Review: Catching Fire

The odds are never in our favor.
Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) are back in District 12. They're still trying to cope with what happened in the area. Katniss with having killed people, Peeta with having a fake relationship with the girl he truly adores. Katniss is also confused by her feelings for her best friend Gale (Liam Hemsworth) After their Victory Tour goes south, they find out that the 75th Hunger Games have special rules: That the tributes will be reaped from the current pool of victors in each district. This means Katniss and Peeta are back in the arena, only this time it's much more dangerous.
 
 
Catching Fire was probably my favorite book of the trilogy. It introduced us to wonderful characters like Joanna, (Jena Malone) Finnick, (Sam Clafin) and Beetee (Jeffrey Wright) Who all were spot on here. (Especially Joanna. Her feistiness was awesome and I loved her little on air tirade. Clever use of "bleeping" there) The film was very close to the book as well. Plenty of things in the arena were exactly as I pictured them, and they stretched the PG-13 rating enough to include most of the violence from the novels.
 
I have to hand it to Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson. When I look at Peeta and Gale, I don't see what Katniss' huge dilemma is, Gale is obviously hotter, but whenever we see Katniss and Peeta kiss, there's a lot of chemistry there, and it makes the conflict a bit more believable. I teared up when Katniss made her tribute to Rue. Hell, I nearly teared up during Effie's (Elizabeth Banks) speeches a few times. Sure, non book readers will think the ending is a gigantic cop out. (I read all 3 books back to back so it really didn't phase me) but Catching Fire did what a proper sequel should do: raise the bar higher from the original.

 
To be perfectly honest, the only real gripe I have about the film is that they didn't explain Joanna's story behind her time in the Games. (She pretended to be weak until there were only a few left, then she viciously killed all of them) But I loved that they kept little touches in like President Snow's (Donald Sutherland, who is SUCH a creep) mouth bleeding - we'll get the story behind that in Mockingjay I'm sure, and the District 3 Tributes being strung out druggies, Mags kissing Finnick goodbye. You've got to appreciate the little things.
Recommended: Yes
 
Grade: A
 
Memorable Quote: "They can't hurt me. There's no one left that I love" - Joanna Mason (Jena Malone)
Fun Fact: This is my 700th post on this blog!

14 comments:

  1. can't wait to see this for some reason, and I wasn't even a huge fan of the book or the first movie, but there is something about this franchise that is sucking me in!!!

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    1. Definitely, I never expected to like this triology as much as I did.

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  2. Happy 700th! Hot damn... I'm closing in on 300 myself, so clearly, you're a force!

    Slightly more on topic, I might see this tonight... so I skimmed it a bit.

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  3. This definitely keeps the story moving at a pace that makes it worth sticking by, especially since it's so hard to get these kinds of tales right for everybody, not just its core audience. Good review and happy 700th, Brittani! Keep it going!

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    1. Thank you! I'm a little worried about the pacing in the next film though, I still think splitting Mockingjay is a bad idea.

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  4. I also read the books back to back (over Christmas two years ago), I can't help wondering how they will make two movies out of the third book that was the weakest of the trilogy.

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    1. I feel the same way. Mockingjay does not need two films. Especially considering nothing happens in the first half of that book.

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  5. Jena is, for me, the Best in the World and she totally proved it with this film. She just stole every scene she's in and I love all the lines she got. I hope she gets more moments in the upcoming films. She made the whole film enjoyable as well as the rest of the cast and Francis Lawrence's direction.

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    1. YES! I love Jena, always have. Even when I was a kid and I saw her in Bastard out of Carolina. That was a hell of a burden to put on a young child, and she nailed it.

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  6. Congrats on 700th post! I'll see this one when it's on DVD, Malone's character looks fun!

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  7. I was really pissed that they didn't include how HAYMITCH won the games, too… they made it seem like Katniss was the first one to discover the edges of the arena. I've read the trilogy twice, yet I really didn't remember what happened in the books, so it was refreshing – but I can see now that I didn't remember some things they left out that would've pissed me off. :D Also, not impressed by Mockingjay being split in two.

    Congrats on 700, too!

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    1. That's a really good point about Haymitch. I didn't even think of that when I was writing this, that is kind of messed up. I'm sure they cut it for time, but they could've at least pointed out that he was in the last quarter quell.

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