A series of film reviews and opinion pieces from a film student and all round movie lover! Happy reading!
Directed By: Francis Lawrence
Produced By: Nina Jacobson, John Kilik
Written By: Peter Craig & Danny Strong (screenplay), Suzanne Collins (novel)
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth
Running Time: 137 Minutes
The concluding chapter of any saga should be enormous, riveting and unparalleled by its predecessors; that’s just how it’s supposed to work. With everything conceivable about the unnecessarily money-hungry decision to split the final instalment in half already being stated, there is no need to address the starkly blank, overstretched and clambering finale that is Mockingjay – Part 2, there are a few other factors at play that render it a disappointment..
In the film that has undoubtedly set the record for spending the longest time in the wings before being released, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), one of the most unlikeable leading heroes in young-adult dystopian cinema returns to helm a do-or-die revolt against the tyrannical President Snow (Donald Sutherland) once and for all.
The moment we were all so eagerly anticipating was scheduled to arrive in H.G.Part 3(b), however it regrettably falls in a heap of exhaustion brought onto itself by the collective four-plus-hour runtime of both parts.
A film where the action is designed to pick up, the thrills to amass and the tension to skyrocket, a peppering of said qualities are presented, most of which are used to drive the promising trailer and not the film itself.
There has always been an aesthetic about The Hunger Games series that appeared slightly confusing. Futuristic with a Dickensian flair, the world building was certainly something unique. Mockingjay – Part 2 certainly attempts to venture back to the roots of the saga, all the while juggling the never before seen discoveries from deep within the Capitol’s compounds. Excitement can be found in gunfire; a feature that dominates the action within the film but ultimately serves as a reminder of how illogical it is to have a bow and arrow as your weapon of choice.
The infiltration and related action sequences are handled moderately well, yet some scenes say well past their welcome and feel shoehorned in. Albeit plodding and overstretched, a strong positive to take from the film is the constant sense of threat and danger for the protagonists.
Tentatively navigating through the abandoned blocks of The Capitol, certain inevitable tropes are manipulated to extend the tension and anxiety as the group attempt to escape the trap-ridden streets.
Concluding in a barely passable fashion, Mockingjay – Part 2 is an example of how to push your luck too far. Overlong and littered with lulls, the concluding chapter leaves an underwhelming, bitter taste in the mouth of audiences who were promised an action-packed finale.
It’s hard to look for excuses to defend the film; although many have said the final book is the weakest of the trilogy, the lack in quality should not apply to the filmic adaptation.
Certain pacing inconsistencies proved detrimental to the film, however sporadic action with a clever sense of awareness to extract the full potential of each scene salvaged some credibility. There are however, some particular character choices that seem curious and unjustified that result in a predictable Deus ex Machina time and time again.
Although it is to be expected with such a film, it contradicts the awareness of shaping genre tropes demonstrated previously with the more horrific scenes.
Lastly, with the lure of a startling new red suit being nothing more than a red herring, Part 2 can simply be summed up as a year-long tease designed to take our money…