Katniss Everdeen has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark. Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a “Victor’s Tour” of the districts. Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) – a competition that could change Panem forever.
I’m going to be honest here. I don’t think the Hunger Games books are the best ever. I really liked them and the ideas behind it are brilliant, but I thought they could have been executed a lot better.
Now, the movie on the other hand managed to take to ideas of rebellion and revolution to the next level. It stayed true to the book apart from a few minor discrepancies and felt a lot more polished than the book. If you have not read the book, you may be a little confused in the movie as some things are not explained perhaps as well as they should be.
The first half of the movie is a little slow and drawn out, but the second half, which takes place in the arena more than makes up for it. It is tense and suspenseful, gritty and real. The special effects were executed well and the arena lived up to my expectations. It has its fill of twists and turns and is all out freaky.
I loved the casting for the movie. All the new characters played their roles brilliantly – Finnick, Johanna, Beetee, Wiress, Mags, Plutarch and all the other tributes. When Katniss and Peeta step into the training arena it is no longer a bunch of kids, but scary well-trained adults who are more than a little crazy. Effie’s personality really grew since the last movie and it added a lot to the film.
There were a few things that bothered me that were done a lot better in the novel. Katniss is a little too much of a damsel in distress in this movie. Sure she kills a fair amount, but gets saved a little too many times. She’s tough for goodness sakes!Then there’s the romance. The novel made a big point of saying that Katniss wasn’t attracted to Peeta or Gale, but the movie turns it into a full on love triangle. I know that’s what sells the tickets, but it began to annoy me.
Catching Fire ends exactly how I hoped it would, though the lead-up to the final line could have been better. The movie was a roller coaster of emotions and fans of the book will not be disappointed. I urge you all to go see it now!
*cue creepy Mockingjay whistle*