The Hunger Games

The Mockingjay Part 1 DVD Dish

After a never ending string of rumors, Lionsgate has finally confirmed the Digital HD and DVD release details for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 in the US.

Of course, they did it with a bit of trolling, because no promotion for this movie has come without any trolling.

THAT DAMN HANGING TREE REMIX! Is the beat-thumping dance music actually relevant to the story or its sales? Nope, it’s just Trollsgate at work!

“Fine, you know what? We’ll confirm the dates! But we’re going to put your through PAIN as we do so! MUAHAHAHAHA!”

Still, the dates are here!

DIGITAL HD: February 17

We’ll admit, we’re still not up on the Digital HD trend. We use streaming services like On Demand and Netflix, but actually buying up our own collection of Digital HD movies to watch on various screens and devices? Naaaahhhh! It’s cheaper, but you usually just don’t get the same special feature goodness that we absolutely require.

These days it’s really tempting, though, because everything comes out on Digital HD about 2 weeks earlier. Two and a half weeks in this case! Ouch!

DVD AND BLU-RAY: MARCH 6

91q1g9j7hmL._SX385_When it was originally rumored that the DVD would be out on March 3, we figured it would actually by the 6th. Why? DVD release parties!

LG did release parties throughout the country for both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, albeit not too many for either. They cover a few of the major city areas. People in the Northeast and middle America know not to get their hopes up. But still, we get to see all the fun coverage after the fact.

We have yet to hear about the important details: THE EDITIONS!

Each will come with its own special-ness. Target tends to rock the special features selection– and we’re hoping they do again so our collection kinda matches– while Best Buy will do its steelbook thing and Wal-Mart will pull off something (hopefully not an awkward triple feature with Part 1 only, because that would be horrendous).

Want in? You can pre-order now!

This is only the beginning of the DVD news, folks! It can only get better from here!

Special Features Breakdowns Next, PLZKTHX!
The Girl With The Pearl

Tim Palen And The Hunger For Mockingjay Part 2 Photographs

FACT: We are a bunch of impatient crazies. AND WE KNOW IT.

Mockingjay Part 1 has only been out for just shy of two months. It doesn’t even have a confirmed DVD release date yet (in fact, it’s still in many theaters) and yet we’re sitting here, arching our eyebrow and looking toward Lionsgate as if to say “Soooo.. Got anything from Mockingjay Part 2 yet?”

Well, there’s good news and bad news when it comes to that urge!

The good news? Tim Palen, Chief Marketing Officer for Lionsgate, will soon be releasing a photography book focused solely on the series! Here are the details:

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This is pretty awesome because Tim Palen is the photographer behind some of the most iconic Hunger Games franchise images out there, including all the awesome character posters. He’s been around the franchise since its beginnings and has got never-before-seen goodness, which is NEVER a bad thing!

The bad news? This will likely be our first taste of Mockingjay Part 2… and it’s not coming until JUNE 2015.

We expected to wait until at least April for the goods. Lionsgate is going to be chugging through the INSURGENT release until the end of March, after all. We can wait for one this to die down before the company worries about another.

Tim’s book will likely mark the very first peek into MJ2. The main photography is his work, so it;s likely going to be released in support of the book. Releasing his work early enough that it’s not considered “in conjunction” with the book would be super contradictory to the book’s whole purpose– TO GET OUR MONEY (and to display some lovely art). This also means the majority of MJ2 images from the book probably won’t (officially) hit the web. Because again, they want us to purchase the book. Which you can do here, if you’re interested.

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Does they mean we’re doomed to another year with no real Mockingjay media until late August? We don’t know if we can stand that pain once again! Clearly it didn’t work out so well last time, so let’s not repeat it, okay?

We Can Be Patient. Just Not THAT Patient.
The Girl With The Pearl

The Hanging Tree Gets Re-Remixed

In the past, we’ve made it abundantly clear how we feel about The Hanging Tree remix. To sum it up, we think that the original remix sent out to all the pop stations is not true to the spirit of the actual song and its meaning. Also, it just sounded really tacky, cheap, and unoriginal.

hanging_tree_by_la_chapeliere_folle-d4c4h7nBut alas, the song itself has sold really well (mainly in its original version) and debuted at #12 on the Billboard charts (as compared to #82 for the soundtrack single, “Yellow Flicker Beat”). It seems that Republic Records wants to ride The Hanging Tree train alllll the way to the station.

Was the pop remix enough? OF COURSE NOT! Have you learned nothing?! To make sure they could get this song the absolute maximum exposure, we’ve also got an alternative remix now:

When we saw alternative, we got a little worried because the genre contains all manners of music and could, quite possibly, have gone off the deep end quickly. It’s basically the “et cetera” genre.

