The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Reviews

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December 10, 2013
This is Empire Strikes Back stuff. It has that second Star Wars movie's kick of confidence.
November 24, 2013
Director Francis Lawrence's film runs nearly two-and-a-half hours but it concludes so abruptly and tantalizingly, it leaves you wanting more.
November 22, 2013
The budget is nearly twice the original, and it shows. Great work from the A-list cast, amazing set designs and costumes.
November 22, 2013
Now the violence is not merely physical, but existential. Far from having won her freedom as promised, Katniss is now imprisoned in a false public narrative-supporter of the Capitol, lover of Peeta-from which she may never escape.
November 22, 2013
Catching Fire delivers on the grim, roiling promises of the original.
November 22, 2013
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire takes the narrative and thematic liberties traditionally granted the middle chapter in a trilogy and drives the stakes up sharply.
November 22, 2013
The one truly fresh invention-and the one that matters most-is Katniss herself. With each on-screen chapter, the poor girl from District 12 continues to fulfill her destiny as an inspiration and a rebel fighter.
Top Critic
November 21, 2013
Given the strength of this installment, I'd say the box-office odds continue to be, in that Hunger Games catchphrase, "ever in its favor."
November 21, 2013
This second in the Hunger Games trilogy, directed by Francis Lawrence, has many of the virtues and somewhat fewer defects as its predecessor.
November 21, 2013
Though some of the chases and escapes are thrillingly filmed, this last section of the film feels indistinguishable from plenty of other video-game-style avoid-the-obstacle action climaxes.
November 21, 2013
The grand climax, whose elements include a long piece of wire, a lightning bolt, and an electronic force field, is an incoherent, rapid blur that will send the audience scurrying back to the book to find out what's supposed to be going on.
November 21, 2013
None of it would work -- not the action, the adventure, the political subtext or the humor -- without the strength and beauty that Ms. Lawrence brings to the central role.
November 21, 2013
Everything that felt clumsy in The Hunger Games has been improved upon here.
November 21, 2013
Though the romantic triangle provides the story's heart, it's the film's take on media as social control (Stanley Tucci returns as the unctuous TV host), sharp sense of action, and smart peformances that give Catching Fire its soul.
November 21, 2013
The ingredients are in place for a potent finale, but "Catching Fire" is watered down.
November 21, 2013
What's surprising is how tasty the franchise still is.
November 21, 2013
Catching Fire is best in its first hour, when it concentrates on the politics and the specific horrors of Panem. It becomes more conventional in the second half and loses steam, but it's always heading somewhere.
November 21, 2013
Katniss Everdeen's quandaries and director Francis Lawrence builds suspense through cunning shifts of character in this spiffy second chapter of the trilogy.
November 21, 2013
It's largely satisfying as far as screen adventures go, and comes fully loaded with special effects and action scenes, and embellished with the usual brand-name character actors ...
November 21, 2013
This sequel is a triumph of production design: Philip Messina's settings are so detailed that they convey how the movie's dystopic U.S. functions beyond the story at hand, and Trish Summerville's costume design shows a similar degree of invention.
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