Overall, fans and critics alike have positive things to say about The Hunger Games. Of course, most people are terrible and I wouldn’t trust their opinion on breathing. I only listen to a handful of people online and in real life that have proved their worth thru Justified and Archer love, or other similar qualifications. Online, it comes down to 3 people, Dustin Rowles, Vince Mancini and Roger Ebert. I don’t agree with any of them all, or even most, of the time. But I’ll listen.
So, what did these three titans among men think of the big screen adaptation of our beloved novel The Hunger Games? Loved it, hated it, pretty good, respectively. Dustin thought the movie wasn’t a slave to the book. The director and cast were brilliant, and the games were shot beautifully. Vince thought it was confusing, blurry and movie referential. Roger thought it was entertaining, but a little shallow. He wanted less of the games and more political intrigue.
I guess in this case, I’m closest to Ebert. I think the film was a very good companion to the book, but it felt a little rushed. I would have been happy with an extra 30 minutes to explore the relationships and politics more. The acting was, for the most part, great. Peeta wasn’t real likeable, but he’s not supposed to be. He’s the one that Katniss is reluctant to love. Speaking of which, my wife was completely unimpressed with Gale. She thought he was too Twilighty. He needed to be more rugged, like he wasn’t afraid of killing a couple dozen squirrels.
Unlike the book, which was told entirely from Katniss’ perspective, the movie was able to zoom out during the games and give us a peek into the Seneca Crane-President Snow relationship. This was great, and I think it will serve to enrich President Snow’s character in the following movies. Jennifer Lawrence was a dead on Katniss. And surprisingly Alexander Ludwig was terrific as Cato. His part could have been expanded (and yes, someone could have put the damn camera on a tripod during his fight scene).
- Needed more Cinna development
- The mom=catatonic story was clumsily told.
- It was blurrrrry.
But mostly, I was entertained. I want to reread the 2nd and 3rd books. And I’m hopeful that the next installments will be even better.
Banner pic via Flick and Bits.