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December Movie Review

The Hunger Games Prequel and Violent Night

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

SUMMARY:

https://www.deviantart.com/allheartsgoboom/art/The-Hunger-games-Mockingjay-part-2-concept-png-458445879

Years before his tyrannical reign as president of Panem, Coriolanus Snow is assigned to mentor Lucy Gray Baird, a tribute in the tenth annual Hunger Games. With the games fast approaching, Snow must do all that he can to get his tribute to survive.

Jacob’s review:

Winning the award for the longest movie title, The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is as amazing as its title is long. As someone who has not read the book, I had no idea what I was getting into when I walked into this movie. However, two and a half hours later, I found myself captivated by the characters and wanting more. Tom Blyth carries the movie as a young Coriolanus Snow. Even though the audience knows where he will end up, you can’t help but root for him and Lucy Gray. Everything in this movie has a purpose. The songs further develop the characters, and the action isn’t just mindless movie stunts. Every fight and death leaves an impact, both on the other characters and the audience. The film also does a good job sprinkling in comedy to relieve us of the more heartbreaking parts. It’s not a particularly light hearted film, but it spreads out the emotion to let each powerful moment have its effect on the audience. The best part of this film is how deep it is. Even after watching, I’ve continued to have realizations. Everything from the performances, the costumes, to even the character’s names provide deeper thematic layers. Though the third act may be a little rushed, The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes might just be up there with some of the best movies of the year.

4.5/5 Stars

Steph’s review:

The movie adaptation of The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes brings the thrilling story and characters to life in an intense and captivating way. You will be on the edge of your seat the entire time during this two-hour-thirty-eight minute film. The visuals are stunning and really give the dystopian world of Panem vivid and gritty imagery. In addition, It was amazing to see the themes of survival, rebellion, and hope translated onto the big screen. It’s fascinating to see how Coriolanus Snow navigates the challenges of the Games and the political landscape of Panem. The movie did a good job exploring the complexities of his character and the choices he makes. The plot kept me hooked, and I loved the twists and turns along the way. Overall, I would recommend The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes to any Hunger Games fan, as it is a captivating prequel that adds layers to the story we already know and love. 

4/5 Stars

 

Violent Night

SUMMARY: A grou

p of mercenaries invade a house on Christmas Eve, taking the family hostage. Unfortunately for them, Santa Claus is coming to town, and he isn’t holding back.

Jacob’s review:

Filled with bloody violence and hit or miss humor, Violent Night is a forgettable film. The premise is simple. It’s a bloody action/comedy film where Santa Claus goes on a murderous rampage. But other than the gimmick of “it’s a violent Christmas movie”, Violent Night doesn’t have much else to offer. The characters are extremely over-stereotyped. You have the snobby, rich grandmother; the dumb, buff boyfriend; the snobby, rich aunt; the phone obsessed, bratty teen; the villain who is only motivated by money and a disillusioned, alcoholic man (who just so happens to be Santa), all who act and talk exactly how you think they would. While this is supposed to be funny, the characters’ stupidity was just annoying. For a “comedy” film, the comedy was all over the place. Were there some genuinely funny scenes? Yes. But were there also plenty of unfunny and outright bad jokes? Also yes. One thing that this film did deliver on was the action. If you’re looking for a bloodbath, this is the film for you. That being said, all the villains were so dumb, it drew the audience out of the film. You can’t focus on the fighting and violence when the people getting killed are so over-the-top stupid. One thing I do appreciate about this film is its dedication to its theme. While the theme may be relatively simple, it’s still effective and gives the film some substance, other than just violence. Violent Night isn’t the worst movie I’ve ever seen, but I didn’t particularly enjoy it either.

2/5 Stars

Steph’s review:

If you’re looking for a movie that combines action, vikings, santa, and stereotypes, you’ve come to the right place. Violent Night is an attempt to revamp your traditional, run of the mill christmas movie, but the attempts to make it unique come off as crass and unwanted. While the movie does have some scenes of genuine comedy, most of the attempts at humor miss the target. I certainly admire the attempt producers made to bring a new take to the overdone and Hallmark monopolized genre, but Violent Night would have been better off simply remaining a  Silent Night. This movie somehow manages to contain all the common movie stereotypes (rich, snobby family with one normal son who is the only one who can save Christmas) yet fails dramatically at depicting them all. It’s no wonder the protagonists all survive without one casualty when the bad guys only use their machine guns at bats and not for the weapons they were intended to be. From the highly improbable to the downright ridiculous, you will be in for a treat. One guarantee when watching this movie is the indelible nature; Violent Night will remain rent free in your head forever.

1/5 Stars  

 

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