Tag «sequel movie»

Movie Mondays: Fifty Shades Darker

Movie Mondays: On the occasional Monday, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this edition’s offering:

Book: Fifty Shades Darker by E L James (2011) | Movie: Fifty Shades Darker (2017)

Which did I read/see first? the BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

 

Series: Fifty Shades
Author: E L James
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Suspense
Heat Rating: Smokin’ (BDSM: High)
Point of View: First Person, Single
Source & Format: Public Library–eBook

thoughts

Man, it’s been a long time since I read this novel! But, it’s probably the one I enjoyed reading the most in the trilogy.

Unlike its predecessor, this one has a much stronger plot (aka not just sexy times). We learn more about Christian’s past, we get a suspenseful plot line and plenty of romantic moments.

It’s a solid sequel I think for a series of this nature.

overall

Rating: 4/5
Series Review: Full series review here!
similarreads


Were My Expectations Met?

I watched the original movie two hours before I saw this in theatres for a little refresher. It reminded me that the first movie had some awful dialogue and not a whole lot going on in terms of plot. So what I wanted from Darker was a more suspenseful plot (given the source material’s suspenseful moments) and for Jamie Dornan as Christian to be not as awkward in the role.

And my expectations were met! I thought this movie was much better than its predecessor. It just seemed a lot more natural in its delivery. There was a touch of (intentional) humour in some scenes which was much appreciated but it was also serious when it needed to be. And for being a two hour movie, it didn’t drag on excessively (and looking back, I’m not sure what you would cut out either).

How Close is it to the Book?

Pretty close actually from what I can remember. It hits all the major highlights of the novel.

I was a little disappointed in one thing which you can read about in the spoiler window below.

My Spoiler Rant

One thing I really appreciated about Fifty Shades Darker was Ana’s insistence that they speak to a therapist to work out Christian’s issues; particularly before she accepts his marriage proposal. I just thought it was a nice, realistic touch to the story and one that doesn’t perpetuate the idea that love can heal all on its own. Whereas the movie lacks this idea by never having a therapist scene and makes it seem as if Christian can change who he is by shear will alone.

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Did I Like the Cast?

I still think Dakota makes a fabulous Ana. She was so on point with this movie.

And Jamie seemed a lot more comfortable in the role of Christian. I think his dialogue improved because he didn’t seem as ridiculous saying his lines as he did in the first movie. Or maybe they just toned down the cheese in general? Regardless, I liked his acting a lot more in this one.

My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:

I’m excited to see how they are going to handle the last novel, Fifty Shades Freed. It’s got a lot of drama and I can’t wait to see it!

thewinneris winmovie

Not only was this book so much better than its predecessor, but it was so much easier to watch on the big screen. I liked the approach the movie took, working with the highlights and making things seem a little more natural and not as forced as the first movie seemed.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!


Synopsis for Fifty Shades Darker (from Goodreads):

Daunted by the singular sexual tastes and dark secrets of the beautiful, tormented young entrepreneur Christian Grey, Anastasia Steele has broken off their relationship to start a new career with a Seattle publishing house. But desire for Christian still dominates her every waking thought, and when he proposes a new arrangement, Anastasia cannot resist. They rekindle their searing sensual affair, and Anastasia learns more about the harrowing past of her damaged, driven, and demanding Fifty Shades. While Christian wrestles with his inner demons, Anastasia must confront her anger and envy of the women who came before her and make the most important decision of her life. Erotic, sparkling and suspenseful, Fifty Shades Darker is the irresistibly addictive second part of the Fifty Shades trilogy.

Trailer:

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Movie Monday: Allegiant

Movie Mondays: On the occasional Monday, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Allegiant by Veronica Roth (2013) | Movie: The Divergent Series: Allegiant (2016)

Which did I read/see first? Book

Book Cover | Movie Poster

SERIESous’ Top Book Series: Favourite Dystopian Series
Series: Divergent Trilogy
Author: Veronica Roth
# of Books: 3 (Divergent, Insurgent, Allegiant)

There are a bunch of short stories told from Tobias’ perspective. See the list here.

