When it comes to movies adapted from books, they can either be a big hit or serious disappointment. For Suzanne Collin’s Hunger Games Trilogy, the movies have so far been successful, and when it comes to Mockingjay – Part 2, it lives up to most expectations.
The fourth and final installment of the series picks up exactly where Part 1 left off: Katniss Everdeen’s recently strangled neck being examined. Peeta, her ally and potential love interest, has been brainwashed by President Snow and the Capitol. Katniss decides that the time has come for Snow to die, and that she needs to be the one to kill him.
Katniss and her team (including Finnick, Gale, and Peeta) set off on a final mission, away from District 13 and President Coin. Their journey greatly resembles the Hunger Games themselves, with unusual and life-threatening traps, several allies and enemies and fate-changing decisions.
Along with the ultimate goal of killing Snow, Katniss’ relationships and feelings towards both Peeta and Gale are questioned. Despite caring for them both, she can only truly love one in the end…that is, if all of them are alive that long.
Mockingjay, Part 2 (being the final movie of the series) has a lot of expectations to live up to, and overall, it does not disappoint.
Jennifer Lawrence, the actress playing Katniss Everdeen, easily captures every emotion behind the role. To be a citizen of Panem who represents the entire rebellion would be confusing, nerve-wracking, and exhausting, and she does an excellent job of showing not only what’s on the surface, but what thoughts are going on in the back of Katniss’ mind.
The acting is also strong for Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson, who play Gale and Peeta in the film. Not only does Hemsworth show the masculine, strong side of Gale, but also the emotions he feels during different life-threatening situations, whether it’s a loved one’s life or his own on the line. Hutcherson shows the pure confusion and terror inside of Peeta, not knowing what’s “real” and what’s “not real,” and feeling unsure of the past, present, and future in his life. Peeta may seem like a hard character to portray, but Hutcherson maintains the character nicely throughout.
As far as the book to movie comparison, the book can simply never be beat. However, the film stuck to the story line well. All the dramatic moments of the novel that readers were dying to see on the big screen were included, and it had the perfect amount of suspense and action involved. From a potential trap being triggered at every step to the climactic rebellions, the movie constantly had you at the edge of your seat.
The only thing that seemed to be lacking slightly was the heart-wrenching moments. Though still included in the film, they seemed to be “glossed over.” Rather than bursting into tears, like several did due to Katniss and Rue’s relationship in the first movie, there seemed to be quick moments of intense sadness that only lasted momentarily. Let’s just say I was expecting to cry, and left surprised when I did not end up doing so.
The romance between Katniss and either Peeta or Gale was definitely still apparent, but also did not seem as strong as it was in the novel. There weren’t as many “aww” moments involved, and when Katniss “chose” who she wanted to be with, it did not seem nearly as dramatic unless you had read the novel, therefore knowing the whole story in a more detailed manner.
Despite a few emotions and backstories not being as apparent as they should be, Mockingjay Part 2 ended the film series on a positive note. Because the movie was so captivating, it felt as though the time went by very quickly (It did not feel like I had been sitting there for the full two hours and 17 minutes, yet I had). If you are a fan of the novels and/or movies definitely check out the last installment; with the strong acting and suspense at every corner, it’s something you won’t want to miss!