The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014)

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Katniss joins the rebels of District 13 in their underground bunker and volunteers to become the face of the revolution in an attempt to counter President Snow’s propaganda.

Although it ended very abruptly, Catching Fire did whet my appetite for what was to come, which unfortunately served only to make Mockingjay Part 1 even more of a disappointment. Reminding me rather of a lot of the second Matrix film, the third instalment of The Hunger Games similarly gets rather carried away with its own formula while at the same time barely moving the plot along at all. The revolution and Capitol attack on the rebel base both happen off-screen and the action centrepiece of the film that replaces the “games” sequence of the previous films occurs in almost complete darkness. There is also nowhere near enough screen time for the supporting characters who added so much to the dynamics of Katniss’ world, and even Jennifer Lawrence seems unconvinced by some of the dubious dialogue she has to spout – mostly involving the love triangle which still completely fails to convince.

The theme of media propaganda and the manipulation of the public is an interesting addition to the overall story, but as a whole Mockingjay Part 1 falls foul of franchisitis; there is simply not enough meat to the story to justify a whole film and it comes across as nothing more than a studio milking its current cash cow.

4.5/10

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