Twelve months after winning the 74th Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen and her partner Peeta Mellark must go on what is known as the Victor's Tour, wherein they visit all the districts, but before leaving, Katniss is visited by President Snow who fears that Katniss defied him a year ago during the games when she chose to die with Peeta. With both Katniss and Peeta declared the winners, it is fueling a possible uprising. He tells Katniss that while on tour she better try to make sure that she puts out the flames or else everyone she cares about will be in danger.Written by
Peeta opens an oyster, finds a pearl, and gives it to Katniss. The inside of the oyster shell is very white, but the pearl is dark gray. Pearl-producing mollusks create pearls that are the same color as the inside of the shell. Oysters with white interiors produce only white pearls. See more »
The film's title doesn't appear until the start of the closing credits. As such, this is the only Hunger Games movie where the title of the movie does not appear at the beginning of the film. See more »
Blu-ray Disc versions of the film feature the IMAX scenes in a taller aspect ratio, thus staying more true to the original theatrical exhibition, similar to what was done with the Blu-ray releases for the Christopher Nolan Batman movies. See more »
Written and Performed by Of Monsters and Men
Courtesy of Republic Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises See more »
Eight out of ten stars!
I must say, I was worried about this one. Catching Fire is my favorite book of the trilogy, but cinematically it makes absolutely no sense. The Hunger Games reads like a screenplay--Catching Fire is a meandery epic full of worldbuilding and exposition for a war that won't even begin until Mockingjay. So I was pleasantly surprised to find that this installment of the hit franchise, directed by industry rookie Francis Lawrence, was maybe even more engaging than its predecessor.
Visually, it is a feat. The attention to detail is remarkable. Lawrence, along with screenwriters Michael Hardt and Suzanne Collins herself, manages to weave in all of the necessary set up to the upcoming war against The Capitol without it feeling tedious or heavy-handed. The new additions to the cast, most notably Philip Seymor Hoffman's Plutarch Heavensbee and Sam Claflin's Finnick O'Dair, are excellent, and the dialogue is much less wooden than, forgive me, the dialogue in the books sometimes is. Moreover, it is impressive that even with so many new people and so many moving parts, the central thread of Rebellion shines through.
Of course, with so much plot, so much to set up, one can hardly blame Catching Fire for falling short in the emotional department--as is, it clocks in at 2 hours and 26 minutes--but I did find myself wanting some steamier Peeta/Katniss action. I was disappointed by Lawrence's apparent disregard for the relationship between Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence, no relation) and Peeta (the incomparable Josh Hutcherson). To me, Catching Fire is about Peeta. It's the Peeta show.
Here's the thing: Katniss is supposed to be conflicted, not indifferent about Peeta. In the paper version, the reader, and by extension Katniss herself, feels truly torn between Gale and Peeta. She can't help but slowly fall in love with Peeta, who is so charming and funny and relentlessly Good. In this iteration, Katniss and Peeta have little to no chemistry, and Peeta only speaks when it is necessary to move the plot forward. Gale, on the other hand, is 6'4 and literally a Hemsworth. That he is a Hemsworth is no one's fault, I guess, but maybe Peeta should have been allowed to say some of the cute stuff he says in the books.
The "adults" in the cast--Woody Harrelson's Haymitch and Donald Sutherland's President Snow have much meatier roles than they do in the books. To their credit, they are fantastic. But I can't help but wonder how much more potent this movie could have been if Lawrence had trusted his young stars a bit more with the emotional heavy lifting.
Though it fell a bit short of exceptional, Catching Fire is by no means a Sophomore Slump, and I look forward to watching Mockingjay Part 1 on the big screen when it comes out!
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