The Hunger Games Catching Fire Review
The Hunger Games Catching Fire begins as Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence ) has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson). Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a "Victor's Tour" of the districts. Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow (Donald Sutherland ) prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) – a competition that could change Panem forever!
Was it good?
While you don’t need to have seen the first film to watch the sequel it certainly helps because most of the key characters have returned and you gain a sense of familiarity as a result. As sequels go they have managed to pull it off because I was thinking (from the clips that I had seen) that this was going to be a mere rehash of the first outing.
However while there is a Hunger Games once more it’s not really in the same mould as there is far more depth, action and team work this time (with a nice twist to the plot which sets everything up nicely for the third film).
But it’s the reasons behind the games (and why Katniss/Peeta are back in it) that play out beforehand and this also allows you to get a glimpse of the struggle that Katniss and her District 12 community has to suffer under the hands of the sinister President Snow (played by Donald Sutherland who does a fantastic job).
This is quite heart-fetching and the film manages to capture the struggle that they face quite nicely. Even the Hunger Games has a different feel because the 75th Anniversary games have brought back past winners.
However this means they are the cream of the crop (so a lot more dangerous) and yet they know they are going to die so some have more empathy and are quite vocal in their disapproval of being included in the games once more!
Mind you at times the film does drag in places as the running time is 2 hours and 26 minutes long, but I have to admit it still feels far less drawn out than the first outing as the Hunger Games coverage is a lot more compact and the action is kept constant so you don’t get a sense of Deja-vu.
The key actors are also more settled in their roles and this shows, plus I still love the way the film was shot with a Blade Runner/Running Man feel.
You can still catch The Hunger Games Catching Fire at the cinema, but if you miss out, the flick is certainly worth buying/renting when it comes out on DVD/Blu-ray and I for one are certainly looking forward to the next outing!