'Hunger Games: Catching Fire': The Good, the Bad & the Downright Ugly

Flicks 13

Catching FireDid you see Hunger Games: Catching Fire yet? Did you did you did you? I managed to get to an early showing yesterday and even though the IMAX pricing was a whopping $14.50 (during matinee hours!) I really enjoyed it. Definitely worth the entire babysitter-plus-tickets-and-peanut-M&Ms cost, although I really need to remember to sneak in my own water because FIVE DOLLARS FOR A DASANI COME ON.

Anyway, if you've seen it and thus have no concerns about spoilers, let's talk about the many high points of Catching Fire … along with a few of the less-awesome aspects.

The Good:

Jennifer Lawrence. I can't stop raving about her lately, onscreen and off. She delivers another pitch-perfect Katniss performance, even when she's shellacked in enough eyeshadow to overload every YouTube makeup tutorial on the web. If her intensity and internal struggle is perhaps not the most subtle thing in the world (her dismayed expressions during the victory tour!), it's incredibly gratifying to watch. Her fierce-yet-vulnerable charisma makes me wonder how Twilight -- with all its bland lovelorn moping -- managed to earn a single box office dollar.

Philip Seymour Hoffman. In a movie sprinkled with flamboyantly over-the-top characters (Effie Trinket, Caesar Flickerman) and a few on-point but predictable ones (President Snow, played by Donald Sutherland's imperiously arched eyebrow), Hoffman was a wonderfully dialed-back element. Great casting.

The Arena dangers. The poisonous fog! The jabberjays! The nightmarish monkeys! I thought they did an amazing job with all of this. Particularly the monkeys. Gah, monkeys.

The costumes. All of the costuming was fantastic, but Katniss' wedding gown that morphs into a mockingbird? Damn. DAMN.


The Bad:

Okay, "bad" isn't really the right word here, but in keeping with my headline theme …

The pacing. It's a sequel and we didn't need a long intro or a tied-with-a-bow ending. Still, it sort of felt like it started and ended in the middle. Plus, when you know there's still an entire Games part of the movie to come, the hour-plus of tours, chariots, costumes, Snow-threatenings and Gale-smolderings does drag on a little bit.

Peeta. I'm sorry, I will never like Josh Hutcherson in this role. Every moment his doe-eyed face takes up the screen makes me want to swat him aside in favor of the more interesting characters.

The familiarity. Catching Fire sets things up nicely for Mockingjay, but really, it's essentially the same movie as the first, "with a twist," as Plutarch would say.


The Downright Ugly:

You REALLY need to go pee before you sit down in the theater. Seriously. Or maybe bring a Stadium Pal.

What did you think of Catching Fire?


Image via Lionsgate

hunger games, movies

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linzemae linzemae

I love josh as peeta. I cant wait to see him transform for the next movies. I wont say why or what, in case a reader hasn't read the books

Momma... MommaCady

Seriously josh is perfect.

nonmember avatar ClarissBradley

I love josh hutcherson as peeta n I hope that him n katinis gets together I like gale and everything but peeta has so much love for her it breaks my heart lol n I always bring my own snacks n drinks to the movies cuz they r expensive

Jenni... Jennishness

I really enjoy Josh Hutcherson as Peeta, I think he does a good job capturing Peeta's personality and relationship with Katniss.

nonmember avatar Kelly

I absolutely love Josh as Peeta because that is exactly how he is supposed to be. Although I do agree with the pee before the movie comment. My daughter went twice and I was trying hard to hold it. I have named it the "Try To Not Go Pee Games."

river... river_coal

I love Peeta! I think he's one of the best parts. He's the right one for Katniss even though she doesn't know it yet. I look forward to his transformation in the next movie.

nonmember avatar katie

I think The movie was great. It was definitely worth the price for the ticket and extra stuff on the side. I loved everything about the movie, I think they did a good job matching it up with the book and I do believe Peeta being played by Josh Hutcherson is awesome. He does his part great !

kckcm2 kckcm2

A-freaking-mazing period end of discussion. Love love loved it, can't even think of anything negative to say other than they are doing a bad job of setting up the location of where the third book takes place. They've only mentioned it one and I seriously hope mocking Jay opens with flash backs that movies one and two left out, so when they describe where Katniss is in mocking Jay people who haven't read the books aren't confused because it popped up out of nowhere.

Trist... TristanMitchael

I seen it yesterday for my birthday. For me it seemed to drag for almost an hour before finally getting interesting. The monkeys made me jump out of my seat though! I like Josh as Peeta, sure there might be someone better but we'll never know because Josh makes an awesome Peeta. And I made sure to use the bathroom as soon as the previews started and glad I did! LOL

MyIsl... MyIslandGirls

Love Josh as Peeta as well. I'm currently almost through the books... I'm really wondering how they will portray Peeta in "Mockingjay".. and is it for sure that they will be making that movie? Anyways... I'm super excited to see Catching Fire. I'm totally sucked into the whole Hunger Games series. I need more!!!


 

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