Back in 2012, “The Hunger Games” was a huge sensation, breaking box office records, and it built on its success with last year’s sequel, but can “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” carry the torch and bring Katniss Everdeen to cinematic victory?
Jennifer Lawrence reprises her role as the reluctant, but powerful hero Katniss, swept up and forced to become the figurehead of a revolution she never asked for. Preened, posed and persuaded by Plutarch (Phillip Seymour Hoffman) and the President of District 13 (Julianne Moore) to become the Mockingjay – the people’s hero, all she wants is to rescue Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) from the clutches of the Capitol.
If you’re expecting something similar to the first two films, then put away your money and don’t invest in this plodding tribute to propaganda. “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” is overlong, underwhelming and contains only a meagre handful of “action” sequences that contain almost no action. It’s a disappointing turn for the franchise and it feels as if they’re holding off all the excitement for next year’s final installment.
Lawrence, Hoffman and Moore are all capable in their roles, and Donald Sutherland turns in another wonderfully creepy performance as President Snow, but they are hampered by a dull script that meanders through a lot of setup until we reach a rather flaccid cliffhanger. Bask in the glory of the first two films, but give this Mockingjay a miss, Katniss deserves better than this.