Short version: I approve of this sequel.
This is one of those rare sequels to a good movie that not only matches the original but surpasses it. If you liked the first movie you will love the Hell out of this one. I'm even told it keeps extremely close to the source material as well, so all you book fans should be pleasantly surprised.
There are a lot of things about this movie that I really liked. One thing I thought was especially well done was how they got across how horrifying and macabre the Hunger Games would actually be for the people actually competing in it. That was one area where I felt the first movie fell a bit short. Even when the games actually start, it feels more like an action/suspense movie than the horror show it would actually be in real life. But in this movie...my God.
I think the first moment when I realized that this movie was hitting exactly the right note was when Katniss and Peeta are watching tv and President Snow announces that the next Hunger Games competitors will be chosen from the current crop of victors. The looks on both their faces said more than a thousand lines of dialogue ever could. It looked like the room was spinning for them.
From there it just builds and builds. I loved the scene with the Jabberjays. I loved the hazards in the arena. And I loved the way all the victors (seriously, all of them) try to pull every trick in the book to get the games canceled before they start. They bust out their best fake tears, their best sob stories, and Peeta (SPOILERS) even tries to claim that he and Katniss have a baby on the way. But my favorite was Johanna, who just straight-up flips her shit on national television and starts cursing out the whole audience. That was mother-fucking brilliant, to use exactly the right expression. She's had all she can standz cuz she can't standz n'more. I love her character and I hope she's still alive for the next movie.
Of course I say "loved" in the sense that they were brilliantly filmed and acted. In reality these scenes are quite difficult to watch (especially the Jabberjays; I was gripping my chair pretty hard during that scene) but that's because they all successfully instill in YOU the emotions that the characters are feeling.
In closing, I encourage everyone reading to go out and see Catching Fire in theaters. This is without a doubt one of the best movie series of this generation, and it deserves every ounce of support.
(But seriously people, don't take young kids to see this movie. I noticed a lot of parents in the theater with children younger than ten years old, WAY too young to be watching a movie as heavy as this one.)