The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
Katniss and Peeta return to The Hunger Games after she has become a symbol of proletarian revolution.
I did not have high expectations, but I was pleasantly surprised. The first film was an uneven combination of "The Most Dangerous Game" and "The Lottery" with a political and economic plot attached to the film like a tumor, but in Catching Fire the film's cohesion is much stronger, and as a result the film seems more original. The reveals at the end and Katniss's victory tour tie the political plot with The Hunger Games, which before bordered on violence-porn.
The love triangle and Katniss's relationship with Peeta still don't do much for me. Less sacrificial than in the first film, Katniss's personality is bland in this film, and Peeta's love-sick staring is devoid of earnestness and intelligence.
They're not compelling characters by themselves, but the plot is strong enough to carry their weight. Strong supporting performances by Woody Harrelson and Jena Malone steal the show.
Overall, Catching Fire did the impossible: it made me look forward to the next film.