Book Order: Chronological
Complete?: Yes
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction, Romance, Action
Heat Rating: cool
Point of View: First Person, Single; Alternating (Allegiant)
Source & Format: Public Library–Hardcover

thoughts

I honestly don’t remember much about this book other than that I was disappointing in it (but I did give it 5 stars so who knows what I was thinking all those years ago) and I was shocked by the ending.

I remember that this book was a lot of talking and I didn’t totally expect that. Given how action packed the first two books were, I should have. But it went the way of The Mockingjay in the sense that this is the book of explanations; where you finally learn what has been plaguing this world.

Unlike some people in the world, I did enjoy having Four’s POV as alternating chapters. After Insurgent, I think this is just as much Four’s story as it is Tris’. It was refreshing to me and I really don’t think you could have told the story of Allegiant without it. They are one of my favourite literary couples and I welcomed the insight into both of their characters through the alternating POVs.

overall

This is one of those books I think you appreciate more after you’ve had a chance to digest everything that has happened. It was slower but really built up for a climax completely worthy of this series.

Rating: 5/5
Series Review: Full series review here!
similarreads


Were My Expectations Met?

After the way Insurgent ended, I really didn’t know what to expect in this movie. I don’t remember this book being too action packed so I was expecting it to be on the duller side. I also wasn’t sure what plot lines they would keep and elaborate on.

As a whole, this movie was more exciting than I thought. Not as fun as Divergent but it still kept moving. I think Theo James as Four is responsible for that. His story was definitely more exciting than the one Tris has but I think it was that way in the book too. It was good but nothing mind-blowing either.

How Close is it to the Book?

I immediately Wiki’d the book for the full synopsis to see how close it was. They changed a lot but I think some of the changes were for the best. In the movie, the world outside the wall is really unknown whereas in the book they have inklings of what is maybe out there. I like the spin they have on the experiment, though I still think the way the original Insurgent novel ended has more impact than the what they did in this movie when it comes to Tris’ mom (In the book, it is Tris’ mom who reveals the truth about their Chicago, not a generic person).

I thought the idea of the Fringe was interesting and I like the more Science Fiction vibe the story has in the movie. It felt simpler to me albeit predictable.

It’s been so long since I read the book so I don’t remember how I felt about the characters. I’ve always liked Tris but she seemed a little lacklustre in this movie and I didn’t like that. She wasn’t the strong heroine I always remembered her to be but I might have felt that way reading the books…I should really reread this series.

Did I Like the Cast?

I still love the cast! They are all so great! Ansel Elgort makes it so hard to hate Caleb and Miles Teller as Peter is phenomenal. I loved every moment that he was on screen as Peter (and I never thought I would say those words).

Theo James really stole the show for me in this one. It didn’t hurt that he had a more action-packed story line but Four is such a badass that it was so much fun to watch him.

I mean, it isn’t that hard…<3

My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:

I always thought it was a super stupid idea to split this book up into two parts–and after watching it I have to say that I still stand by that stance. I honestly don’t know if they are going to keep the original ending of the books given the events they kept and modified in this one. I really hope they do but I get the feeling they won’t and that is really upsetting.

thewinneris wintie

After the movie, I would have said it won but it seems a little forgettable now that I write this. It’s also been so long since I read the book! When I think about it now, I remember it being bored yet I gave it a 5/5 right after reading it so what do I know?!

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for Allegiant (from Goodreads):

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered – fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningliess. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend to complexities of human nature – and of herself – while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.

Trailer:

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Movie Mondays: Hunger Games – Mockingjay Part 2

Movie Mondays: On the occasional Monday, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins | Movie: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (2015)

Which did I read/see first? the BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

Warning: For those who have not read the final book of the Hunger Games Trilogy, Mockingjay, while I tried my best, there may unintentionally be spoilers!

