CLINT’S THOUGHTS: The whole franchise was kind of pretentious. They should have stopped after the last 2 movies. At least this was better than the last one. My rating is a bit weird because I feel I didn’t like the movie as much as how good it was, because I was pissed off about how pretentious it was, how mediocre the 3rd movie was, and how the Hunger Games movies no longer have any hunger games in them. This was basically just a war movie, and a wrap-up of everything they built-up. It was still cool, but…. In a 4 movie franchise, it kind of sucks if you blow your load after the first 2 movies, which is what happened with Hunger Games.
I’d say the first 2 Hunger Games movies were an awesome mix of survival battles (i.e. Battle Royale), dystopian politics (becoming more and more relevant each year), sci-fi gimmickery (Battle Royale did not have this technology), and post-modern management of public perception (i.e. Wag The Dog). But the 3rd movie seemed to mostly be whining about public perception and dystopian politics — where was the cool battles, the acutal Hunger Games? It was almost like a big fashion show. The 4th movie is similarly missing aspects of the first 2, except in the opposite direction: It just feels like a war movie with a lot of random battles (that aren’t hunger games), with unnecessary new plot elements introduced to stretch it out into yet another movie. When I read the IMDB plot summary, it read better than what I experienced while watching it, so maybe I drank a bit too much and that made me enjoy the movie less than I could have. But I was kind of disappointed.
CAROLYN’S THOUGHTS: I barely even remember 3, and we had to reread the plot as a refresher. This movie didn’t redeem the franchise much, but it was better than the last one. These movies were more entertaining when they were about the actual Hunger Games.
Based on the book by Suzanne Collins.Starring:
Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique in X-Men: First Class movies, American Hustle) as Katniss Everdeen.
Josh Hutcherson (Journey To The Center Of The Earth, Zathura: A Space Adventure, Bridge To Terabithia, Howl’s Moving Castle, American Splendor, 1 ep of Justice League) as Peeta Mellark.
Liam Hemsworth (Triangle, The Expendables 2) as Gale Hawthorne, Katniss’ boyfriend.
Woody Harrelson as Haymitch Abernathy.
Donald Sutherland as President Snow.
Philip Seymour Hoffman (The Hunger Games 2-3, The Invention Of Lying, The Boat That Rocked aka Pirate Radio, The Big Lebowski, Synecdoche New York, Magnolia, Along Came Polly, Boogie Nights, Scent Of A Woman, Twister) as Plutarch Heavensbee.
Julianne Moore (The Hunger Games 3, Don Jon, Hannibal, The Big Lebowski, Boogie Nights, Crazy Stupid Love, Magnolia, The Fugitive) as President Alma Coin.
Willow Shields as Primrose Everdeen.
Sam Claflin (Pirates Of The Caribbean 4, Snow White And The Huntsman, The Pillars Of The Earth) as Finnick Odair.
Elizabeth Banks (The Hunger Games, Miri In Zack And Miri Make A Porno, Moonbeam City, Fred Claus, The 40 Year Old Virgin, Betty Brant in the Spider-Man movies, Wet Hot American Summer, The Details, Movie 43, Pitch Perfect movies) as Effie Trinket.
Mahershala Ali (The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button) as Boggs.
Jena Malone (Sucker Punch, Howl’s Moving Castle, 1 ep of Robot Chicken) as Johanna Mason.
Jeffrey Wright (1 ep of Robot Chicken, 1 ep of Venture Bros.) as Beetee.
Music: Screeching Weasel – Get Off My Back