Review: The Hunger Games
OverviewGenre(s): Action, Science Fiction
Things We Liked:More streamlined narrative than book | great secondary characters
Things We Hated:Flat characters | Muddles over important details
I have finished the books, I have watched the movie and I still can’t think of what I actually feel about this story. I really want to like it. The Movie was as good an adaptation of the novel as I could have expected, exceeding my expectations in spots and of course, failing to achieve [...]
I have finished the books, I have watched the movie and I still can’t think of what I actually feel about this story. I really want to like it.
The Movie was as good an adaptation of the novel as I could have expected, exceeding my expectations in spots and of course, failing to achieve others.. I thought the characters were what I wanted, though some aspects like the “Careers” and sponsorships were downplayed to make room for the overall arc.
I do have a slight bone to pick with the casting of the Careers. They came off as much more handsome/pretty than I would have or did give them credit for in my imagination. For example, even though I know that he was characterized as such I thought of Cato as more of a brutish young man, not nearly as handsome, and much more of a killer. You could say that the casting department found the way Cato he looked more realistic, or even that he was just like he should have been in the book, but with such a lack of soul and a blood-thirsty intent for killing, it seems there would have been a few more scratches and visual queues to latch on to. I understand that He had his 2-3 lines at the end of the movie where he has come to the realization that he’s been dead pretty much his entire life, I like to think of that as an attempt to bring perspective to a situation from the eyes of a psychopath. I don’t think it was done intentionally, but it is a nice cinematic homage to the “Tears in Rain” speech given at the end of Blade Runner by a dying Rutger Hauer. Both speeches come off as sincere, Rutger’s has a lot more weight.
I was not disappointed by the movie. Instead I thought of it as a much more streamlined version of the story than was presented in the book. There were obvious changes but the biggest change had to do with foreshadowing, which I approved of. I enjoyed the way the film took on the challenge of making president snow a more involved (at least in this book) and more insidious character. The course he takes now is a much more interesting one than I thought was set up in the books, where he seemingly pops up at the start of Catching fire and offers his little monologue to Katniss, hoping that everything is better.
Some things seemed even more out of place to me than I had originally imagined. The cornucopia for example was much bigger and more modern than I ever imagined. It looked like “The Crag!” featured on a Nickelodeon Game-show called Guts. The costume design for people in the Capital suggested Steam-Punk with their garish makeup and style of some future Victorian Age. I know it was not included in the original story but that might have been an interesting angle to take, seeing as (we find out later of course) the most coveted technology has been sitting out in a sector no one wants to even mention.
I hate to say, I’ll need to see the whole thing, because that was my response to the books as well but, I’ll have to see the whole thing before I can really judge. Once I finished the books I thought that they were entertaining, but that’s it. They did not feel like they had the staying power of a Harry Potter. I could be wrong, but we’ll see with the release of the second movie.
Catching fire was by far the slowest of the three books, and offers a more difficult narrative for the filmmakers to make interesting. On the plus-side though, streamlining the plot won’t be hard, you’ll just have a lot of fanboys (and girls) that will complain all day about it.
I’ve already seen a lot of complaining directed at this one, and I’m not even talking about the blatant racism directed at a character (Rue ((though it’s interesting to juxtapose the backlash of the morons who are complaining about her race with the current Trayvon Martin situation(((seriously though, what the hell?))) who was portrayed exactly as she was in the books.
It’s as though fanboy culture in its aggressive attempts to become mainstream has arrived at the station and is now bumping its bloated belly around all the gift shops trying to find the best deals possible. Then turning around to complain (to their already complaining companions) that what they paid for isn’t nearly as good as the product that originally came out in another country by a different name all together, insisting that pretty much everyone knows the product that they have just bought, was just a rip off of that.
For example: Battle Royale.
It was a good movie, with an interesting story-line. Get over it.
This line of thought opens a totally different conversation up, is anything original? Has art, in its myriad forms and formats, come to the end of original design? Is everything just a copy of a copy of a copy? Should that matter? Does that matter? Why?
Sometimes the fascination of these stories is what surrounds it, rather than the actual story. This one is turning into a bit of a circus, nothing like the pageantry of Breaking Dawn part II, at least not yet. I imagine that Mockingjay will enter and exit the area to thunderous applause.