Monday, April 15, 2013

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire -- Trailer Reaction

If there is anything that gives me that old man, "these darn kids!", mentality it would be the MTV Movie Awards. Last year, I subjected myself to the 'prestigious' ceremony in order to watch first-hand the preview for the then-upcoming film The Dark Knight Rises. It was ultimately worth sitting through the agonizing hours of bestowing high honours onto classic films such as The Twilight Saga : Breaking Dawn - Part 1 and cinematic sequences involving defecation and wedding dresses, but there will be very few films in the future that will earn my admiration and/or anticipation enough to torment myself with the antics of idiotic teens and unfunny comedians again.

This year the "big footage preview" event for the MTV Movie Awards was the first full trailer for the upcoming sequel to last years massive hit The Hunger Games.

The Hunger Games was not a cinematic classic nor a flawless film by any means, but it was a surprisingly enjoyable and interesting film. I had little to no reason to ever see the film aside from the involvement of rising star and now Academy Award winner Jennifer Lawrence, but fortunately the talented actresses lived up to her reputation as an emerging talent and was easily the best aspect of the film with her commendable performance. To be fair, even with its flaws, most other aspects of film were pretty good in their own right.

Now we have our first glimpse at the sequel titled The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Yep. I am on board. Granted the film still does not look to be one of the all-time cinematic greats, but then again, stranger things have become so. However, this film really appears to be avoiding the sequel trap of retreading the same ground in hopes of delivering more of what the fans loved about the first film and instead appears to do what all great sequels have: explore new territory while expanding the story. 

One of my biggest issues with The Hunger Games was how much more interesting the pre-game story was compared to the actual events which occurred during the games themselves. The film does not exactly fall apart once the games begin, but it does suffer from the most problems during those sequences. The biggest of these problems being the death of a 'major' character, which is meant to be profound and moving, yet we barely spent any time with the character in question much less explored her relationship with Lawrence's Katniss Everdeen. The most intriguing aspects of the film were when it explored the concept of these games, their intended social roles, and the preparation rituals and trials leading up to the games. It was fascinating getting inside the inner machinations of this dystopian society while getting to know Katniss and the supporting characters.

While the novel apparently does shift the story back to the games in what is essentially an all-star edition of the fictional reality competition, the trailer for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire at least points to the possibility that the inner machinations of the powers that be within the society and the consequences of Katniss' actions from the previous film in the form of civilian rebellion will be the focus of the films story. Exploring this world further? Jennifer Lawrence, Donald Sutherland, and Philip Seymour Hoffman? I am excited.

P.S If you are one of those idiots still insisting The Hunger Games films/novels are a rip-off of Battle Royale....PLEASE GO FUCKING EDUCATE YOURSELF!

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