Fallen Snow Steals the Show

Five years ago yesterday was the publication of Mockingjay, and to celebrate Lionsgate released a new Mockingjay Part 2 banner.

MJ2 banner

It instantly gave us deja vu of Catching Fire’s “Victors Revealed” banner. Fortunately this time, the whole banner was revealed at once and not a slow 2 week ordeal of one character per day like with Victors Revealed. And yes, each of the characters suffer from a little bit of awkward photoshop placement. But the more you look at it, the more you realize the distinction between this new banner and Victors Revealed. As the title suggests, Victors Revealed was all about the characters. The arena background looked cool, but it was not meant to be the main feature of the piece, the victors were.

However, this new banner, aptly titled “Fallen Snow” is more about the background. The massive, broken statue of Snow is what draws your eye. The image of a dictator’s statue being pulled down is very evocative in the real world, but the SIZE of the statue is what takes it a bit more to the realm of fantasy. The statue threw us off guard because the scale is so large compared to Squad 541. It actually looks a little like Ant Man promotion with Katniss so tiny (yet victorious) on Snow’s arm. While lots of fans eagerly zoomed in to their favorite characters, we don’t see this as a character piece. If it were a character piece we’d be a little disappointed that other members of 541 were left missing and their overall teeny tiny size on the banner.

We see this more as a continuation of the earlier movie posters of the decapitated statue and red Katniss chillin on Snow’s throne. But now it’s not clean. Now there’s fire and smoke and ruin. This collective of small, vulnerable warriors amidst all the destruction. These tiny figures have felled a powerful giant, but at great cost.

This type of snow removal is way worse than the frozen water kind.

JJ

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5 comments

  1. “We see this more as a continuation of the earlier movie posters of the decapitated statue and red Katniss chillin on Snow’s throne. But now it’s not clean. Now there’s fire and smoke and ruin. This collective of small, vulnerable warriors amidst all the destruction. These tiny figures have felled a powerful giant, but at great cost.”

    While ITA about the imagery here, I think is going to be a challenge for MJ part 2, is how to make the revelations at the end, about Coin as well as D13 itself, actually make sense instead of just being played for shock value, and actually convey the idea that the rebels have “felled a powerful giant, but at great cost”.

    Note that in the book, Katniss doesn’t trust Coin or D13 from the beginning. She knows that D13 forged a separate peace with the Capitol and left the other districts to fend for themselves, that they had ulterior motives for taking in refugees due to the recent plague, etc.

    But AFAIK, MJ Part 1 seemed to suggest that D13 actually DID cleverly “play dead”, and while the plague is mentioned, there’s no Dalton cynically stating this is the ONLY reason for the D12 people to be welcomed. They also left out the abusive treatment of the prep team; though Movie!Effie claims to be a prisoner, she’s certainly not mistreated in any way.

    They also made Coin into a much more well-rounded, sympathetic character who even tries to build rapport with Katniss. Now, I actually liked this, and of course book fans weren’t fooled as to what Coin is capable of, but the movie-only ones, probably see Coin as a “good guy”, though there were hints that she is becoming more politically ambitious.

    ** Start anti-GOT rant**

    Basically, I’m really hoping this doesn’t turn into anything like GOT, where the show-runners seem to have decided that shock value is the be-all and end-all, ahead of any attempt at coherent plot or characterization. I even thought this the case for the show RW (comes totally out of the blue) versus book RW (foreshadowed in many, many ways). Or Shae’s actions in S4, totally OOC for Show!Shae, to the point her actress actually publicly complained, though not at all for Book!Shae.

    And I won’t even get into the ridiculous way Season 5 ended. Sure, the specific events in terms of deaths and defeats, either already have occurred in the books, or will occur eventually. But a good adaptation is not just about recreating signature scenes from the source material. It’s about having them make sense in the context of the adapted story.

    ** end anti-GOT rant**

    Now, I actually doubt that the production team for the THG movies will totally tank the end. Having 2 parts actually helps create space to fill in the gaps. But it is interesting how the promos so far are really hammering home the idea that Katniss will personally take Snow down and be hailed as a hero, when that’s not quite what happens at the end.

