The new Hunger Games film might have been a pretty good war movie, if there were an actual war in it. But there's not. Suzanne Collins'Mockingjay, the concluding novel in her Hunger Games trilogy, tells the story of an uprising by the citizens of Panem against the tyrannical President Snow. However, in the manner of the Harry Potter and Twilight franchises, the screen version of Collins' book has been stretched, for purposes of profit-maximization, into two movies. And so The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 is essentially a prequel to the presumably more exciting wrapup still to come in Part 2. Although Mockingjay was filmed as one long picture, that second installment won't be released for another year. So when this movie comes to an end—or just stops, actually—in the midst of an emotionally fraught scene, we're not tantalized so much as simply annoyed, writes Kurt Loder.
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