The Hunger Games

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CinemaSins         Movie Reviews

From the book of the same name by Suzanne Collins.

A dystopian future where the US is divided into zones, which must each send two teens for a gladiatorial contest to the death; Katniss volunteers for this to save her sister from being sent.

For those of you who don’t already know it, Otter is a Teen Librarian.

What that means, in terms of this review, is that I get to be smug about having read this WAAAAAY before it became a bestseller and everyone started reading and talking about it and before the movie came out. And if you don’t think THAT’S smug, just mention to me that you read Game of Thrones last year. I’ve been sailing on that ship since 1996…but I digress.

Hunger Games. Awesome book. Great series.

Movie…good. Well done. Looked perfect, just the way it should have looked. The author helped write the screenplay…and yet, you know what I’m going to say here. You know EXACTLY what I’m going to say. Don’t you? So let’s all say it together:

THE BOOK WAS BETTER.

See, you knew that was coming. But it’s true, it was. The movie LOOKED right, the actors were good*, it was well written…but the best parts of the book were Katniss’ internal monologues, and her thoughts about what was happening and why, and how she felt about it.

And that’s exactly what’s wrong with the movie…one is shown the scene, and told how Katniss feels, but hearing about her pain secondhand, and actually experiencing it while reading…not the same. Not nearly as good.

So yes, it was a good movie. Worth seeing. For me, not worth owning or seeing again, but your opinion might be different…as for me, I’m off to read another awesome book.

*My favorite actor quote right now: I have a friend who was at Comic-con 2012 with me, and one of the things he did was to get a press pass for the Hunger Games promo party (and there’s more of a story there, he wandered into the wrong party and ended up with Peter Jackson and the dwarves and Gandalf and a bunch of other WAY famous people…) He was talking to the actress Amandla Stenberg, who plays Rue, and asked her if she felt sad when she saw the footage of her character dying…Stenberg (who is all of 14) said, in effect, I think you’d have to be really self-involved to cry watching your own death scene. Yes, indeedy, but how few Hollywood types are sensible enough to realize that!

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