There are some hard-hitting dramatic beats in this final installment of the series. Perhaps I’m just madly in love with J-Law. Yes, that could be it. But she is also a hell of an actress.
Katniss takes a dark turn early, and she leaves us wondering how the resolution will play out if she becomes the self-appointed assassin of the revolution.
Panem is a place of mythic symbols, and they take their propaganda seriously. The main metaphor of the series is the dichotomy between the people who see war as a game and the pawns whose lives are decided by others. Katniss springs from the powerless, the Tributes, but she will be tempted to rise through the ranks. Then what?
The climax left me befuddled for awhile. Stopping dead in its tracks, the air blew right out of the theater, and we lingered wondering what Suzanne Collins might have up her sleeve. It’s a daring resolution, but I think it was the right choice.
Lastly, there is a slow denouement which reminded me of the problem with the final Lord of the Rings. That long slow cooldown doesn’t always work, because all the dramatic issues have already been resolved.
I can’t see die hard fans faulting the film. There are plenty of the tropes that went into the series. The characters develop. Not everything is as it seems, and we have a couple of twists to ponder over.
Personally, a few directorial flubs weakened the sequences. Tactics during the battles weren’t on the level. It had a canned feeling in several spots.
A 4/5 effort.