The best thing about the first Hunger Games, besides Jennifer Lawrence, is it gave fans a well-portioned feast that sated their ravenous stomachs and stopped the twitching in their page-turning fingers (well, let’s be real, probably less than a quarter of the audience actually read the books). Catching Fire is arguably more succulent than its predecessor in almost every way possible, as it expands its menu to offer fans a broader array of delicacies than the original.
However, the portion sizes are smaller this time around. While the first Hunger Games ensured every scene, character, and conversation were perfectly represented, Catching Fire is forced to sometimes gloss over the good stuff to get to even more good stuff, since there’s almost too much to go around within the film’s heavy 146-minute run. It isn’t a problem as much as it is a strong point on paper, but the finished product may not linger with the audience as long as the first.