Series: The Hunger Games Trilogy
Author: Suzanne Collins
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Competition, Romance, Action
Point of View: First Person, Single

thoughts

It’s a toss-up between Catching Fire and Mockingjay for my 2nd favourite novel in the series. I honestly only really remember the start and end to Mockingjay–it’s all one big blur. But I do really remember liking it and how it shifted more to the politics of everything. There were also some great plot twists that kept me on the edge of my toes.

overall

It was a solid way to end the series and ties up all the lose ends that you possibly want tied.

Rating: 5/5
Series Review: Full series review here!

similarreads


Were My Expectations Met?

Considering I was against the idea of splitting up Mockingjay into two parts, I suppose yes, my expectations were met. The first movie is such a dud to me and this one was definitely more thrilling. We get all the action I wanted to happen in the first one even if I did feel like some parts went on too long in this one.

How Close is it to the Book?

It’s been 5 years since I read Mockingjay but given the Wikipedia synopsis, I would say pretty close. I actually get the impression that most of the important stuff actually happens in this movie and not the previous one in terms of plot points. Not entirely shocking…

There is one scene in particular that really seemed subdued compared to the novel and I was a little disappointed in that. The movie didn’t have as much as an impact as I would have wanted.

Did I Like the Cast?

Yes! Like I said in all my other reviews of the movie, the casting for this series is phenomenal!

Donald Sutherland as President Snow was by-far the highlight for me in this movie. He is a fantastic villain from start to end. Of course, Haymitch and Effie stole the show for me whenever they were on screen. I also thought Josh Hutcherson did a fantastic job with Peeta.

thewinneris winbook

I think I still like the book the best. It was really hard for me to move away from seeing this movie as nothing more than a cash grab for fans. However, I think this was a much better movie than Part 1 and I wish this was the only Mockingjay movie we had for the Trilogy.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for Mockingjay (from Goodreads):

Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games.  She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive.  Katniss should be relieved, happy even.  After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale.  Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be.  Gale holds her at an icy distance.  Peeta has turned his back on her completely.  And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol – a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she’s afraid she cannot stop.  And what scares her even more is that she’s not entirely convinced she should try.  As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol’s cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever.  If they can’t prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.

Trailer:

Movie Monday: The Scorch Trials

Movie Mondays: On the occasional Monday, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: The Scorch Trials by James Dashner (2010) | Movie: Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015)

Which did I read/see first? the BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

SERIESous’ Top Book Series: Biggest Disappointments 2014
Series: The Maze Runner Trilogy
Author: James Dashner
# of Books: 3 (The Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials, The Death Cure)
Book Order: Chronological
Complete?: Yes
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Science Fiction, Suspense, Apocalyptic, Mystery
Heat Rating: cold
Point of View: Third Person

thoughts

I nearly didn’t pick up The Scorch Trials after the extremely-dry-it-was-nearly-brittle story that was The Maze Runner (TMR). TMR was one of those stories that had a great concept but ultimately failed to execute in the way I wanted it to. It was a super long book and I really didn’t want to read an equally long novel for a series I found to be pretty lacklustre. However, that all changed when I read the last 2 chapters of TMR.

The revelations at the end of TMR got me excited to read The Scorch Trials (TST). I knew it was going to be a book exploding with plot twists and secrets–and it was!

TST was hard to put down. It picked up the slack that TMR never got around to. It was faster paced; laced with action and adventure and had great plot twists. Throw in some character development and you’ve got a fantastic story.

Reading TST made me see why people like TMR Trilogy–because up and to that point I was seriously not getting the hype!

overall

The Scorch Trials restored my faith in this series and almost made the task of reading The Maze Runner worth it!

Rating: 4/5
Series Review: Full series review here!

similarreads

Were My Expectations Met?

Seeing as TST was my favourite book of the series AND I adored the first movie, I was SUPER EXCITED to finally watch it!

I wanted a movie with lots of action, lots of Dylan O’Brien screen time (and the other boys too of course) and suspense. I also couldn’t wait to see The Scorch brought to life! TMR Trilogy is so descriptive that I have a very good idea of what everything looks like, but I couldn’t wait to see it on the big screen!

So were my expectations met?

YES!

I was fully entertained during this movie! I was glued to the screen because I couldn’t wait to see what would happen next.

How Close is it to the Book?

