These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
Ear Worm: …and, due to the sheer number of times they play it, that goddamn tune is all but guaranteed to be stuck in you head after the movie.
Quite a lot of James Newton Howard's score is on-target.
Does This Remind You of Anything?: The scene where Katniss and Peeta enter the pond after being attacked the the poison gas. The water gets rid of their blisters, but removing them is still very painful. The scene that results is something that could easily be mistaken for two people having an Immodest Orgasm if one just listened to the audio.
Ensemble Darkhorse: Johanna Mason, the Deadpan Snarker, borderline Ax-CrazyAction Girl. Her rant during her interview and the scene with her in the elevator have pretty much secured her as "the best thing about the film". As one commenter put it "The next Hunger Games movie could just be Johanna axing a bitch and I'd still love it."
Finnick as well, but no surprises there.
Even Better Sequel: The sequel has been better received by critics and surpassed the numbers of the original film.
What's worse than comparing it to Battle Royale? Comparing it to Twilight and its ilk, and insisting that you refused to watch/read it because it's "just another melodramatic teen love story".
Fanon: Many fans take the comment of "What if we set your backyard on fire?" from Johanna's rant in the arena to mean Snow had her family (ergo, those she loved) burned to death as a result of her refusing to be the Capitol's sex slave. After all, Johanna is from the lumber district, so fires would be common there and not too suspicious.
Game Breaker: The revolutionaries turn out to be a literal game breaker, by destroying the arena.
"Funny Aneurysm" Moment: When talking with Finnick, Katniss' snarky quip about "what people pay for the pleasure of your company" seems just that, snarky and funny. However, it kind of stings when one finds out that Finnick was forced to be a prostitute after his victory, and many did indeed "pay for the pleasure of his company."
Of course, the scene is nearly word-for-word as it is in the book, even "How do people pay for the pleasure of your company?"
Misaimed Fandom: When the movie came out, a number of companies tried to capitalize on the popularity of the franchise, including Subway ("Where victors eat!") and Covergirl with their Hunger Games makeup line ("Soon, you can look a little bit more like Katniss or your fave Capitol citizen!"). Remember that Katniss was made famous because she killed other teenagers in a sadistic gladiatorial game for the entertainment of a corrupt upper class. Ironically, the in-universe Capitol might have put out ads just like these, given the amount of popularity the victors had.
The Hunger Games makeup line from Covergirl was especially misaimed, given that Katniss never wore makeup on her own and hated wearing it in the Capitol since it was another opulent luxury (in her homeland of District 12, the people could barely afford food). Plus Catching Fire was about Katniss helping to start a rebellion against the society wearing this sort of makeup.
She Really Can Act: Sure, those crying scenes may be Narm-y, but you have to admit, Jennifer played her role pretty darn nicely.
Some critics were much impressed with Josh Hutcherson's performance in the film.
Ship Tease: The movie may have implied that Johanna has and/or had one-sided feelings for Finnick.
"Love is weird."
There was already some Haymitch/Effie in the first movie, but the "we are a team" scene, where Effie and Haymitch briefly hold hands along with Katniss and Peeta, without Haymitch saying anything snarky, probably pleased quite a few Hayffie shippers.
Considering that Katniss never develops romantic feelings for Gale in the book and the scene where she kisses him before the Games was invented for the movie many fans have complained about adding this for the Galeniss ship.