Now that almost all book to movie adaptations seem to be splitting the last book into two films, in addition to the usual casting announcements and the like, there is a whole other issue to ponder. And I think it’s the most exciting one because nobody knows until they see the movie: How is the first part going to end?! Sometimes the choice is obvious, and sometimes not so much. There are three (possibly four) scenarios for how I think the Mockingjay- Part 1 ending is going to play out.
For those of you who don’t follow internet fan chatter, I’ll tell you that the prevailing fan theory for where “Part 1” is going to end has been set pretty much since the announcement was made that Mockingjay would be two movies. I’ll call it the “Hijacked Peeta Rips Out Our Souls Before a Jarring Cut to Black” theory. Right after Peeta, Johanna, and Annie are rescued from the Capitol and Katniss goes to visit Peeta now that he’s safe and sound in District 13. Only to have Peeta turn to her, scream that she’s a killer, and attempt to strangle her. End movie. As agonizing as it’ll be to have to wait an entire year for Part 2 after and ending like that, it’s a suspenseful, heartbreaking, and shocking (for those who haven’t read the books) place to end.
However, since that ending is the one a lot of fans have been betting we’ll get, I wouldn’t be shocked if the filmmakers decided that they didn’t want to go in that direction. In order to maintain some element of surprise, they may have chosen a different ending. So we’re left with two other options.
The movie will end at a point in the story shortly before Scenario 1. If the audience is waiting for Katniss and Peeta’s reunion, we’ll be caught off guard if Part 1 ends at any point before then. (This option seems unlikely to me, mostly because of the screencap that I used above. We can’t be sure that Peeta isn’t in the Capitol here, but it looks like there are x-rays in the background, which makes me think that this is post- rescue and tests have been run to assess the prisoners’ injuries. But you never know.)
The movie ends at some point shortly after Scenario 1. If the Peeta/Katniss reunion comes and goes and yet the movie continues on the audience won’t quite know where to expect the cutoff, since we already got more than we were bargaining for.
Possible Surprise Scenario 4
I think we also have to consider the fact that there’s going to be a lot of story in these movies that wasn’t in the books. They’re making two movies to tell this story even though Mockingjay isn’t any longer than the first two books in the series. In the first two movies we’ve seen bits and pieces of what’s going on outside of Katniss’ point of view, and it’s a safe bet that we’re going to see even more of that in Mockingjay- Part 1, especially since characters that we care about and are invested in are trapped in the Capitol. Plus, we already know from the story change involving Effie being in District 13 that certain liberties are being taken. So it’s entirely possible that Mockingjay- Part 1 is going to end at a point in the story that’s been newly created for the movie.
If I had to pick one, I’d say I favor Scenario 1. I don’t know that I’d put money on it (or I should say, I don’t know if I’d put the small amount of cash I still have after buying all those Mockingjay tickets on it), but it seems like the most cinematic ending to me. Luckily the wait is almost over and we don’t have much longer until we find out.
Where do you think/hope the Mockingjay Part 1 split is going to be? Are you crying already?