Movie Recommendations: Hunger Games Trilogy (2012-2015)

Quote from Hunger Games by President Coriolanus Snow:

“Hope.  It is the only thing stronger than fear.  A little hop is effective.  A lot of hope is dangerous.  A spark is fine, as long as it’s contained.”

hungergames

Director of Hunger Games: Gary Ross

Screenwriters: Gary Ross, Suzanne Collins, and Billy Ray/based from Suzanne Collins’ novels

Main Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Willow Shields, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Paul Malcomson, Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, and Donald Sutherland, Wes Bentley, Lenny Kravitz, and Jack Quaid

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense violent thematic material and disturbing images

Running Time: 2 hours and 22 minutes

*******

Director of Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Francis Lawrence

Screenwriters: Simon Beaufoy and Michael Arndt/based from Suzanne Collins’ novels

Main Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Willow Shields, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Paul Malcomson, Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, and Donald Sutherland, Lenny Kravitz, Jack Quaid, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amanda Plummer, Jeffrey Wright, Sam Claflin, and Jena Malone

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some frightening images, thematic elements, a suggestive situation and language

Running Time: 2 hours and 26 minutes

*******

Director of Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 and 2 : Francis Lawrence

Screenwriters: Peter Craig and Danny Strong/based from Suzanne Collins’ novels

Main Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Willow Shields, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Paul Malcomson, Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, and Donald Sutherland, Lenny Kravitz, Jack Quaid, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amanda Plummer, Jeffrey Wright, Sam Claflin, Julianne Moore, Natalie Dormer, Mahershala Ali, Jena Malone, Elden Henson, and Robert Knepper

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some disturbing images and thematic material

Running Time: 2 hours and 3 minutes and 2 hours and 17 minutes

*******

I finally watched the Hunger Games trilogy. I have to say I enjoyed all of them despite the seeming simplicity of the plot.  Maybe, it didn’t come across that way in the books, but I can’t say because I haven’t read them.  The combination of action within the adventures of Katniss with sci-fi elements includes enough backstory to understand the rules and situations the people of the various districts reside within Panem make this trilogy worthwhile.

The first movie begins in District 12 where we meet Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), a 16-year-old girl, who takes the place of her sister Prim (Willow Shields).  She is to fight in the upcoming Hunger Games alongside an acquaintance named Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) who was chosen as the boy tribute. Despite her conflicted feelings for Peeta, she leaves with him to the Capitol.  Their escorts, Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks) and Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson) help them get ready for the opening ceremonies. After meeting some of the other tributes from the districts, they start their training.  When the Game officially begins and the alarm sounds, the tributes fall one by one until there are a few left remaining.  It has always been a game of survival, but whether Katniss will kill Peeta or the other way around depends on where their loyalty falls and if they actually make it to the end.

The second movie begins after the 74th Hunger Games is over.  Katniss and Peeta have returned to District 12 where they are rewarded and punished for their actions.  President Snow (Donald Sutherland) tells Katniss it is her responsibility to stop the unrest cropping up in the districts while on their victory tour.  She must also keep up appearances regarding her love for Peeta while Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) is now in control of running the Hunger Games.  President Snow announces Katniss will take part in the Quarter Quell, which is a version of the Hunger Games in an effort to tarnish her image.  President Snow does his best to keep her under control and when the Quell begins, it’s winners against winners in a free for all in this tropical forest.  As the winners succumb to death and the dome collapses, Katniss blacks out.

The third movie begins after Katniss wakes up and is told what happened to Peeta and takes on her new role.  She visits the various districts with her military escort to fulfill her duty to make propaganda videos.  This time Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth) is with her.  With the districts fighting with the Capitol soldiers, Katniss gets caught in the middle.  She finds little solace in this role of Mockingjay but agrees to go to the Capitol on President Coin’s (Julianne Moore) request to with a team of other capable fighters of Squad 451. She is the face of the revolution and remains extra cautious around everyone upon recent news from Boggs (Mahershala Ali).  With Peacekeepers swarming around the Capitol, the remaining team hides underground but not to for long.  Again on solid ground, Katniss, Gale, Pollux (Elden Henson), and Cressida (Natalie Dormer) find refuge in a fashion shop.  Katniss and President Coin make one last attempt to overthrow the autocratic rule, but in very different ways.  When she wakes up inside the Presidential mansion, learning who is in charge and who has died.  The time of reckoning has come.  Someone has to pay for this mess including Katniss who is sent back home to District 12.  She returns where it began, in the home she lived with her family, and the field she once hunted and remembers who hunted for her.

I rate Hunger Games trilogy GREAT at 90%.

It gets FOUR FINGERS.

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2019

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