A new trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 was released on Wednesday, and it’s a huge disappointment. Whereas the first two trailers focused on Katniss Everdeen laying siege to President Snow’s totalitarian regime, this third release, titled “For Prim,” is a corny, grainy sizzle reel rehashing Katniss’ past interactions with her little sister.
The trailer is designed, obviously, to make viewers care about Prim, but it fails miserably. For one thing, the sappy background music (M83’s “My Tears Are Becoming a Sea”), the strange shadowy quality of the footage recycled from previous films, and the ghostlike Katniss-as-mockingjay rotating in the background of every shot make it almost impossible to take the trailer seriously. For another, most Hunger Games fans just aren’t invested in Prim, who's an afterthought in the books and movies alike. Finally, it seems pointless to replay footage from past films—after all, the audience for the fourth movie consists mostly of people who have already seen the first three.
Recycling seems to be a trend in the Mockingjay Part 2 campaign. The teaser trailer, which came out in June, was a thrilling look at how the battle against the Capitol will progress now that the rebels have united. The second trailer, while action-packed, was very much a repeat of the first: same footage of the rebels storming the Capitol, same wedding scene, same creepy sewer demons, same message. As the film’s Nov. 20 release date draws nearer, the repetition gets more and more frustrating, especially for long-time fans who already know what’s going on.
If you’ve read Mockingjay, you know that “For Prim” is priming us for an emotional gut punch. But if the prior films are any indication, it'll be Jennifer Lawrence’s performance, and not her lukewarm relationship to her sister, that both captivates and devastates audiences. Let’s hope the next trailer shows us what we have to look forward to.