Fire is Catching,
and so is Mockingjay Part 1
A Commentary on Mockingjay Part 1
Review by Casey Cook
Mockingjay Part 1 is a suspense movie. And not the good Alfred Hitchcock suspense, a bad suspense/romance mixture. I’m not saying that Mockingjay was a bad movie, it wasn’t as exciting without The Games. Mockingjay was less about the action of The Games and the life or death interactions of the characters, and more about a forced love story between Katniss and Gale (since Peeta was captured) mixed with a strategical cyber warfare between the Capitol and District Thirteen.
Mockingjay Part 1 is basically a big set up for Part 2. I’m not going to ruin the movie for you, but I will tell you that there is not as much killing or action or thrills as the first two movies. As for matching to the book, the movie does a pretty good job of sticking to it. They do an incredible job of portraying the political side of warfare, which is what the first part of Mockingjay is about.
The Games are over. The districts are on the verge of revolution. And District Thirteen is the mastermind behind it all. However, the face of the revolution is reluctant to step up to the plate. Director Francis Lawrence did an amazing job of capturing Katniss’s insanity and how she tries to hold it together when she is being watched, but breaks apart when she’s alone.
Along with the directing, Jenifer Lawrence’s acting was excellent, this one was her best movies yet. She was able to portray the emotional state of Katniss. All other actors paled in comparison next the Jenifer Lawrence. I do, however, have to give props to Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket) and her acting skills as well. Effie, as always, was vibrant and motivational even without her extravagant clothes and hair styles, she was able to improvise splendidly.
Unfortunately, there was one character who did not get much screen time and that is Finnick Odair. Being the heartthrob tribute from Catching Fire, Finnick was lost and just as, if not more, mentally unstable than Katniss after hearing the bad news of his beloved Annie. Luckily, we’ll get to see more of Finnick in Part 2.
A character that we do see a lot is Gale Hawthorn who interjects himself in this love story. In Catching Fire, Katniss and Gale’s relationship works and it feels genuine. However, in Mockingjay that feeling is lost. It’s almost as if the movie is trying to make the love triangle more important than the war. Katniss and Gale’s relationship feels forced and it doesn’t fit in well with the story.
Mockingjay is a movie you must see especially if you are a superfan of the books or even if your just a fan of the movies. Next November couldn’t come fast enough because Part 2, the epic finally, is going to bring back all the excitement of the first two movies and our two star-crossed lovers will be together again. Though this wasn’t my favorite Hunger Games, it was definitely worth watching and worth the wait. If you haven’t seen it yet it’s time to go to the theater, get your snack and drink, and enjoy the movie.