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Friday, March 23, 2012

The Hunger Games Movie

The Hunger Games: Movie

Are you like me? Read the books and been waiting on pins and needles for the opening day to see The Hunger Games movie? Or are you someone who would rather forgo the books, however saw the trailer, and decided that the movie might be worth seeing? Either way, it is definitely worth the $15 movie ticket and a couple hours spent in a packed theater.

First off, Lionsgate made a smart move by snagging the author of the series, Suzanne Collins, as an executive producer. Giving her a lot of control over the script and casting. You could see the impact she had on the movie, keeping the storyline real to the original book. One does not necessarily have to read the book to feel the nuances of the characters and desperation of a country on the verge of revolting.

The cast was another great feature to the film. Although there was some upheaval in the beginning about Jennifer Lawrence playing Katniss, mainly because of her age (21) and looks, she portrayed the character to perfection. And the two male leads, Liam Hemsworth (Gale) and Josh Huncherson (Peeta), played their perspective roles well. This did not feel like some pumped up soap opera teen drama, like another movie series that I will respectfully not name here. The Hunger Games was mature, well timed, and plot controlled. And on a side note, Elizabeth Banks as Effie Trinket and Lenny Kravitz as Cinna were quite surprising and excellent in their roles.

However, there were two small hitches to the film. Nothing major and even one I completely understand and was unavoidable, and that one point was the violence. Due to the novels being ranked as Young Adult books (although quite violent), Lionsgate had to make sure the movie retained a PG-13 rating so they could bring in their main audience. That meant taking out some scenes and/or removing A LOT of violence. This did not necessarily hurt the movie, but where I read the book, during some scenes I found myself thinking that certain deaths were very tame compared to how they should have been. Again, though, I understand the need for this.

Last hitch was Woody Harrelson as Haymitch. In no way did he NOT do a good job, the role just did not fit the character we know. And that may be more the script writer's fault and not Harrelson's. We may never know. Though Haymitch is supposed to be completely inept, a bit of a fool and a (pardon me) jackass, he is not really played off as such in the movie. Haymitch is still a drunk, but not overly so and he seems to show more favoritism with Katniss than Peeta, which in the novel is opposite.

These issues are besides the point. Go see this movie! I guarantee it will be one of the best movies this year, and most certainly the best sci-fi. Let me know what you think!

The Hunger Games Trailer:

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