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Movie Review: "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire"

Nov 20 2013, 5:56am CST | by ABC News Radio

Lionsgate(NEW YORK) -- It’s really this simple; Jennifer Lawrence was meant to play Katniss Everdeen.  It seems silly to say because it's as obvious as the makeup on Effie Trinket’s face.  I can...

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36 weeks ago

Movie Review: "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire"

Nov 20 2013, 5:56am CST | by ABC News Radio

Lionsgate(NEW YORK) -- It’s really this simple; Jennifer Lawrence was meant to play Katniss Everdeen.  It seems silly to say because it's as obvious as the makeup on Effie Trinket’s face. 

I can write about the marvelous direction of “Hunger Games” newcomer Francis Lawrence, or Jo Willems' gorgeous cinematography, the design and scope of Panem and Katniss’ home, District 12.  But it's Lawrence’s face -- full of antipathy, distrust, pain and love -- that pulls you in and never lets go.

In The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Katniss and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson), as victors of the most recent Hunger Games, are about to embark on the traditional victor’s tour of the districts, but before they step on the train, Katniss is visited by Panem’s dictator, President Snow (Donald Sutherland).  As we saw at the end of The Hunger Games, Katniss’ insolence has begun to inspire the masses.  In a delicious exchange, Snow -- keenly aware that Katniss and Peeta were faking their romantic relationship -- acknowledges that Katniss has become a beacon of hope for the people but admonishes her to become a better actor, or deal with the death of her family, and likely District 12.

Our heroine decides it will be best for everyone if she sticks to the script, visits the districts and acts as though she loves Peeta.  That plan quickly comes apart during their first stop: District 11, the home of Katniss' dead friends Rue and Thresh, who saved her life in The Hunger Games.  This is Lawrence at her best, connecting with the audience in a moving scene during which she meets the people of District 11, and Rue and Thresh’s families.  Her heartfelt words inspire an elderly man to thrust his arm in the air and whistle, mimicking Katniss’ famous Mockingjay signal.  It incites a riot.

Katniss can’t help but be the inspiration she is, and there's not much Snow can do about: if he has her killed, it would surely lead to a further uprising.  Enter Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s Plutarch Heavensbee, the new Gamemaker.  Heavensbee and Snow decided that the 75th anniversary of the Hunger Games will be unlike any games they’ve had.  This time, they'll reap (select) the tributes from the living pool of past Hunger Games victors, forcing Katniss back into the arena, and quite possibly Peeta, too.  The plan, of course, is that they don't survive.

Stanley Tucci, who returns as Hunger Games host Caesar Flickerman, is even more enjoyable than he was in the first film.  The same goes for everything about The Hunger Games: Catching Fire -- which is saying a lot, given how high the first film set the bar.  Director Lawrence’s vision of this dystopian world is more consuming, too, making it easy to get lost in this two-hour, 26-minute wave of emotion that you just don't want to end.  The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is that rare instance when the movie is better than the book, and the second movie is better than the first. 

Four-and-a-half out of five stars./>
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Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Source: ABC News Radio

 
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1 week ago

Kate Hudson And Jimmy Fallon Play 'Box Of Lies,' Can't Control Their Giggles

Jul 22 2014 8:11am CDT | Source: Huffington Post

Kate Hudson just went from "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days" to "how to completely lose it in 10 seconds." Earlier this year, Jennifer Lawrence couldn't keep it together during "Box of Lies" with Jimmy Fallon, but now it's Hudson's turn to fail in the most hilarious way ever. One thing is for sure, the actress' new movie, "Wish I Were Here," seems to be aptly titled because wi ...
Source: Huffington Post   Full article at: Huffington Post
 

 
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5

1 week ago

Second Wave Of Teen Choice Awards 2014 Nominees Revealed

Jul 18 2014 2:01pm CDT | Source: Huffington Post

Another batch of Teen Choice Awards nominees were announced yesterday, just in time for the live show's premiere next month. The first wave has already been revealed, making the big event even more star-studded. Leading the way in movies is "22 Jump Street," with seven nominations in the eight film categories. Iggy Azalea was nominated four times in music and another for Style Icon. Other nominees are Ansel Elg ...
Source: Huffington Post   Full article at: Huffington Post
 

 
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4

2 weeks ago

Claire Leeson Spent $30,000 To Look Like Kim Kardashian

Jul 14 2014 4:15pm CDT | Source: Huffington Post

Kim Kardashian's style does not come cheap. Just ask 24-year-old Claire Leeson, who freely admits to spending thousands of dollars to look like the reality star. The Essex, England resident revealed she's spent an estimated $30,000 on breast implants, hair extensions, spray tans, makeup and clothing to emulate the 33-year-old star. Appearing on ITV's "This Morning" on J ...
Source: Huffington Post   Full article at: Huffington Post
 

 
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3

6 weeks ago

Jennifer Lopez Dances With Jimmy Fallon, Says She Didn't Mean To Reject JLaw

Jun 17 2014 1:17pm CDT | Source: Huffington Post

Jennifer Lopez stopped by "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" on June 16 looking nothing short of stunning in a plunging white dress that flattered her famous figure. The 44-year-old, who recently split with boyfriend Casper Smart, was the recent topic of conversation when Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence stopped by "The Tonight Show" and recounted the time Lopez apparently rejected her offer to dance together at the 2013 Met Gala. Fallon, who was on ...
Source: Huffington Post   Full article at: Huffington Post
 

 
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2

7 weeks ago

Jennifer Lawrence's Joy Mangano biopic gets release date

Jun 7 2014 10:01pm CDT | Source: Digital Spy

Jennifer Lawrence re-teams with American Hustle's David O Russell on Jo ...
Source: Digital Spy   Full article at: Digital Spy
 

 

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