Josh Hutcherson

Lionsgate

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part I opens with Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) buried deep in District 13. After breaking the Hunger Games arena and getting rescued by freedom fighters in the previous movie, Katniss has been spirited away to the thought-to-be-extinct last District. News of the Capital laying waste to her home in District 12, plus the memories of the Quarter Quell, where Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) and two other victors were abandoned by the rebels, has thrown her into a confused depression. Suffering from PTSD and loads of regret, Katniss reluctantly agrees to be the face of the rebellion under the supervision of Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) and Alma Coin (Julianne Moore). Using media and propaganda, Plutarch uses Katniss to inspire the other Districts to rise up against the Capital and lead a revolution. On the smaller scale, Katniss is determined to rescue Peeta from the clutches of President Snow (Donald Sutherland), who has brainwashed the victor for his own propaganda purposes. The film makes some bold moves early on. Rather than revisiting the actual Hunger Games again (which was done to creative effect as the Quarter Quell in Catching Fire), this movie tells a different type of story. It isn’t a story of survival in the field, but rather a rallying point for a rebellion. That shift in direction, though, is hobbled by its existence as only half the narrative from the final book in Suzanne Collins’ trilogy. What started out as a better-than-expected and relatively smart young […]

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Hunger Games Mockingjay Snow and Peeta

Have you been good? Obedient? Loyal to your country since the last time we were graced with a Hunger Games film? Well if you haven’t, it’s probably for the best that you keep your mouth shut, for Panem’s dear, dour President Snow (Donald Sutherland) has an important announcement for his many citizens: be good to Panem, keep your head down and don’t ask questions, and Panem will be good to you just the same. The first teaser for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1 has arrived, and if there’s anything to take away from it, it’s to watch your back at all times if you live anywhere within the 12 Districts … and maybe pray a little bit for Peeta Mellark. It’s more of a not-so veiled threat to Panem’s revolutionaries than a presidential address, and if Snow’s faux friendly “I’m a cool leader, come hang out with me, KATNISS” speech didn’t ring any red hot alarm bells right away, the sight of poor little Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) standing calmly at his side might be a suggestion. For those who saw The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, you might recall that at the end of the film, our dashing male lead was separated from Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) — who was on her way to the District 13 headquarters of the new rebellion — and kidnapped and taken to the Capitol. It seems as if he’s found/been forced into a new role as the right hand man of the President — or at least […]

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The Hunger Games Catching Fire

At the tail end of 2013, Iron Man 3 received one of the biggest bitch-slaps of the year, courtesy of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. The teen novel adaptation swooped in and eclipsed the Marvel superhero’s spot as the highest grossing movie of the year, at least in terms of domestic box office. While The Hunger Games: Catching Fire didn’t overcome the worldwide box office of Iron Man 3, it had its own victory by besting the first installment by more than $200m worldwide. As the movie-going audience prepares for the first of two final sequels releasing later this year, they can stave off their hunger by checking out The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on DVD and Blu-ray. Included on the discs is a commentary with director Francis Lawrence and producer Nina Jacobson. Lawrence had already been working on the final two films at the time of recording, so his insight goes beyond the production of this film and extends into the grand finale. Even if you’re not a huge fan of these films, you can take solace in the fact that the filmmakers behind them are striving for something better and deeper than the previous box office champs in terms of young adult fiction. (Yes, I’m talking about the thank-god-it’s-over Twilight films.) Now, with that dig against Stephenie Meyer and all things sparkly out of the way, on to the commentary.

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review hunger games catching fire

It’s been nearly a year since Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) captured the hearts of the people of Panem by winning the 74th Hunger Games in extremely unorthodox fashion. Where there should have only been a single victor the two illusory lovebirds stood together as champions in defiance of both expectations and President Snow (Donald Sutherland). Fearing that seeds of rebellion are breaking through the hard earth outside of the Capitol, Snow carts the two from district to district pimping their celebrity in the hopes that it will distract the people from their day to day drudgery. Instead, the trip spurs more unrest and unruliness leading Snow to make a change for the upcoming 75th Games. In direct conflict with the life of wealth and peace their previous victory had earned them, two past winners from each district, one male and one female, will once again be chosen as tributes to fight until only one remains. Katniss and Peeta are forced to continue the charade that is their love affair as they reunite with their Capitol entourage and attempt to make allies amid the roster of past champions and imminent threats. The games are still about life and death, but this time it’s the heart of the rebellion that the pair are hoping to keep thumping in addition to their own. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is the second film in what has quickly become one of the biggest YA franchises yet, and while it features many of the […]

