VV’s Spoiler-Free The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 Review

We saw Mockingjay Part 2 last night and we want to scream all the details with absolute elation from the rooftops. But we won’t, because it’s only Thursday and we’re not terrible people who want to spoil it all for the masses. So we’re going to give a general, spoiler-free review.

12043070_10153658258916810_107667881438186217_nReally, this is all about THE FEELS. There are a lot of them. I went to the Mockingjay Double Feature and I started to tear up during Mockingjay Part 1, which is something I didn’t even do the first time I saw it, just from the sheer momentum of what was to come. It’s the end of an era, but if it’s gotta end.. Damn, at least it went out with a bang!

We’ve read the books more than once and talked about them at length here, so like many of you, we knew what was coming. Know this: Being aware of what will happen and watching it unfold in a visual medium are two very different things. There were several situations throughout the movie in which waiting for the other shoe to drop amped up either the tension or the excitement for me– sometimes both. It’s a testament to the way Francis Lawrence and his team purposefully crafted the film to squeeze every possible emotion from the tale.

297A9B5D00000578-3117094-image-m-29_1433866860839Likewise, the action is pulse-pounding and sharp. The film deftly portrays the horror of violence and war without glorifying it, exactly as its source material sets out to do. With the details covered pretty thoroughly in Part 1, this film wastes no time jumping into the action. The pacing isn’t too breakneck, but you don’t have much downtime until the last few scenes.

More than being utterly gripping, this film is the franchise’s best tribute to Suzanne Collins’ work. The film follows the book more closely than any movie before it without losing its cinematic glow. The popular scenes and quotes that you’re waiting for are there, perhaps delivered in a way you didn’t always expect but powerful nonetheless. That’s not to say there aren’t any changes, but they were pretty minor and didn’t affect the overall viewing experience for us. We were hit hard by one scene change in particular, knowing it was due to Philip Seymour Hoffman’s untimely passing.

19291497-20776541-thumbnailThe acting has always been superb in the franchise, but I genuinely think they give their best performances to date. Liam Hemsworth transforms Gale’s broody nature into something more fierce and palpable and Jennifer Lawrence just is Katniss Everdeen, but this is especially true for Josh Hutcherson, who truly rose to the occasion and portrayed Peeta’s compromised mental state with a zinging undercurrent of desperation and earnest. Of course, the supporting cast was also wonderful as always, particularly Julianne Moore as Alma Coin and the members of Squad 451, who really got to sink their teeth into this script.

new-effie-stillWhile I ultimately loved the film and its sweet ending, we do imagine that– as is the case with most epilogues– it will become a source of debate in years to come. It’s more about your perception of the characters and their lives in the aftermath than the actual content.. aaaand that’s all we shall say about that for now.

Urgh. We love this film. We love this franchise. We are clearly biased as all hell, but if you’re here, we think you will too. If you’re a Hunger Games fan, this final movie has so much to offer you and you will not be disappointed!

We’ll Do The Crazy Spoiler Edition Soon,
The Girl With The Pearl

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2 comments

  1. I saw it last night with my high school class. We loved it. While the movie isn’t perfect there were so many memorable moments that were translated to the screen. In my mind, the ending scenes in Victors Village and epilogue were sheer genius. Kudos to FLaw and the cast. We can’t thank you enough for this gift of bringing our beloved books to the big screen.

  2. I definitely felt that the movie delivered, to me it was actually distracting at times how true it was to the books. Nevertheless, the big moments really hit me, and as it was mentioned, knowing what was coming only upped the tension. Of which there was a lot. It was TENSE.

    And yeah, I don’t think the criticism about the epilogue should be as big as it’s probably gonna be, and I’m already hating the Harry Potter comparisons on that one particular front, because it’s not the same. Mockingjay needs the closure. It needs that tiny hopeful note at the end. It was one of my favorite messages of the books, that things can always get better, no matter how bad it gets, and even if the bad things never really go away.

    I do think that the movie suffers from the split in the sense that this is a story that wouldn’t work without the preparation. It’s pure pay-off. All the other movies can be watched without the others, but MJ 2 probably wouldn’t work that way. But then again, it doesn’t have to, and this way we were given a lot of meat to chew on.

    Honestly, the 2 hours flew by when I watched this movie. And now I really want to do a whole movie marathon of the series. I’ll definitely have one when the DVD is out.

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