Hunger Games: Dr. Amy H. Sturgis on the Dystopian Tradition

Wonderful opportunity for Hunger Games fans who are students — Dr Amy H. Sturgis, Potter Pundit and All-Around Literary Lioness, is offering a free lecture series this Spring! Read what she sent me about it:

On the weekends of March 28/29 and April 11/12, I’ll be offering a free interactive, multimedia lecture series – hotel accommodations and catering is included – for interested undergraduate and graduate students. It’s in Asheville, NC, a stone’s throw from where the Hunger Games film was shot. Students are responsible for travel there and back, but everything else is paid for.

The subject is “The Dystopian Tradition: What Worlds Gone Wrong Can Teach Us.”

Here’s the description:

Why did nearly 370 international organizations in the spring of 2014 use the term “Big Brother” from Nineteen Eighty-Four in their united call for global surveillance reform? Why did citizens in Thailand in the summer of 2014 adopt the three-finger salute from The Hunger Games to protest the repressive military coup in their country? Dystopian fiction and film pervades popular culture and conveys big ideas about issues of immediate political, economic, and social importance. This series will explore the warnings embedded in a century of great dystopian works with a focus on the lessons about human nature, free societies, and individual and community well-being that remain most relevant–and challenging–today.

For free registration, go to

Welcome, Mockingjay Movie Fans! Here is a Shortcut to the Best of Hogwarts Professor on ‘The Hunger Games’ Books & Films

Do you love Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games trilogy? Well, you’ve come to the right place for serious readers’ discussion of the artistry and meaning of these best-selling books and the blockbuster movies!

For the round-up of 30 posts about Mockingjay, the book, head here. The ‘Greatest Hits’ from that set include:

For the round-up of 35 posts about the first films, check this out. The best from that lot, I think, are:

There are a lot more that are just as good or better — dig in! Scroll down, too, for Elizabeth Baird-Hardy’s review of the latest film.

Welcome to Hogwarts Professor, your best online resource for in-depth discussion of The Hunger Games!

Mockingjay Flies Higher than Earlier Installments

On November 21, in our now-annual trip to the wonderful Yancey Theater to see the latest installment of Hunger Games film adaptations, the Mayland gang was joined by a fantastic group of high school students from Avery High School. Thanks to their teacher, the incredible Hollie Greene, I was able to speak with the students about the book’s symbolism before they joined us in the theater. Seeing the film this time was not only a great experience because of our high school friends, but also because this movie, much more so than the previous two, often delivers the goods when it comes to grasping the deeper meaning. Though no film is perfect, and a film based on a book is always fraught with changes readers don’t like (the students sniggered at the shirt I wore, proclaiming simply: “The book was
better”), Mockingjay part 1 has some elements that make it, undeniably, the best adaptation of the trilogy so far. Join our conversation with your thoughts if you have seen the film! If you haven’t, I’m not holding back on the details, so be warned! [Read more…]

Countdown to Mockingjay Part 1

On Friday, I will be taking a group of students and colleagues on our now-annual excursion to a local theater to see the newest film adaptation from The Hunger Games Trilogy. Though we have already speculated here a good deal on what is promised by the trailers and ads, and I will have up a complete review after the showing, I thought I would share my “top 9” list (everything in this trilogy is in threes, so we’ll do nine, not ten) of moments, themes, images, symbols, and other elements that I will be watching for as I and a healthy group of college students, high schoolers, and our colleagues and friends gather to see how the movie gamemakers have envisioned the transformation of this remarkable story from page to screen. I hope you’ll share your thoughts, too, especially if you plan to see the film! [Read more…]

Mockingjay Part 1 Trailers Promise Plenty of Action and Maybe Even Something from the Book!

I’ve never made any secret of the fact that I actually like movies, hence my title as unofficial faculty film fancier here at HogPro. The first Hunger Games movie, however, was mostly a tremendous letdown, despite a few useful and meaningful moments. Catching Fire was an improvement, though still with some shudder-worthy gaffes and a botched ending. This week saw the release of the final trailer for the first part of Mockingjay, set for release on November 21. The previews include big, loud, grab-those-viewers-by-the-lapels sequences, but there are a few moments that deserve some thought, consideration, and speculation. The shorter trailers that have been released, including Katniss’s return to 12, are actually quite thoughtful and haunting, boding well for the actual film next month. More TV spots have emerged, and more doubtless will appear in the airtime assault leading up to the film’s release. So, in our own prep for the big, big day, let’s look at some of what we can expect and dread, based on the previews we are seeing.

[Read more…]