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92 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars True to the book - no spoilers
'Catching Fire' is my favourite book in the 'Hunger Games' trilogy and I wasn't disappointed by the translation of it to the big screen. Yes, some scenes have been left out or changed, but with the changes I personally think they work better for those seeing the film who haven't read the books. Overall, it's very faithful to the book.

The directing, special...
Published 4 months ago by Pink-Lady

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Felt like a filler
Much like The Empire Strikes Back and The Matrix Reloaded this film seemed to be there to provide a link between parts of the story in different films and had the usual effect of leaving the viewer unsatisfied at the end (which isn't an end).
Published 1 day ago by PC Weighill-Smith


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92 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars True to the book - no spoilers, 23 Nov 2013
'Catching Fire' is my favourite book in the 'Hunger Games' trilogy and I wasn't disappointed by the translation of it to the big screen. Yes, some scenes have been left out or changed, but with the changes I personally think they work better for those seeing the film who haven't read the books. Overall, it's very faithful to the book.

The directing, special effects and acting all bring to life the darkness and emotional intensity of the story. Starting soon after the 74th games, Katniss and Peeta (along with their families and mentor Haymitch) are living in Victors Village. But with the victory tour of the other 11 districts, where all the tributes died in the arena, about to begin, and with rumours of a rebellion, it seems life is not to get any easier for Katniss, Peeta and Haymitch.

I don't want to spoil the film for anyone who hasn't the read the book so won't add any spoilers. Suffice to say that 'The Hunger Games' set the scene and 'Catching Fire' takes the story to a whole new level. It's a heartbreaking, shocking, breathtaking, suspenseful, funny, moving and thought provoking rollercoster ride of a film. Jennifer Lawrence is particularly outstanding as Katniss, although all the performances are strong. I'm only sorry we now have a wait a whole year to see the next installment, 'Mockingjay Part 1'.

Incredible, memorable film, well worth seeing even if you haven't the read the books (although it might help to see 'Hunger Games' first as it really does set the scene and will help you understand the background).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars She on fire, 28 Mar 2014
By 
K. G. A. Alavi (London, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a really great adaptation of the book. The really great thing about this movie is that it did stay true to the story but used but it added things to it that might have been missed in the book. The acting was top notch. Jennifer Lawrenceas the played lead of Katniss Everdeen perfectly. Some of the people I watched this with brought up a great point, when you have a really good lead actor giving a great acting performance it encourages or forces the rest of the cast and crew to up their game and give the best performance they can. If I had not read the book, I would not have seen many of the twists or turns coming. Always a mark of t a good film is that you do not realise that 2 hours have passed while watching it. I really enjoyed this film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely perfect, 14 April 2014
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This review is from: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2-disc Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Firstly, the package arrived a day early which was great as it was much awaited. The packaging was perfectly sized and everything arrived in top shape.

Secondly, the movie itself was beyond brilliant. Having seen it several times before in the cinema, I was still blown away by the accuracy of the film in comparison to the book. The Hunger Games was a fantastic film in itself, but I think the screenwriters of Catching Fire really outdid themselves and did a superb job writing (I noticed many direct quotations from the book which I was thrilled about). I have nothing but positive comments for all the fabulous actors; Jennifer Lawrence really does make the perfect Katniss, and I was particularly enthralled by the performances of the actors playing Finnick and Johanna (both introduced in this film). I truly hope that both parts of Mockingjay live up to this extremely high standard, and if anyone is questioning whether or not to buy this film, then I would without a doubt recommend it to anyone. As a firm believer of reading books first, I would of course say that reading the book prior to watching would be ideal, but in actual fact it is not a necessity (it just adds to the emotion and understanding).

I was disappointed in some of the scenes cut out of the film (Madge had already been cut from the entire franchise, but I was looking forward to meeting Bonnie and Twill) but I suppose that it would have been near enough impossible to include everything.

So that's five stars from me, and I hope that if you do end up buying this film, you shall love it as much as I do because I really do think it is truly spectacular.
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50 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars People gonna rise up and take what's theirs. They're talkin' bout a revolution. It sounds like... a mockingjay., 10 Dec 2013
By 
Maciej "Darth Maciek" (Darth Maciek is out there...) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
I found this second, more serious and much darker "Hunger Games" film, even BETTER than the first one. Below more of my impressions, with some limited SPOILERS.

First let's say that this film sticks to the book very closely. Of course there is no way you can show during 145 minutes everything that a book contains (and therefore the characters of Bonnie and Twill among others are not shown), but I believe virtually everything important is included. And that is a precious thing.

All actors did great. Jennifer Lawrence who plays Katniss Everdeen is of course THE STAR of this film, but everybody around her performed also flawlessly.

The best performance is offered by Josh Hutcherson who plays Peeta Mellark, a young boy madly in love with Katniss and linked to her in most complex ways since a long time. This role is the most difficult in all film as Peeta is a most complicated character: a baker's son, weaker than many of other young males around and definitely not born to be any kind of hero he nevertheless soldiers on through all the hardships and relentlessly pursues the woman of his life through all the nine circles of hell - and beyond...

Much more attractive, stronger and very manly Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth) is by comparison a little bit easier to play, but the events put him also in a position not easy at all... Which gives a quite interesting love triangle.

Young actors who play new characters of Finnick Odair (Sam Claflin) and Johanna Mason (Jena Malone) were very well selected. He is an extremely handsome and very vain young hunk - with brains and a plan. She is not very appealing physically, but she got enough character, potty mouth and (bad)attitude to spread amongst a battalion of more average girls - and still have enough for her own needs...)))

Older actors give also a great show and we have a lot of them. Donald Sutherland is of course the greatest of them and we all know how much he enjoys playing characters which are odd and also sometimes evil - and here he gives us a great show portraying the aged supreme master of Panem, president Coriolanus Snow, a man both odd AND evil... Haymitch has more screen time in this film than in the previous one and Woody Harrelson plays him splendidly - and that is a huge compliment coming from me as I usually don't like this actor. At all.

Effie Trinket - a really splendid and so appropriate last name by the way - also appears more in this film. We come therefore to know her as a person who is simultaneously grievously annoying, heavily ridiculous, enragingly insufferable and beautifully pathetic - and Elizabeth Banks plays her just like it should be done. Lenny Kravitz offers a surprisingly good and serious performance as Cinna. Stanley Tucci is of course a treasure as Caesar Flickerman, a TV show host and great regime propagandist whom we want to strangle from the second he appears on the screen...))) And then there is Philip Seymour Hoffman as Plutarch Heavensbee, the Head Gamemaker of 75th Hunger Games, successor of the most unfortunate Seneca Crane who "choose to stop breathing" in the previous film...

In smaller but important roles we have Amanda Plummer (Honey Bunny from "Pulp Fiction") as Wiress and Lynn Cohen (Ukrainian baby sitter Magda in "Sex and the city") as Mags. And also Patrick St. Esprit as Head Peacekeeper Romulus Thread. Honestly, as dissuasion and pacification tools go, the face of this guy alone is worth a whole Panzer division - and then there is still all the rest of him...

A digression here for "Star Wars" fanboys and firearms maniacs. First, it was a great idea (and I think also a tribute to Star Wars) both in book and the film to follow George Lucas and dress the bad guys in white...))) Also, firearms maniacs will appreciate the Peacemakers being armed with Belgian 5,7 mm FNP90, an indeed very futuristic looking weapon, but actually in service since 1990 and presently used by more than 40 countries. This weapon, which has a rate of fire so high that it is possible to cut a man in half with a short burst, was actually already used by the security troops of one bloodthirsty tyrant, overthrown and killed by insurgents - Muammar Gaddafi... End of digression for "Star Wars" fanboys and firearms maniacs.

Willow Shields who plays Primrose Everdeen appears only briefly and her character has in fact only one line to say - but when she says it, this is a GREAT moment! And then there is little Erika Bierman, barely 12 years old (but looking 9), who plays president's Snow granddaughter, a lovely little thing who speaks only like twice in this film, every time hurting and scaring her dear Grandpa worse than ten thousands armed rebels could ever do...)))

Although not appearing as a character, in this film there is also Rue, the cute little girl from District 11. As we know she was killed in the previous games - but her picture appears in a couple of moments in this film and every time it occurs it is an indictment of the Capitol, stronger than a 10 000 words accusation act...

The Arena built for those very special 75th Hunger Games is a really hellish place. Suzan Collins must be quite a kinky gal for inventing such a perversely twisted tool of torture and murder. The whole games are therefore a pretty dramatic thing, albeit ultimately not as dramatic as those portrayed in the previous film (guess we are now more used to the whole thing).

But the reason why I believe this film is SUPERIOR to the previous one resides in all parts which take place BEFORE the games themselves - and they constitute more than half of the film. The feeling of omnipresent TERROR all around the Panem is portrayed very well indeed - and all those who, like me, once lived under an authoritarian repressive regime (I grew up in communist Poland) will fully appreciate it.

The mixture of oppression, repression, censorship, shortage of everything (when in the same time regime's nomenklatura lives in opulence), black market as a coping mechanism, the violence of little local tyrants serving the regime, the feeling of powerlessness - it is all there. And then come the whispers of something going on, then some official flags are ripped off at night, then appears the first writing on the wall, the first stone is thrown against a patrolling police car, first signs of rebellion appear and with them HOPE - but also the first dead... It is all there.

The second "Hunger Games" is therefore for my personal taste a darker, more serious (sometimes even sinister) treat, very usefully reminding especially the younger viewers what exactly an oppressive regime LOOKS and FEELS like and how difficult and COSTLY it is to regain the freedom once it was lost - or even worse forfeited... And this part of the film definitely overshadows the adventure/action scenes and any kind of love triangle.

The very LAST scene, not involving any actors but just some graphics, is simply GREAT and so full of promise for the next film that I simply cannot wait to see it - and see it I will, as surely as I will buy this one on Blu-ray, as soon as it is available. Definitely. Catch this film as long as it is still playing in theaters - it is worth it. Enjoy!
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great continuation, 12 Mar 2014
Catching Fire is a great continuation of the Hunger Games franchise, and is very true to the book which can't be said for many Hollywood films which have to skip parts of the books to fit the film into a reasonable length, I felt that Catching Fire was much darker than the first film but it was also much better.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MUST BE A FRAGILE SYSTEM IF IT CAN BE BROUGHT DOWN BY A FEW BERRIES, 30 Nov 2013
By 
The Movie Guy "Movies from A to Z" (United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
As it turns out the Hunger Games was not berry good for the empire as Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) has inspired hope and rebellion. Instead of just killing her, they have changed the rules ( see Jonathan "Roller Ball") and devised a new Hunger Game of past contestants. The game is stacked against her as contestants must battle the elements more than each other.

The beginning of the film lacks the crazy action of the second half, but it is theme driven for the true sci-fi fan. Katniss is a hero, but as she says, "By killing people." In those 3 simple words. Katniss who suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome, conveys the perplexity of war heroes with a moral conscience. The film also touches on the power of celebrity as they "never get off this train: and the trouble they cause if the don't "stick to the script." The culture is set up similar to the Roman Empire where bread and circus' s keep the masses in check and where Romans "Eat to puke and puke to eat." Katniss, is a hero because her compassion expresses in all of us the person we want to be. As such it is easy for her to gain allies.

The film contains all the elements of an ideal cult classic complete with theme, special effects, drama, top stars, and a touch of light humor.

I do not recommend watching this film if you haven't seen the first one (or read the books) as it doesn't recap.
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28 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better still, 22 Nov 2013
The film is quite long but, in my opinion, very well done. Great efforts were made to follow the book and the result is very satisfying. Unlike the endless changes made to How I Live Now, for example, this is a faithful attempt to recreate the story written by Suzanne Collins. Of course certain small details are changed, but the broad sweep of this cinematic blockbuster is likely to leave no-one but the most pedantic disappointed (and I am usually one of those).
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 18 Mar 2014
This is brilliant. Don't be put off by the inactive trailer because it is phenomenal but just a bit better than the first film(also amazing)!!!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Book vs Hollywood, 24 Feb 2014
By 
CJT (Truro, Cornwall) - See all my reviews
I tend to be able to pick loads of tiny holes in films based on a book that I've read in the past, but this is the exception. This is extremely faithful to the book (especially compared to the low-budget Hunger Games). THG: Catching Fire is by far my favourite book in the series, and Francis Lawrence and Jennifer Lawrence have done it a brilliant justice. A must-see for any fan of the books.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good flick but .., 30 Jan 2014
By 
G. O'Neill (Qatar) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I enjoyed the film. I have not read the books but I am reliably informed that "Catching Fire" is as close to the book as is possible. My only reservation here is the lack of blood. Violent death by knife, spear and axe and not a drop of the red stuff. The book does not focus on the gore so it could be argued that the film should be the same. Personally, I felt irked by the lack of realism. Killing someone with an axe makes a helluva mess. Sanitizing the action to make horrible violent death seem almost tidy bothers me. Viewers should be shown the full graphic detail of what killing someone with an axe looks like so they are appalled by it, as they should be. A few pools of vomit in cinemas, an 18 certificate and lower profits for the studio are a small price to pay for a bit of realism.
Obviously I am reviewing the film, not the blu ray.
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The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2-disc Edition) [DVD]
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