I have to say that I am thoroughly impressed with all four of these movies. For once, a book to film adaptation was successful and done really well. They were faithful enough to the books to please fans, and at the same time they added in magnificent scenes which couldn’t be shown in the books – Donald Sutherland was INCREDIBLE, just a perfect President Snow. Take note Hollywood, this is how book adaptations need to be done.
There was one rather significant deletion that I was mildly disappointed about, and that was the training scenes with Johanna. In fact, I really wanted more Johanna in general as her character, and Jena Malone’s portrayal, are both very good. The training while not significant really and I can understand why it was cut (and considering there wasn’t that much extraneous fluff in the movie as it is, they needed to cut something), I’m more disappointed in the cutting of the combat simulation test they had to do. I think that was a significant moment of characterisation for Katniss, trying to show herself to be someone who can follow orders. I found the hiding in the transport after being shot weak in comparison.
The other perhaps major loss is the final pod where the roads ‘fold up’ as they make their way to the Presidential Compound. I can definitely understand why they removed that. Only thing that then bothered me was just how damn close Katniss was to the explosions, like dude, way too close, should be dead.
I loved the soundtrack, they’ve always done a good job, and it was nice to see some of the sounds from previous episodes come up again. The Tour by James Newton Howard never fails to give me goosebumps and bring me close to tears from the damn Catching Fire District 11 scene.
To be honest the deaths in the movie, I think due to the foreknowledge and the fast pace, didn’t leave that big an impact on me. Likely because I was sitting there very prepared and just waiting for them to happen. They were done well – and my oh my, I loved the execution scene. That was done perfectly.
I’m very happy with how the movie series has played out, and I don’t care in the slightest that the final book was split. Great job!