At The Movies

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part One

Year – 2014       Time – 123 Minutes        In theatres now

Directed by – Francis Lawrence

Screenplay by – Danny Strong and Peter Craig

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Based on the book by – Suzanne Collins

Starring – Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jeffrey Wright, Stanley Tucci, Natalie Dormer, Sam Claflin and Donald Sutherland.

Mockingjay picks up where Catching Fire left off. Katniss (Lawrence) wakes up in District 13 to find out that Peeta (Hutcherson) is being held captive by President Snow (Sutherland) at the Capital city.

District 13 is under the leadership of President Coin (Moore). President Coin is unsure of Katniss’ ability of being the face of the rebellion. Plutarch (Hoffman) insists that Katniss is the “one”. Plutarch puts together a propaganda video with the help of tech wizard and Hunger Games winner, Beetee (Wright) and district one transplant Cressida (Dorman). Cressida and her film crew fled the Capital City to join the rebellion. She desperately wants Snow and his control over Panam defeated.

Katniss is really struggling with being the face of the rebellion and all of the responsibility that comes with it. She has never been comfortable around people and now she is surrounded by people watching her every move and waiting for her to show them what to do. She is also struggling with Peeta being a captive. President Snow is using Peeta in a series of video interviews by Caesar Flickerman (Tucci). Peeta is being coached into convincing Katniss the rebellion is wrong and hurting people.

Haymitch (Harrelson) and Effie (Banks) seem to be the only friends who understand Katniss. Gale (Hemsworth) no longer understands her because he is very caught up in the rebellion.

This film spends most of its time setting up the next movie, Mockingjay Part Two. I found it long even though it is the shortest of the three films. I miss the chemistry between Lawrence and Hutcherson because this movie is not really about them. This story is about District 13 trying to get the other districts to follow their lead and also President Snow’s obsession with crushing Katniss.

There are some suspenseful moments like the last few minutes but all in all it is pretty slow moving.

The cast is terrific and I liked the new characters introduced but the film is lacking the excitement, romance, adventure and sure storytelling of the other two movies. That being said, I still would recommend seeing it. I would follow Katniss Everdeen to the ends of Panam; she is such a fantastic character!

I give this film 3 out of 5 Kernels and I rate it PG13.

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Suzanne Kingman-Mckay

Can’t decide what to watch? I have over 400 reviews of various different genres. There is something for everyone!
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