But then we listened and… it’s almost like someone out there tried listening to the fans of once! We’ve been saying that The Hanging Tree is not a hip, dance-y pop number. It’s minimalist and dark. And this remix actually makes an effort to focus on the vocals and the message with a low-key musical arrangement with haunting undertones. That plucking but that reminds us of Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used To Know” makes us raise an eyebrow a little, but it’s still a major improvement.

The original will always be the best, in our opinion. It’s meant to be something powerful, sung without musical backup by a young rebel before a crowd catches on, a classic score swelling up behind their voices. Nothing is ever going to beat the movie version. But if The Hanging Tree HAD to be remixed for radio, it should have been something like this all along.

We Actually Want To Hear This Again. It’s A Miracle!
The Girl With The Pearl

Brawlin’ With The Mockingjay

This will be the first and last time I talk about the MTV Movie Brawl. Except for social media, possibly. We swear!

No, it hasn’t started yet. It’s still in the nomination phase. Yet… the heat is already on for the MTV Movie Brawl and Mockingjay Part 2. For some reason, this sucker always seems to be the one to get fans all sorts of riled up.

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And honestly, y’all? We don’t know if we’re with it this year.

How I Met Your Mother had a funny little gag called The Murtaugh List, aka a mental catalog of things that make you say the infamous line from Lethal Weapon’s Roger Murtaugh: “I’m getting too old for this shit.”

The MTV Movie Brawl is on our Murtaugh list. And it’s pretty easy to see why, as evidenced by a fellow VV writer and a friend of the site:

As we’ve pointed out before, these awards have more to do with which fans are most likely to vote repeatedly than which fandom is actually the most beloved. Sure, Catching Fire won in 2013. But in 2012 and 2014, the franchise lost to films that we very mildly popular by comparison.

See, we don’t mind losing in these races. It’s gonna happen, especially since we’re not all screaming from the rafters about voting like other fandoms will. And that’s okay! But it would feel a little more realistic if the results reflected the actual box office opening weekends a little more closely. For instance, losing to Captain America, Guardians of the Galaxy, or even Divergent last year would have made some sense, as clearly large numbers of people were actually anticipating these films. We know this because they had solid opening weekends and a big box office pull. Veronica Mars was an indie and had a limited release including VOD so obviously the numbers weren’t going to as big, but the film didn’t even make back its $6 million budget. And while we definitely appreciate the Marshmallows enthusiasm, it didn’t leave much space for accuracy.

Surely, there’s quite the possibility that we’ll lose again because another crowd because there’s so many hardcore fangirls out there, people. Though it makes us slightly cringe-y, we’re betting on the Fifty Shades of Grey crowd to be the over-enthusiastic one this year.

So Yeah… We’re Murtaugh Listing It,
The Girl With The Pearl

Awards Season and the Hunger Games Fandom

The new year brings new opportunities for the entertainment industry to get together and receive AWARDS. So many types of awards. There are the most prestigious awards: The Oscars, SAG, BAFTA, Golden Globes, Writers’ Guild, Producers’ Guild, etc.

There are a lot of highly lauded actors in the Hunger Games franchise, but their fancy awards are all for non-Hunger Games movies, sadly, because big blockbuster movie performances are rarely considered by these groups to be worthy of recognition. (One caveat – The Critics Choice Awards which has an “Action Movie” category, but those awards are somewhere down the line in terms of prestige). Some of our favorite actors will no doubt be in attendance for these prestigious awards. Julianne Moore is in awards contention for her role in Still Alice. Jennifer is a past winner of pretty much every award so she may present at some of these awards (definitely at the Golden Globes, where she won last year). Lorde will no doubt be at the Golden Globes since Yellow Flicker Beat has the sole Mockingjay-related nomination there. The Hunger Games movies only seem to get love in the original song category, so it seems that will continue again this year. We’re used to it. We know how it goes. We’ll be watching them in all their Capitol-esque glory where everyone comments on the dresses, the hair, shoes, jewels, and the inane interviews that go along with it. But some are a good time, especially the Golden Globes, because Tina Fey and Amy Poehler make it soooo fun.

good times at the pcas

The Good ‘Ol Days, when Lionsgate forced these guys to do these type of appearances.

There are also highly corporately sponsored entertainment events masquerading as “awards” like the People’s Choice Awards brought to you by seemingly every single brand P&G owns (It’s a lot). The fandom seems to get really excited about the People’s Choice Awards, but I think it’s only because in 2013, the big three attended and were cute buddies together. Ever since the franchise moved to debut movies in November however, the movies have been too off-schedule to be “nominated” (the “nominations” began before Catching Fire or Mockingjay came out in theaters).  Jennifer Lawrence has nominations this year, and there are rumors that she could attend, but my money is on a tapped “thank you appearance” at best. She doesn’t need these type of appearances anymore, the events need her to get ratings. So we’ll see how that ends up.

