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THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE - Movie Review

I actually think The Hunger Games is a pretty awesome film franchise. Yeah, the movies aren't perfect, but they mange to entertain me. I really enjoyed the first film, and I'm happy to tell you that the sequel was even better. Director Francis Lawrence did a great job bringing The Hunger Games: Catching Fire to life, and I'm glad that he's also directing the next to two films as well. He has a great handle on the story and characters, and I liked what he did with this movie. It was a much tighter film, and more gripping this time around. There's also more at stake in this part of the story, which brings a good amount of intensity.

Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson reprise their roles as Katniss and Peeta. They are the first-ever co-winners of The Hunger Games in which two adolescent citizens from each of the 12 futuristic dystopian districts are chosen to fight to the death. 

In the sequel Katniss and Peeta head out on a victory tour, where they are forced  to give scripted speeches and condolences to the families of fallen tributes. But something is brewing in the districts. People have been inspired by Katniss and Peeta to rise up against the Capital. They regarded the couple’s willingness to take their own lives at the end of the last Hunger Games as an act of rebellion, and now they want to rebel, even at the expense of their own lives. 

Katniss is a beacon of hope to these people. To get rid of that hope President Snow plots to kill Katniss. He announces that the 75th Hunger Games would include a reaping of only the surviving tributes from the previous games. It is during these games that he would orchestrate her death. This is a blow that no one was expecting, and it is very crushing to the tributes and induces anger, especially for Katniss, who ends up going through hell all over again.

There is a lot of tension in this story, and it's full of moments that will surprise you and bring audiences on the edge of your seat. Especially if you haven't already read the books. There are some pretty terrifying moments here that I would hate to be a part of. Like the first film though, the movie is PG-13, and there is hardly any blood but it's still good, and still gut-wrenching at times. I do think it's funny though that they show more blood on certain TV shows then they do in this movie. 

I liked a lot of the new characters introduced in the movie as well, but my new favorite character was Johanna Mason played by Jena Malone. She was pretty badass. All of the supporting cast was great though! Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jeffrey Wright, Elizabeth Banks, Donald Sutherland, and Woody Harrelson all gave fantastic performances. 

This was an entertaining film, fans of the franchise and the book should enjoy it. I know the Hunger Games isn't for everyone, but I take it as it is, and I really liked it. I can't wait to see the next two films! I'm not the only wine that liked it though! The movie is getting solid reviews, and audiences seem to be loving it. As I listened to people talk about the film in the theater, I heard nothing but praise about how awesome it was. The movie is definitely worth checking out!

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