  2. Can we be honest here, with all the 50 different websites and click this many times and snapchat this or that to unlock this still or banner or whatever, can we just say Lionsgate’s marketing strategy sucks? They’re using youtubers now, yes, YOUTUBERS to market this final film. Maybe no too many will sympathize w me here but what do youtubers even have to do w The Hunger Games in the first place? I thought it was a decision that was easily over looked when they did the Capitol life last year w iJustine. Like who even cares about the Capitol that much when it’s taken out of movie context? I wish they would target all fans and stop catering to a small group..not all THG fans are 11-16 yr olds. Surprisingly many are adults 18 & up(like myself, 18).
    I’ve heard so many people say they getting sick of it now because of all the questionable marketing that is dumbing down the franchise for a fraction of it’s fanbase. Isn’t the idea to grow the fanbase or gain interest in the story rather than cater to a dwindling number of faithful fans?
    Lionsgate did an ok job w the book to movie adaption but as the years went by and the story progressed it seems THG could’ve had so much more potential in the hands of another studio.

    1. Do you mean the YouTubers who were at the junkets yesterday? I’m not in the “youtuber demo” so it’s not really relevant to me either. It seems like they’re trying to get the word out on the movie to the widest audience possible, and are using the popularity of some YouTubers to reach a younger audience. I doubt it means they are going to neglect “traditional” media when promoting the film though, since outlets like the New York Times were there as well. I’d imagine it’s more that they’re supplementing their approach to adapt to the changing media landscape.

      Though I would agree with the big Snapchat push right now their efforts have been targeted much more at the younger audience so something a little more broadly appealing soon would be nice.

    2. Like JJ said, the YouTube thing is just to use their massive popularity and follower base to promote the film. By the numbers its a brilliant move, but image wise it’s odd IMO. MJ may be the only film that will do this until the next YA blockbuster phenomenon comes, as I do not see the other major franchises doing this.

      There are def elements of the campaigns that do feel like ‘dumbing down’/reinforcing the “this is another Twilight/tween girl YA” stereotype like the pop artist “soundtrack” albums, mall tours, some of the merchandise…YouTubers could be added to that list but the benefit in terms of reach by the numbers is quite good…

      It’s a bit of a shame really because I think the franchise wouldn’t be as underappreciated and wouldn’t have this stigma had Lionsgate done away with those Twilight tactics from.the start. Even Nina Jacobson never positioned the books or the films as YA.
      At least they’re placing the trailers with Jurassic World and Mission Impossible and the new Bond film as opposed to Paper Towns or Twilight like before…..

  3. Satsumarena–

    I really don’t think we need to worry about Part 2.
    I DO very much hope that the general audience will be able to understand Katniss’ ultimate decisions and why she made them, instead of walking away thinking that she had cracked her crock. And I know that people have been a little confused over D13 and Coin not actually seeming so bad or suspicious in Part 1 (in comparison with Snow’s regime, anyhow), but I have no doubt that they’re just giving you red herrings and misdirection. That’s what it’s all about. They knew there’d be a year in between the films, and that many people still wouldn’t have read the books by next month, so they couldn’t very well start overtly revealing the truth in the first half. They want the non-readers to be shocked at the revelation that Coin’s just as bad, maybe even worse than, Snow. In fact, they seem more afraid of spoiling the presidential “twist” and the Peeta/Gale question than of spoiling deaths.

    I think we just have to accept that we can’t see everything that happens, or experience it in the same way as the characters. Some of them may have had their suspicions from the start, but the filmmakers didn’t want to let part of the viewership in on the truth right away, so they understated and downplayed it. They’re trying to sell this as more of a straightforward, typical good-guys-vs.-bad-guys thing, because they know people will watch anything that’s got a lot of explosions and running around and a hero defeating a villain. Hopefully the intent is to give them something far deeper and more complex than just about any of their other options–which so far the cast & crew have succeeded in doing.

    Whether they’ll have time to actually delve into some of these specifics (about 13 abandoning the other districts, welcoming refugees solely because of the plague, and punishing minor offenses with brutal severity) or not remains to be seen, of course. Some of it could be covered briefly or mentioned in passing. Clearly, there remains a lot to effectively convey (how lovely would it be for reader-fans to have to be responsible for explaining it ad nauseam to confused non-readers?) But I can’t imagine that they didn’t have this intentionally planned and plotted from the start; I trust them on it. I also LOVE GoT…but so far, only one development in the show vs. the books really upset me. I thought they did it too early, purely for shock value. (It was something that Martin hasn’t even written, or at least published, yet.) And obviously, I liked Shae up until a point–when I absolutely condemned her to rot in hell. xD
    They ARE of course writing the show based upon his summary of the rest of the books, so I know they aren’t going totally off the rails with crazy, inexplicable stuff that just doesn’t fit and make sense in the overall timeline. They’re just…moving things around there, for reasons that, gods willing, will become apparent to us.
    With THG, what they’re doing is bringing the story to visual life–and doing so brilliantly.

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