Outside of the glamour of these award shows, the popularity of our Hunger Games movies means that so many websites want to draw us in with their own magical internet pony voting awards where usually you can vote as many times as you want to encourage hits on the site.  (Yes, the People’s Choice is like that too, though most other magical internet ponies don’t get televised on CBS).There were a few of these in December, and there will no doubt be more soon to come, like MTV’s Movie Brawl, which I bet they’ll do again this year. And it’s so exhausting. But we get it. You want the thing that you love to be recognized in some way as “the best” so you get sucked in and vote and vote and vote. Just don’t let it take over your life and your social accounts too much.

At least it fills the dark time when there is no movie news.

JJ

Mockingjay Part 1 Contends For The Top Spot

Yes, Mockingjay Part 1 technically came out last year, but it’s still earning its way toward some accolades.

While clearly not in the same running as The Hobbit, Into The Woods, or Unbroken right now, Mockingjay Part 1 is still in many theaters across the US and heading toward a big, big goal: The highest grossing movie to be released in 2014.

We’re almost afraid of jinxing it by talking about it too much, but look!

box office 2014

Since the charts are based on the year of release and doesn’t separate earnings by year, Mockingjay Part 1 can still overtake Guardians of the Galaxy. The movie did surprisingly well for a somewhat outdated option in the post-holiday movie surge and is now less than $10 million behind the top spot. That may still seem monumental, but in box office speak, it’s not bad at all. If the movie performs at it did before the holidays, it’ll take two or three weeks to surpass.

Because we don’t want to come off as overly confident, We’ll admit there’s risks. Audiences could drop off in forever of Taken 3 or something equally terrible (because in case you didn’t notice, studios tend to release the films they’re less-than-confident about in January). Theaters may decide to “pull” the movie before the goal’s reached.

But here’s why we really, reeeeeeally hope they don’t: So we can shove it in some faces!

Yup, pure spite and bragging rights. You were probably expecting something more poignant, eh?

Remember when everyone was talking about it disappointing domestic box office? Well, even if it is less than Catching Fire, it’ll still be the highest grossing movie in the freaking country! A bad box office year is a bad box office year for the film industry as a whole. Still, The Hunger Games fans will be able to laugh in critics and analysts faces, knowing that despite all their negativity, we still made 2014 our bitch! BOOYAH!

Hmmmm… maybe it’s time for another trip to the movies!

Also, Transformers Is In The Top Five? EWWWWWW.
The Girl With The Pearl

Mockingjay Missing Scene Mayhem

What are you trying to do to us, Lionsgate?! We’re having palpitations over here!

See, you’ve been releasing a lot of gorgeous new stills over the past month. This one is a fave:

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But they’re stills that probablyyyy would have been better served in the pre-release drought that lasted until about a month prior to the film. Instead they came afterwards in the midst of Christmastime award-contending releases when the steam behind your movie is already 94% gone. Not your best move. IMJUSTSAYIN.

But then to make it worse, you quote them up. Mostly it’s movie related, but sometimes it’s this:

What? WHAT?!

This amazing, fierce confrontation between Katniss and Haymitch didn’t happen in the movie. We know! We desperately wanted it to happen in the movie, so we watched out for it during our multiple viewings. NEVER HAPPENED. Our fangirl hearts were crushed.

So what does it mean? Is this an actual deleted scene from the film? Or are you just taking book quotes that were never even part of the movie and torturing us with them?

We’ve stared at these pictures long enough and tried to riddle it out, but we’re honestly not positive. Both characters were in those same outfits A LOT. Backgrounds are blurred. The exact moments featured aren’t coming to mind, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t in the movie. The character in the foreground of Katniss’ still doesn’t have Haymitch’s long wavy hair, so it’s probably not a scene in which she was talking to him.

And we won’t even theorize that any part of this is from Part 2 (though we’d be thrilled of it got squeezed in there.) Learn from the past year, you eternal optimists. If we’re lucky, we might get something from Part 2 by the end of June. Maybe!

We’re somewhere between two and three months away from the DVD, so we can only hope the mystery gets solved when the deleted scenes are announced. If it’s in there, we will then suggest a few other scenes that probably could have been cut in order to include this one.

No More Non-Scene Teases, PLZKTHX!
The Girl With The Pearl

Unnerving Characters of The Hunger Games

Cross-fandom inspiration time!

On Day 11 of the 12 days of Pottermore, JK Rowling talked about Draco Malfoy. Particularly, she mentioned how “unnerved” she was by the massive amounts of Draco fangirls who assumed that under all the bullying, bigotry, and general cowardice, the character actually has a heart of gold. The author said she’d had to drop some truth about the character plenty of times in the past: As much as people will romanticize him, he’s still a pretty awful person who never really shook off all that bigotry.

