The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
The Walking Dead
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The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 sets up the franchise finale with a penultimate chapter loaded with solid performances and smart political subtext, though it comes up short on the action front.
All Critics (281)
| Top Critics (51)
| Fresh (192)
| Rotten (89)
| DVD (2)
A solid lead-up to the finale.
In the excitable world of dystopian fantasy, the series remains the best of the bunch.
It's an elaborate game of hurry-up-and-wait. And it's the most shameless example yet of splitting the final book in a hugely popular series into two film adaptations.
Might it have been better if they'd squeezed the whole book into one movie? Probably. Nonetheless, Mockingjay Part 1 is a fine entertainment, shot through with moments of surprising emotional impact.
Jennifer Lawrence's charisma and the the sly excellence of her supporting cast keep "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1" aloft.
Mockingjay has more exposition than a TED Talk, more rubble than a decade of The Flintstones, and absolutely no nonmonetary reason to be Part 1 of anything. It isn't storytelling. It's a filibuster.
Once more, the film is carried effortlessly by Lawrence.
This is a darker more detailed chapter, with less action and more political commentary. It's a slow build that proves to be quite interesting -- sort of an evolution of the revolution.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part I burns bright and explosively lays the groundwork for the revolution of all time, fueling the anticipation for an extraordinary endgame.
These films are at their best when they're working with small touches, and yet again, this is where they shine.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 builds on its promise to provide conscientious escapism for the topical fodder that holds so much truth in the disillusionment of authoritative scrutiny and societal disenchantment in today's political climate.
Aside from the pacing issues, it is otherwise as good a movie as the first two, but ... I can easily see this one being a bit tedious for some.
First and foremost I'm disagreeing with about a quarter of critics who said this movie lacks action etc. This movie was never about action sequences in fact its a movie about propaganda and the manipulation of the media. In fact this serves as a social commentary on our own society and how mass media influences our chain of thought and decision making. The second issue that critics are having is that once again this last book has been split into two movies. While yes it may be for an extra money grab, at the same time this movie in my opinion works more effectively than that of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 and Breaking Dawn Part 1, in the fact that the events in this movie will lead to the revolution and war in Part 2. Moving on for those that think Jennifer Lawrence might be overrated as an actress I one suggest watching Winter's Bone and two she proves she is not overrated in this movie delivering a knockout performance as Katniss Everdeen and her PTSD scenes handled with amazing strength. The rest of the cast is also stellar with new additions such as Natalie Dormer as Cressida and Julianne Moore as President Coin proving capable in their roles. The revolution has begun and is televised.
Monkingjay Part 1 seems to be a placeholder for the final movie. It is OK; Katniss is still saving the day, and President Snow is still that bad guy, but this movie seems to fall short on content.
Leaving aside the action that was so present in the previous films to invest more in the characters, this third chapter is a grim, intelligent and riveting character study that finds space to discuss relevant matters like media manipulation and proves to be the strongest installment of the series so far.
Considering the pace of the first two films, you would like think that this third instalment would at least try to keep up, but it sadly falls short in almost every regard. Jennifer Lawrence plays the character of Katniss perfectly once again, and the entire cast around her do their very best, but splitting this book into two films was a very obvious mistake, seeing as there are no real stakes here, until the very end, but then you have to wait for the resolution. If they wanted to make this film three hours to get the point across, I would be totally okay with that, but there is a bit too much plot for it's own good. More of a political thriller than a hunger games film, "The Hunger Games: Mocking Jay - Part 1" feels like the epitome of a cash grab. It is not a bad film in any way, it just feels like an unfinished one, and that is what bothers me. It is a very well-written film for what it is, and there are a few very intense and shocking moments, but they do not make up for the padded out story. I am both extremely excited and scared for the finale, because there is a lot set up in this film and I am not quite sure if they can pull off this conclusion in a two hour film. Overall, It is a well-made set-up but nothing more. I wish it had the same level of depth that the first two films had. I would say that this instalment is a disappointment, but I kind of got exactly what I expected. "The Hunger Games: Mocking Jay - Part 1" did not sit with me the way I wished it had. It is definitely worth a watch to see where the story is headed, but it does not screaming multiple-viewings like the first two. Entertaining, well-made, but ultimately unsatisfying.
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