‘Mockingjay: Part 2’ leaves lasting impression on ‘Hunger Games’ series

The storied “Hunger Games” series comes to a close Nov. 20, as “Mockingjay: Part 2” is released.

Beginning three years ago in 2012 with “The Hunger Games,” the film adaptations of Suzanne Collins’ novels have been widely acclaimed and celebrated by millions of fans around the world. The latest film ends the story and wraps up the adventures of Katniss Everdeen, the girl on fire, in a beautiful and emotional finish.

Two of the films actors, Wes Chatham, who plays Messalle, and Evan Ross, who plays Caston, sat down with the SMU Campus Weekly to discuss what made the film so important.

The film mostly takes place in the rubbles of the Capitol as the main characters fight their way through seemingly endless obstacles to reach the home of President Snow and finish the war.

Filmed largely in different areas of Europe, including Berlin and Paris, the film needed a look of dishevelment and rubble.

“They chose these European places because they’re trying to find a timeless look, an architecture that’s hard to place, that’s kind of in its own world,” Chatham said. “They used a lot of the old World War II barracks, they used these mills, an old airport.”

The militaristic tendencies of the film can’t be ignored as the story takes on essentially that of a war movie. Using the old areas for the set design only increased the reality and brutality of the heavier aspects of the film.

“You really felt it,” Ross said.

One of the most intense sequences of the film was when Katniss and her squadron are sneaking underneath the city in the sewer system only to be found out and chased by a mob of mutant creatures. The scene is one of the most tense in the film and it was just as brutal for the actors involved.

“We kept doing a scene where we get tackled, and the stunt guys are on top and they’re the lizards and they’re eating you. We got really focused on how we need more violence and more danger,” Chatham said. “There was a time where I ended up on the bottom somehow. There were eight bodies on top…and I was like, ‘am I going to drown in a foot water? Is this it for me?’”

The reality and danger of the scene translates very well in the film, as the fear from the actors is one that is immediately instilled in the audience as well.

An intense film throughout, there are multiple scenes that depict emotionally raw war violence and the effect it can have on those involved.

With its beautiful storyline, “Mockingjay: Part 2” is not a film that should be overlooked.

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