by Heinrich Domingo
For those who cannot comprehend the value of momentary silence, blank stares, and rhythmic poundings, The Mockingjay 2 wishes to apologize. The bored readers might have missed the depiction of the art and science of war. In its last installment, Hunger Games explicates that its story is more than killings and violence, it is of politics, morality, and philosophy. It captures the intricate process of finding utopia in a world designed to be dynamic and faulty.
In order to be called an action film, images on the screen must portray bloodlust and ruthlessness. And for it to pass Hollywood standards, it must be fast-paced, hyped, and vigorous. For the generation reared to have 2-minute attention span, The Mockingjay 2 is a disappointment.
Rather than showcase epic battles and well-staged fight scenes, the film captures the solitude of the main character. Silence and contemplation composed the gist of the film. The seemingly blank spaces are actually tools for viewers to think back of its rationale.
Undeniably, the lack of action in the final piece of Suzanne Collins’ masterpiece is noticeable compared to its predecessors. But, for an ending that pays tribute to the well loved personas of Katniss Everdeen, Peeta Mellark, Finnick Odair, and many more, nostalgia is the way to go.
The Mockingjay 2 begins with a full-face shot of its protagonist (played by Jennifer Lawrence). The film goes on in its storytelling without providing background and context. From here, audience are reminded that what they see is a movie not willing to babysit unknowing expectants. It is, in a way, an omen on how scenes are faithful to their book counterparts.
The director (Francis Lawrence) understands that there could be no better film treatment than the path taken by the book. Such faithfulness is well celebrated by book readers who have been fond of the Hunger Games.
Instead of abiding by the expected, the moviemakers decided to focus on the other side of war. It looked upon agony, remorse, and ambivalence – elements that are seldom discussed in Western action films. For the past three prequels, adrenaline rush fueled the enjoyment of the audience. This year, a new menu is offered. Does the disapproval of the majority of the viewing crowd equates to the film’s failure? Maybe, because the production house might have forgotten that the public does not wish to pause, to stop, or to simply look away. The likes of Marvel movies or Michael Bay films have invaded the system of entertainment. And this time, they have reached our core.