The Hunger Games: The end of an era

‘Shoot as clean as your heart is’


Movie: “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2”

Company: Lionsgate

Release date: Nov. 20

Grade: B+

A story of emotional twists and turns, “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2” is dark and morbid but somehow ends optimistically with Katniss’s head held high.

As Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) seeks an end to President Snow’s reign, Peeta’s (Josh Hutcherson) tortured mind remains a focal point for the movie.

This film brings a certain modern influence that we all can relate to – the use of media. From the opening of the film media is what drives and pushes the plot by mobilizing the masses to think a certain way. While media on the rebels’ side attempts to capture Katniss’ inspiration and unite their forces during the film, the capital attempts to capture Katniss’ downfall to demoralize the rebel forces.

This constant push and pull of propaganda is captured superbly, with cliché enactments organized by a camera crew clashing with real world dangers.

The unification of District 2 is executed by the propaganda of the rebels’ planning and the unscripted voice of Katniss. Her staged “death” becomes the image for both sides of the war in an effort to sensationalize their morale even though Katniss still lives.

This feature of the film is thematically powerful as the issues of what is true and false, while the media and war muddle what is right or wrong.

Jennifer Lawrence plays a perfectly unstable Katniss, floating on the extremes of love, hate and revenge.

In her charismatic role, she unanimously leads the rebels and tries to protect and defend herself from Peeta because of his brainwashed hate for her.

Katniss desperately tries to protect everyone around her and end the war, which she does, single-handedly.

She plans to assassinate Snow along with the help of Peeta, Finnick and Gale (Liam Hemsworth) in their last attempt to free Panem from the capitol.

As many rebels fall to traps from the royalist game masters, others fall to the collateral of war.

The movie is heartfelt in its depiction of death and loss, yet still manages to put an optimistic end to a riveting series of sadistic physical and psychological games.

As the film comes to an end, Katniss’s purity is challenged.

She appears to give into the cycle of revenge by giving into President Coin’s idea of making the royalist participate in a new hunger games.

She agrees and is asked to carry out the public execution of Snow. While making a speech in front of the public execution, Coin says to Katniss, “Shoot as clean as your heart is.”

Instead, Katniss aims at President Coin and kills her with a swift arrow to the heart.

This scene is one of making things right and causes rather mixed emotions to overtake the film with the death of President Coin.

Coin, who appeared no better than Snow as a ruler, forced Katniss’ hand, who didn’t want to see Coin become a new tyrant.

In a letter to Katniss, Plutarch says, "We may mess up, but perhaps we may learn from our mistakes this time.”

This letter justifies Katniss’s actions and her purity as someone who wants what is good for everyone in Panem.

This may not have been the most exciting of the movies in some people’s eyes, but it is one of the more conceptually powerful films in the series with convincing acting.


Giovanni Gaglianese is an arts staff writer. Arts desk can be reached at