I've been in a mood lately when it comes to YA books and movies I come across at the library or on TV. It's been far too long since someone has written a story that truly moved me. So I've decided to go back to the roots of YA sensational story telling by re-watching The Hunger Games movies.
Let me tell you, I was not disappointed. Somehow these movies seem more important to me than ever and each death left its mark all over again. In honor of the fallen, I have decided to put together my own list of characters whose deaths touched me the deepest.
All photo credits: The Hunger Games Wiki
Number 5 - Primrose Everdeen
Some would argue that Prim's death was the saddest in the series but honestly it almost didn't make my list. It is true that Prim's reaping is what set the entire rebellion in motion, because it forces Katniss to volunteer, setting off a chain of events that was to lead to the revolution. So when she dies at the end, we're all left feeling a little cheated, because what was the point of it all if Prim dies anyway? But that's exactly the genius of Collins' writing. Prim was always going to die and Katniss stepping in for her was but a stay of execution.
Another thing working against Prim is that she's just kind of there, isn't she? The
Number 4 - Cinna
Movie Cinna, played by Lenny Kravitz, had a much bigger impact on me emotionally than as he was written. Kravitz nails the part, from his soft-spoken and calm demeanor to his subtle gestures as he secretly works to make Katniss the face of the rebellion. But let's not forget how it all started. It is Cinna's first year as a stylist in the games and he chooses Katniss. Like many others, he is affected by her bravery and selflessness. He decides he is going to do everything he can to make sure she wins.
books gave us more of her, but the movies didn't giver her a lot of screen time. I didn't really care about Prim the way I cared about some of the other characters. Ultimately she makes my list because I was genuinely sad to see a sweet soul such as hers be taken, especially after getting a glimpse of the future she could have had being a doctor in thirteen.
Cinna is all in with Katniss and unlike other acts of rebellion from other characters, he knows his will end in his death. Perhaps he could have ran after giving Katniss the wedding dress that transforms into a black mockingjay. He could have ran to district 13 or lay low in the city until finding a way out. But instead he is with Katniss to the very end. And whether he knew or not, his death fueled Katniss with the fire she needed to run into the slaughter and find her bow.
Number 3 - Rue
Both in the book and the movie, I cried real tears when Rue died. We know it's going to happen and we think we are prepared but then it happens and we're sobbing like babies. Here's what makes Rue so special. She saved Katniss twice. The first time is when she gives her the idea to cut the hive and let loose the tracker jackers on the other tributes. The second time is when she takes care of Katniss when she is most vulnerable (a little different the books).
Her death is tragic because she is so young and innocent. The death scene is handled beautifully in the book and movie. We feel Katniss' pain as she tries to give Rue a proper send off in horrific circumstances. Katniss sings, cries, screams, and finally honors Rue. This is the moment the rebellion truly begins.
Number 2 - Boggs
Boggs' death hit me really hard this last time watching the films. It's been awhile since I read the books so I wonder if his death was as meaningful as in the movie. I'm about to read them again so I'll be watching out for that.
Boggs represents all the people Katniss inspired to fight the Capitol. Because he is a soldier, we don't see his true feelings for Katniss until he thinks her life is in danger. Until that moment, he seems like
he is only following orders to keep her alive. I'm speaking specifically to the moment Boggs tells Katniss he is going to keep her alive because "she's earned it." Boggs has been watching everything from the moment Katniss volunteered for the games and has made it his mission to keep her alive. It's then we see he's not simply following orders. Later, when it seems like President Coin might not have Katniss' best interest in mind, Boggs speaks up. He tells Katniss Coin will do anything to keep her power. As a soldier, his allegiance should be to his commander-in-chief, but it's not. He's loyal to Katniss. Finally, Boggs's dying words are what really hit home for me. His final thoughts are of her and what he can do and say to keep her alive.
Number 1- Finnick Odair
Surprised? Well I'm still not over his death and probably never will be. He didn't have to die! I'm getting ahead of myself. First, why should we care about Finnick? Finnick single-handedly keeps Katniss and Peeta alive during the 75th hunger games all while carrying Mags on his back. He is fiercely devoted to his girlfriend Annie and ugly sobs when no one is looking because of his guilt at not being able to save Peeta and the others.
As his story unfolds, we hear about how he has been used and abused by the people in the Capitol. Finnick is just one big softy. After everything he's been through, he finally marries his love Annie. His story should have ended there. But for some reason Collins felt the need to send Finnick to the front line. Fine, but does he really need to die?
What really bugs me is how he dies. In water. Finnick is deadly in the water so this would be the perfect opportunity for him to make a miraculous escape that only he could pull off. Instead he gets taken down and dies begging Katniss to end his misery or maybe save him? I'm not sure.
And for the record, Annie having a baby does not make up for his death. I wanted Peeta and Katniss to have Finnick and Annie over for holidays for years to come. A little card in the mail showing they are doing well does not make up for anything. Finnick should have lived and that's all I have to say about that.
Agree? Disagree? Think I missed someone? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading!