The Hunger Games

REVIEW: The Hunger Games Exhibition Experience

Welcome, welcome to our review of The Hunger Games Exhibition!

A few lucky fansites were given an early preview of this massive undertaking over the weekend! Kait and JJ attended the event (though JJ very skillfully avoided all the cameras). Now, we’re breaking down everything you need to know if you’re considering a visit to what seems like the franchise’s very first East Coast attraction!

Without any further ado…

THE COSTUMES AND SETS

Yes, all the major costumes and set pieces are there, perfectly positioned and lit in all their glory. You’ll be tons of familiar outfits, designs, and set arrangements. You’ll also see so things you didn’t notice in the films. For instance, did you know Effie was wearing these shoes in District 13?!

51654684

We’ve never seen them before and it’s tragic!

The costumes are spectacular, but there’s also full set pieces to adore. They’re set up in ways you’d easily recognize the film and pretty dazzling up close. For example, the Hob set in full of props that look faded and distressed, but seeing it all in person adds a whole new dimension to it. As you end with one section and walk into another, you’re usually turning a corner to find a massive, beloved scene RIGHT IN YOUR FACE. It was enough to make us squeal, even enough to make some others get all teary-eyed!

Just a real casual Capitol party display... SQUEE!

Also, Josh, Jen, Willow, Jena, and Francis went through the exhibit yesterday, the day after the fansites. They touched what we touched. WE PRACTICALLY EXCHANGED FRIENDSHIP BRACELETS. Just kidding, but it’s still pretty awesome!

INTERACTIVE FEATURES

If you’ve gone to an exhibition for Harry Potter and/or The Lord of the Rings, you probably think you know the drill by now. What you’re NOT accounting for are the boatload of unique interactive features that make this stand out, even for people who are not super familiar with the series (you know, in case you bring a mostly clueless friend or parent along!)

INTERACTIVE AUDIO DEVICE
When you enter the exhibition, you’ll be given a handy cell phone sized device. It seems like it’s just an audio guide, but there’s lots to do with it! Namely, it finds “Hidden Spots” throughout the exhibit that unlock deleted scenes and show how the props in front of you. They also pull up holographic maps, allow you to take pictures, and give you a special ally with whom you can explore!

POLLING STATIONS

Every here and there, you’ll find polling stations that ask how you would react in certain Hunger Games style situations. Turn the lever and your vote is counted– a pellet falls into a glass cylinder. Then you can examine the cylinders to see how your vote compares to others.

THE TRAIN TO THE CAPITOL
Be prepared for your photo op! Get cozy in the back of the train to the Capitol, where Katniss and Peeta worked out their tentative friendship in Catching Fire, and snap a pic! Built-in screens give the illusion that you too are headed to the Capitol.

Kait with Adam from HG Fireside Chat and Brittany from Down With The Capitol

Kait with Adam from HG Fireside Chat and Brittany from Down With The Capitol

INTERVIEW WITH CAESAR
Caesar Flickerman is one hell of an interviewer, even when his head is a television screen! You can stop and have a photo op with The Capitol’s favorite television host but be warned, those fancy seats are really hard to sit upright in!

Also, it's hard to get his face to show up at certain angles!

Also, it’s hard to get his face to show up at certain angles!


FIGHT TRAINING

Think you got the moves? A movie stunt coordinator is ready to test them! See how well you can learn and bust out a quick defensive sequence used in the films. It’s harder than you think!

JOIN THE MOCKINGJAY’S PROPO
A special station in the Mockingjay section of the museum allows you to choose your setting and record a propo message in support of the Rebellion! Your image will then show up on the big ol’ HD TV screen behind you.

YOUR VERY OWN TRIBUTE PARADE

It’s your turn to join the Tribute Parade! Instead of explaining, here’s a video of me and Down With The Capitol’s Ellie making fools of ourselves for good old fashioned fun! Shelve it under “So horrible that it’s actually kind of amazing.”

THE GIFT SHOP

At the end of the road, we hit the gift shop!

Like most, there’s lots of items in here that seem a bit random, like mints and “Capitol confections” that are just regular candies bottled up pretty. But there’s also some really awesome stuff, exclusive mug and t-shirt designs, Buttercup plushes, Tim Palen’s new photo book, and jewelry ranging from simple ($5 arrow ring) to “SERIOUSLY.. WHO THROWS AROUND MONEY LIKE THAT?!”($7400 diamond encrusted gold Mockingjay pendant necklace.)

Disappointing news– the Katniss Cowl is in the gift shop, but it costs $130. Yup, the mass produced version is just as much as (if not more than) most Etsy sellers. We just want to own a Katniss Cowl and still pay off our student loan debt in a timely fashion, Lionsgate!

For a small fortune, all this can be yours!

For a small fortune, all this can be yours!

And so ends our adventure. If you’re a Hunger Games lover and you’re heading to New York City this year, we highly recommend it!

Want more images? Check out our full gallery!

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!

Looking Through Tim Palen’s Photographs from The Hunger Games

Today Tim Palen’s Photographs from The Hunger Games became available. Even as a super fan, I was on the fence about this purchase with the $75 list price, but when I saw it in person I had to take the plunge.

imageThis is a hefty, gorgeous book, filled with large beautiful pictures from the first three movie campaigns (or to be more fair, 3.5 movie campaigns) and explanations of the creative choices behind them in the introduction. As the title indicates, the photos are the focus – specifically character portraits, with movie and Suzanne Collins’ book quotes interspersed throughout the pages.

For The Hunger Games, we see alternate shots of the characters with their eyes closed, as well as different takes on released promotional images. For Catching Fire and Mockingjay Part 1, we again see the familiar images from posters and other promotional images with unreleased versions or additional character shots.  Some of the unreleased images from Mockingjay Part 1 are staggering.
imageWhat about Mockingjay Part 2? Well, as anticipated, there’s not that much you haven’t seen. There’s no Katniss in that mysteriously red Mockingjay outfit that we’ve been hearing about from CineEurope. Nope, nothing new. Unless you mean the several new pictures of Peeta (one in a hospital gown and several in battle gear) and one of Gale crying in the style of the “Sister’s Portrait.”

Oh, yeah, I guess those count. You might like those. A lot.

This book is clearly a collectable item at the size and price tag. I think the best way to decide if it’s worth it to you is to see the book in person, either at an Assouline bookshop or the Hunger Games Exhibition Gift Shop (it should be available more widely in about a month). My only twinge of regret is that I wish this were released next year so that the Mockingjay Part 2 section could be more complete.

Every book needs to leave room for a sequel?
JJ

The Red Mockingjay Suit of Chaos

We’ve already got a “teaser” for Mockingjay Part 2, which was trailer length but WE’RE NOT COMPLAINING. Now it’s time to prepare for the theatrical trailer!

See, we know it’s out there! Some lucky folks in Spain got to see it today as part of Cine Europe, which is an event for studio types and film distributors that’s similar to CinemaCon. There isn’t too much description out there yet, but there was ONE gem in the reports:

J-Law was like "I'll take it in RED, plzkthx." (No, not really.)

J-Law was like “I’ll take it in RED, plzkthx.” (No, not really.)

Come November, Katniss will be rocking a red Mockingjay suit!

You may be thinking back to April right now. Because in April, Funny Or Die released a gif of Jennifer Lawrence in a red Mockingjay suit talking into a banana as if it were a cell phone. We assumed nothing of the suit, only that it was a discolored imitation of the suit from the films. Hell, it’s Funny or Die! They clearly weren’t being serious!

Buuuuuuut then Lionsgate started asking that all the image be taken down pronto. From all the places. At the time, we just assumed this was Lionsgate getting antsy over their ownership of all things even kinda sorta mentioning the series and shrugged it off as silly. LO AND BEHOLD, THERE WAS A SECRET IN HERE!

Lionsgate nixed the images, so we can’t post them here, but the Internet is a vast entity where nothing ever disappears, especially if you check tumblr. Just sayin’!

Now to the big question — WHY ADD A RED MOCKINGJAY SUIT?

Artistic flair, we suppose! To give the audience something they didn’t expect and make Katniss stand out. We would assume it was used for was the execution scene if we didn’t already see that in the teaser. Maybe it’s another propo outfit designed to make her stand out more on screen. In which case, goal achieved!

To be clear, we give zero fucks about the additional of this suit. It’s actually pretty cool and not everything is always going to be straight off the page. We’ve been blessed with pretty minimal changes throughout the series and the color of an outfit in now way changes the plot. So yeesh, naysayers, calm yourselves before you pop a vein or something, ‘kay?

It’s More Of A Crimson, Anyway. The Crimsonjay!
The Girl With The Pearl

Mockingjay Part 2: Proud To Be 3D Free

…In the US anyway.

Look, we get it. 3D is a big thing. Some people really like it and in the grand scale of things, it’s revolutionized the way that audiences view and appreciate films in recent years. But can we just say…

THANK GOODNESS MOCKINGJAY PART 2 WON’T HAVE THAT BS!

Yes, 3D is amazing, but only when it’s done right.

Personal favorite 3D experience!

Personal favorite 3D experience!

