Catching Fire: The Sequel to the Hunger Games

Autumn R.
Staff Writer

The sequel to The Hunger Games, Catching Fire came to theatres November 22nd. Written by Suzanne Collins, Catching Fire has gotten rave reviews and has made $26.2 million at the box office. The heart-pounding journey of Katniss Everdeen, which began in The Hunger Games, continues in the film Catching Fire. The thrill of The Hunger Games returns in the sequel, as well as the romance triangle between Katniss, Peeta, and Gale. The audience is confused and anxious to see how Katniss handles the love triangle, keeping the audience on their toes throughout the movie. Through Katniss’ journey, she overcomes a variety of obstacles that keeps the audience engaged.catchingfire-ar

Catching Fire, the second movie and book in The Hunger Games series, has received outstanding reviews from theatres and viewers across the nation. People are so enthralled with the plot, the outrageous costumes,  and the characters’ perfect acting skills, but what the  fans love most about the movie is that it is so closely related to the novels. The previous movie in the series, The Hunger Games, did not get such great reviews when it came to relating to the book, for there were a few scenes that were displayed differently. However, with Catching Fire, the reviews were quite the opposite. Audiences across the country said that the second book is so closely related to the novel, but in reality, no movie can be 100% like the book, so there were a few changes.catchingfire2-ar

There are four major changes in the movie, varying it from the book.  The first is how the President now threatens Katniss with images, not words, about her love for Gale.  In the book, when Snow comes to visit Katniss in District 12, he ends their tense conversation by saying “By the way, I know about the kiss,” making him sound more like a jealous middle schooler than a powerful tyrant. In the movie, he reminds her to continue toeing the line and leaves her with a little video projector that plays footage of the kiss, a reminder that Capitol eyes are everywhere, and a way to imply that he actually cares about Katniss’s feelings for Gale. The second difference is Plutarch Heavensbee doesn’t show off his mockingjay watch. When Katniss dances with the new Head Gamemaker at a Capitol ball, in the book he keeps the conversation simple, but pauses to show off his pocketwatch emblazoned with a mockingjay. Katniss eventually puts together the watch and the arena’s shape to realize it is a clock. This would be a little hard to connect in a movie, so the film changes their dialogue in that scene entirely.  Also, within the movie there is much less time spent within district twelve. The movie eliminates many scenes within district twelve to help move the plot along more smoothly visually. The movie writers also deleted a whole chapter from the book in the movie. The chapter contained news on district thirteen, but it was not used, because it does not aid in information needed for the next movie.  Other than those few differences, the movie has been reviewed as being closely related to the  novel.  Senior Madison McCabe comments, “I actually like how the movie interpreted the book.  In some parts of the book I found it boring, and the movie did not mention those parts, which I liked.” Most fans who read the novels are distracted by the immaculate costume choices in the movie, and not the differences compared to the novel.

Catching Fire has even more extravagant costumes than in the previous movie. Trish Summerville, costume director, went all out in this film. From makeup to wardrobe, Summerville knocks it out of the park. The audience can see that there are many more gloomy and dark costumes, expressing the depression of all the districts. One mentor of Peeta and Katniss in the film, Effie Trinket has the most outrageous costumes of them all. From dresses made of butterflies, to many different colored wigs, she earns the most intriguing costume award. Summerville states that her favorite costume to create though was one of Katniss’. She had a beautiful winter wonderland wedding gown that soon turned into a black mocking jay bird dress that even had wings.  Drawing her ideas from nature, Summerville said it was “complicated but the most rewarding” of the costumes. Senior Zack Case comments, “The costumes are really weird in this movie, but if they weren’t, the movie would be a lot less interesting.” Along with the beautiful costumes comes the breathtaking scenery used in the movie.

The scenery in the movie looks so tangible and real, it is almost scary. The virtual jungle with the many palm trees, rushing ocean waves, and even evil monkeys portray  eye-popping imagery that is almost perfect. The jungle is a dangerous and chaotic place, which represents Katniss and Peeta’s lives at the moment during their second Hunger Games.  Senior Madison Schroeder comments, “The book describes the monkeys pretty well, but the movie does it justice. They looked so real I was actually kinda jumping in my seat during the movie!” The gloominess and darkness of winter in district twelve represents the depression of the lives of Katniss and Peeta.  The extravagant and crazy parties that they attend with such immaculate features displays the rich qualities the people of the capitol have. All the scenery has underlying meanings that connect to Katniss and Peeta while also displaying such appealing imagery.

Overall, Catching Fire is a complete hit! It appeals to audiences of all ages and is family appropriate as well. This film has rave reviews, and it will not be a waste of money to see in theatres!

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