the fresh films reviews

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The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)

Preceded by: The Hunger Games (2012)
Succeeded by: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 (2014)

Francis Lawrence
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
146 minutes
Nina Jacobson
Jon Kilik
Screenwriter (based on the novel by Suzanne Collins):
Simon Beaufoy
Michael deBruyn

Cast includes:

Katniss Everdeen Jennifer Lawrence
Peeta Mellark Josh Hutcherson
Gale Hawthorne Liam Hemsworth
Haymitch Abernathy Woody Harrelson
Effie Trinket Elizabeth Banks
Cinna Lenny Kravitz
Plutarch Heavensbee Philip Seymour Hoffman
Beetee Latier Jeffrey Wright
Caesar Flickerman Stanley Tucci
President Snow Donald Sutherland
Claudius Templesmith Toby Jones
Johanna Mason Jena Malone
Wiress Amanda Plummer



This film spends one hour dwelling over content which must belong to another movie, because it surely makes no sense within the realm of this one during its flimsy and largely plotless preface. I'm playing stupid here; I know well that the filmmakers expect us to have the story from The Hunger Games, the first installment in this now four-legged trilogy (!), fresh in mind, but I'm not buying into that premise. If a film isn't able to work on its own, in addition to within the trilogy as a whole, then I consider it a failure. And Catching Fire is one half complete failure, filled with vapid scenes of contrived drama that haven't been accounted for or anchored in any way. The hammy musical score is probably supposed to create some sort of backdrop for us, but it only serves to accentuate the emptiness of these segments. Then, after the script has effectively stripped our Katniss of every privilege she had gained after her win in the first film (very much like they did to Paul Kersey in Death Wish II or Rocky Balboa in Rocky II) the film gets into its own as another season of The Hunger Games begin and the action gets going. This, of course, is the premise were Suzanne Collins' originality comes into work, and even if we've seen it before, there are enough new ideas and even a fair deal of tension to elevate the film from its initial dullness. Needless to say, everything then suddenly stops in mid-action, in preparation for the next installment. It's almost like having sex, only without the nice foreplay and the sweet climax. Enjoy!

Copyright 8.10.2014 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang