The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2
The final film of the franchise picked up directly after the closing of Part 1, where Peeta strangled Katniss in a fit of blind, conditioned rage spurned by the Capitol’s torture. In Part 2’s opening, Katniss struggles to speak, her throat bruised and vocal cords damaged. I was surprised that her throat didn’t remain bruised for the next few scenes but instead was shown to have healed – the opening acted only as a link from the previous installment. But despite this, it captured me, and I was intrigued by Katniss’s defiant desperation.
After the intensity of Peeta screaming that Katniss should be killed, that everything out of her mouth is a lie, she chooses to actively fight for freedom rather than simply make speeches about it as the symbol of the Mockingjay. She decides this to protect the brainwashed Peeta and everyone she cares about. Shortly after, Joanna Mason foreshadows that "anyone can kill anyone", and I started to bounce my knee restlessly. I’d like to say I was prepared for the emotive buildup of Katniss having to witness people die, but I wasn’t, and it was brilliantly sad.
The intense, gripping narrative consumed me, particularly in the scenes absent of music. Hearing your own breathing whilst watching the characters’ desperation to survive built insurmountable tension. The action following this tension – particularly in the sewers underground where Katniss fires explosive arrows at the rabid Mutts attacking them – enables a surge of adrenaline that you experience with the characters on-screen as they frantically fight to protect everyone.
Because the action sequences happened so quickly, I couldn’t process what occurred until the music dulled and the characters could rest again. Like the characters, I as a viewer could only properly process a character’s death well after it happened, when Katniss had a quiet moment and was able to grieve about it, herself. This definitely drove an emotive connection with her character and I most definitely heard sniffling around me in the cinema during these scenes.
From the moment the movie started to the moment it finished, I was enthralled. The characters did not stop, there was never a lull, and whatever dialogue occurred drove the plot. I felt the characters’ pain and left the theatre with tears in my eyes. It was a brilliant film and conclusion, I’d definitely see it again.