Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 47 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 42 out of 47
  2. Negative: 0 out of 47
  1. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Nov 21, 2013
    88
    Very few people will take in this spectacle of a society amusing itself to death, of “reality games” and the vapid media hysteria that surrounds them, and not draw a parallel to our own televised bread and circuses. At its best, “Catching Fire” is a blockbuster that bites the culture that made it.
  2. Reviewed by: Richard Roeper
    Nov 19, 2013
    88
    Catching Fire makes only the occasional misstep.
  3. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Nov 21, 2013
    83
    As teencentric franchises go, I much prefer The Hunger Games to the blessedly expired “Twilight” films. For one thing, they employ much better actors. My favorite: Amanda Plummer, one of the best and most underused actresses in America, as one of the Quell contestants.
  4. Reviewed by: M. E. Russell
    Nov 19, 2013
    83
    Lawrence steps up. And her character's fierce independence provides a welcome alternative to certain vampire-fixated young-adult heroines who define themselves entirely through the attention of much-much-older men.
  5. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Nov 19, 2013
    88
    The screen translation of Catching Fire, the second volume of the series, offers its audience many of the elements that made The Hunger Games compelling, but adds to that by deepening the themes and emotional currents and traveling to darker destinations.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Nov 21, 2013
    88
    Pop-culture escapism can be thrilling when dished out by experts. Katniss is a character worth a handful of sequels. And Lawrence lights up the screen. You'll follow her anywhere.
  7. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Nov 19, 2013
    91
    The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is movie escapism made with intelligence, and that doesn't come around often enough. As I sensed this movie ending I wished it wouldn't, and when it did I wanted the next one now. Take that, Bilbo.
  8. Reviewed by: Geoff Pevere
    Nov 21, 2013
    88
    The result is not only a dramatic improvement over what was already an unusually smart and satisfying pop-cultural parable of insurgent 99-per-cent rebellion, but a very likely candidate for the all-time-great-sequel sweepstakes.
  9. Reviewed by: Todd Gilchrist
    Nov 12, 2013
    91
    Catching Fire is a monumental achievement, a massively entertaining crowd-pleaser that is thought-provoking and personally inspiring in all of the ways that it aspires to be.
  10. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Nov 12, 2013
    90
    [Francis] Lawrence and his team have calibrated the entire experience for maximum engagement. And while its pleasures can’t touch the thrill of seeing the Death Star destroyed — not yet, at least — the film runs circles around George Lucas’ ability to weave complex political ideas into the very fabric of B-movie excitement.
  11. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Nov 21, 2013
    90
    Catching Fire is exceptional entertainment, a spectacle with a good mind and a pounding heart.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 919 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 21 out of 221
  1. Nov 22, 2013
    10
    I really liked The Hunger Games, it was truly different, original and overall very entertaining and touching. Catching fire is a really big improvement on the first Hunger Games, no shaky cameras first of all. Not always that we get good sequels, this middle installment of a great upcoming trilogy is fun, although gripping and violent, entertaining for everyone looking for a good time. Full Review »
  2. Nov 22, 2013
    3
    The first hour or so of this movie is wonderful. It really fleshes out the setting of the sci-fi dystopia seen only very briefly in the first movie. The second half is a train wreck of improbable circumstances and impossible to follow action scenes. People just seem to... DO THINGS for no explainable reason. I've never seen a movie go from pretty good to horrible beyond saving so quickly. If you look closely you can spot where it happens. It's right around where the actual "Hunger Games" part begins. Full Review »
  3. Nov 23, 2013
    3
    Winner of the Most Hyped Disapointment of the Year Award for sure.
    Francis Lawrence attempts to fit all the features of the book into the
    movie whilst trying to stick to the 2 and a half hour limit, which results in it all looking half assed and rushed, that people seem to be talking over each other and it all goes to the point where I would be happier if they had just left it out, any character development the book had has been left out, most of the characters' actions get explained perfectly in the book, in the movie it leaves the audience confused. For some inexplicable reason everyone has taken up the practise of cussing at random, and for some reason one of Katniss's prep team was killed offscreen.
    Please try harder in the future Francis Lawrence, for the sake of the fandom, humanity even.
    Full Review »