|Title:||The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1|
|04.22.15||Netflix|| So, to recap my feelings thus far with this franchise, I really liked the first two books - couldn't put them down - and mostly liked the third book, thought the first movie was too long and boring but found things to like in the second. Now this one, which I was in no hurry to see but wanted to watch it when it hit rental markets. I thought it was ok, a bit long and boring for most of it but it picked up a little toward the end.|
It's kind of weird... I feel like Jennifer Lawrence is a good actress and I've liked her in other stuff but she feels flat to me as a lead in this series. All she did this time around was walk around with her hair in her face looking sad. It doesn't help that they put her in these high-waisted bore-suits that soaked all interest from the screen. I mean I get that District 13 is supposed to be Spartan and dour but it was also only for like a hundred book pages. Since they are stretching out the last book we end up spending A LOT of time there and I can't quite care about any of it.
I wound up checking my email and thinking about other things for parts of this. The sequels and series of the 80s were pretty box-office driven... There was Back to the Future where the two sequels were planned and shot at the same time but I'm thinking maybe Lord of the Rings was the first all0in commitment from a studio to make a planned trilogy. Of course Harry Potter is the big one, but if most people are like me they burned out on the series after the books ended (somewhere around film 5 or 6). Twilight, which I never saw any of. The Hobbit which was unfortunate all around. And of course Star Wars, which I don't know the details of but I suspect the first two sequels were rough-sketched out before Empire ended since they had those cliffhangers with Han and Luke. I'm just pondering the nature of this series and how it fits with the others... I feel like maybe these mega-franchises are not really a great idea. So much of this one felt like ramp-up to the next one and so much is presupposed from the last one that it doesn't really stand on its own at all. It's kind of like a really big budget episode of television.
How's something like this going to live on in historical context? I'm a big fan of LotR but it's been years and years since I last saw them and I'm not likely to anytime soon because it's like a 12-hour commitment. If in 5 years I get an itch to experience Hunger Games again, am I going to sit down and watch all 4 of these movies? And further on down the line... it's not like these movies reflect much historical or social context because they were all planned out roughly at the same time. When I went back and went through the Texas Chainsaw Massacres I had a great time reading the different eras that each film represented. Or if I go back and watch some Police Academy movies, I'll be able to see the evolution pattern that that series took. And I think that comes from someone doing one movie then sitting down and asking "where can we take this? what next?"
Certainly there are some positives to knowing how things will end before you start them, but I think that the form of the trilogy has cemented for a reason. Any more than 3 and you start to meander. I definitely felt that with this movie.
wow long and rambling. I should've written this while watching!