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Through the Pages: Mockingjay Chapter 1


It’s time tributes! Join us as we breakdown Mockingjay before the arrival of ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1″ with our predictions on what will make it to the big screen and what will be left behind on the cutting room floor. Don’t forget to comment with your own predictions so that we can come back and examine who got what right or wrong!

Spoiler warning! Through the Pages involves a lot of book discussion, so if you haven’t yet read Mockingjay then proceed with caution. Or, better yet, go read the book and come back and join in!


Chapter 1 opens with Katniss standing in the remains of the Everdeen family home in the Seam. As Gale and others watch on from hovercrafts above. Katniss works her way through what is left of District 12, recounting the firebombing that occurred after the Quarter Quell, how Gale managed to evacuate some of the residents, and how she feels about her part in all of it. Eventually the ruins, the thought of what may be happening to Peeta, and the thoughts of those lost become too much and she runs to their house at Victor’s Village. There she gathers a few possessions, including the plant book, and has a most unexpected reunion with Buttercup. Lastly, as Katniss goes upstairs to retrieve her father’s hunting jacket, she finds a single white rose left for her.

Crystal: Starting the film off in District 12 just like in the book sounds completely doable to me, so I don’t see why they wouldn’t stick with it. Besides, we’ve already seen set photos of Katniss with her brown jacket on with Gale, so we do know they go back. However, I don’t think a month will have passed. I think Gale will be with her on the ground rather than in the hovercraft, Katniss will see skulls and panic, and she’ll ask him what happened. He’ll tell the story and we might possibly see a flashback. I can’t decide if she’ll go to Mellark Bakery’s ruins, but it’s possible so that Gale can establish that his whole family is gone. I hope they have her stuffing Buttercup into a bag, though they might not have established their relationship enough for it. I definitely think the rose will be in the house.

All of Katniss’ descriptions of things going on in District 13, including Coin’s comment about how they should have rescued Peeta instead, will come later after the District 12 stuff.

Lines I hope make it: Nothing really stands out for this one. I’d like to see Francis’ creativity shine here.

Tash: I hope that ‘Mockingjay Part 1’ opens just as the book does – it would be a great way to drop the audience straight into the action and set the tone going forward by opening in the still smouldering ruins of District 12. I’m glad that ‘Catching Fire’ showed us more of the district, because as Katniss picks through the rubble we will have a reference point as to what used to be there (I really hope to see part of a blackened ‘Building a better tomorrow’ mural somehow partially intact among the rubble). It wouldn’t surprise me though if there was a slight shift of location, perhaps instead of standing in the family home Katniss may find herself at The Hob or other Seam building remnants, before making her way to the square and the Victor’s Village beyond.

Instead of remaining on the hovercraft I’d like to see Gale walk through with her. Rather than relying on voiceover this would be a simple way to recount what has happened, as he explains the hovercrafts flying in with a carpet of bombs and the escape to the woods. Liam delivered the ‘there is no District 12’ line beautifully and I would like to see more of Gale’s simmering anger here. It’s also a chance for Jen to show those amazing facial expressions and body language again to show the despair, guilt and overwhelming sadness and fear Katniss feels. Aside from the ruins and scattered remains, which really drive home how war touches everyone, the most pivotal part of this chapter is finding Buttercup (hooray for Buttercup!) in the Victor’s Village house and then finding the rose. I really hope to see Katniss back away in fear or even throw/destroy the rose, then descend into hysteria about Snow’s message before Gale grabs her to calm her and return her to the hovercraft. That would also give it a nice parallel with the opening of ‘Catching Fire’! (making it all the more heartbreaking later when the friendship she relies on unravels)

