Goulburn Writers Fest Masthead

Review: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay: Part II

Roslyn Hull

As the war of Panem escalates to the destruction of other districts by the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant leader of the rebellion, must bring together an army against President Snow, while all she holds dear hangs in the balance. IMDb

I see a lot of films. I promised myself when I started reviewing them that I would always enjoy them, not just see them and for the most part, that is what I do. However there are weeks that are busy, sometimes crisis ridden, and I dash off to a movie alone and with little of the buzz I should feel – just so I have something to review.

This week was sorely in danger of being that sort of week. But then a friend advised me to discard my responsibilities and run away to the movies with her and her sister-in-law. So I did. What a very, very good idea.

I could also pick their brains on the film, as I had already done with my daughters when they saw it. All five of us agree. This is a fitting end to the Hunger Games saga.

It is everything it needs to be – and maybe just a little bit more as well. The novel Mockingjay has a lot of interior dialogue but a movie needs to show what is going on with the hero, not tell us about it, which this does very successfully.

The author, Suzanne Collins, also worked on the screen adaptation and I think this is evident in how close the action sticks to the novel – with that one, excellent exception that the interior angst is replaced with action.

The characters are everything they need to be, with Peeta, Gale and President Coin particularly being given more depth than before.

Julianne Moore is very good, Liam Hemsworth is very pretty but Josh Hutcherson could be an actor to watch, his depth and anguish is the core of Katniss’ final journey and he handles this burden very, very well.

The story, like the book, is sad, it is dangerous and there are a few moments of real edge of the seat action.

It is also a true ‘Part 2’ – the story is picked up exactly where Part 1 left off, so if you cannot remember what happened it might be worth renting the DVD before heading to the cinema. For any naysayers I would also add that this is one time when a book did need to be divided into two – there is so much action in the final conflicts that I was exhausted reading it.

A single movie would have been emotionally overloaded and the tiny, yet telling, moments would have been lost in the noise.

My girls thought the penultimate scene between Peeta and Katniss was touching and so special the film should have ended there. However, my two friends both have children and the final scene was more heartbreaking for them, the were both sniffing.

I enjoyed the books, I enjoyed the films and I enjoyed having friends with me when I saw the final instalment.

May the odds be ever in your favour.


Ros Hull

Roslyn is a writer and storyteller who loves all things Canberra, her family, sci fi and movies – but not in that order. She has worked in museum education since 2001 and has a passion for imparting knowledge to others. Writing is her happy place, particularly if there is a dog at her feet and a coffee in her hand. More about the Author

  • Wendy Dawes

    I was not crying. I had dust in my eye.

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