I honestly can’t remember what exactly happened in the book. BUT, I do know there were major changes–starting with how they get into the Scorch in the first place.

In theory, I think I like the book’s version more of how they enter the Scorch. It was very interesting to me and it kept me guessing. But in practice, I think I liked the root the movie took in the long run. While it seems to be following a similar Hollywood-esque dystopian movie style, I feel like it works for this story.

I definitely found the movie to be easier to follow. There were just so many elements at play in the book that I like the “less is more” attitude of the movie.

Did I Like the Cast?

What a silly question! YES I LOVED the cast! They are probably one of my favourite casting picks for a book adaption ever.

I loved all the characters I loved in the book (maybe even more) and I loved to hate the characters I hated in the book.

My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:

Words cannot express how excited and pleased I am that there is not going to be a split 3rd movie! It didn’t work for The Hunger Games nor Twilight and there really is no need for Divergent to be split into two movies either (I’m skeptical). I cannot wait to see how everything wraps up and I hope that I get more closure in the movie that I ever did in the books.

Only bummer part is waiting until 2017 🙁

thewinneris winmovie

I think I had this decided before I even saw the movie! While I enjoyed the book, I loved this movie! It made me jump in my seat, want to slap some characters for their nonsense and had me holding my breath. It was just so entertaining and I can’t wait to see it all wrap up!

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for The Scorch Trials (from Goodreads):

Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end.

Thomas was sure that escape from the Maze would mean freedom for him and the Gladers. But WICKED isn’t done yet. Phase Two has just begun. The Scorch.

There are no rules. There is no help. You either make it or you die.

The Gladers have two weeks to cross through the Scorch—the most burned-out section of the world. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them.

Friendships will be tested. Loyalties will be broken. All bets are off.

There are others now. Their survival depends on the Gladers’ destruction—and they’re determined to survive.

Trailer:

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Movie Mondays: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins | Movie: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014)

Which did I read/see first? the BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

warning

Warning: For those who have not read the final book of the Hunger Games Trilogy, Mockingjay, while I tried my best, there may unintentionally be spoilers!

The Book:

Series: The Hunger Games Trilogy
Author: Suzanne Collins
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Competition, Romance, Action
Point of View: First Person, Single

Thoughts:

As I said in my previous review of Catching Fire, it’s a tossup between Mockingjay and Catching Fire for my second favourite book of the trilogy. It is hard to ultimately decide because they differ so much from the inaugral Hunger Games book.

Mockingjay is definitely slower because we don’t have the Games to keep us entertained. But, things come to the forefront regarding the dystopian universe the books are set in and that managed to capture my attention. There were also a lot of twists that kept things interesting.

Conclusion:

There isn’t much to say that I haven’t said about the previous two books. They are all well written and I liked how everything wrapped up in this one. It has also been 3 years since I read it and I can’t remember the particulars of my reaction to the book after finishing it but I really liked the book when all was said and done.

Rating: 5/5
Series Review: Full series review here!.

Similar Reads: Divergent by Veronica Roth (Divergent Trilogy, #1) and Delirium by Lauren Oliver (Delirium Trilogy, #1)

The Movie:

I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that I thought splitting up Mockingjay into two parts was a stupid idea. All it is to me is a way to make extra money because they know people will see it. But when it comes to the story, I have no idea how you split up such a small book that really doesn’t have a whole lot going on into two 2-hour movies.

And I think it showed when I watched the movie: because it was on the duller side.

Did I need to watch some guy I don’t remember reading about, and still don’t know the name of, walk away from a plane for 5 minutes? Nope.

Did I need to revisit the same site of destruction 2+ times to get the idea that things weren’t good in PanAm? Nope.

Did I need another shot of a distraught Katniss to get the idea that she was distraught? Hell no!

Don’t get me wrong, I thought Jennifer Lawrence did a great job with what she was given and I think she is a great actress. She was dramatic but not annoyingly so in terms of her acting. It was the plot that I struggled with.

Honestly, it was dull and I felt like nothing really happened until the last 30 minutes of the movie. There was just so much redundancy that I think it really killed the movie and left me with a bad taste in my mouth. Frankly, there was no reason to drag this book out into two movies and it makes me really worried for Divergent’s third movie, Allegiant because there is no need to extend that book into two parts when NOTHING HAPPENS action wise. It’s a shame the focus is on money and not providing the best experience for the viewer.

So while I didn’t love the movie, I still liked watching all my favourite characters brought to life. Stanley Tucci, Woody Harrelson and Elizabeth Banks were fantastic and I loved watching them on screen. The casting for this series has been amazing and it was great seeing the chemistry between all the characters.

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the BOOK. Honestly, there is no need for two movies and I preferred the concise scenes of the book to the redundant scenes of the movie.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for The Hunger Games (from Goodreads):

Sparks are igniting.
Flames are spreading.
And the Capitol wants revenge.

Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games.  She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive.  Katniss should be relieved, happy even.  After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale.  Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be.  Gale holds her at an icy distance.  Peeta has turned his back on her completely.  And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol – a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she’s afraid she cannot stop.  And what scares her even more is that she’s not entirely convinced she should try.  As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol’s cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever.  If they can’t prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.

Trailer:

Movie Mondays: Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants Series by Ann Brashares | Movie: Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants and Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants 2 (2005 & 2008)

Which did I read/see first? Books

Book Cover | Movie Poster

The Book:

Series: Sisterhood or Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Drama, Coming of Age, Chick Lit, Contemporary
Point of View: Third Person, Alternating (though each book starts with a First Person prologue)

Thoughts:

The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants series is one of the first Young Adult series I ever read and I credit it with my reading addiction. While they are definite chick lit books, they really do have good messages about friendship and family.

The books have a lot going on because you are essentially reading 4 different girls stories that are linked by them being all friends. Nowadays you would probably get a single book for each girl but I like how they are all combined together. I always found that there was some plotline that was my favourite in each story that made me keep reading even if I wasn’t a fan of one girl’s plotline.

Conclusion:

These books are a lot of fun but also have some more serious moments to them. Young adult chick-lit fans will love these books without a doubt!

Rating: 4.5/5
Series Review: Full series review here!

Similar Reads: Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson #1)

The Movies:

I decided to combine book movies into one review instead of making them separate. The first movie, The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, is only based on the first book of the series; however the sequel movie combines books 2-4 together with the main focus being on book 4, Forever in Blue.

So, I’ll start with the first movie. I thought it was really well done and I really enjoyed it. The casting was spot on, though I’m not the biggest Alexis Bledel fan so I didn’t overly like her as Lena. But other than that, the rest of the cast was great and even if I don’t like Alexis, she is exactly what I pictured Lena to look like. It captured the heart of the book very well and it was cool to see a favourite book series come to life on the big screen.

I was really surprised when the second movie was announced because my understanding was that the first one didn’t do crazy well at the box office. Regardless, I was super excited to watch it. Again, the cast was great and I had no problems there. Knowing that they were combining the next 3 books into one movie, I think they did a good job. It’s hard to do and I know that things had to get cut but I think they blending everything well. I totally thought that they changed the ending but based on what I read on Wikipedia, I am wrong there 😛

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the BOOKS. While the movies do a good job at capturing the feel of the books, I like the full plotlines we get in the books though I don’t think fans of the books will be disappointed in the movies.

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (from Goodreads):
Carmen got the jeans at a thrift shop. They didn’t look all that great: they were worn, dirty, and speckled with bleach. On the night before she and her friends part for the summer, Carmen decides to toss them. But Tibby says they’re great. She’d love to have them. Lena and Bridget also think they’re fabulous. Lena decides that they should all try them on. Whoever they fit best will get them. Nobody knows why, but the pants fit everyone perfectly. Even Carmen (who never thinks she looks good in anything) thinks she looks good in the pants. Over a few bags of cheese puffs, they decide to form a sisterhood and take the vow of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants . . . the next morning, they say good-bye. And then the journey of the pants — and the most memorable summer of their lives — begins.

