The Hunger Games, Mockingjay Part 1 Review: Jennifer Lawrence IS the Mockingjay

If you haven’t read the books, or haven’t seen the latest Hunger Games movie, Mockingjay Part 1, beware there are spoilers ahead.

jennifer_lawrence_in_the_hunger_games_mockingjay_part_1-t2The last time we saw Katniss Everdeen, was in Catching Fire after she had destroyed the arena and was picked up by the rebellion. In Mockingjay Part one, Katniss is left to pick up the broken pieces of her sanity, and to come to terms with the things she didn’t know existed before: namely, the rebellion and district 13.

In the excitement to remove her from the crumbling wreckage of the quarter quell, Peeta was captured by the capitol. District 12 was destroyed, and the remaining survivors find sanctuary in District 13. Although destroyed on the surface many years ago, district 13 managed to survive underground with the leadership of President Coin, who runs their district with strict military precision.

This is something that’s difficult for Katniss, because she is sick of being told what to do, and where to go, especially when all she wants to do is escape the pain of the people she has lost. She agrees to be the Mockingjay, a symbol of the rebellion, only if Peeta and the other victors that were captured are rescued from the Capitol. The Mockingjay will be promoted in a series of promos to help encourage the districts to join the cause and fight against the Capitol.

What is most noticeable about this movie: the intensity. Everything has been brought up about ten notches. The first two films are mostly told from Katniss’ perspective, which is true to the novel, but for the fist time, we get a more elaborate view of the events that are happening outside of Katniss’ point of view. We see exchanges between President Coin, (Julianne Moore) and game maker, Plutarch Heavensbee (Phillip Seymore Hoffman), and also scenes between Plutarch and Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks). There are also, numerous shots of the rebellion that happen in the other districts as well.

Emotions are high; fear, and anger and heartache simmer just below the surface and it’s not difficult to catch the emotion behind the revolution, the need to fight for the right to live. This change in perspective makes sense, as Katniss’ state of mind is not always completely together, and it is clear that there is something larger at stake here.

mockingjay-part-1-trailer-still-5-cressidaKatniss is often joined by her old friend Gale, (Liam Hemsworth) and new friend Finnick Odair (Sam Claflin), but she obtains new friends in her entourage; the most surprising (and bad-ass looking) is one member of her camera crew, Cressida (Natalie Dormer) who some might know as Margaery, on Game of Thrones.

If the great cast might not draw you in, how about the soundtrack? Lorde recorded four songs for the film and even Jennifer Lawrence has her own track. Although she claims she is a terrible singer, the song she sings in the film, “The Hanging Tree,” is hauntingly beautiful and almost eerie in the way it lingers in your mind afterwards. There is no other actor alive (I believe) that would be able to play the role of Katniss so well.

“Fire IS catching.”

Here’s a look at J-Law’s awesome singing:


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