The Girl Who Caught Fire

Movie theaters were lit ablaze when The Hunger Games: Catching Fire ignited in theaters.

The sequel to its predecessor, The Hunger Games, grossed in an estimate of $110.2 million from Wednesday to Sunday over the Thanksgiving holiday, breaking other Thanksgiving record-holders like Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone which earned $57.5 million.

Catching Fire picks up from the aftermath of Peeta and Katniss’ victory in the 74th annual Hunger Games. What was supposed to be seen as an act of love was instead perceived as an act of rebellion. Katniss becomes a symbol of hope to the people of Panem, sparking the rise of a rebellion. To suppress this mutiny, Panem’s president, President Snow, declares that their quarter quell (75th anniversary of the Hunger Games) would have a new twist. Instead of choosing new tributes to battle it out, the pool of previous victors would now be forced to fight for their lives once again.

As a huge fanatic of this series, I can’t help but say that I expected great things from this movie, and luckily, it exceeded those expectations. Unlike the first movie in which there were major plot holes from the movie and book, Catching Fire was a carbon copy of the book. They did leave out minor details here and there, but not major ones that would affect or alter the story in anyway, like in the first movie when they completely disregarded the fact that the mayor’s daughter gave Katniss the mocking jay pin.

This movie also helped me fall in love with the characters all over again. New comers Sam Claflin, as the charming Finnick Odair, and Jenna Malone, as the  snarky anarchist, Johanna Mason, did a commendable job portraying their characters without being overshadowed by their renowned colleagues, Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson.

As for the CGI, it was just like the first movie, great with the scenery and everything else, but tacky with one of the major motifs of the movie: the fire. Like in the first movie, Katniss twirls around in her dress again as the fire evolves it into her mocking jay outfit. Fire was also apparent in the chariot scene once again. The CGI wasn’t as believable in these parts, and kind of stuck out like a sore thumb, but when it came to the overall view of Panem, the different animals, and aspects of the arena, the graphics looked realistic enough for me to give it two thumbs up.

The last movie, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, will be split up into two parts like the Harry Potter and Twilight finales. Part 1 is expected to be released in 2014 and Part 2 in 2015.