Academy Award winner Jennifer Lawrence returns as Katniss Everdeen in this thrilling second adventure from The Hunger Games saga. Against all odds, Katniss and fellow tribute, Peeta, have returned home after surviving the games. Winning means they must turn around, leaving their loved ones behind, and embark on a Victory Tour through the districts. Along the way, Katniss senses a rebellion simmering – one that she and Peeta may have sparked. At the end of the Victory Tour, President Snow announces a deadly 75th Hunger Games (Quarter Quell) that could change Panem forever.
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This film picks up where the last one leaves off. Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) is recruited to be the face of the rebellion. She is reluctant until it becomes personal. Happy content people don’t pick fights. The film consists of a propaganda war between Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) and the government and Katniss and the rebels/terrorists/anarchists/freedom fighters.
The story centers around the idea of putting on a massive Public Relations campaign to rise up against the capitol. Don’t get me wrong, I realize the importance of motivating the masses when it comes to warfare in any form but they could have renamed this movie “How the cast of Mad Men would run a war.” I’m imagining a massively popular video parody as I sit here. This is a weakness inherited from the novel but it seems to be final proof that there was just nowhere left for the author to go.
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DAYS OF FUTURE PAST has a perfectly convoluted plot that unites the X-Men universes of the first three movies and Matthew Vaughn’s FIRST CLASS which was set back in the early 1960’s. Thus we have Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellan back as the originals, along with their earlier counterparts, James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender, in the roles of Professor X and Magneto. The movie begins in a hellish future ruled by the Sentinels, killing machines capable of hunting down anyone with even slightest trace of the mutant gene, where there is a handful of surviving mutants led by a now reconciled Professor X and Magneto.
They devise a plan that calls for Kitty Pryde to use her power to send Wolverine’s consciousness back into his 1973 body and then try to prevent Mystique from assassinating Bolivar Trask, the inventor of the Sentinels. It is Mystique’s capture following this crime that allows the Sentinel makers to use her DNA to build indestructible machines capable of neutralizing any mutant’s power. But back in the Vietnam era 70’s, with its lava lamps and water beds, Wolverine has his work cut out for him: Charles Xavier is a bitter alcoholic living in the now shuttered Xavier Institute (under the care of Hank McCoy/Beast) and Magneto is imprisoned below the Pentagon for killing JFK (there is a nice twist on this later).
The best part of this is that it puts Hugh Jackman’s Logan back front and center in the story as he goes about getting Xavier to care again and busting Magneto out of his cell so they can rewrite history and save the future.
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