Trailer for Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants:

Movie Mondays: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins | Movie: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)

Which did I read/see first? BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

warning

Warning: For those who have not read the sequel to the Hunger Games, Catching Fire, while I tried my best, there may unintentionally be spoilers!

The Book:

Series: The Hunger Games Trilogy
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Competition, Romance, Action

Thoughts:

This is hard to review without giving too much away about the series but I will give it a shot.

After the high I got reading the Hunger Games, I will admit I was a little disappointed in this second book. If you asked me to rank the books in my favourite order right after reading them all, I wouldn’t hesitate to put Mockingjay before Catching Fire. But as I said in my series review, it’s now a toss-up between Mockingjay and Catching Fire for that coveted second spot.

I think the main reason I felt a little let down by this book was that it starts really slowly. Based on the synopsis, I expected us to be thrust into the action but what we get instead is the daily life in Panem. It definitely picks up though with a major twist (that somehow I had read before the book so that was a little disappointing to say the least) and then it doesn’t stop.

All I can say is that I am glad I read all these books after they had all been released or I would have pulled my hair out at that cliff-hanger ending.

Conclusion:

While it follows the format of a typical book 2 in a trilogy, it still is on par with it’s predecessor and keeps things interesting and leaves readers on edge for the follow-up.

Series Review: Full series review here!.
Rating: 5/5

Similar Reads: Divergent by Veronica Roth (Divergent Trilogy, #1) and Delirium by Lauren Oliver (Delirium Trilogy, #1)

The Movie:

It’s not a secret that I loved the first movie. Overall, it was a solid movie adaption with a superb cast and amazing costumes and set design. Based on the previous movie my only concern with this new movie was the shaky camera work that would sometimes make me sick to my stomach.

I happy to report that there is no shaky camera work AND they seem to realize that a more mature audience was watching because I found they kept a lot more of the violence in than in the previous movie.

This movie was the perfect blend of life in District 12 and the events that follow. I didn’t find that it dragged (and it easily could considering the movie was 2.5 hours long) and it kept me interested.

I also like that they added some humour to the movies. I find Jennifer Lawrence to be a pretty funny girl and there were certain scenes that you could tell she wasn’t really acting but she was just being herself. She does a great job of playing Katniss and unlike the Katniss on the book who started to irritate me a little, she never bothered me in the movie. When I went to see this the second time you could easily tell who had read the books and who hadn’t based on who chuckled at certain points.

I think it helped that it’s been two years since I saw the book so I don’t remember much. After I saw it again with my mom (who also read the books) we immediately went to check my copy of the book to see how it ended (we thought it ended differently). Turns out the end scene is identical to what we find in the book and a lot of the story is similar as well. Of course, changes were made but they were things that were so small I had totally forgot that they were in the book. I also have to give props to the screenwriters in how they handle the scenes that Katniss never talks about in the book that you see in the movie (like President Snow scenes). I could easily see those conversations happening in the book in the background and if I didn’t know better, I would have suspected that they were a part of the book.

Again the set and costumes were great! They really capture the world Collins writes about which I truly appreciate as a fan of the books.

I’m also glad they kept this movie as one whole movie. Dragging it out into two wouldn’t be that enjoyable. I’m interested to see how they will separate Mockingjay into two parts (because it too could be kept as a single movie in my opinion). Guess I will have to wait a year to see how that all plays out 🙁

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the MOVIE . Again, another tough choice but I’m giving it to the movie this time for simply reminding me how great the book is. It basically took all my favourite parts of Catching Fire, omitted the slower parts and used that to create the movie. Yet again, fans of the books will not be disappointed in this movie adaption 🙂

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for The Hunger Games (from Goodreads):

Sparks are igniting.
Flames are spreading.
And the Capitol wants revenge.

Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games.  She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive.  Katniss should be relieved, happy even.  After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale.  Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be.  Gale holds her at an icy distance.  Peeta has turned his back on her completely.  And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol – a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she’s afraid she cannot stop.  And what scares her even more is that she’s not entirely convinced she should try.  As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol’s cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever.  If they can’t prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.

Trailer: