Effie Trinket

What’s Up with Those Kissy Clips?

To gear up some excitement for the Digital/HD/Blu-Ray/DVD etc release of Mockingjay Part 2, Lionsgate released a new trailer. Makes perfect sense. They also have released clips from the movie to some media outlets.

These are clips from the movie, so if you’re a fan, you’ve already seen these. The benefit here is that you get to see the moment again while you wait for the home entertainment release. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, it’s another chance to convince skeptics to give the movie a chance.

And if you like kissing scenes, man are you in luck! Well, you’re in luck if you’re a Galeniss or Hayffie type person. All us other people can just chill some more and wait I suppose.

You’ve got the awkward Katniss and Gale “it’s like you’re drunk, it doesn’t count” kiss via teen.com (’cause of course that would be the site).

Then the Hayffie shippers rejoiced at the release of this clip.

Don’t get us wrong, that’s quite a touching scene. We love that “Promise me you’ll find it… The life of a victor” exchange, but we were really rolling our eyes that these 2 clips were the first that hit the web for promotion.  There have been other clips released since then thankfully that relate to other elements of the plot. If not, one MIGHT be tempted to think this film was just some sort of romance-driven soap opera. Many people already wrongly have that impression, let’s not encourage it.

There’s still about 2 months to release, and in the days leading up to that we’ll likely get some sneaks of the new BTS/featurette content. And inevitably Peeta-related content because they know fans go nutzo for that stuff. We’ve been around long enough to have a good idea of the playbook.

I guess these were early Valentine’s Day presents from Lionsgate (though we could have done without that Gale kiss tbh).

JJ

 

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Visualizing Panem Post-Movies

Now that the entire Hunger Games series has been adapted to film, I’ve been taking stock in how these movies have impacted how I think about the book series. I’ll come right out with it and say it – while I LOVE SO MUCH about the movies, they will never top the books for me. There are some creative choices in the movies that I will adamantly reject forever and try to forget (mainly some parts of The Hunger Games movie and some scenes from the last 25 minutes of Mockingjay Part 2). Hmm, that sounds like fodder for a post, but for a later date.

On the other hand, there are some parts of these movies where everything fell into place and just was so RIGHT that it’s taken over how I visualize certain characters or scenes when I now re-read the books.

Right from the Start: Snow and Coin

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From first casting announcements of both Donald Sutherland and Julianne Moore, I felt really good about how these characters would translate to screen. They look the part and inhabit those roles in a way that fits so well with how I’ve imagined the characters. Donald Sutherland owns Snow so much for me now that I get chills when hearing his voiceover work on orange juice or airline commercials. President Snow wants me to drink orange juice. Yes, sir! I remember being surprised how sympathetic Coin was in Mockingjay Part 1, but it seemed very right for the progression of the character, and how she would have been without the framing of Katniss’s “unreliable narrator” perspective.

Oh. My. Finnick

Finnick cfFor those around the fandom in Catching Fire casting days, you remember what a BIG FREAKING DEAL this was. Lots of names thrown around to play Finnick. Lots of fan favorites. And Sam Claflin, a relative unknown (outside of roles in Snow White & the Huntsman and a Pirates of the Caribbean movie) was chosen. We had time to “get to know him” pre-CF. He was delightful on Twitter. Set photos leaked that were very promising. There was that Capitol Portrait with the pirate look. And then we saw him in the movie and YAY, IT WORKED.  He was Finnick. He is how I see Finnick now. Bravo.

Awesome Surprises From Smaller Roles: Paylor and Jackson

paylor jackson

One of the great, wonderful surprises of the Mockingjay movies was the development of these two characters, who I honestly never paid much attention to, at least during my first reading of the books. So Patina Miller and Michelle Forbes had the benefit of a cleaner slate to build these characters. And build them they did. They project authentic power and leadership so well that you don’t question the news that Paylor will be president, or Jackson’s role in Squad 451 in the slightest. When I re-read Mockingjay, I see those actresses in full costume. They ARE those characters now for me, and it’s enriched the reading experience.

An Interesting Mix: Effie and Haymitch

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The overly bright, colorful world of the Capitol in Suzanne Collins books is intentional. You have to admit though, that the Candy-Land-on-acid-type buildings would have been too distracting to deal with on screen so the “Capitol color” is restricted mostly to the people, not buildings. But with the costume, makeup, and hair styling of Effie, the team really nailed it, and Elizabeth Banks surely took charge of making that character her own. I think the decision to add Effie to District 13 was a good decision for Mockingjay Part 1, but still think Book!Effie follows a more realistic path for that character. I love how Elizabeth Banks gave the character more heart, but I don’t see Effie really changing that dramatically so quickly. In terms of how I visualize the character though, it’s all Elizabeth Banks in her full Capitol glory. Kudos to her and the design team for the creativity and transformation.

Then we come to Haymitch, who I always though of as more “Seam” in looks with darker hair and complexion, more damaged, more dirty, more foul, and much more drunk than we see in the movies. Regrettably, the movies give us a PG-version of Haymitch. Sure, you see him drinking, and his mockery and wit is there, but he’s nowhere near the abrasive drunk he is in the books.  I would have loved to see Woody Harrelson given full reign to make the character more rough. All of that being said, when I read the books, my mind sees Woody Harrelson and that blond wig. Somehow, he’s convinced my brain. He is Haymitch. The mind does what it wants. It’s interesting that this happened, considering this next part.

The Big Three: Love You Guys SO MUCH, but…

What about Katniss, Peeta and Gale? Jennifer Lawrence did a phenomenal job with Katniss. She grabbed hold of that character and owned the performance throughout the four movies. So much so that her voice is very much Katniss’s voice to me. I feel the same way about Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth (well at least 90% for Liam, but he got better as the movies went along). For all the wonderful ways they inhabited these roles, my mind still can’t (or won’t) adapt. The way I perceive these three in my mind’s eye when reading the books is much different. The cast is perhaps too physically beautiful, too Hollywood, and for Katniss and Gale, yes, too much of northwestern European ancestry to cancel out how I’ve always imagined the three. It’s nothing against the actors, because those are things they can’t change and these were movies with certain expectations of super-Hollywood-esque attractiveness from the leads.  Katniss and Peeta especially remain murky visual concepts in my head, and I’m fine with that. It’s probably better that way for the two characters who I love the most.

Movies – they mess with your head in unexpected ways.

JJ

 

The Hunger Games: The Reunion

So something weird happened last night: I went to my 10 year high school reunion. YES I AM OLD. I accept this and you should too. Moving on!

It turns out the reunion situation was pretty similar to what I expected (read: fairly lackluster), but it got me thinking about the people I reunited with and how, inevitably, some of them exist in every crowd.

For instance, I was convinced to go thanks to the Effie Trinket-esque friend. The girl who still has lots of lovely memories from back in the day and remains largely positive, determined to see us take advantage of the fun promised by this event. “Its’ going to be a big, big day!” And once we got there, she was a total champ.

Naturally, it got me thinking where the rest of the characters would fall if they met in a function hall ten years later.

Still never mastered how to smile!

Still never mastered how to smile!

For instance, Gale would probably be the best dressed guy in the room. He’d make polite small talk with the girls he missed out on in high school. But ultimately, he’d have a few too many drinks, viciously insult one of those said girls and get her all upset, reminding everyone that he’s still kind of a dick.

Katniss sits at her table while almost everyone else kind of flutters around the room. She sticks with the people she knows best, but chats with anyone who comes over to say hi. She gets a little alarmed if anyone is too enthusiastic, because nobody cares about how you’re doing that much. Moderate alcohol consumption and avoiding eye contact is key to surviving the night.

Peeta is also looking decent, but in a more basic way than any of the other men. He’s friendlier than Katniss, but still sticks by her side for most of the night. Your single friends lament the fact that he’s still with “that girl he’s been dating forever” with a twinge of jealousy. Also, he gives the awkward welcome speech.

The “Oh hell he better have a ride home” guy

Haymitch is in ripped jeans and a t-shirt, drunk to the nth degree about 20 minutes arrival. He greets everyone as if they’re his best friend, even relative strangers. Upon seeing friendly faces, he thanks them for being one of the fellow “normals” to show up in comparison to the more popular folks from back in the day (P.S. That happened) and by the end of the night, he’s flashing everyone as they try to say goodbye (P.P.S. Also happened).

Annie Odair (Cresta? Cresta-Odair? WE DON’T EVEN KNOW) is there as well. She’s smartly dressed, a bit shy, but so lovely. She’s the person everyone hasn’t fully kept in touch with but is still a total joy to see. For a few seconds that the other characters catch up on news about her kiddo and life, a reunion feels like an actual reunion and not a giant puddle of awkward.

Plutarch is the guy who’s forcing everyone to take pictures, because the memories. And the Instagram account. Everyone knows he’s in not way a ruler of Panem, but he’s sure gonna act like it. He’s a little too slick for his own good and a lot of attendees roll their eyes when he turns away.

There are probably dozens of mostly nameless others involved in this reunion– Gale’s family and Katniss’ mom and several residents from both District 12 and District 13. If it were an actual Hunger Games reunion, we’d have this:

hunger-games-reunion

Plus, with more people, you could probably repeat this formula several times over!

Or Just Leave For A Bar After 2 Hours. That Worked Too!
The Girl With The Pearl

Testing Out The MJ2 App (And Looking Like An Unconvincing Drag Queen)

O hai, it’s a Mockingjay Part 2 app!

In a less complicated, cutesy twist, the OLTM (Our Leader The Mockingjay, in case you forgot) app has become MJ2 to promote the final Hunger Games movie.

Honestly, not too much has changed. The big new draw is that that graffiti feature has been readjusted for YO FACE!

This post contains my face… and for that I apologize.

First off, the Mockingjay war paint!

mockingjay

Apparently, my forehead is not big enough for this feature. But otherwise, not terrible!

Fun fact: You CANNOT smile when you take this picture. Something about the facial shift angers the overlay and it disappears. So go for your war face!

Next, you can get into the Capitol spirit and become Effie with a bazillion different make up options. Mind you, all of these options will make you look like an unconvincing drag queen or perhaps a six-year-old who has raided mom’s make-up stash.

mockingjay

The stupid duck face WAS intentional. I regret nothing.

The old feature has also been given an upgrade. You can still point and shoot at certain clear surfaces to add “graffiti” to your surroundings, but there are plenty of new graffiti options.

Remember the MockingToilet? IT JUST GOT BETTER.

mockingjay (1)

Katniss is on the throne while ON THE THRONE and we are not even a little bit sorry for this.

So if you love The Hunger Games and like to go crazy with funny picture sharing on social media, today is your day! Dance through the fields of Internet glory! …But charge your battery first, because this app will kill it in about 5 seconds.

I Barely Wear Real Makeup And I AM OVERWHELMED,
The Girl With The Pearl

What Those Mockingjay Part 2 Stills Are Really Saying

For so long, we sat at our computers bemoaning the total lack of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 promotion, begging Lionsgate to “just give us something!”

Now they’re giving us ALL THE THINGS. Right now. At the same damn time as all the other things. Yesterday, we got a poster. Today, tickets went on sale and Fandango users will get a new clip if they purchase when 24 hours (if you’re in a prominently MovieTickets.com region like us, look to the inevitable piracy). Entertainment Weekly also released a still cover featuring photoshop-y Katniss, Peeta, and Gale from Tim Palen’s upcoming book o’ portrait wonders and eight new stills. Tomorrow, the final trailer hits… but only at Best Buy. Again.

Clearly, that’s a lot to talk about. AND WE WILL. But today, we’re gonna focus in on those stills. You may not realize it, but there’s a message in each character’s eyes. There’s some serious thought there that they’re trying to get out. We’ll translate for you.

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“Urghh… It looks like we’re still committed to playing out the love triangle that nobody wants. Seriously, it’s giving me a migraine…”

 

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“Da na na na, da na na na, da na na na, da na na na… CROSSBOW! The weapon for guys who want to impress chicks but don’t have any real skill!”

 

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“We’re all pretty psyched about confronting the enemy! ..Except Peeta. He still doesn’t know what the fuck to do with his gun.”

 

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“I’m just the basic bitch behind the camera, so Imma sit back and encourage the real badass to do all the killing despise her worst fears blooming to life before her eyes. How else do you think I keep my hair firmly to one side?”

 

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“And then those freaking mutts showed up and I was like… tumblr_mvhy9xAFC41s822dfo1_250

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“Why are we in The Hunger Games franchise playing bad cop/reluctant cop, again? We were born to play Legolas’ twin sisters in Lord of the Rings, thank you very much!”

 

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“Look, Katniss, it’s not that I’m not saddened by your sister’s death. It’s just that.. if I’m going to drop you off in District 12 in place of Plutarch and mourn with you for a moment, I’m gonna look fly as fuck as I do it. Plzkthx.”

 

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“You thought you had your shit together by this point in the movie, didn’t you? THINK AGAIN, WOMAN!

That’s Our Story And We’re Stickin’ To It,
The Girl With The Pearl

Teasing the End Too Much?

“I can’t believe they showed so much of the end!”

We’re a little surprised too. We weren’t really expecting to see Katniss marching in the Capitol on her way to execute… Snow in the Mockingjay Part 2 teaser trailer. We were expecting a little more focus on the beginning of the film. It’s not that we didn’t LOVE seeing that scene, or other scenes that we know are later in the film. The execution scene with Katniss aiming her arrow is a great call back to the other films so it certainly stays with you. But to have them in the teaser trailer, the first glimpse of the film, is unexpected.

Then EW released a “new” still yesterday. Well, we don’t consider it all that new, because it’s a scene from the teaser where Effie is helping Katniss prepare her look for Snow’s execution. But there it is again – drawing focus on a scene from late in the film.

Mockingjay Katniss EffieWhat’s interesting about the choices to reveal things that happen from the very end of the film is that they don’t necessarily reveal too much of the actual plot to non-book readers. Sure, you see Katniss leading people in the Capitol. But come on, even casual movie watchers know this is where the story is heading anyway. These moments have a strong visual impact, and can help sell the movie. Book readers know what happens anyway, and the non-book readers won’t understand all the context enough to be truly spoiled.

Like in the scene from the still above. Katniss and Effie are clearly in the Capitol from the surroundings and Effie’s newly regained colorful outfit. Us book readers can distinguish other small things that reveal the timeline – the uneven end of Katniss’s braid indicating singing from fire bombs – but a casual viewer isn’t going to notice that. The casual viewer probably isn’t thinking about the timeline at all. They’re just seeing a return to Effie preparing Katniss for her latest big big big day in the revolution.

So yes, it’s surprising that they’ve already revealed some shots from the end of the movie, but we think it helps build continuity as we march toward this EPIC CONCLUSION.

If they showed Prim with parachutes in the distance, that’s another story.

JJ

GALLERY: The Hunger Games Exhibition

You’ve probably noticed that there’s been lots of goodness from The Hunger Games Exhibition all around the web, including over on our Instagram page. Now, we’re sharing all the photos from our Hunger Games Exhibition with you!

If you like these glimpses, stay tuned for a detailed report on the super fun exhibition!

REACTION POST: Mockingjay Part 2 Trailer

We’ve got a Mcokingjay Part 2 trailer and lots of new feels along with it!

To celebrate our first glimpse at the franchise finale, we’re presenting you with another zany reaction post! We’ve got a lot to say about the new trailer, so let the gushing begin!

Oh, and this sucker is pretty long, so don’t forget to click READ MORE the see the whole thing.

THE FEELING IS BACK!

THE GIRL WITH THE PEARL: So how does this trailer stack up against the mountain of other THG trailers we’ve seen?

JJ: It’s right at the top for me. I love the teaser and theatrical trailers for CF, and this one made me feel that same level of astonishment/amazement.

normal_Mockingjay-Part2-Unite024TGWTP: I’m in the same boat. The second CF trailer was my favorite up until now, but I think this one actually beats it!

JJ: That feeling of “THIS IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN I EVEN DREAMED. PRAISE FRANCIS LAWRENCE” type of feeling. I didn’t quite get it with the MJ1 trailers. But now it’s back, baby!

THEM THERE EYES: Not joking, I’ve had to go back and watch them all… I tend to forget.

TGWTP: Nina and Francis got harassed about wanting an amazing trailer a lot on Twitter. WE DO NOT APPROVE OF THIS. Buuuut they certainly delivered!

TTE: I wonder if they have the same team on the trailers?

JJ: It varies. I believe this one was by Trailer Park. But they’ve had different companies work on them.

TGWTP: I have no idea. The teams behind trailers obviously need way more credit than they get.

JJ: But it was just overall well done. The structure, the shots they chose, it gave us hints at a lot of scenes throughout the movie… but not TOO much.

TTE: Yes, even the music they choose to buy, and sample from the scores are perfectly placed.

WEDDING FEELS HIDDEN BEHIND SOME SERIOUS HAIR

normal_Mockingjay-Part2-Unite017TGWTP: How many feels did you have when you realized it began with the wedding scene?

JJ: THAT was a great choice.

TGWTP: I made an uncomfortable gaspy-sob sound that was probably not meant to come out of a human.

JJ: First, it just LOOKED beautiful, but then you realize what it actually is, and as a fan, you’re hooked in completely from the start. And Katniss’s voiceover for that moment is so perfect. Well played.

TTE: Well, the first time I viewed it I was in a hot car, watching it on my cell phone… but I had the sound up on my car’s stereo… so that made it kind of dramatic in probably not the way they wanted it to be… for me at least.

TGWTP: I must admit though… I didn’t notice Johanna in that scene until about the fifth time I watched it. Too distracted by Effie’s Edward Scissorhands hair

JJ: I didn’t notice her either. But that doesn’t take points away for me. There will be moments with Johanna later, I’m sure.

TTE: I didn’t see her! *runs off to pause video like crazy person*

TGWTP: How could you behind Effie’s flair, really? Though man… Jena is handling that bald cap like a champ in the scene when you DO notice her

TTE: Oh, there she is… ten seconds in, over Effie’s shoulder.

normal_Mockingjay-Part2-Unite081TGWTP: And did you guys notice that when we finally see Katniss talked to Coin, she’s still got the bruises on her throat?! *weeps* Then you realize that her voice sounds REALLY ROUGH.

JJ: Yes, the bruises are a great detail. And her voice. Poor dear.

TTE: I was about to say “Her voice sounds really trashed.”

TGWTP: Obviously, we know the story picks up immediately after Peeta’s attack. But knowing and seeing are way different

JJ: “Snow has to pay for what he’s done…” Cue Lionsgate logo lol

TGWTP: BAM!

EFF YOU, SPEECHES!

TGWTP: I also find it funny that Katniss says “I can’t make another speech about it…” and then is launches into her District 2 speech shortly thereafter lol

JJ: “Can’t” versus “God help me I DON’T WANT TO”

TTE: I think that’s on purpose! she’s very speech-y.

JJ: But Katniss, you do some pretty good speeches. Impromptu is hard to do after all.

TGWTP: Exactly. Poor girl is just like “NO MORE FUCKING SPEECHES! LET ME TAKE OUT MY RAGE ON THE BATTLEFIELD.”

(more…)

Here’s Effie. Kind of.

