Friday, November 20, 2015


Jennifer Lawrence   Josh Hutcherson   Liam Hemsworth   Woody Harrelson   Donald Sutherland   Julianne Moore   Elizabeth Banks   Stanley Tucci, Philip Seymour Hoffman

          Mockingjay Part 2 is a fitting and tender ending to the Hunger Games series based on Suzanne Collins’ books.  Most of Part 2 is very dark, and we lose key people during the battle to undermine the Capitol and get rid of President Snow (Sutherland).  The rebels, led by Alma Coin (Moore) with Katniss Everdeen (Lawrence) as a figurehead, hope to establish a free state in which democracy is the rule.  Peeta (Hutcherson), whose mind got jumbled when he was captured by Snow, is angry and paranoid about Katniss, but with the support of the core group will gradually get things sorted out.
      Pursued by Snow’s troops and risking their lives avoiding pockets of embedded weapons throughout the city, Katniss and her group make their way to the Capitol to achieve their mission, forging the underground sewer system and hiding out in the Hunger Games’ former stylist Tigris’ lair for a short rest, they receive the announcement from Snow that the city is to be evacuated to the Capitol where they will receive food, clothing, and health care.  This seems like a perfect opportunity to get to the capital by disguising themselves in Tigris’ store of clothes, and they make their way in the midst of the crowds.
      Although they are still guarded and afraid, the group forges on, but sabotage and betrayals are still ahead.  Who will survive, and will they be able to accomplish their mission?
Director Francis Lawrence and screenplay writers Peter Craig and Danny Strong improved this production as compared to part 1; however, neither holds up to the exciting, creative work done with Catching Fire.  For some reason (and acknowledging that I have not read Collins’ books), Katniss is much more passive in 2 and 3 than she was in Catching Fire, where she was like a ball of fire.  I prefer the more heroic, three-dimensional version of her in the first installment.
        Lawrence is a fine actress and performs at her best here, given the script.  Hutcherson and Hemsworth, rival suitors for her affections, are also very good, and have a discussion about their rivalry, unaware that she is listening to them.  It is a sweet, heartfelt moment, and one of the only scenes where humor comes into play. 
        Brief glimpses of Harrelson, Sutherland, Moore, Banks, and Tucci are rewarding to see, artfully playing the significant characters we’ve come to know.  It was bittersweet to see the late Philip Seymour Hoffman looking as if he had just acted out his part.  How we miss him!

A fitting conclusion to a popular series of fantasy fiction.

Grade:  C By Donna R. Copeland

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