Katniss Everdeen reluctantly becomes the symbol of a mass rebellion against the autocratic Capitol.
Katniss Everdeen becomes the face of a revolution in “Mockingjay — Part 1,” a tricky transitional episode of “The Hunger Games” franchise that abandons the reality-TV bloodsports of the first two movies to conjure a dour, grimly escalating vision of all-out war. Unsubtly resonant, at times quite rousing and somewhat unsatisfying by design, this penultimate series entry is a tale of mass uprising and media manipulation that itself evinces no hint of a rebellious streak or subversive spirit: Suzanne Collins’ novels may have warned against the dangers of giving the masses exactly what they want to see, but at this point, the forces behind this hugely commercial property are not about to risk doing anything but. It’s a sensible if not exactly inspired strategy, and with Jennifer Lawrence once more carrying the proceedings and director Francis Lawrence (no relation) dutifully replicating the elements of an inherently cinematic story, Lionsgate’s plans for worldwide B.O. domination look secure.