Review: “Hunger Games: Catching Fire” delivers

Contributed

Jennifer Lawerance and Josh Hutcherson star in the second installment of the “Hunger Games” franchise.

Laura Wardyn, Student Writer

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“Hunger Games: Catching Fire” is the second movie from the wildly popular Suzanne Collins’s book trilogy of the “The Hunger Games.”

The movie opens with our heroine, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and her partner Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) embarking on their winner’s tour of the Districts.

Along for the ride are the eccentric Effie (Elizabeth Banks) and the drunken Haymitch (Woody Harrelson).

Katniss and Peeta must continue their love charade for their adoring public though Peeta spends most the movie making sad puppy eyes at Katniss.

Katniss is clearly suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, happy to be alive, but tortured at the high cost others paid so she could live.

The villain, President Snow, played by Donald Southerland, plays a game of cat and mouse with Katniss throughout the movie, making threats against her family and her true love, Gale (Liam Hemsworth).

President Snow sets out to crush Katniss, who has developed quite a following with the public, including his own granddaughter. Snow wants Katniss to make him believe in the “for the cameras” romance she shares with Peeta.

On the tribute tour, Katniss and Peeta are told what to say when addressing the public. They go off cue and speak from the heart, and their fans begin to show their support by making the mocking jay sound and holding up three fingers in a show of solidarity.

The atmosphere is ripe for revolution at each stop throughout the Districts.

Uber animated game show host Caesar Flickman (Stanley Tucci) is on hand to get all the juicy details of the supposed lovers’ personal lives, including their upcoming marriage, and Peeta hints that Katniss could be with child.

A new game master, Plutarch, (the creepily brilliant Philip Seymour Hoffman) is brought in to oversee the games. His job, according to President Snow, is to make Katniss lose favor with the public.

Luckily for Plutarch, it just so happens to be the 75th Hunger Games and the third Quarter Quell. Former winners will be the contestants, and sure enough, Katniss and Peeta are back in the games.

Katniss and Peeta meet their competition and quickly try to make alliances. At the start of the games, contestants are dropped off on an island, and the movie really takes off.

“Catching Fire” is directed by Frances Lawrence (“I am Legend” and “Constantine”).

The movie runs long but doesn’t feel like that way. There are loads of action, tension and special effects, and the writing is well done.

“Catching Fire” is an enjoyable movie and the ending leaves you wishing you could see the next movie immediately or at least run out and get the books.

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Review: “Hunger Games: Catching Fire” delivers