There’s two ways 3D comes about:
1) The film is intended to be a vast visual experience from the get-go and the director and studio agree to shoot the film with 3D technologies and that style in mind.
2) The studio decides to convert the film to 3D in post, creating a lesser quality version that adds little to the film and gives some people headaches.

The Hunger Games franchise uses the latter. Why? We assume it’s because 3D ticket prices are higher, driving up overall profits when people inevitably get lured in by the idea of seeing the biggest, “best” version of the film. But in recent years, audiences have wised up to the conversion method most studios use and 3D sales have declined. And ya know, those tickets are effing expensive!

Sadly, this guy was only available in Fake 3D.

Sadly, this guy was only available in Fake 3D.

Don’t get us wrong, there are some GREAT 3D films out there. But we weren’t planning Mockingjay Part 2 in IMAX 3D because we weren’t about to pay extra for poorly converted nausea. Now, we’re really, really excited to see it in IMAX 2D without the silly, unnecessary “effects”. We’re just bummed that IMAX versions are still only being offered in 3D for the rest of the world!

So movie studios, know this– We’re not total fools. If you’re not going to commit to REAL 3D for your films, don’t come at us with the cheap conversion. We don’t want it!

2D Or 3D? You Tell Us!
The Girl With The Pearl

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…)

The Mockingjay Part 2 Trailer: Reactions on the Fly

No, this is not this official bomb diggity trailer reaction post we do for every film, sadly. Getting a bunch of busy ladies together to chat takes time, but it’s coming!

Here's a hug. We all need one!

Here’s a hug. We all need one!

In the meantime, let’s discuss some off the cuff reactions!

For me, this was probably the best trailer for the series we’ve seen so far (followed by the second Catching Fire trailer, if you’re curious!) Some really awful fans have been jumping all over Nina and Francis on Twitter demanding that this trailer be freaking fantastic because they’d had to wait so long– as if Nina and Francis control the release of trailers– and now those two can be smug. It WAS freaking fantastic!

We got a major sentimental scene, Finnick and Annie’s wedding, for which the visuals were gorgeous. We see the extreme sister love between Katniss and Prim. And then the tension seeps in and we remember that it is NOT ALL GOOD. War is happening, people are rallying, Katniss is dressed up as the Mockingjay, and Effie and Haymitch are there to attempt to be reassuring but probably kinda failing.

Then there’s the hug continuation that hit all the feels, as noted here by a Twitter user:

Shot through the heart!

Shot through the heart!

From there, the action begins! Did anyone else think the Star Squad was running from a crazy huge deluge of oil when those set photos from Paris hit the Internet? WE SURE DIDN’T.

Altogether, it was an exciting, uplifting, heartbreaking, INSANE experience to watch the first trailer for the final film.

However, there has been one thing pointed out to us that we can’t un-see. Something straight out of the Catching Fire trailers:

THIS NOVEMBER
COMES THE EVENT
THE WORLD HAS BEEN WAITING FOR

We mean… both “events” have that November release and the world is waiting / waited for both (not the whole world, of course. There’s undoubtedly some countries out there where people do not give a daaaaamn about these films.) The lettering is the same in each but the background is different– CF is black, MJ2 is crimson with little embers floating. Still, are there NO OTHER WAYS to say “Everyone is anticipating this movie coming in November” without recycling?! Are we budgeting the biggest franchise Lionsgate has?

Still, we’ll try to let it go because all the other stuff.

Real Freak Out Reaction Post Coming Soon!
The Girl With The Pearl

The Rogue Rumor

Let’s focus on good news, even if it’s,just a rumor: A resident of Panem may be headed to a galaxy far, far away!

Sam Claflin aka our very own Finnick Odair is reportedly being considered for a role in Star Wars: Rogue One! It’s still a rumor, but we’re clinging on to this rumor for dear life because it makes our fandom-loving hearts want to burst!

tumblr_inline_n6v4c4FdOe1rte3i4

In case you’ve been living under a rock (or you don’t follow Star Wars), Rogue One is the first of many planned standalone spin-offs set to hit the franchise. Chronologically, it will take place before Star Wars IV: A New Hope, aka the first movie.

He's probably a little short for a Storm Trooper...

He’s probably a little short for a Storm Trooper.

Sam is reportedly being eyed to play one of several freedom fighters without Jedi powers who fight back against the Empire and form the rebel alliance. According to The Wrap, the role would be more substantial than his role in The Hunger Games.

AND PLEASE LET THIS BE TRUE BECAUSE WE LOVE IT!

First and foremost, Sam is an excellent actor. He’s got chops and thankfully, he’s been given many more opportunities to display them following the end of Hunger Games filming. But we think there’s something particularly special about joining the Star Wars universe, the franchise that exposed the magic of cinema to many. It would be amazing for any actor, so we want that for an actor we adore!

More than other actors in the franchuse, Sam also comes off like a massive fanboy in general, so we imagine he’d have a lot of fun with this opportunity. Also, Sam Claflin isn’t commenting on the rumors, which means we’ve avoided the Fight Club casting jinx!

So what do you think? Are you ready to see Sam playing an action star in a galaxy far, far away?

Because We Just Need Something To Happen!
The Girl With The Pearl

The Hunger Games Exhibition Comes to Town (Well, NYC)

We’ve been teased about it, and now we can book advance tickets. Yes, The Hunger Games Exhibition comes to Discovery Times Square in NYC starting July 1 through the end of the year to let fans immerse themselves more in the world. Well, at least as much as you’d want to, since Panem doesn’t seem like a great place to live.

Per Lionsgate:

The Hunger Games: The Exhibition celebrates the blockbuster Hunger Games franchise and Katniss’s epic journey like never before. This dynamic exploration of the art, science, pageantry and history of the world of Panem features iconic costumes, props, and set recreations that highlight the technological wizardry and amazing artistry that brought this world to life. High-tech, hands-on interactives let you dive into exciting behind-the-scenes content, engage deeply with the world of the films, and discover a whole new side of the stories that took the world by storm.

image004

The poster is again centered around our Girl on Fire looking a bit sad and stoic, as you’d imagine she would in this type of situation.

From this promo pic it looks like they’ve recreated the Hob as part of the exhibition too, complete with Mockingjay pin. But Madge, you say, what about Madge? Forget about Madge here, this exhibition celebrates the world of movie Panem. Which is still really cool.

image003

Since we love learning about how these movies have been made, we’re looking forward to checking it out. You can visit www.thehungergamesexhibition.com to purchase tickets and get more information. The site has some high-level info on the different exhibition areas, such as District 12, the Tribute Train, and “Katniss’s Journey.”

We hope this is just the first step in lots more news to come.

JJ

Mockingjay Part 2 Trailer Speculation Shootout

Look, we get it. Waiting for an anticipated movie trailer sucks. Waiting for a Hunger Games trailer is perhaps even worse because Lionsgate is obsessed with keeping it sooper sekret right up until the day of release, whenever the high hell that may be.

But seriously guys, stick a fork in us… because we’re done.

THE OBSESSIVE TRAILER TALK IS TOO FREAKING MUCH.

It started off pretty chill with the Age of Ultron rumors. Someone said the Mockingjay Part 2 trailer would come out in front of Marvel’s surefire smash, which was easy to believe because regardless of whether it’s true or not, Lionsgate would be straight up idiotic is they DIDN’T do this. LG’s upcoming release Age of Adaline was also named as a potential suitor for the trailer. Then somebody asked Lionsgate and they denied it all, and the people who are new to this rodeo actually believe Lionsgate’s denial without question. Hint, folks! LIONSGATE NEVER TELLS THEIR FANS ANYTHING UNTIL MAYBE A COUPLE DAYS IN ADVANCE, IF WE’RE LUCKY. They deny all rumors straight up to that point. Don’t know why they think this method is useful, but they do it anyway!

Speaking of overdone...

Speaking of overdone…

Then somebody confirmed with a source that the trailer isn’t happening until summer, while somebody else confirmed with a source that the trailer IS indeed coming with Age of Ultron/Age of Adaline. THE AGES, if you will. All these sources, by the way, tend to be movie theater employees. So someone in there is completely fucking clueless and just making answers up.

And somebody in South America has now posted a trailer list for Age of Ultron without a Mockingjay Part 2 trailer on there, so now we’re supposedly meant to believe that the rest of world isn’t getting it either because that one theater isn’t with that one particular film? Because all theaters always show the same things internationally and trailers never end up under codes names and these lists never change, right?!

Then the superfans and even some fansites (though most have wised up to this by now) are posting and retweeting and commenting on every. freaking. rumor. Sometimes we’re pretty sure they just want to sound like they’re in the know. It’s enough to make us want to tune out any mention of the trailer.

Look, we honestly don’t know whether the trailer is coming with Age of Ultron or not. We don’t believe any of you on either side anymore. You know when we’ll know? WHEN IT HAPPENS. And all this constant, rampant speculation ain’t gonna make it happen any faster.

So let’s try some patience, okay guys? We know it’s new to everyone, but it’s time.

Sorry, Temporarily Possessed By The Spirit of Lewis Black This Time,
The Girl With The Pearl