“Mockingjay, Part 1” — Redwood City Century 20, 4th Sunday in November (2014)

What self will say about the third (or penultimate) installment in the Hunger Games franchise is that it is very fleet. Hardly a wasted word or line of dialogue anywhere. Kudos, Director Francis Lawrence. You are genius.

All the important parts are there. To wit:

  • The Pearl (BTW, not a single reviewer from any of the major dailies mentioned this. If you don’t mention the pearl, you don’t really “get” the Katniss/Peeta thang. Ergo, you end up writing things like: “This movie is sooooo dull!” People, why do you think Katniss was rolling that pearl around in her hand? That was no mere pacifier!)
  • Peeta’s televised interviews with Caesar Flickerman (Three in all: YAY! Self knows: she sounds like such a sadist. But viewers needed all three to really see the progression of Peeta’s physical — not to mention psychological — deterioration. Though self admits to being a tad confused when J-Hutch moved from a white suit to a black suit apparently sprinkled with cement dust . . .  or was that supposed to be glitter on his shoulders?)
  • Buttercup (Seems to have blown up HUGE in this installment. Looks as big as a raccoon! Obviously being almost-abandoned in 12 has not had significant impact on Buttercup’s nutritional intake!)
  • Pouty Yet Loyal Gale, still the best eye-candy in The Hunger Games universe
  • The Hanging Tree song. Self loves that it’s so macabre. J-Law sings it as if she’s channeling Suzanne Vega. Very, very good.

What’s better than the book:

  • The return of Effie Trinket, in a drab jumpsuit, with no eyebrows. She’s the new Cinna. As every revolutionary worth his/her salt knows, you can’t do nuthin’ without a good stylist.
  • Cressida’s shaved head. The shaved part is covered with swirling, green tattoos. Cool!
  • Philip Seymour-Hoffman, whose sardonic delivery saves the film from ever teetering over into ridiculousness or self-importance. Yes, we needed you, PS-H. Self mourns your untimely demise. Truly mourns.
  • the darkening of the Capitol
  • Julianne Moore of course. Did we ever think we’d get such a wonderful Alma Coin? Self thinks: Not in our wildest dreams!
  • Haymitch getting sexy. Seriously. Mebbe it’s the rebel coutoure (aka:  Knit Cap) Whatever, it works.
  • J-Law’s steely gaze (so effective, especially in close-ups!)
  • J-Law’s voice: She has a sort of Lauren Bacall growl-iness combined with a blank affect. Result: mesmerizing.
  • Hijacked Peeta — 10x scarier than in the book. The pencil-neck! The black eyes! The bubble-head! Most of all, the RAGE!

Last scene: heart-stopping. The film is constantly teetering on the razor’s edge of self-knows-not-what, but those last two or three minutes are straight up horror.  Like a scene from The Ring.  Consequently, self has been feverishly looking up HEA (Happily-Ever-After) Hunger Games AU (Alternate Universe) fan fiction ever since she got home.

Search Tag: Toastbabies

Because Bread + Fire = Toastbabies.

More Toastbabies! More!

This year, thank God, reviewers seem to be tiring of the word “dystopian.” At least, self thinks she saw it in only about half of the reviews she read on Rotten Tomatoes.

Self can never thank her niece, Georgina, enough. G was a Stanford undergrad when self happened to mention that she just couldn’t seem to get into the Twilight books. At which point, G upped and said, “You should try The Hunger Games. I finished the first book in one weekend.”

And the rest is history.

Self thinks the only failing of “Mockingjay, Part 1” is that you don’t get to hear Lorde’s (great) song until the closing credits. What a waste. Seriously.

Also, it just occurred to self that Dr. Aurelius (Katniss’s and, later, also Peeta’s therapist) is completely AWOL. Unless Katniss hasn’t yet been diagnosed with depression?

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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