Movie Review: ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

I’m avoiding spoilers of today’s 50th anniversary episode of “Doctor Who” like the plague since I was at a family event and unable to catch it live. That being said, I figured that I would write-up my little review for ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ which I had the opportunity to see Friday evening.

Full disclosure: I have not yet read the books nor do I plan on reading the books anytime soon. For me, it’s either read the book or see the movie. I end up disappointed if I attempt to engage in both mediums.

In short, I thought the film was fantastic – my favorite film of the year thus far, which is saying a lot considering that just a few weeks ago, ‘Thor: The Dark World’ held the spot of my favorite film of 2013.

hunger_games_catching_fire_reddish_posterAlright. The IMDB synopsis says,

Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark become targets of the Capitol after their victory in the 74th Hunger Games sparks a rebellion in the Districts of Panem.

Very vague and spoiler free, right? Well, you guys know how I am about spoilers, so we will just go with that description and keep on trucking.

The costumes were fabulous, even better than the first film, in my opinion. I’m always impressed by the dedication and creativity that the film’s costume designers must have.

The acting: I felt that Finnick Odair (played by Sam Claflin) and Johanna Mason (played by Jena Malone) completely stole the scenes that they were in. Throughout the entire film, I found myself on the edge of my seat – apprehensive and nervous, a sign that I was truly invested in the film. I think a lot of care was put forth by the casting department to chose actors, and not necessarily well-known actors, that would fit the various roles.

One particular detail of the film stuck with me. I had heard rumors that parts of a scene had been filmed at the gorgeously futuristic Marriott Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia – the very hotel I had stayed in during both of my times at DragonCon. I was stunned when I actually recognized the hotel on-screen.

The only negative that I have about the film was how abruptly it ended. The third installment, ‘Mockingjay’ is going to be released in two parts: the first in late 2014, the second in late 2015. I really hate waiting and I hate cliffhangers. Even more than that, I hate it when they split a film into two parts. While I understand that it helps to develop the plot so that everything isn’t rushed or so that you won’t have to sit in a theater for hours upon hours, to me, it really just seems like an attempt to grab as much money as possible.

All in all though, this film is a definite buy!

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