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quarter quell katniss

You didn’t think that just because society had transformed into a dystopian nightmare where children are forced to murder each other for sport while the rich clap along that we would totally abandon Twitter, right? If the newly released posters for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire that call for the citizens of Panem to #celebrateyourvictors are accurate, then some form of the social networking site is alive and well in the future. The new series of one-sheets [via First Showing] depict the group of Hunger Game victors who are now forced to participate in the Quarter Quell, as if winning that last tournament wasn’t bad enough. Featured are: Cashmere and Gloss of District 1 (Stephanie Leigh Schlund and Alan Ritchson), Brutus and Enobaria of District 2 (Bruno Gunn and Meta Golding), Beetee and Wiress of District 3 (Jeffrey Wright and Amanda Plummer), Finnick and Mags of District 4 (Sam Claflin and Lynn Cohen), Johanna of District 7 (Jena Malone) and of course, Katniss and Peeta of District 12 (Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson).

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seyfried

What is Casting Couch? It’s a tireless wanderer that scours the Internet in search for news of actors getting hired to appear in movies. Today it’s found more, including new roles for Rhys Ifans and Monica Bellucci. With his latest film, Frances Ha, just getting ready to expand beyond New York and LA this weekend, director Noah Baumbach now turns his attention to his next project, a story about an older couple striking up a friendship with a younger couple called While We’re Young. Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts have been on board to play the older couple, and Girls star Adam Driver is official for the younger male, but the search for the female half of the younger couple has been an ongoing process. It’s an ongoing process that’s likely to soon come to an end though, because The Wrap is reporting that Amanda Seyfried has emerged as the potential candidate to play the free-spirited young lass, and she’s even cleared some room in her schedule to make it happen. Sounds like it’s nearly a done deal.

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Catching Fire

Even in the fictional world of Panem, newly-crowned Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence is a victor. In The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Lawrence’s Katniss Everdeen and Josh Hutcherson‘s Peeta set out on their official “Victory Tour” after having won the 74th Annual Hunger Games in stunning fashion (back during The Hunger Games). Of course, not everything is creamy goat stew with plums (or whatever it is that Katniss noms on) and high (read: bad) fashion, because the Capitol is none too pleased with their dual wins, and things are about to go from glitz and glamour back to televised murder. Nope, this Victory Tour cannot last forever, but let’s enjoy the clean clothes and tossed rose petals while we still can. Check out another brand new Victory Tour poster after the break. So modern! So clean! So…not like what much of Catching Fire is probably going to be like!

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Josh Hutcherson

What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting column that has updates on the careers of some promising young talent. And Matthias Schoenaerts. Josh Hutcherson is one of the hottest young actors in the business right now, but when you first hear that he’s negotiating to star in a movie about Pablo Escobar, it sounds a little confusing. Never fear though, because Deadline has an explanation. Paradise Lost is the movie about Escobar that’s being written and directed by Life of Pi actor Andrea di Stefano and is starring Benicio Del Toro as the infamous drug lord. The reason that Hutcherson is said to be negotiating for the lead role is because, while Del Toro gets to do the showy stuff as Escobar, Hutcherson’s character is the one whose eyes we see the story through. If he signs on he’ll be playing an Irish surfer who falls in love with Escobar’s niece and then has to meet her murdering, drug-dealing uncle. Colombia sounds fun.

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Obviously the one thing that movie-goers desperately wanted from The Hunger Games was to somehow feel closer and more involved with the child-on-child murder-for-sport that played out before their very eyes. Isn’t that what entertainment is for? Luckily enough, the Hunger Games team has heard our cries (some of them muffled by the blood that is filling our lungs, thanks to a hearty jabbing from a fellow Tribute), with Peeta Mellark himself (Josh Hutcherson, if you’re not hip to it) revealing which portion of the upcoming The Hunger Games: Catching Fire will be filmed in native IMAX. Which portion? The best kind! The one with the killing! Hutcherson told MTV (via /Film) in a new interview (which you can check out after the break) that the Francis Lawrence-directed film will feature IMAX scenes in the arena during the games, saying: “I think, all the stuff in the arena is going to be IMAX. So when you go see it in IMAX, you’ll see the regular movie when we’re in the Districts and in the Capitol. When you see us go up in the pod in the games, it will open up into IMAX. It will be amazing. It’s very cool.” Jokes about murder aside, the arena used in Catching Fire is going to be awesome (should the film stick to the original vision of the book, which is sort of a no-brainer), and to be immersed in that world via IMAX should prove to be one hell of a time. Also, huge plus […]

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Red Dawn World Premiere at Fantastic Fest

We’re still expecting at least one more wave of announcements concerning the upcoming film slate at this year’s Fantastic Fest, but the festival’s closing night film is no longer a secret. The Chinese Koreans will invade Austin on September 27th for the world premiere of Red Dawn! The oft-delayed remake sees a group of not-so youthful looking youths forced to fight an incursion of Korean soldiers who somehow made their way into the United States and took control of the Midwest. It stars Chris Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Josh Peck, Adrianne Palicki, Isabel Lucas, Connor Cruise and Jeffrey Dean Morgan. My money is on Hutcherson peeing in the radiator. Check out the trailer below to prepare for the invasion.

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Drinking Games

Along with Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, the Incredible Hulk, and Batman, a lesser-known heroine named Katniss Everdeen became one of the biggest box office draws of 2012. Now the immensely popular dystopian science fiction adventure The Hunger Games is available on DVD and Blu-ray. The Hunger Games tells the story of a dark future where the government punishes the people by forcing their children to fight to the death in an arena. You know the drill, basically a less-Japanese version of Battle Royale with some really funky fashions. Still, it’s an enjoyable film and worth enjoying with a drink in your hand.

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Despite the fact that we’re no longer in a cold war that’s creating easily exploitable cold war paranoia, Hollywood has decided to reboot one of the greatest cold war paranoia films of all time, Red Dawn. Sure, the story of a foreign menace invading U.S. soil isn’t likely to resonate with audiences as much in 2012 as it did in 1984 (especially seeing as film audiences are now more global), but at least it gives us a chance to watch things blow up real good. And, if the first trailer for the reboot assures us of anything, it’s that this new Red Dawn is going to have lots of explosions. If you’re noticing that the film’s stars, like Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson, are looking a little younger than they did the last time you saw them play Thor and Peeta, that’s because Red Dawn has been sitting on the shelf for a little while due to the MGM bankruptcy and some nasty business where the bad guys were digitally changed from being Chinese to North Korean (once again, global audience). What the delay of the release doesn’t explain though, is why the action of the trailer is set to a Filter song, as this thing has only been shelved for a couple of years, not since the late ’90s.

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Much like the impending invasion of the United States by Liechtenstein’s armed forces that we all know is coming, the long-shelved remake of the eighties classic Red Dawn is destined to hit screens later this year. After much hemming and hawing throughout MGM’s financial woes the film was rescued and made ready for our collective consumption. It was also diddled with a bit… The film follows a group of young adults forced to band together when their homeland, Americuh, is invaded by the North Korean military. Yup. North Korea. The original film cast the interlopers as a Russian/Cuban collaboration, and the remake originally changed them to Chinese. After filming wrapped someone in a position of power (and stupidity) decided labeling the Chinese as bad guys was bad for business so they did some digital manipulation to change the Chinese flags, emblems and grimaces to North Korean. Our country’s future rests in the hands of Chris Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Josh Peck, Adrianne Palicki, and Isabel Lucas. Yahoo! Movies has just debuted the poster, and it does a fantastic job…if that job was as recruitment for your local militia. Check below for the full poster in all of its glory

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Joseph Kahn‘s new movie Detention is essentially The Breakfast Club meets Prom Night meets the kitchen sink. A group of diverse high-schoolers are stalked by a serial killer named Cinderhella, and the terror culminates during their collective stay in after school detention. The film is far from a straight forward thriller though as Kahn plays with the medium in different ways and fills the story with crazy distractions like time travel, homages to The Fly, grizzly bears and more. It’s pretty nuts. Detention was released earlier this week, and if you haven’t picked it up yet we have some good news. We’re giving away a copy of the film on Blu-ray and another on DVD. And because we care how you look in public we’re also throwing in a Detention t-shirt, beanie and baseball cap (pics below). Keep reading to see how you can win!

