Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN


November 27, 2013

'Catching Fire' delves into darker, somewhat redundant territory



That means the 12-to-18-year-old age range of normal Hunger Games competitions is nullified; it also means Katniss and Peeta are drafted back into the arena representing District 12, proving the government’s promise they’d never again be forced to compete is a lie.

“Fire’s” greatest and most glaring weakness lies in it similarities to “Games.” It sometimes feels as if director Francis Lawrence (“I am Legend” – assuming the reigns from Gary Ross) used the first film as a blueprint, transforming its story, directorial style and other elements into a formula, which he adheres to a little too closely.

By the same token, however, the continuity between films 1 and 2 is impressive, with Director Lawrence managing to make the transition between the two more seamless than might otherwise be expected. In other words, these two films feel like they belong together, like they’re part of the same universe and world.

Helping the director in that regard is Jennifer Lawrence, who again brings her considerable presence to Katniss. She has a subtle, yet powerful combination of vulnerability, toughness and poise, and her chemistry with Hutcherson has improved since the first film, making their dynamic more compelling. Does she love him? Does she not? After all the pair has survived together, we’d like to see Katniss choose Peeta over the vapid Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth).

Of course, there’s not much time for romance when you’re trudging through the jungle, running for your life from flesh-devouring poisonous fog, rabid mandrills, blood rain, lightening and a horde of seasoned killers out to murder you before you can murder them. Indeed, that’s how Katniss and Peeta spend most of the second half of this film.

And although that’s how they spent much of the first film, “Fire” certainly differentiates itself with a twist ending that both leaves the viewer “hungering” for more, and foreshadows the series’ direction moving into 2014’s  “Mockingjay – Part 1.”

Text Only
  • ent-gb073114-state fair concerts jpg Indiana State Fair concerts at the Fairgrounds Coliseum and Free Stage boasts major talent Concerts that are part of the 2014 Indiana State Fair begin next week as Lynyrd Skynyrd performs on Thursday, July 31 (pre-fair) followed by amazing shows at the Fairgrounds Coliseum and Free Stage throughout the run of the fair. Also, in celebration

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • ent-gb073114-Movie boys pic Movie Boys: Lucy This week Andy is back from the opening round of parenthood, and we take a look at the Scarlett Johansson action vehicle, “Lucy” (R). Johansson’s title character is forced to become a drug mule, when an accident causes her brain capacity to advance a

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 'This is the End' is long and not funny FROM THE DEN AT HOME — I was nothing short of stunned by how little I enjoyed “This is the End.”I rented this film expecting an irreverent, side-splitting hilarious romp, with laughs coming so quickly and frequently I’d be forced to watch a second ti

    July 31, 2014

  • ent-gb073114-New at library pic New arrivals at library Translation to XTAGS failed

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws-gb072614-book review pic 1 Review: Supersurvivors by David B. Feldman, PhD & Lee Daniel Kravetz You’re not sure if you’ll ever recover.The loss of job or a business. The loss of a lifelong dream. The loss of your health or the life of someone you love. Without a doubt, you’ll never be the same. It’s the worst thing that could ever happen to you

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • New arrivals at library Translation to XTAGS failed

    July 25, 2014

  • "Hercules" movie poster Movie preview: “Hercules”

    Plot: Having endured his legendary twelve labors, Hercules, the Greek demigod, has his life as a sword-for-hire tested when the King of Thrace and his daughter seek his aid in defeating a tyrannical warlord.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • "Lucy" movie poster Movie preview: “Lucy”

    Plot: Writer/director Luc Besson helms this action-thriller that tracks a woman who falls prey to sinister underworld forces, but gains superhuman abilities that allow her to strike back at her oppressors.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • ent-gb072414-movie wolf apes dawn - pic Latest 'Apes' flick is monkey as metaphor FROM THE DEN AT WOLF THEATRES — At its core, “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” is a fable about the human condition that evinces thoughtful, subtle influences from a slightly unexpected source: George Orwell’s 1945 novel “Animal Farm.”Of course, with

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • ent-gb072414 Movie Boys review jpg Begin Again is nice counter to endless summer blockbusters With Andy still on sabbatical, I’ll be taking a solo look this week at an anti-blockbuster-type of movie. Begin Again (R) stars Mark Ruffalo as a down-and-out New York music executive who stumbles into a bar and coincidentally hears an ingénue singer

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo