The Hunger Games Catching Fire Review

The Hunger Games Catching Fire picks up where part 1 left off. Katniss is apparently suffering from PTSD at the beginning of the movie. She tries to shoot a bird with a arrow but it turns into a person and she freaks out. I found it strange that it never happened again during the rest of the movie though. I call that weak writing at it’s best. Katniss, and Peeta are trying to move on with their lives because of everything that’s happened but they can’t really do that because their lives has become a public attraction all over the world. They’re forced to “love” each other for an audience but no one is buying it. The Hunger Games Catching Fire is directed well. Every moment had the right amount of tension and when the movie would seem to get too slow then an action sequence would happen. I would say this movie is a definite step up from the original in almost every way.

download (3)That being said it’s still quite boring to watch. I had to take frequent breaks while watching it so I wouldn’t get too bored with some of the scenes in the movie. I actually took my kids outside to play for an hour before I sat back down and finished the movie. I haven’t done that since I attempted to watch Twilight a few years ago. I liked Katniss and Peeta’s moments in the movie but I’m not a fan of love triangles so I quickly lost interest in Katniss when she was going from kissing Gale to Peeta a few scenes later. Make up your mind woman. I thought Gale was alright but he honestly only served as a distraction to get him and Katniss some alone time. I thought the actual fight scenes this time around were entertaining but every time something happened it was offset by an equally boring moment.

The coolest part of this movie was when they were running from the poisonous fog. That was awesome but I didn’t like the way that scene ended. The only two characters that I was remotely interested in were Peeta, and Katniss. Everyone else felt forced and I honestly didn’t care what happened to any of them. I think if this movie was a good 30 minutes shorter I would’ve walked away in a good mood but it’s not. It’s almost 3 hours long and sitting through the entire thing was dreadful, yet exciting at the same time. I have mixed feelings about this movie but it’s a lot more negative then positive. I liked that there was a lot more killing this time around but Katniss never seems to kill anyone when it counts. What’s the point of having a bow if you’re not going to use it to rack up a body count?

The movie tries to set up this killed or be killed atmosphere, but it fails to get it right. It’s like friendship island and honestly it kind of reminded me of Condemned. The only difference is I actually liked Condemned. Instead of the brutal Hunger Games that I was expecting it’s just more of the same that was in the first one. The movie has a better director and action sequences but in the end it felt lackluster. Not too many people actually died on screen and half of them weren’t even killed  by Katniss. The ending was extremely disappointing and was your common sequel bate that you would expect from movies trying to build hype for another sequel.

My final verdict for The Hunger Games Catching Fire is a 6/10. This is a solid sequel that’s held back by some really lackluster moments. I liked watching the build up to the actual Hunger Game event but at the same time it was dreadfully boring. The actual Hunger Games itself stepped it up with the action but it felt like friendship island instead of an actual fight to the death scenario that they tried to have for these movies.

The Verdict: 6/10

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For a completely different take on this movie you can read Cara’s review here: http://caragaleblog.wordpress.com/2013/11/25/the-hunger-games-catching-fire-a-dazzling-sequel/

And I encourage everyone to also read V’s review here: http://verbalspew.wordpress.com/2013/11/25/film-the-hunger-games-catching-fire/

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25 thoughts on “The Hunger Games Catching Fire Review”

  1. Great review; I haven’t seen this one yet but was hoping to give the franchise a chance after the first one turned out better than I had expected. After carrying the numerous scars of sitting through the Twilight movies with my wife, anything is better. 😉

    1. Everyone seems to be telling me that but I reviewed this as a movie not as a book and I think that as a movie it’s pretty weak. Thanks for visiting, and commenting :].

  2. I’m a bit of a HG fanboy, so I may be biased, but hear me out 😛
    First off, have you read the books? From the way you word things in the article, I would suppose not. Thing is, I can’t imagine how tough it would be for the writers to cram all the happenings (and more importantly, the character development that wasn’t really seen in the movie) from the book into a film format without it being any longer than it was. For movies like this, I see them as more of a companion to the book than a standalone film, you know? A lot of the issues you cited with the movie are remedied in the book, which is why I always suggest that people try to read the books before the movies, assuming it’s feasible and there’s enough time for it.

    I really liked it, thought it was much better than the first, and I’m excited for the third and fourth movies, but hey, just my opinion haha.

    1. I don’t think you can ever compare a movie to a book because 9 times out of 10 the book will win. That being said I reviewed this as a movie and not as a book and honestly I’m not interested in reading the books. I’ve seen one terrible movie and one alright movie in this series.
      Just because the book makes certain things about the movie better doesn’t change the fact that this movie had problems and was weak. So I can’t really give it points based off of it having a better book.

      1. Right, I know. I completely get what you’re saying.

        On the other hand, one movie that breaks the mold that “every book is better than the movie” is Holes. The movie basically uses the book as a script, so everything in the movie was just like in the book, down to the lines they spoke. It really brought the book to life and in doing so, made a movie that everyone can enjoy whether they’re read the book or not.

  3. Good review. It wasn’t better than the first, but it still goes to show you that this story is working up to something, and it’s very exciting to sit back and watch. While, at the same time, getting involved with the characters.

  4. Interesting point about the PTSD, you’re right it was never really addressed, other than through Katniss’ apparent trust issues. I did like this one though, improvement on the first for sure. Thanks for the shout out too!

    1. I think if the movie would have given every character that we saw a good death on the screen then it would have been much better. I did enjoy it more then the first one though and that’s saying something. Part 1 is a 3/10 for me :].
      Anytime V :]. I think your review of this movie is excellent and it’s nice to read a second opinion of it.

      1. I definitely agree; to pull off this premise in a believable way we needed more action, more good deaths, as you said. Creating these films and books for young adults of a certain age group seems to be quite restrictive when it comes to action. Even though the issues being dealt with are very adult issues, we don’t get the full scope of terror or gore that we would see if the main characters were actual adults. Don’t get me wrong, I think quite a few YA novels and films deal with some stuff excellently, but in order to rake in the big bucks writers and filmmakers have to ensure that their films aren’t rated any higher than a 12 and that they don’t piss off the parents. I think these kinds of films suffer as a result.

        As for a few other comments here about the books, while I do agree that in general they are better, they weren’t spectacular, they didn’t blow me away. The first one was interesting, the second had a little more enjoyable action, but the third was awful.

      2. Thanks for the honesty :]. The way people made the books sound was like it was the next big Empire Strikes Back. You’re spot on about this movie. Since it caters to a younger crowd there isn’t much violence but the story comes across as telling this dark story but nothing really dark ever happens in the movie.
        If you’re telling a dark story then you’re going to need to have more of what I mentioned in the review. You can’t tell a dark story and have the movie rated for anyone over 12. Honestly though I think i’m done with this franchise. I doubt part 3 is going to go in that direction.

      1. I would go crazy if I had to see this again. My wife wouldn’t even sit down and watch it with me because she hated the first one so much. It actually put her to sleep. Only Zero Dark Thirty had that affect on us before the first Hunger Games movie.

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