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Red Dawn Remake

The Red Dawn remake has been a long time in the making, specifically because it was made and then taken back into the deep bowels of production and post in order to change the main villain. That’s a daunting task when you’re replacing a bad guy, but it’s an insane job when you’re replacing hundreds of them. The plot to this one is the same as the plot to the 1984 John Milius joint where foreign invaders take over a small, rural community that happens to be loaded for bear. The high school kids grab weapons, lose some innocence and fight back the baddies. In these first photos, it’s clear that Chris Hemsworth, Josh Peck and Josh Hutcherson will be battling with guns and cold, steely stares. After losing to them in a staring contest, check out the second image below:

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What exactly is Epic, the next animated feature from the makers of Ice Age and Rio? If its new trailer is any indication, it’s going to be a mishmash of two well-established storytelling tropes, that of the mystical, tropical wonderland (think Fern Gully or Avatar) and that of the secret world where tiny people live right under our noses (a sort of Honey, I Shrunk The Kids meets The Secret World of Arrietty). It also seems like a movie that’s going to combine big adventure (forest warriors!) with silly humor (talking slugs?). Official word on the story says that Epic tells the tale of a teenage girl who gets transported to a deep forest setting where a battle between good and evil is taking place. There she teams up with a rag-tag group of characters to join a fight that’s going to have huge consequences for both their world and ours. That doesn’t give away much, but at least it indicates that this is going to be a story with real stakes.

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Today’s major casting press release might be the first I’ve heard of Twentieth Century Fox Animation and Blue Sky Studios’ upcoming 3D CG “action-adventure comedy,” Epic, but it’s just about all I need to get certifiably pumped over whatever the heck is going to get tossed at the screen with this one. Why? Let’s just take a look at the cast, shall we? Epic will star Beyonce Knowles, Colin Farrell, Josh Hutcherson, Amanda Seyfried, Johnny Knoxville, Aziz Ansari, Pitbull, Jason Sudeikis, Steven Tyler, Blake Anderson (who?), and Judah Friedlander. Because why the heck not, right? The only thing that is disappointing about this cast is that Epic is not live-action, so there’ s no guarantee that any of these giant, hilariously-cast talents will ever be in the same room together. Pity. I suppose you want to know what Epic is actually about, right? Apparently, the film comes to use from the creators of Ice Age and Rio, and it “tells the story of an ongoing battle deep in the forest between the forces of good and the forces of evil.  When a teen age girl finds herself magically transported into this secret universe, she must band together with a rag-tag team of fun and whimsical characters in order to save their world…and ours.” So, it’s FernGully?

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Reel Sex

As any The Hunger Games fan already knows, the director who took on the challenge of bringing the first book in Suzanne Collins’s seminal series to life has stepped away from the sequel, Catching Fire. While many critics and fans have spent the past month arguing Gary Ross’s handling of the film, it is beyond a doubt going to be one of the most financially successful films of 2012 if not of all time. The trilogy came in with a built-in fan base, something which Ross respectfully acknowledged with his adaptation but that didn’t stop him from adding his own creative flourishes. Who would have ever thought a character that is mentioned three times in the novel would go on to steal the film with his steely blue eyes and amazing follicle art work? For giving us Seneca Crane, Mr. Ross, the pogonophiles of the world thank you. However what we face now is a three-fold issue: who will take over Catching Fire from Ross, does the next director need to keep the same aesthetic of the first film, and is there a responsibility to appoint a female director to take on the challenge of continuing the story of one of the strongest heroines in 21st Century literature?

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Culture Warrior

Most dystopian science-fiction narratives feature stories in which a protagonist experiences a process of ‘waking up,’ transitioning from a state of blind ignorance to one of newfound enlightenment. The protagonists of The Matrix (1999), Brazil (1985), and the ur-text for dystopian futures, George Orwell’s 1984 (and its numerous film adaptations), all feature primary characters who transition from a state of passivity and complicity in an oppressive and manufactured society and transition to a newly critical, empowered state of being in which they are able to see beyond the veil of ignorance and witness the world for what it ‘really’ is for the first time. These protagonists are made capable of seeing beyond the structures of propaganda and carefully constructed illusion that they previously accepted to be objective reality and develop a political impetus in direct reaction to their previous state of complicity and ignorance. As someone previously uninitiated to the world of Suzanne Collins’s The Hunger Games (I hadn’t read any of the books prior to seeing the film), what struck me most about Gary Ross’s adaptation is the spin it puts on the typical ignorance-to-enlightenment narrative of dystopian science-fiction.

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Kevin Carr

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr is feeling hungry. Of course, this is nothing strange because he’s always feeling hungry. But this week, he’s extra hungry because only one movie is opening wide, and that is the highly anticipated adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ novel, The Hunger Games. So Kevin grabs a bow and arrow, a tub of magical antibiotics, tracker jacker repellant and a big bucket of popcorn to check out what is sure to be the next big young-adult-novel-turned-billion-dollar-franchise. (Spoiler alert: Kevin is still hungry when the movie is over, but that’s no surprise either.)

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published: 12.18.2014
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published: 12.17.2014
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published: 12.15.2014
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published: 12.12.2014
D+


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