A Snippet on Two Part Films: A Deadline Comment

by jonnahzkennedy

The problem is that, Mockingjay has no reason to be a two part film: it just doesn’t have enough material to sustain as two parts. What is more, the reason that Part I is so underwhelming is because, as mentioned time and time again, it felt too much like half a movie. I believe that if you’re going to make a two part film that makes on cohesive story, every part has to have its own arc that would allow it to sit as one film, possibly without having to wait for the next part. There are small subplots throughout this film, but overall it simply felt like a tiring odyssey that led to nowhere. For instance, the two parts of Kill Bill are a good example of how a two part movie should be made and considered. While Kill Bill Vol. I dos feel slightly incomplete, when I finished watching it, I felt satisfied because it was it’s own film that could stand alone without much fuss. Vol. I was concerned with getting back at O-Ren Ishii which led to the films final battle: full circle, with a small hint that, “wait, there’s more to come,”. It’s also kind of like a TV show: it should be fine if you don’t watch maybe the first two episodes, you should still be able to feel immersed into the third episode because the third episode, while expanding on the things that happened in the first two, has it’s own goal that it needs to achieve by it’s finale.

In the case of other movies that have been split into 2 parts, there are very few that I would legitimately say deserved to have two parts, and one of those is Harry Potter. The Deathly Hallows had too much material for one film to cover in an exceptional way, and if they had made it one very long 3 hour film, they might have to have made several cuts that would weaken the plot. In the case of Breaking Dawn, there was no reason to, and that one I can fairly attest was a total cash grab. In the case of the Hobbit, I could have understood 2 films: while the book is quite small, there are just a lot of things that happen and take up a great deal of space in the book and I could understand them wanting to keep all of those things in the film, especially since the book revolves around 2 major plots: battling Smaug and the Battle of the Five Armies. Those should have been the two parts of the film. In the case of Allegiant (the final part of the Divergent Trilogy/Series), I can’t wait to see how they try and drag that into two parts, and how they throw Four (the bonus novel that Veronica Roth wrote as a cash grab to get the final scoop out of the Divergent series; awfully written novellas that I can’t wait to sell away to my local Half Price Books) into the mix as well. They’ll have to make extensive changes to the book in order to make it well worth 2 movies, but I still highly doubt anything good will come out of it; and after watching the Insurgent teaser trailer, I don’t know how much worse these films can get! Finally, in the possible case of Stephen King’s the Stand, I unfortunately can’t see why they would want to make 4 different films. Yes the book is gargantuan, Stephen King’s one true epic (outside of the Dark Tower), but just because a book is big, long, and grandiose dosen’t mean it’s adaptation needs to be the exact same way. The first film wouldn’t even be concerned with any real action since a great deal of the first quarter of the novel is just building up to the plague. The best that would come out of four films would be more like a very, very long drawn out episode of the Walking Dead (which I don’t like), since a great deal of the novel is characterization and character analysis.

I think this splitting fad needs to die out already, because where film-makers should have been looking at it as an opportunity to explore these worlds on a deeper level, as well as to test expand the landscape of film-making, they’ve turned it into a dirty game of “How much money can we soak out of this tired Sham-Wow towel before people start to notice that we dried out a long time ago?”. The idea of a part one and part two used to portray an idea that a movie had become so ambitious and so great that they just had to split it so that the EXPERIENCE of the film had a proper satisfying taste to it, by the time its second part came to a close, but now it’s become repulsive.

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