Monday, June 11, 2012

Mockingjay Mockup: STORY LINES

Welcome back to another edition of The Mockingjay Mockup! We had planned on talking about story lines and a detailed look at part one, but we don't want to make these posts too long. Hopefully we can post about the details of Part One tomorrow, since we couldn't bring it to you today. After broadly mapping it out in our last post, we will now examine to what extent the many relationships with Katniss should exist in Mockingjay Part One.


Every movie has an A storyline, B storyline, C, etc. Movies typically have an average of three different story lines (a statistic I totally and completely looked up and is not at all fabricated by me for sake of publishing this on time), all of which usually come together in some form at the end. So what do we have? Very broadly there are two: District 13 and The Capitol/the rest of Panem. But anyone who has read Mockingjay knows that within the District 13 storyline there is an extremely complicated web of relationships that must be dealt with. Well, we counted 8 as far as the important one goes. One might say that it might even be all of them. You're probably wondering, "Well cheese and crackers Jimmy, aren't you supposed to cut some stuff out?" to which we say, most certainly but really…. they're all kind of important! Tiffany and I frequently found ourselves remembering extremely important relationships to the story we missed, making manly guttural noises and saying, "We can't NOT put that in there!" If we were feeling this much anxiety, feelings, and extreme confusion making a simple structural split, we can only imagine  how grueling the actual process will be for the actual film. We salute you, you brave souls, you. So, onto the necessary relationships to be established for the film. I believe the question we should be asking is not what relationship story lines they are going to cut out, but which ones are they going to diminish:
-Coin/Katniss (conflict)
-Gale/Katniss (friendly conflict)
-Finnick/Katniss (Depending on how Finnick is handled in Catching Fire)
-Annie/Finnick story (If not already shown in Catching Fire)
-Snow/Katniss (conflict)

A little daunting, right? Don't forget, we even have to add the Johanna/Katniss relationship in Part 2. Some may look at this and think there's no way to establish all of this in a 2.5 hour movie. Well, we think this is possible. Thanks to The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, we already will have had the time to established these story lines in a way that is not rushed, which is always the danger of movies that have way too many relationships going on. You need time to care about (or despise) these characters if the audience is to be invested. Luckily, we have two movies to accomplish this. That way by the time Mockingjay comes around, you don't need to do too much establishing of these already cemented relationships. The only scenes necessary to be put in Mockingjay Part One will be those that propel the story forward.

So what will be diminished? This is a question even we can't answer. The most we can do it predict and speculate as best we can. Here are story lines we think are sufficient with just a scene or two in part one: Prim/Katniss, Finnick/Katniss, and Haymitch/Katniss. We're betting that there will be at least one scene with Katniss' family. After all, District 13 being establish will include where Katniss sleeps every night. Given what happens toward the end of Mockingjay, Katniss and Prim's relationship MUST be touched upon in part one at least once. Sure, she'll be present here and there throughout the two movies, but we're hoping the one scene they put in is her and Katniss' "Whatever it takes to break you" discussion during the bombing. It is possible they will also keep the scene earlier on in which Prim reminds her of the leverage Katniss has to be the Mockingjay. However, this particular scene may just end up on the cutting room floor.

 As for Finnick's friendship with Katniss, we're hoping they put him in throughout the films since he is such a beloved character (I may cry if they leave out the hilarious underwear scene), but as far as character development scenes, we are hoping that they keep the scene during the bombing where he shows Katniss knot tying and talking about Annie. Should they not explain their love story in Catching Fire, we could see them putting it in this scene. At least we can feel safe in knowing that they will ABSOLUTELY keep in Finnick's propo distraction where we find out his backstory. We've got a sort of rad idea on how to orchestrate this scene as part of Part One's climax.

 Lastly, we've got Haymitch/Katniss, which I'm sure will be a very well established relationship once Catching Fire is released. Keep in mind we're just looking at Haymitch's relationship to Katniss scenes, not all the other necessary Haymitch scenes to the story. So what is to be established? Assuming they don't sneak this scene into the end of Catching Fire, which we doubt, they MUST include their first real discussion about what happened at the end of the Quarter Quell, each recognizing the other's mistake. We're also hoping they also include the part when Haymitch comforts Katniss during the post District 13 bombing propo, giving a reason to break Peeta and the others out. It's a great scene that shows both of their connection to Peeta and each other, but it's possible they might forgo that for time reasons. They can easily come to the conclusion to break them out solely for the sake of needing to free the others from The Capitol's grasp. But, if I think those behind The Hunger Games films are as smart as I think they are, they'll keep that scene in not just for Haymitch's character, but to establish the psychological and emotional toll on Katniss.

Let's move onto the important story lines. Odds are the Gale/Katniss relationship will get a decent amount of screen time, given how they have set up the Gale/Katniss relationship. Not to mention, Gale is an integral part to Katniss' life and even through all the arguments, is still her right hand man. Depending on what the director of Mockingjay will want to focus on (and what Suzanne has to say about it), we are hoping that a lot of attention goes to Coin's character. Not only because she is a new character, but her conflict with Katniss is probably the most important conflict in Mockingjay. It must be established very early on that something is very unsettling about the way the rebellion handles things, and Coin and Katniss' power struggle. However, the great thing about the book is that this conflict is understated. It should not be established that it is Katniss vs Coin. It needs to be Katniss vs Snow, so that in the conclusion of Part 2, we see what has been under our noses the whole time. Therefore, the Katniss/Snow story line is one that should be greatly displayed. This is the main conflict throughout the story of The Hunger Games, and part one should not disappoint. We expect to see a few glimpses into the war effort in Panem, what Snow might be going through, and of course what Peeta is going through in his cell. Which leads to our final major storyline that in Part One, only exists in a few scenes. We believe that the decision will be made to see what Peeta is going through, as to not lead viewers hanging (especially those who have not read the books, to which I cannot help but say: WORST DECISION EVER!). As for occurrences in the book, we expect all the Peeta scenes to be in there for part one, which is basically all of his television appearances. Each one serves an important purpose to the telling of Mockingjay.

Looks like we're gonna end it here for now, we hope to make the next post very soon. Expect graphs, details, and plot lines abound!

~May your bread be toasty and your arrow fly straight,
Courtney & Tiffany

Check out the other Mockingjay Mockup posts:


Part 1 Overview