time to overthrow a corrupt regime, itself a system that has become dictatorial and oppressive over the course of decades. What doesn't make sense is the speed in which the history of "The Hunger Games" tends to repeat itself and the actions of its inhabitants as they switch allegiances or change behaviors to match a contrived plot twist. Peeta's brainwashing in the previous film spills over onto other characters as if they were also influenced by insect toxin torture.
Meanwhile, as the storyline alternates between rousing speeches, insubordinate maneuvers, and surprise attacks, Katniss retains her infuriatingly reckless routines. She's lost all of the momentum of her survivalist toughness from the actual kill-or-be-killed, gladiatorial competitions; now she only exhibits a carelessness and an unintelligence that proves she doesn't understand the importance of her role as a symbol, the severity of warfare, or the benefits of hatching a plan. Nearly every one of her endeavors begins with impulsiveness or arrogance and ends with blind luck. She never once demonstrates acumen as she treks across 75 blocks of booby-trapped metropolitan ruins; rather, she proceeds with a repetitious circle of foolhardy instincts and last-minute escapes fueled by well-timed rescuers. It also doesn't help that Katniss' attitude stays in a constant funk, as if she's a whining, remorseful, intimidated, hollow shell of a person, devoid of the will to carry on fighting. For the most part, she gave up two movies ago.
Even when the set designs show potential as battlegrounds of claustrophobic, mazy terrors, they're spoiled by traditional zombie hordes or video game-like deathtraps. The postapocalyptic terrain and its strange denizens can't muster the inventiveness necessary to put this project above the countless other features that borrowed from the success of the original. It seems that the writers ran out of steam after "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire." It also doesn't help that the long-awaited wrapping up of loose ends, the serving up of retribution to the evil culprits of a four-part series, and the witnessing of outcomes of so many characters provide little real satisfaction, continually hiding behind the idea that war is hell. A "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" styled finale (which is essentially coda after coda after coda) and the most unconvincing of love triangles further cement "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2" as something much less than a complete movie and far more disappointing than a muddled bit of juvenile science-fiction outgrowth.
- The Massie Twins
This movie was noting else but a huge disappointment. Poor acting, no suspense at all, unnecessary dialogs and empty scenes like in Bollywood's movie that do not contribute to the plot. And mentioning the plot I should say I've never seen so poorly developed plot. Even the adult movies from the 80s have better screenplay and more meaningful dialogs. And when the poor viewer is expecting at least some proper action scenes, all he gets is a 2 minutes zombie chase in the sewers. That's it. Only the well- executed digital effects and the lack of humor prevent this movie from looking like the 90s "Hot shots". This movie deserves nothing but mocking. It's total waste of time and money.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I saw the movie on Thursday night and I LOVED IT!!.I loved that it was
extremely faithful to the book and if there's anyone that love the
books as much as I did can appreciate that. I loved that the movie had
great action,all the great performances by the entire cast especially
those of Jennifer Lawrence(katniss),josh Hutchinson(peeta) and woody
Harrelson(Haymitch).I also loved the places they picked for the capital
and district 13.
I actually thought the pacing was necessary because it gave the same impact like it does in the books. One criticism I will say is the ending they should have added that it took 10 to 15 years for peeta to convince katniss to have kids.
All in all I thought it was an epic conclusion to a fantastic book and movie series.
DEFIANTLY A MUST SEE!!! 10/10
Mokcingjay part 2 has a fantastic, brutal and honest look at the
affects and harshness of war, coated and enriched with a deep and
thoughtful exploration of the series' dark and gritty themes. It pushes
the 12A certificate it owns to the max and uses it to its advantage.
The film's action is spectacular. Exciting, and scorchingly intense, they further emphasise the brutality of war. As usual, the special effects are handled well and the film is shot in a swift manner.
The central performances are stellar, with Jennifer Lawrence shining once again both as an actress and as Katniss. Returning cast do an excellent job, Elizabeth Banks, Woody Harrelson, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Jena Malone, Philip Seymour Hoffman and the rest of the cast.
The cinematography is great. The film is well filmed, colour graded and is given a slicker and darker aesthetic.
The script is a bit skeletal, with some of the dialogue being more functional than empowering, but overall the cast really make good use of their material.
The third act is shocking and surprising, elevating this film to new heights.
Overall, fantastic work from Francis Lawrence and all his team; this film is well acted, well filmed, well paced, intense and refined with its dark and gritty drama / social commentary.
Goodbye Katniss and crew, it's been a fantastic journey.
War movies have always been a favourite genre for me, and in Mockingjay
we get war in all it's horror and heroism all tied into a comprehensive
and intelligent bundle that is carried effortlessly by Jennifer
Lawrence. The direction keeps us focused on Lawrence, she is in 95% at
least of the scenes and she dominates. Her portrayal of Katniss as a
damaged, fragile and very young girl who is also the main prop of a
rebellion against horrific oppression is spellbinding.
The fact that the script makes no concessions to the action junkie is IMO at least, only to be commended. The rest of the cast seem to have been inspired by her formidable work. Everybody has raised their game to match her, I can not think of a weak link in the rest of the cast's. performances. Liam Hemsworth at last make Gale real. There are too many really to list here. Stand outs for were Josh Hutcherson's Peeta,. Elizabeth Banks Effie, Philip Seymour Hoffman's Plutarch and of course Donald Sutherland's Corialanus Snow. A great story needs a great villain and his Snow is both fascinating and repellent.
And on a final closing note, this film makes the eternal whining of the. so-called Battle Royale 2: Requiem 'fans' look more pathetic than ever and leaves you scratching your head wondering what film they saw.
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