Cary, NC — The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 is the highly-anticipated conclusion to the giant franchise starring Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen, the face of a rebellion fighting the good fight against the evil President Snow. Thankfully, the film sticks the landing with a thrilling and somber end to one of the best franchises in recent memory.
Great Science Fiction Filled With Ideas
One of the things I love about the Hunger Games movies is their willingness to play with ideas. Like any good science fiction property, the setting and story use the fantasy of fiction to say something entirely non-fiction. It’s truly impressive that a story originally intended for young adults has so much to say about propaganda, politics and violence.
Credit must be given to original author Suzanne Collins for subverting expectations left and right. Even the love triangle, popular in so many young adult stories like this, is set up through the course of these movies only to be brutally undercut by the end of this film.
Thrilling and Intense
The first film was directed by Gary Ross (Seabiscuit, Pleasandtville). While he did a great job establishing this world and introducing the characters, Francis Lawrence has been with the franchise ever since. He’s done wonderfully with taking these films and their audience seriously, allowing the stakes to steadily grow with each installment. Here, there is one sequence in particular that is filled with so much tension that it could have been plucked right out of a horror movie. Really great stuff.
Jennifer Lawrence is Amazing
But the real heart of these movies is the one and only Jennifer Lawrence.
Her star has risen to incredible heights over the last few years thanks to these movies and a handful of Oscar nominations (and one win). Like her director, Lawrence takes the material seriously and is never anything but believable. There is one moment where her character completely breaks down, and it’s surprising how emotional it is, but it makes complete sense given how much Katniss has been through.
It’s a great performance and a great conclusion for a compelling character.
Overall, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 is an emotionally satisfying end to the series.
These films were filled with ideas and questions that have no easy answers, and, wisely, they don’t try to answer them. How often is it that a giant franchise such as this forces its audience to think and have a conversation afterwards about its themes and characters? Not often enough I say, and all the more reason to see it on the big screen.