Thursday, December 11, 2014

Mockingjay Part 1

Seeing Mockingjay part 1 (third film in the Hunger Games series) so soon after seeing Snowpiercer was a mistake. Snowpiercer offers a grown-up version of rebellion by the downtrodden, while Mockingjay part 1 offers a young adult version.

My archived posts (HERE and HERE) on the first two movies in the Hunger Games series reminded me that I quite enjoyed the first film, found the second less interesting, thought it would have been preferable for its somewhat repetitive content to have been blended into part 1. That wouldn't have yielded a second gob of $$$$$$$$$$$ would it? I haven't read the books, but after seeing Mockingjay part 1 I get the same feeling - that splitting this part of the story into two was, once again, unnecessary for any reason other than $$$$$$$$$$.

This time I can't even say that I'm glad I saw the film, as I did regarding the second film of the series. There is much very obvious padding in Mockingjay part 1; trite dialogue and repetitive action sequences played out in unrelentingly grey rubble-strewn environments. Inclusion of the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, and the previously entertaining Woody Harrelson, giving them each a scant few boring lines, seemed to me like a cynical ploy to hold the interest of any more mature audience members. A Maggie Thatcher-like turn by Julianne Moore as leader of the rebels didn't feel right. The only constant high quality in this film lies in Jennifer Lawrence's performance as Katniss Everdean.

If Mockingjay Part 1 is meant to be, for its target audience of young adults, a kind of "War and Revolution Primer", I suppose it succeeds, but for that demographic alone. Whereas during the first two episodes in the Hunger Games franchise, I knew I was watching a story written for younger generations, I still found something of interest. Not so with Mockingjay part 1. I've seen far more affecting films about war and/or revolution, as I'm sure have all audience members over the age of 50. This film, in contrast to the first two in the Hunger Games series, left me feeling that I was simply too old for it.


Sonny G said...

I have'nt watched any of them , but I can say from past experience that by sequel 3 it usually is about the money and trying to make as much as possible off of the original hit.
How in the world the Harry Potter thing went on so long, I cant explain.

Godfather 1 n 2 excellent and the only great part of Godfather 3 was seeing Al Pacino and Diane Keaton together on screen again.

Happy Thursday to Ya'll

mike said...

The reviews that I saw or read were much like yours, Twilight. Reviewers thought this movie was an unnecessary prelude to the next sequel and it should not have been a stand-alone, but condensed and incorporated into the assumed part II. The classic noir of choosing quantity over quality.

The makers are laughing all the way to the bank:
"Worldwide: $564,177,267" (as of 12-9-14)

Sonny G said...

Thats quite a number, Mike.

would'nt it be great if they'd give a third of that to the hungry folks in this country...

yes, I still dream of such a day.

mike (again) said...

Sonny - Yes, half a billion is mucho-lots. But, put that in perspective with the 2013 estimate for the cost of the Afghanistan-Iraqi wars accrued by the USA. The cost continues to climb, as we have not ended the conflict:
"The new estimates top the $4 trillion reported in the 2011 ‘Costs of War’ study conducted by Brown University. A further, more recent ‘Costs of War’ report published earlier this month found that accrued interest on the nearly $2.2 trillion in expenses would amount to some $4 trillion dollars in the coming decades, suggesting that the overall costs could amount to around $6 trillion."

mike (again) said...

Sonny - BTW, the USA's federal budget for the ENTIRE year of 2015 is 1.1 trillion dollars, excluding the war!!!

Twilight said...

Sonny ~ I agree. In almost every case of series either in film or TV, the producers expand or carry the themes too far, until the're wrung out, devoid of the original attraction or "magic". All in the quest for $$$$$$$$$$.

It's a fairly new phenomenon, I don't remember it happening in earlier days of TV to the same extent - and not at all in film when I was younger.

Twilight said...

mike ~ Mammon rules...and war.

I saw a pie chart earlier that is relevant to your remarks

It's part of this article by David Swanson -

Sonny G said...

I wont pretend I know the details but I Know for a fact War is a profitable business. II also notice they will tell how much it costs- but never the profit point. at least Hollywood//they they probably lie and leave out a lot of the info// does say what the products costs and what they make..
Can it be? Hollywood and its money grubbing masters are more forthcoming than our government- you know the one, right? the "Of the People, for the People" one. major eye roll here

Twilight said...

Sonny ~ Hmmm yes - "for the People" being only for certain of "the People" - the in crowd. There used to be a category of "celeb" called "The Beautiful People" - now we have another category, not exactly the celebrities, more like the inglorious - "The Ugly People".