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WHY HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 1 THE MOVIE LOST MONEY IN ITS OPENING - A Mom's Review
One of the posters for the film
Kids Always Know....
I knew that this film would not do well when a few things happened before I took my daughter to see a matinee today. When I asked my 14 year old son if he would like to join, he said "Are you kidding me? That is like asking me to go watch the movie Twilight." He told me that his friends said it was stupid and corny. BANG, they lost a lot of 14 year olds. The other thing that happened was that a lot of my daughter's 12 & 13 year old friends did not go to opening weekend. No photo's of ticket stubs on instagram. Another BIG sign. The big question is "why?" I will tell you why in the next few paragraphs.
I took my daughter to see the film today anyway because she wanted to go see a movie with me. I begged her to see "Insurgent" instead, but then realized that it is not out til March 2015. Too bad because the trailer looked AMAZING!! So did Disney's new take on Cinderella. I would have even seen that over this Mockingjay film. I have to admit I was not the biggest fan of the last installation of Hunger Games and I did not see the first one, but I am not their main audience so my opinion may not count to some people. After the film finished my daughter said this, "Look mom, no one is clapping." She also said a few things during the movie like "this is slow" and "that part was cheesy." There were a few times Jennifer Lawrence really came across as a bad actress. The thing that got really tiring was her "moping" throughout the film, pining for Peeta and a lot of slow scenes where she cries for him. It felt like a soap opera in some parts. They really needed more action in this film and there were plenty of places to make this work. I have to blame the director on this one I suppose and everyone else who made the final decisions on the final cut.
At one point in the movie, I really wished she went for Gale and I whispered this to my daughter who laughed a lot. This would never have happened if the film rocked. My daughter would have not taken her eyes off the screen if she was into the movie. Peeta the lover who has been captured was annoying, plain and simple. The way they showed him throughout the film on a screen and at the end. The end scene was way silly, but I will not ruin it for anyone. Let's just say this, the director made a mistake with Peeta at the end.
Even if the director has to stay true to the books, it is important not to let the movie drag in places. One of the best scenes in the film was a sort of "Mission Impossible" shot but it came after a lot of sappy Jennifer Lawrence close ups. Man, this is supposed to be a strong young woman who can hold her own. I will admit it is good to show vulnerability in a character, but too much of it just makes the audience get off the edge of their seats, especially younger kids. I feel that there were too many weak choices made in this film. By the end, I didn't even care what happens. I just wanted to go get a coffee. The older cast members played their roles well but it was a bit serious for the younger audience. The quicker way to sum this up would be to say this "They really needed to add some stuff in it to keep the younger fans interested." That 25 million that they lost on opening weekend was a lot of 12 & 13 year olds. This was the weakest opening weekend of all of the Hunger Game Films.
If you decided to take two of your kids to the film, atleast one will be disappointed. If the girl is younger around 10-13 years old, she may want to see less "sappy romance moping" and if it is an older girl, she may like it because she has a crush on a boy at school. if it is a teen boy who likes girls, he will not like it either because it will just be too cheesy for him. But if none of your kids are there yet with the opposite sex, do not bother taking them to this film.
There is a few shots of dead skulls and bones where a lot of people died and they do focus on it a bit. It could give younger kids a nightmare. My daughter was a little weirded out by that and closed her eyes. My kids watch all sorts of films because their father and mother are in the industry so they are pretty savvy when it comes to films. The clincher at the end was when my daughter came out of the theater like she had gone to sleep and woke up from a nap. I asked her if she still wanted to see the next one and she said she will wait until her friends see it first. Not a good sign for the franchise. Kids do know a lot about what they like and what they don't like. I can guarentee that when we go to see Insurgence, that we will both leave the theater excited about the next one.