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The Student News Site of Coral Springs Charter School

Paw Print

The Student News Site of Coral Springs Charter School

Paw Print

Hunger Games: The Ballad of the Songbirds and Snakes

“Its the things we love most, that destroys us” – President Snow

The Hunger Games is one of the main dystopian franchises that all ages, young and old have adored. The books were released in 2008, following with a sequel in 2009, and the finale in 2010. More recently, the highly rated franchise got the latest addition in May of 2020 upon the release of Hunger Games: The Ballad of the Songbirds and Snakes. Each of the books have been made into films. The Hunger Games (2008) was released March 23, 2012, Catching Fire (2009) was released November 22, 2013, and The Mockingjay (2010) was split into two films Mockingjay Part 1 and Part 2 and released in 2014 (Part 1) and 2015 (Part 2). The movies included the talents of Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Stanley Tucci, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Liam Hemsworth, and many others. The Hunger Games has become one of the highest grossing franchises of all time.

The franchise decided to produce a prequel to the series that will further explain the ways of the past and what led up to the present. The publicity team even went so far as to air a map of the United States and where all the districts are on it, as well as showing that Florida has long since sunk. The citizens are so impoverished that they have resorted to eating anything they can find from trash to other people. Fast forward 10 years and only the lower class are starving, but at this point the upper class can have lavish gatherings. The nation of Panem is broken into 12 districts, with each having their own purposes. District 1: Luxury, District 2: Masonry and Defense, District 3: General Electronics, District 4: Fishing, District 5: Power/Electricity, District 6: Transportation, District 7: Lumber, District 8: Textiles, District 9: Grain, District 10: Livestock, District 11: Agriculture, District 12: Coal Mining, and The Capitol.

Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes starts roughly 64 years before the 74th annual Hunger Games, making this movie set during the 10th annual games. The story line follows 18 year old Coriolanus Snow and his attempt to climb the ladder of The Capitol. We meet the legendary Lucy Grey Baird, who was responsible for multiple songs sung in the previous Hunger Games movies, songs like The Hanging Tree and even the song Katniss sings to Rue in the 74th annual games. Most of Lucy Grey’s songs appear to be about Snow, which is why he gets so agitated when he hears them.

We start to learn little things about the eventual President Snow. Things like why he always has a rose was because his grandmother had a rose garden that was prized in the capitol, and that his mother’s makeup compact smelt of roses and he’ll inhale the rose scent to remain calm. We also learn the origin of the Mockingjays or rather Jabberjays. We find out more about Tigris and her relation to Snow. We learn more about Katniss’ name, and even have a parallel of Lucy Grey bowing in the same manner Katiss does in the first Hunger Games.

This new movie holds tons of references and easter eggs to the original movies. To name a few, there is a bow and arrow propped up and unclaimed in the arena when Snow enters, a sly reference to Katniss and the significance of her in Snow’s future. The announcer of the Hunger Games says, “I don’t love your odds, but may they be in your favor,” a call back to the saying in the future movies. We even learn the reason Snow says, “It’s the things we love most that destroy us.”

This movie was so in depth and immersive that it had some people saying it was even better than the book, which almost never happens. Many, including myself, believe this movie has the potential to win awards for how good it was. This movie was 2 hours and 38 minutes long, but the audience still wanted more. The cinematography was exceptional, with many moments within the film being poster worthy. The movie was intense. You felt the chaos in the scenes, even having the camera moving with the characters during chaotic fight scenes, causing the audience to be immersed in the action. A lot of the shots helped to showcase certain emotions that the characters felt.

Credit is due to the woman who put everything into the character of Lucy Grey, Rachel Zegler. Zegler did an amazing job as Lucy, showing so much depth to the character. Her accent was incredible, a very southern accent that she does not have in real life. That and her incredible vocals made her a fan favorite. Coriolanus Snow showed fantastic depth, and the props go to Tom Blyth. Blyth showcased little details about the character Snow in mannerisms and you can even see the exact moment and turning point of his character.

This movie is a must see. Even if you haven’t seen the original movies, you can still see it and it will make sense. That’s one of the reasons this movie is great. You don’t need to have an insane amount of background information to watch it. If you haven’t seen the Hunger Games: Ballad of the Songbirds and Snakes yet, I would highly recommend it.

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About the Contributor
Katelyn San Marco
Katelyn San Marco, Staff Writer
Katelyn San Marco is a senior. She is a soccer player who also participates in the drama program. She enjoys going to the movies and taking night sky photography.

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