Monday, November 24, 2014

The Mockingjay Part 1: Movie Review! (Spoilers Marked!)



Hello, everyone! I'm back, and I'm here to review The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 the movie! If you're a fan of YA book to movie adaptations and haven't been living under a rock this past week, you'll know that this movie came out this past week making $55 million it's opening day. Not too shabby for another “Part 1” finale of YA movie franchise. But enough about that, let's get to the review!

First things first. There will be spoilers in this review, but they will be clearly marked for those who haven't seen the movie yet. You'll be able to skip over any spoilers or spoil yourself to death depending on your judgment.

So, what's going on in this movie? Well, you should probably watch the first two movies (you can find them on Amazon and Catching Fire on Netflix). But the Cliff Notes version is this: Katniss has escaped the games and is now living with her family underground in District 13. President Coin asks Katniss to be the Mockingjay, the symbol of the rebellion, and in return they have to save the captured victors, including Peeta, from the Capital while a war is raging across Panem.

Let's start out with the good. We have a great cast again for this movie with a couple of new faces. One such face is Alma Coin, President of District 13, played by Julianne Moore. She was absolutely amazing and her scenes with Philip Seymour Hoffman, who plays Plutarch, were just excellent.

Of course we had our major players. Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen was flawless as usual. I expect no less from her. But we did get to see more of Liam Hemsworth who plays Gale in the movie. I thought he did a really good job, but nothing can compare to Josh Hutcherson, who plays Peeta, who isn't even in much of this movie, but (and no spoilers) he's been given some good material to work with and he kills it.

I think that they depicted the war very well in this movie. Since it is a movie, we get to see more than Katniss's point of view. We get to see the leaders of the war making decisions and the reasons behind them, something that was impossible in the book. We see it first hand, and some things that were not explained fully in the book get depicted in detail in the movie.

One thing the book lovers may be concerned with is what they changed from the book to the movie. Let me just say that is not a problem. I will get a little more specific in the spoiler section, but I will say the changes that they made did not bother me, and I'm a stickler about that. For example, they had Effie, Elizabeth Banks, have a major role in this movie, and that was such a wise decision. Six Fluvia's couldn't match the awesomeness that is Elizabeth Banks.

I'll mention this here and not in the spoiler section because you do get a clip of it in the new TV spot for the movie, but Jennifer Lawrence sings “The Hanging Tree” in the movie. I thought that they may dub her over with a professional singer, but they didn't and she killed it! It's haunting and beautiful and hauntingly beautiful, and it will give you goosebumps when you hear it in it's entirety in the movie.

Now let's talk about some of the things that I didn't like. First things first: this may sound like a broken record but this movie doesn't need to be in two parts. It's clearly a marketing ploy that we've all experienced by now, and it makes me a little sad. There were so many times were I thought “It doesn't need this scene. This could be done in a montage. I feel like we did this scene already.” I just felt like it was stumbling a little bit, and for a movie that's two hours, you need to pick it up a little bit.

Also, I won't mention names here, but there were some characters that were featured in the promos that I didn't get to see onscreen until the very end of the movie. They got more screen time in the commercials than they did in the movie. Seriously.

This is the Spoiler Zone! Stay away if you haven't seen the movie yet!


For a dark movie, this movie had great comedic timing. Jennifer Lawrence playing Katniss as a horrible actor is just hilarious. Effie trying to coach her makes the scene even funnier. They both look like they are trying so hard, and the result is sub par at best. Then Plutarch starts yelling at her but trying to be kind, and it was really great.

Speaking of Effie, thank God they put her in this movie. She's still Effie. She doesn't quite get why everyone has to eat the same things and, heaven forbid, wear the same things, but she does her best to help her victors. She's an escort, and she doesn't let anyone take that job away from her. Not to mention her flirtation with Haymitch, while dark, is also great to watch.

The TV crew is great. They do a great job, acting wise, being persuasive to the audience as well as to Katniss. They are still worried about the art, which brings it back to their Capital roots, but they also know what this could mean for the rebellion. They acted like a legit camera crew, which is interesting because you have a camera crew filming a fake camera crew.

Let's talk some Peeta. His progression in the interviews with Ceasar Flickerman were absolutely amazing. He starts out normal, and with each of the interviews, you can see the effect torture has had on him. When he shouts out for Katniss, warning her about the Capital's plan to bomb District 13, it's scary but in a good way. At the end where we see Peeta attack Katniss, I got scared. It was visually stunning and the acting for both Lawrence and Hutcherson was incredible.

You are now out of the Spoiler Zone! You can come back if you want my final thoughts!



Final thoughts about this movie: despite the fact that this movie would be better as a one big movie rather than be split into two parts, it is still a really good movie. With that in mind, I give this movie a solid four explosive arrows out of five!

That it for this post! Comment down below on two part movies you wished were one movie. Subscribe to the blog by adding your email to the Subscribe Box down below or off to the right. Add me to your circles by clicking the Google+ Button off to the right. Follow me on twitter for up to date information about the blog and ridiculousness about my life @KK_Donna_Blog. Follow the tumblr dedicated to the blog, which you can find at this link. Read on, lovelies! I'll see y'all next post!