Archive | November 2013

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire


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Constant craving

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.

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Thor: The Dark World


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Knock ‘em dead

Marvel continues to dominate the box office with Thor: The Dark World, the next stepping stone in Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that delivers the consistent action, thrills, and laughs fans have come to expect from Marvel, though in perhaps more generous helpings this time. As someone who didn’t care at all for the first Thor and finds Chris Hemsworth kind of annoying, The Dark World casts a shadow over all previous prejudices and won me over as a fan of yet another Avenger.

The Dark World is pretty much that stereotypical movie you think of every time you think of big budgets stuffed with special effects, big name actors, and non-stop action. Beginning with a Lord of the Rings-style voiceover setting the exposition, we learn Dark Elf leader Malekith (Christopher Eccleston) is hunting the Aether, a weapon of intergalactic destruction, to destroy the universe for no clear reason. Thor’s grandfather and then king is able to hide the Aether away somewhere safe for eons, at least until Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) happens upon it by complete plot-convenient chance one day.

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