"Jennifer Lawrence is a perfect chameleon"

In the third instalment in the Hunger Games franchise, the taunting, killing and flaming arrows have made their way outside of the Hunger Games arena. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) destroyed the games in the previous instalment; Catching Fire and her defiance has inspired the districts to rise against the tyrannical Capitol. A lot is at stake, nonetheless her beloved Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) who is being held captive in Capitol by President Snow (Donald Sutherland).

Katniss is persuaded to join the uprising’s propaganda team. She becomes the Mockingjay, part broadcast journalist and part superhero, bearing the torch, wings and voice of the rebellion. Uprising starts and the Mockingjay begins to sing, but is it really for good? Who is playing with whom? 

This is another Hunger Games film directed by Francis Lawrence (Catching Fire), but a difference is that the last book has been divided into two films. 

I thought the film was very exciting, but inevitably, I think the best is yet to come. In a way the films serves as a credible build-up for the final film. There are more physiological traumas and speculation than real action, but still the suspense is seething throughout. It ends on a disturbing note about the mental impact of war. 

The author of the Hunger Games books has said that she drew inspiration for the story from old greek myths and roman expressions. For example, the name "Panem" comes from a Latin phrase "Panem et Circenses", which means "Bread and Circuses". It was a strategy used by Roman Emperors where they thought they could control the people by making sure they were given food and entertainment. 

But ancient inspiration aside, the dilemmas and issues raised in the film feel very current; uprisings, rebels, promos, dictators, civil war and cease fires. The film leaves your moral compass spinning and by questioning the motives and justifications of the fictional characters, you can’t help but feel a wave of unease about civil war and armed rebellion in the real world. 

Another real world glimpse in this science fiction action flick is the comic relief provided by a cat. Not a cat video, but a fluffy pet which was the only thing that made us smile in this film. The rest was a thrilling, nail biting ride where the only path to safety seems to be to jump through the fire.

Jennifer Lawrence is a perfect chameleon. The last few years since the first Hunger Games film she has shown the world how she can completely transform herself for every role. She encompasses Katniss’ complexity; at the same time that brave adolescence, as unpredictable and compassionate as the day she volunteered for the games to save her sister, yet now she is also scarred from the war. 

To conclude, I think the whole series so far has been great. Every decision and plot twist is unexpected and you never know who is deceiving who. I think hunger games fans will enjoy this film, but really what it does is make us look forward to Mockingjay Part 2.