Now, Draco Malfoy is the victim of fans romanticizing him under the “Bad Boy With A Heart Of Gold” stereotype. We loathe this trope beyond all others. Draco is not this trope, nor are Hunger Games characters that fanon (fan canon, that is) wants to trope up, like Finnick and Gale.

However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other characters for which the immense fan love might be considered a bit “unnerving” in the eyes of Suzanne Collins, even if they don’t necessarily romanticize the character. Perhaps they love him for the sheer fun and easy entertainment, the swagger and the smile.

You know who we’re talking about…

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No, seriously!

Caesar Flickerman has pizazz FOR DAYS. He makes us laugh. His style is unmatched. So we all love him, right?!

What we often overlook is that underneath it all, Caesar Flickerman is a pretty fucking awful human being.

We might think he’s just the standard vain, mindless Hollywood entertainer type, but not really. Caesar maintained his fame because he was the best spokesperson for the annual systematic sacrifice for children. He reassures and perpetuates lies in order to give a dictatorship the upper hand. When he interviews Peeta in Mockingjay, he absolutely knows that Peeta is being tortured and repeating carefully rehearsed falsities.

Book!Caesar is pretty much President Snow’s right-hand man. In the films, we’re provided with Antonius and Egeria, who kind of serve as intermediate Ministers of Propaganda. In the books, they don’t exist, so it’s easy to imagine Caesar is involved in plotting media relations that oppress and mislead the people. Especially since Snow sits off to the side and monitors all his segments. Even if he’s not so much involved in the planning in the films, he’s still the mainstay responsible for the execution of said plans.

So he manipulates, oppresses, and coerces. But he does it in a glitter tux with purple hair and a day-glo grin, so we forgive em!

We’re all quite susceptible to Caesar’s charms. And really, it’s not our fault– It’s Stanley Tucci’s!

But now that you think about it… isn’t that character adoration kinda unnerving?

Stick That In Your Holiday Pipe And Smoke It!
The Girl With The Pearl

The Girl on Fire, Made of Wax

Her face has been everywhere the past few years for the movie promotion, but yesterday marked another milestone in the cultural life of Katniss Everdeen. Yes, she has made it to another level now. Wax.  She’s a popular enough character that Madame Tussaud’s has made Katniss Everdeen wax figures for its London, NYC, and LA locations.

Here they are:

London Katniss

London Katniss

Katniss in NY (top) and LA (bottom)

Katniss in NY (top) and LA (bottom)

The likeness to Jennifer Lawrence’s Katniss is pretty incredible. And we like the choice to have District 12/Catching Fire Katniss in two of the locations. This isn’t Katniss all glammed up for the Capitol in her fire dresses (although when you’re modeled after Jennifer Lawrence, you’re going to be gorgeous no matter what). This is Katniss in the woods (or in the woods of the first Hunger Games). She’s frowning. She’s concerned. She’s sad. She’s not fake smiling for the audience.

We’re happy they chose to immortalize this version of Katniss, and not “The Mockingjay.” Potential promotional partners, take note.

But while we really do like the serious take on Katniss, we wouldn’t mind if Jennifer Lawrence paid a visit and did some Jon Hamm/Don Draper type silliness.

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THAT, we think, would burn down the internet.

JJ

Victor’s Village Holiday Giveaway 2014!

It’s the most wonderful tiiiiiime of the year!

Well, kinda. We mean, Mockingjay Part 1 hype is mostly over and there’s roughly 8,000 things to do and everyone’s finances are pretty bleak… BUT we’re going to put a little pep in your step this holiday season with a chance to win some incredible Hunger Games themed prizes!

There’s no major tasks or hoops to jump through this year, mainly because we totally procrastinated on this sucker. You’re welcome!

So let’s look at the stellar prizes, shall we?

Custom Hanging Tree Lyrics Mug by CuppaCharisma

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As if winning this gorgeous mug with some poignant Hunger Games lyrics on it wasn’t enough, CuppaCharisma is going to customize the back of the mug with a bare tree and the winner’s first name!

Mockingjay Shot Glass Set by CosplayKreations

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A set of 3 of these etched 1.5oz beauties could also be yours! Glassware is a great way to show off fandom without getting too flashy and… what can we say? We like shots!

Catching Fire Best Buy Steelbook Edition
The Hunger Games/Catching Fire Wal-Mart DVD Combo Pack

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Looking to collect ALL the Catching Fire DVD editions or know someone who is? You’re in luck! Two runners up will receive either a Catching Fire Best Buy Steelbook edition or The Hunger Games/Catching Fire Wal-Mart DVD Combo Pack!

ENTER THE HOLIDAY GIVEAWAY HERE!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Our holiday contest is open internationally. Contest ends on December 27th. Winners will be contacted on December 28th.

No matter what you celebrate, HAPPY HOLIDAYS!