Well after a minor set back (thanks food poisoning) and battling rude movie neighbors (why do people have to talk the entire time?!) we have finally seen Catching Fire. Rejoice the world, there will always be horrible ways to torture and maim people. So what is the Tenchi verdict?
Well...I don't know. Catching Fire was better than the Hunger Games. Well at least maybe visually anyway. But is that fair because the arena was so much more grand in the second book anyway? I went into the first movie not knowing about the book but now I can see how things were skipped over. A lot was skipped over for the second one as well (which I will cover) but at the core the message was there. I mean at the end of the first movie nonbook readers didn't KNOW that Katniss was not in love with Peeta. Kinda a big deal. This movie felt much more dire when things were supposed to be bad in the first. I don't know, I just know the second one was better.
The thing that bothered me the most about the movie was Finnick. Almost all about him and his scenes. I think the actress playing Katniss is too tall and imposing to be Katniss but (at times) she played Katniss how Katniss would be. The actor who played Finnick was...not Finnick. I don't think he was handsome enough. That might sound vain for me to stay but in the book it is like Finnick is Adonis. People in the Capital are tripping over themselves to sleep with him. The man playing Finnick is cute yes but not...Capital sex god. Perhaps it was all too much to live up to. However there was not enough Finnick The scene with the sugar cubes was almost a check list scene. Like got the sugar cubes, check. Like the real meaning of the scene was lost since it was forced. I know scenes were cut but this one almost played out in full and it was off. Finnick in the arena was almost robotic, borderline...something. Not evil but you know. I mean the Finnick that everyone knows and loves would not say cannons are music to his ears, even if it was for the cameras. I did like the glance after Peeta was brought back to life but...unforgivable Finnick didn't cry after Mag's death. How hard would it have been to add Katniss taking watch and having her hear Finnick cry? Him saying that Mags didn't have a chance and not following it up with his real feelings....it made Finnick look cold hearted. He didn't have time to shine.
Johanna on the other hand was shining all over the place. She didn't get the memo she was a sidekick and not the actual Mockingjay. I thought her Caesar interview was way too in your face when I saw it. Then when I thought about it later....if other things were going get cut adding that in there made sense. Perhaps a bit more subtle after the Jabberjays as her simple message in the book was enough. I don't think anyone walked away confused on Johanna though. It was clear she was annoyed at this whole thing but went out of her way to help Katniss. While I thought it made no sense to have Johanna and Katniss alone backstage it set the tone well. Katniss thought all the Victors were crazy, especially after the elevator scene (MOG Katniss' face) but Johanna reminded Katniss who the real enemy was again.
I think that the trailers showed way too much though. Katniss' speech to Rue's family before this wasn't spoiled though so yay?
Everyone is rooting for you Peeta. Well at least Katniss. I guess everyone else is rooting for the other one. XD
I do like some stuff that they added from the book. I think the first kiss between Gale and Katniss was....odd and out of nowhere but the third was done well. It could mean so many things. I loved the families standing up the picture of the fallen tributes instead of a busted down pen. Snow's granddaughter was almost a glimmer of hope that the world isn't sick...and how confused the Capital is. I like how Snow was personally watching the games, really showing how involved he is/worried. Since there is no Madge I like how Katniss saw the riots on the screen. I mean they are traveling on a train, Peacekeepers need to know what is going on around them.
Overall I liked the movie despite any critics I might have written. When you have high expectations going into something of course you are going to have an opinion on the matter. Movies are not books or we would still be on the Lord of the Rings Two Towers. XD Especially books with inner character dialogue, told from one point of view, and unreliable because she is crazy. I thought the actress that played Katniss really stepped up, especially in the District 11, dead Peeta, and Haymitch is a liar scenes. Apparently 40 minutes of the movie is on the cutting room floor so maybe when the movie comes out on DVD most of my complaints will be pacified. So yes. The movie was 4 out of 5 Tenchi Stars and it was worth attempting to see it twice. But Peeta has one leg folks. One leg.
On a side note the husband had a frowning face at the end of the movie.. He said why would you end a movie that way?! Wonder what he will think about how Mockingjay part 1's ending haha.....