Today, another image from Tim Palen’s upcoming bookTIM PALEN: Photographs from the Hunger Games, was released via Entertainment Weekly. This time, we got a look at District 13-era Effie.

effie-trinket

Wait, is that even Effie? Of course we recognize her from the inventive use of the bandana and some signature accessories she was able to swipe on her way out of the Capitol, but her face looks a bit different. Maybe it’s that Effie dug heavily into the makeup stash used during Katniss’s first failed Mockingjay transformation. Or maybe someone went a little Photoshop happy.

The photograph itself is quite lovely, and the posing very much in Effie’s character. I suppose if we imagine that Effie commissioned this piece and wanted her face to have all that extra…work to make the “best impression” possible, then, ok, we get it.

Really though, we think someone just really enjoys using Photoshop.

JJ

Mockingjay Part 1 Lulz: Rolling Dad Commentary

I had a completely different post planned for today, but then something spectacular happened. I watched the Mockingjay Part 1 DVD with my dad.

emma-stone-excited

See, my dad likes the series but is by no means an expert. He probably hasn’t watched Catching Fire since last spring and missed Mockingjay Part 1 in theaters, so this was his first viewing. Also, my dad is pretty big on personal commentary whenever he watches a movie from the comfort of his own couch and his attention skills are not the best.

So today, inspired by “Things My Husband Says During Outlander” (if you watch that series, READ THESE! They’re way funnier.) I decided to write down a few of the gems and share them with you. Because I’m pretty sure everyone know someone who does this!

PSH:
“Oh wow, he’s in this? How much is he in this?”

White rose:
“What the hell does that mean?

2581126223637204660bpdvmTncSnow gets cut while shaving:
“Yeah, now you got it coming, ya bastard.”

“I wonder where Peeta bread is?”

Dream sequence:
“Wow. She is actually a lot taller than him.”

Negotiation scene:
“I’m not sure why the critics made this movie not sound so good. I’m already sure it’s a lot better than the critics made it sound.”

Effie:
“Wait… she’s bald. Is she bald?”

Gale:
“Now is that one Chris? I can never tell.”

Looking at Cinna’s Mockingjay sketches:
“Wait, who’s dead? The bird?”

Propo filming:
“Heh heh. This is just like being in the movies. Except you’re bad!”

Haymitch and Effie eye lock:
“You gotta like them two, anyway.”

Beetee:
“Oh he can’t walk anymore, huh? … I need a refresher.”

Arrows:
“It’s funny how she never runs out of arrows.”

“The red ones must be very expensive.”
*looks at my redhead mother*
“You cost me a lot of freakin’ money all the time.”

“Don’t expect much chit chat, he’s an Avox”:
“An Avox? What does that mean? Is he some sort of asshole?”

“He must be on a puree diet.”

Shooting at Capitol bombers:
“Pretty boy can’t make the shot.”

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District 7:
“How the hell do they climb the trees so fast?!”

Hunting
“What is that? A horse? An elk. It could be a deer, but it’s got the hairy neck. An elk.”

“That ain’t right. You ain’t gonna cheat on Peeta bread, are you? Poor Peeta.”

Katniss/Gale kiss:
*aggravated moan*

Attack on the dam
“Trying to figure out what’s happening here.. Oh, oh! That there is gonna get blown up!”

“Mmm hmm Mr. President.. your time is getting short!”

The Attack on 13:
“District 13 had all this stuff [weapons, defenses, etc] all that damn time?!”

“What’s with all the water? Are they (District 13) purposefully trying to kill everybody?”

The hatch shown in the Crazy Cat scene: “Hey look! They got portable water!”

The Rescue:
“I don’t think this is gonna work out well. I have a funny feeling. We’ve setting up for the next movie.”

“Urgh.. he’s probably already dead.”

Other victors: “Wait.. they were in there too? Where did they all come from?”

The End
*Peeta’s back stiffens*
“Uh oh.”
*Peeta attacks*
“Uh oh!”

“Wow. He really has gone cuckoo.”

At Least He’s Team Peeta, Amirite?
The Girl With The Pearl