This article contains plot spoilers.
There’s always a great deal of anticipation regarding the final film in a series as successful, and embedded in such an extensive fan network, as The Hunger Games.
The final film needs to develop a discrete story so that is still comprehensible to an audience of non-initiates, while at the same time referring back to and tying together the narrative, themes, and character relationships of the films that preceded it.
It needs to satisfy fans of the series by clearly wrapping everything up, but it needs to do more than that.
Series become, for fans, a kind of environment. The films become the backgrounds of lives, and there can be comfort in the knowledge that, at a certain time of the year (or every couple of years), another film in the series will be released. Think about what the end of the year meant to Harry Potter fans.
Final films, therefore, need to leave viewers with a sense of completion, but also with satisfaction regarding the future world for the characters they have come to know and love. The final scene in which we see our heroes will be the scene they inhabit for the rest of time.
The new Hunger Games film, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part II, effectively fulfills the first two requirements, but leaves a lot to be desired in terms of its ultimate presentation of its characters.
The narrative follows an “impossible mission” type structure (The Dirty Dozen, 1967, The Devil’s Brigade, 1968, The Expendables, 2010) with a band of rebel heroes up against the odds on a mission through hostile territory, dodging myriad pitfalls along the way.