The student news site of Kingwood Park High School

KP TIMES

The student news site of Kingwood Park High School

KP TIMES

The student news site of Kingwood Park High School

KP TIMES

‘The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes’ brings Hunger Games back to the forefront

In+The+Ballad+of+Songbirds+and+Snakes%2C+a+young+Coriolanus+Snow+mentors+District+12+tribute+Lucy+Gray+Baird.+Photo+courtesy+of+Lionsgate.
In “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” a young Coriolanus Snow mentors District 12 tribute Lucy Gray Baird. Photo courtesy of Lionsgate.

“The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” joins the prestigious line of Hunger Games movies and does not fall short. The newest addition to the Hunger Games universe hit theaters on Nov. 17 – eight years after “Mockingjay, Part II” was released. The prequel, which is based on the 2020 book by Suzanne Collins, gives viewers a look at a young Coriolanus Snow. 

The movie follows Snow as he seeks the Plinth Prize, which would cover his university tuition. To win, he must mentor District 12’s tribute Lucy Gray Baird in the 10th Hunger Games. Coriolanus helps her to victory, but the fallout is anything but simple. 

The movie’s casting was superb, living up to the first four movies. The leads Rachel Zegler (Lucy Gray Baird) and Tom Blyth (young Snow) portrayed their characters just as readers imagined them. Zegler exemplifies Lucy Gray’s many emotions and free spirit. Blyth portrayed young Snow’s character arc and cunning personality perfectly.

After the 10th Hunger Games in “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” a young Coriolanus Snow continues a relationship with Lucy Gray Baird. Photo courtesy of Lionsgate.

The supporting actors in “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” do not fall short of the leads. Josh Rivera (Sejanus Plinth), Hunter Schafer (Tigris), and Jason Schwartzman (Lucretius Flickerman) added their own importance to the movie. Rivera’s final scene in the movie when he screams for his ma hit the hearts of many viewers. Schafer’s scene when she calls Snow  “Coriolanus” for the first time instead of “Coryo” surprised the audience. Schwartzman’s comedy added a sense of comedic relief in some pretty serious scenes. 

For some viewers the two hours and thirty eight minutes may be too long, but I believe it could have been longer. The movie adaptation of “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” lacked some details from the book. For example, the movie cut parts that show Clemensia Dovecote, Snow’s classmate, after she got bitten by the snake mutts. That part gives a preview of what will happen to the tributes after being bitten by the snakes. She had neurological damage and her body was twitching after one singular bite.

In addition to great casting, the marketing and music for the movie cannot be ignored. The marketing was strong, helping get many former fans of the series out to watch the movie. The trailer was eye-catching, and Lionsgate launched a successful TikTok campaign to get their teen audience excited. 

In the Hunger Game movies prior to “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” the franchise had strong soundtracks with popular singers, like Lorde and Taylor Swift. “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” soundtrack was strong with many songs sung by Zegler, the lead herself. Three-time Grammy award winner Olivia Rodrigo also sang and co-wrote the closing credits song “Can’t Catch Me Now.”

“The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” had a budget of $100 million, which is similar to the budget for the movie of the summer “Oppenheimer.” The movie has already made more than  $110 million. 

“The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” is the must-see movie of the fall. The movie provides good character storylines and for the most part follows the storyline well. The movie will have you rewatching all the Hunger Games movies and dusting the books off your bookshelf.

Leave a Comment
Donate to KP TIMES
$740
$1000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Kingwood Park High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs. The journalism program at Kingwood Park is funded solely from student sold advertisements and community support.

More to Discover
Donate to KP TIMES
$740
$1000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All KP TIMES Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *