The very popular Hunger Games franchise has come to its close with the release of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2. The follow-up to last year’sMockingjay – Part 1 turned lots of viewers off with a slow, drawn out story and little action. Thankfully, Part 2 brought back the action that is the core of the franchise.
For anyone who has read the books, Part 2 is an excellent visualization of the events that take place in Mockingjay. The text of the book is quite confusing at times and does not give enough detail on the destructive “games” in the Capitol. The film highlights the action scenes perfectly while using dialogue to explain the craziness of the situations. If the book did not make sense to you, the film is the way to go. This is the best part of the film because seeing everything makes the book redeemable.
The war scenes have spectacular CGI. The CGI helped to enhance the different situations that Katniss and crew were stuck in, which can be seen in the trailers. The film relies heavily on CGI to create the pods that President Snow uses to attack the rebels. This was one of the parts of the book that was harder to visualize. The CGI artists did a great job of bringing these to life to show the real peril of Katniss’ situation.
Another good decision in Part 2 was to keep the consistency of the other films. The same patterns and formulas were used to construct the style of Part 2. The filmmakers kept up with the story they were telling by changing little details of the book to make for a better film. For instance, characters that appeared in the books, but not the films so far do not magically make an appearance. A few of these minor changes actually enhanced the final chapter of the franchise.
The story is also continuous, as Part 2 picks up where Part 1 left off. It is crucial to watch or re-watch Part 1 before going to see Part 2. These films were meant to be seen back-to-back.
However, the book should not have been split into two films. The problem in making two films is there is no natural split in the book. There are not two stories being told, nor is the book long enough to justify two films. This led to both films being less impactful and not showing the full emotional arc of the book.
Part 1 was not very good, because it had to drag out boring dialogue to make a full-length film. One three-hour film would have been much more enjoyable than sitting through two films.
The other major issue with Part 2 is the lack of emotion. There were a few scenes where the emotion ran high and you could feel the characters’ pain. The rest of the film does not follow suit.
The biggest emotional lack is from Katniss. The book has Katniss going on a major emotional journey throughout the events of the war against the Capitol. The film unfortunately does not show the same emotion. Katniss is seen emotionless for most of the film and does not show heightened emotion in the biggest scenes where you would expect some sort of reaction from here. This was such a key part of the book that does not translate to the film. It was a terrible mistake that almost ruins the film.
On the other hand, do not give Katniss too much grief about her emotional state. She is still a 17-year-old who has been through much more than most face in an entire lifetime. She still has every right to be non-committal to the fight and not know whether to be with Gale or Peeta. People always forget that Katniss is a teenager, so even though the emotion was lacking, it is understandable to some extent.
Part 2 ends the franchise on a high note by showing the true perils of the political war. Rumor has it that Lionsgate is looking into make more Hunger Games films. Even though Mockingjay – Part 1 and Part 2 were not as impressive as they could have been, making more films would be a winning idea. If Part 2 is truly the end, then at least they made it right.