Extra Cinema: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (12A)

Undated Film Still Handout from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Pictured: Liam Hemsworth. See PA Feature FILM Film Reviews . Picture credit should read: PA Photo/Lionsgate Publicity. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Film Reviews.
Undated Film Still Handout from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Pictured: Liam Hemsworth. See PA Feature FILM Film Reviews . Picture credit should read: PA Photo/Lionsgate Publicity. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Film Reviews.

Director: Francis Lawrence

The film opens with resilient heroine Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) back in District 12, hunting alongside her beau, Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth).

They steal a kiss in secret before Katniss returns to the Victors’ Village to continue her fake romance with Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) for the cameras. President Snow (Donald Sutherland) is waiting for her.

“I think we’ll make this whole situation a lot simpler by agreeing not to lie to each other,” growls Snow, who threatens Gale’s life if Katniss steps out of line.

Flanked by booze-sodden mentor Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson) and sartorially daring escort Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks), Katniss and Peeta tour the districts, scenting rebellion in the air.

Meanwhile, Snow recruits a new Games creator, Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman), to stage a special anniversary tournament known as the Quarter Quell, which will pit the darlings of District 12 against former winners in a duel of death.

In the arena, Katniss and Peeta risk everything once again to keep each other alive, forging alliances with cocksure Finnick Odair (Sam Claflin) and his elderly mentor Mags (Lynn Cohen), quixotic duo Beetee (Jeffrey Wright) and Wiress (Amanda Plummer) and rabble-rousing loose cannon, Johanna Mason (Jena Malone).