Mockingjay movie soars into success

Meghan Laakso, Reporter

Being an avid reader, it is a personal rule that I read the book before I see the movie. Admittedly this leaves me disappointed with the film 98% of the time but I do this because I like to create and imagine the setting without the movie’s influence. Doing so allows me to feel as if parts of the book have become my own.

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving, my sisters and I went to the theatre to see Mockingjay: Part One. Having read the entire Hunger Games trilogy multiple times, I was worried the film adaption would not live up to the book or even the first two movies. Thankfully, I was pleasantly surprised at how well the plot stayed true to the novel.

In Mockingjay, Katniss returns from the games to find District 12 bombed to pieces. She relocates to District 13 where she is asked to be the face of the rebellion against the Capital. Katniss faces many consequences throughout the movies as President Snow punishes her for her actions of treason against him and his system. One consequence being Peeta held hostage and a victim of mind altering.

Katniss struggles to be the role model the rebellion needs and finds it hard to balance her grief with her desire to be strong for her family and those watching her. She knows that if she shows any signs of weakness, the Capital will use it against her to bring the uprising down. As Katniss struggles to get Peeta back, she also has to work through her  feelings for her close friend, Gale.

Through out the movie, I got more and more excited at how cool all of the special effects were. But I was taken back when I saw they added scenes that weren’t in the book. In the novel, Katniss knew they were going to rescue Peeta but it didn’t elaborate in on the whole rescue plan. In the movie, they included the rescue plan as well as the whole sequence leading up to the actual rescue. To do this, a few other things were added so the audience would understand what was going on. Even though it did surprise me, I continued to be impressed at how smooth and mind-blowing the scenes were.

Since it is a trilogy, there were no casting surprises. Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, and Josh Hutcherson gave phenomenal performances (just like the previous two movies) making you feel everything their character felt. The only complaint I have is the execution of the character of President Coin, acted by Julianne Moore. I was confused at how compliant and nice Coin was made out to be. In the book, Coin was harsh, abrasive, and unapproachable. Because of this edited appearance, the movie did not show the personality conflict between President Coin and Katniss to the degree it was written in the novel. This worries me because I feel some foreshadowing for Mockingjay Part 2 was lost.

Altogether, I would give the movie five out of five stars and my full recommendation to go see the movie for yourself because it is 100% worth it. I have never been happier with a film adaption of a book before.