Lines I hope make it: “Want to see Prim?” – Katniss

Phil: With the debut of a Mockingjay teaser trailer not that far away, I’m quite excited to start going through the pages of the last book and imagine how it will translate to the big screen. The first chapter is an interesting one, but it includes a lot of Katniss’ thoughts, which can sometimes be hard to explain in a movie. I believe that Mockingjay – Part 1 will start with some sort of video from the Capitol, maybe an announcement from Snow, or something related to Peeta being tortured in the Capitol, similar to the way The Hunger Games started, with Caesar interviewing Seneca. Then, I think they’ll want to switch to Katniss in 12, walking around the district. Much like in the novel, she’ll probably walk on someone’s skull and be kind of terrified, and afterwards she will go to her house in the Victor’s Village. They’re probably going to focus on Buttercup and then on the rose sent by Snow, and then she will hear Gale’s voice in her headset. A hovercraft will then be seen coming down and picking her up.

Lines I hope make it: “Want to see Prim?” – Katniss

Erin: I’m hoping we’ll get an opening that follows closely along with the book, with Katniss exploring the demolished District 12. I’d like to see her by herself for a little while before walking to the Meadow and meeting up with Gale. He’ll explain what happened as they walk along, and hopefully we’ll see some flashbacks from the night he saved those 800 district residents. Their walk will end at Katniss’ house in Victor’s Village, where she’ll go inside alone while Gale calls the hovercraft to pick them up. I’m looking forward to her reunion with Buttercup before shoving him inside her game bag. When she goes to get her father’s jacket, maybe it will be in the same study where President Snow talked to her, tying back to Catching Fire. And on the desktop, there could be a single white rose.

Jackson: Really this could be a sensitive subject for me because I have a way I am dying for the movie to start out. I want a hardcore flashback to District 12. The Hunger Games and Catching Fire both start in a peaceful 12, so I want the opening scene to have that same settled feeling. We see people going about their day-to-day lives. Gale is outside the mines and Prim and Ms. Everdeen are in Victors Village. Then there is a dull humming noise. People go out of their houses and thats when they see the first hovercraft drop the bomb as a huge explosion shakes the ground. Then Gale springs into action saving lives as homes explode and fire spreads through the streets.

I know a lot of people are expecting a flashback scene, but I’m worried a flashback wouldn’t do the bombings of District 12 justice, and they would be more likely to be glazed over. One thing I liked about The Hunger Games more than Catching Fire was there was more time to stop and savor the moment. I can’t help but compare it to how The Two Towers started. They went back and showed Gandalf fighting the Balrog to draw you into a scene that immediately made you giddy with excitement and say, “OH MY GOD!” That’s the same feeling I want Mockingjay to draw me in with.

Lines I hope make it: This chapter was so internal for Katniss there wasn’t a lot of dialogue. That’s actually one thing I think is gonna be tough to work around.

Natalie: I have really liked the consistency of starting the movies with Katniss on her own. If they can I’d like for that to continue as I can see a great way for them to do that in Mockingjay Pt 2. However what I expect to happen is for Katniss to find out what happened while walking with Gale through or from the main area of District 12 to Victor’s village. I think there should be flashback to the escape of the residents of District 12 with Gale leading the way, then District 13 coming to rescue them, perhaps even showing them all being welcomed into District 13. Moving back to Katniss and Gale who’ve stumbled across the square Katniss freaks out starts running towards the village meanwhile Gale gets notified they need to leave so he chases after Katniss and we see Buttercup growling near the gates to the village. Katniss grabs Buttercup asking if she wants to see Prim and goes into her house. In doing so Katniss sees her hunting jacket has been moved and is now hung with her game bag on the desk beside the rose , perhaps a picture of Peeta and Katniss in the Victory Tour smiling which could then visually allow for her to be freaking out and wondering about Peeta aloud and beginning to realise they’re both not safe which would allow the audience to see Peeta in the Capitol.

About Tash

Tash is a 28-year-old Australian currently working in communications and media. A keen WW2 history enthusiast, particularly when it comes to the airborne, Tash also enjoys gaming, car detailing and spending far too much time on the Internet.

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