Media Courtesy of Movie Pilot
I'll be honest here, I had mixed feelings going into the theater and watching this movie. But I'm so glad I went to go watch it because it was incredible! Just when you thought that this series couldn't have gotten any better, it surprises you with the masterpiece that is Mockingjay Part 1. I'll promise to share with you what I thought about it with as little spoilers as possible.
From start to finish, the movie keeps you at the edge of your seat. Even if you did not read the books prior to watching the movies, you were hooked from the start. There was certainly never a dull moment and right away, the movie was able to capture the viewers attention and keep them wanting to watch more and more.
The cast was also equally incredible. Especially with new additions like Natalie Dormer, Julianne Moore and Mahershala Ali, this star studded cast did not disappoint and each brought their best to the table. Despite the cast's amazing performances, it was Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson who really shined. Each of them proved to the audience that they really are incredible actors, especially with such difficult and emotional roles as this one. I'll spare you the details, especially if you haven't read the book and don't want to be spoiled, but I will say this, those two actors deserve an award because those were the most incredible performances I've seen in a long time.
Director Francis Lawrence and Cinematographer Jo Willems also stand out in this film. We have never experienced the districts as much as we have in this movie and these two just worked together to make them stand out more than ever. Especially in the outside scenes, all of the angles and the way the lighting highlights certain parts of the outdoors that Katniss loves so much causes for such breathtaking scenes that make you feel like you're really there with them.
Composer James Newton Howard also deserves a lot of credit. The film's score was one of the best I've heard in a long time and the music really kept in line with the movie, which can tend to be difficult with a movie like this. There were times where I felt that the music really made the scene so much more spectacular and I believe that if any other composer was chosen, we couldn't have felt so moved by certain scenes than how James Newton Howard.
Finally, the writing styles of both Danny Strong and Peter Craig really shine throughout this film. It's very hard to adapt a book into a movie, especially one of this nature, but they did such incredible job. The best part of the film were the extra scenes that were not in the book, due the fact that the movie is not based on Katniss' point of view like how the book is. It was interesting to see what was going on in other parts of the world of Panem, specifically in the Capitol, while Katniss is in 13 and these extra scenes do not disappoint. They just add more layers to the story that they are portraying and allow us to take a deeper look as to both sides of this war.
Overall, this movie does not disappoint at all. Fans of the book will enjoy seeing the extras that the movie has to offer and those who haven't read the books will enjoy every exploring the never before seen parts Panem. Everyone who has worked on this movie came together to create one of the best films of 2014. I recommend you to watch it as soon as you can because this film is going to be the one thing everything is going to be talking about for a long time. The Mockingly certainly lives and it is even better than ever before.