Gripping, intriguing and dazzling are words to describe the sequel to the 2012 blockbuster The Hunger Games. Catching, the middle child of a trilogy is a strong comeback from the slightly underwhelming first outgoing of the series.
‘The Girl on Fire’ Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) is back and this time is breaking all of the cinematic conventions of a female lead all over again. Lawrence gives a powerful performance, leading a strong cast of veterans such as a subtle, calculating Philip Seymour Hoffman, who plays Plutarch Heavensbee, and a scene stealing, Stanley Tucci as Caesar Flickerman. Though, Jena Malone (Sucker Punch) and Sam Claflin (Snow White & the Huntsman) hold their own as the vicious Johanna Mason and the charming Finnick Odair.
Jennifer Lawrence once again proves why she is an Oscar winner as she immerses herself into the complex character that is Katniss. Opposite from her is Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth who also give great performances. One also cannot forget the great performance of the talented singer-turned-actor Lenny Kravitz who plays the gold eye-rimmed Cinna.
Kudos must be given to writers Simon Beaufoy and Michael deBruyn who do a great job of staying close to the original narrative of the novel and bringing it to life, while also creating new moments unique to the film flawlessly. Any fan of the book series’ dream. Francis Lawrence does a great job of bringing across the urgency of this thrill ride of a sequel. The cinematography is shockingly beautiful in contrast to the ruthlessness of the plot.
If you weren’t too impressed by the first movie, this sequel definitely brings you back into the phenomena that is The Hunger Games Trilogy. This movie is what happens when the passion for the craft of filmmaking is put ahead of money-making. Bring on Mockingjay!