Rapid Review: The Hunger Games – Catching Fire (2013)

catching fire poster

“I agree she should die but in the right way. At the right time. Katniss Everdeen is a symbol. We don’t have to destroy her, just her image.”
– Plutarch Heavensbee

SYNOPSIS: Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark become targets of the Capitol after their victory in the 74th Hunger Games sparks a rebellion in the Districts of Panem. – via IMDB

catching firecatching fire chariot

GRADE 8.5So I strolled myself and my themed nails into this film, incredibly excited as well as wary over what it would hold. My biggest worry came in with Sam Claflin to play the ever detectable Finnick Odair. Was he up for it? Just oh my and wow yes. This movie worked on so many levels and completely thrilled me. It was also very loyal to the book. There were no boring moments that had me begging for the time to just hustle up already, and I was awed by the manner in which Francis Lawrence pulled this together. Philip Seymour Hoffman was fantastic in his role as Plutarch Heavensbee. Elizabeth Banks was finally given a lot more screen time, and built up Effie’s character a lot. Woody Harrelson is ever entertaining as the pisscat Haymitch, and played the drunken fool so well. The anger that burns within Gale is portrayed so well by Liam Hemsworth, and his whipping had me at the edge of my seat, even though I was expecting it. The relationship between the victors was shown and it captures the essence of their anger and betrayal at having to be sent back into their nightmares. Jennifer Lawrence remains a phenomenal cast for Katniss Everdeen, and the movies really manage to take away that totally annoying part of her character that the books brought in at the best of times. The arena was simply fantastic, and all the actors cast to play the victors and tributes from the various districts were so well done, and completely captured everything. Jena Malone is definitely someone to highlight from the lot. Sam Claflin gave Finnick the epic upper hand and I am pleased to say that he got me to believe in his abilities. He isn’t a bad actor; I was just so worried that he would not have the energy Finnick does. I am pleased to say that my worries were unfounded, Finnick remains my favourite character, and Claflin does him justice. Catching Fire far outstrips its predecessor, and is well worth the watch! I was so impressed with this movie, and if they can conclude the final two movies in this strain, this will be one of those absolutely great film series! (Can I just hem hem here at the Potter debacle…). Tom, let’s sound like gushing schoolgirls!

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37 thoughts on “Rapid Review: The Hunger Games – Catching Fire (2013)

  1. Tom says:

    Great review Zoe!!! Yeah I’m glad to see we can both be schoolgirls together!!! Wow that really looks weird written down. But I’m stoked you found this as thorougly-made and compelling as I did. Not going to lie though, a little surprised at the 8.5. I mean, I’m no snob — that’s a great score. Perhaps I was a bit TOO generous giving it the full pie, but oh man. The number of things that this film entertained me with was off the charts. One of my faves of the entire year. Schoolgirls.

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    • Zoë says:

      🙂 Thanks Tom! Damn straight, someone I can gush about, and I am not that time! 😛 Is the 8.5 too low/too high?! I thought that was very fair! Ah, it was so great! There was so much that thrilled me and had me at the edge of my seat and I was never bored. SO great, and such good performances, too! I agree on a great one for the year! Gushing, listen to us!

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  2. Beer Movie says:

    Nice review. I am with you on this one. Caught it last night and really enjoyed it. I didn’t mind the first film, but this one was a massive improvement on it I thought. One of the best big budget blockbusters of the year for me.

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  3. CMrok93 says:

    Good review Zoe. Now that the story is moving along at a fine pace, I can finally look forward to what’s coming next down the pike. Hopefully, it continues to get better and better.

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    • Zoë says:

      Thanks! It worked for me. I like a movie that is paced, this movie’s second half was built on a good, solid foundation in the first half in my opinion 🙂 However, I can see how it would get a bit much for some.

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    • Zoë says:

      Thanks Ruth! It was really well worth the watch, and I hope you get to it as soon as possible. I thought on the score for almost two days, and it still seems to be the right one for it! Cannot WAIT to hear what you think about it!

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  4. Tim The Film Guy says:

    Good Review 😀

    It was a great film, really liked it a lot. Thought it was a fantastic improvement over the first, and I cannot wait for the next one, especially after that ending 😀

    Oh and thanks for the comment, i’ll respond soon 😀

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  5. table9mutant says:

    Glad you liked this. 🙂 Yep – so much better than the Harry Potter films so far! And, wow – what a loyal adaptation. I was very happy with this one. The final two movies will be… Interesting… I’d have to say it’s the one time I maybe want them to NOT be totally loyal to the book as I didn’t like the final one very much.

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