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Mockingjay Part 1

I saw it this afternoon with R&S. Quite liked it. I continue to prefer the movies to the books, largely because I prefer the broader focus of the movies, not being quite so deeply inside Katniss's head. I've noticed a number of reviewers saying negative things about the decision to split the book into two movies. While I rolled my eyes pretty hard when the split was announced, I actually think it was the right choice. And I don't agree at all with criticisms that the movie seemed bloated, too exposition-y, not enough action. I felt like the pace and level of detail was just about right. Maybe the decision to make four movies instead of three was financially motivated, but it's working on an artistic level for me as well.

Major spoilers follow for anyone who hasn't read the books.

The other criticism around the choice to make two movies seems to revolve around the cliffhanger ending. The film ends right after Peeta and the other captured victors are rescued, and I can't think of any other spot that would have made sense. R pointed out that one of the main plot arcs of this movie was the question of what had happened/would happen to Peeta, and this arc is in fact resolved before taking an entirely new direction. Yeah, it's a pretty extreme cliffhanger, but Catching Fire ended on one just as intense, and I don't remember people taking that movie to task. It worked there and it works here.

Good movie, good performances. Great casting -- Julianne Moore is pitch-perfect as President Coin. Recommended.

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