The Hunger Games: Mockingjay II is the second part of the third installment in the dystopian book trilogy written by Suzanne Collins. Though initially I found the splitting of the third book into two parts a Hollywood ploy to maximize the profits from this project, admittedly, there is a lot of material in the book, and fitting it all into a 2 hour film would have done injustice to the story.
This fourth and final installment in The Hunger Games film series was directed by Francis Lawrence to a screenplay adaptation by Peter Craig and Danny Strong. It stars much of the same cast, including Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore, Sam Claflin, Jena Malone, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Donald Sutherland. Not without faults, Mockingjay, Part 2 is a fine piece of filmmaking. Noteworthy are the performances of its cast including Lawrence , Hutcherson, Sutherland and Harrelson. Production value is high and the pace, at least throughout the first part of the film, is even.
On a less favorable notion, this film’s later part loses some of the intimacy of the characters with the audience that the earlier segment of the film managed to create. Special effects take over and something is gone. The overall tone of this series’ conclusion is way too dark and thus the ending, which was to be somewhat optimistic, leaves us with a taste that is more bitter than sweet. I remember reading the books and not having that same dark impression upon completion.
On a separate note, it is kind of freakish to watch Philip Seymour Hoffman, may he rest in peace, in his final performance.
If you have seen the earlier parts, I presume skipping the final installment is not an option. And, again, this is not a bad film. It is quite loyal to the novel. Still, something did get lost in translation.