The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
the hunger games: catching fire | the hunger games | catching fire | based on | novel | francis lawrence | simon beaufoy | michael arndt | jennifer lawrence | josh hutcherson | liam hemsworth | action | adventure | mystery | sci-fi | sci fi | thriller | united states
Film: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Director: Francis Lawrence
Writer: Simon Beaufoy and Michael Arndt
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth
This film begins a little bit after the first one ended. Jennifer Lawrence is out hunting and she meets up with Liam Hemsworth. Their relationship is strained due to what happened in the Hunger Games. Hemsworth is clearly in love with her, but Lawrence doesn’t want to decide who she wants, because she is more worried about surviving. Josh Hutcherson is also upset with her after figuring out her feelings in the arena where faked in order to survive.
The president, played by Donald Sutherland, visits Lawrence. He tells her that her stunt has become more of a problem than she realized. There are seeds of rebellion starting. He claims that they didn’t believe her that she loved Hutcherson, but that she was intentionally going against the capital. He charges her with convincing him that they are in love or else. Sutherland also knows about the kiss shared between her and Hemsworth.
She doesn’t do very well when the district tightens up security. The new head peacekeeper is played by Patrick St. Espirt. He whips Hemsworth and Lawrence steps in. He punches and whips her as well. Her mentor from the games, played by Woody Harrelson, and Hutcherson step in to protect her and stop St. Espirt from punishing Hemsworth further. Her mother, played by Paula Malcomson, and her sister, played by Willow Shields, help to heal him.
Despite how they really feel, Hutcherson and Lawrence put on for the audience that they are still in fact in love. Elizabeth Banks and Lenny Kravitz get them ready for their interviews with Stanley Tucci. Lawrence and Hutcherson begin their tour of the other districts.
They don’t do a very good job at calming the masses down though. No one lets Hutcherson know, so he offers a month of their earnings to fallen warriors from District 11 and this ends up inciting a riot. They then go about reading from the cards given to them by Banks, but by then everyone knows it isn’t real. The districts are restless.
There is a new gameskeeper, played by Phillip Seymour Hoffman. He comes up with a plan with Sutherland how to calm the country down. Being the 75th year, they are coming up on the third quarter quell. This time, they are pulling tributes from previous winners. This means Lawrence is going back into the games. She visits Harrelson after having a breakdown and she wants to ensure that Hutcherson survives.
The plan backfires when Harrelson’s name is drawn and Hutcherson volunteers to go back in as well.
This is going to be even tougher to survive with all past winners competing. Some important people are two careers from district 1, who are back-to-back winners as well as brother and sister, played by Alan Ritchson and Stephanie Leigh Schlund. The other two careers are Meta Golding, who filed her teeth to fangs, and Bruno Gunn. There is an old woman who volunteers, played by Lynn Cohen, and the youngest winner ever, played by Sam Clafin. There is also Jena Malone, who has a bad attitude and is proud of her body. There are also two nerdy tributes, played by Amanda Plummer and Jeffrey Wright.
Lawrence once again distinguishes herself with a bow and everyone wants to be her ally. She wants to team up with Plummer, Wright and Cohen, but when she can’t, refuses to team up with anyone. She watches Kravitz get attacked as she goes to the arena. Will he survive after the stunt he pulls with her costume, making her a symbol of the revolution?
This game has its own tricks and dangers. Who will Lawrence team up with? Can she keep Hutcherson alive? Will she survive? Who can she trust?
At the time of watching this film, I was very close to finishing the book. I see that they go very well together in that the book gives you more feelings, or lack there of, and background story, while the film really gives you other angles of what is going on to fill in other parts of the story. It also hides some things to make the end even more of a surprise. I think that the story is pretty good and the title is pretty obvious to what is going on as well. The acting is solid though.
I do have to say that I still annoyed with Lawrence, even though I should take my gripe up with the writer of the novel, Suzanne Collins. Lawrence is quite selfish in wanting both of her loves, but not choosing; yet also not letting either of them go. I also feel that the film moves quicker than the book through some things and I think they leave some important aspects out in doing this.
I am adding this film to the horror film research much like the original due to having another Hunger Games, this one being even more deadly. Lawrence and Hutcherson play some of the younger characters in the games and needing to compete for their lives is a scary thing to deal with.
I would recommend this film. I personally felt this one was better than the original, even though this one does focus less on the games and more on the revolution to stop them. I thought the acting was pretty good. The story is a little obvious, but the twist at the end was nice. There is also a little less fighting in these games, but after watching the film, it makes sense why. If you like the liked the first film, I would recommend giving this one a viewing to see the story continue on. I also think that this one could be watched by itself, which is tough to do for a series of films that were planned to be made.
My Rating: 7 out of 10