Hunger Games the Movie

The Hunger Games (film)

The Hunger Games (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I talked my friend and his wife into going to see Hunger Games with us. At the end, as we left the theater, I asked “how did you like it?’

“It glued me to the seat, but I didn’t like what it was.”

I knew exactly what he meant. This is a movie about kids killing kids. Do we really want that message, and image being fed into the brains of our teenagers? The fact is that teens across America have flocked to see this film. They relate to the heroine and her friend. My own granddaughters have seen the film twice. A cult grows around this film. The eighty year old man who owns the farm where filming took place is selling because strangers are driving across his property and stopping to visit the buildings used in District Twelve scenes. This is not normal folks.

The country of Panem covers most of North America and has divided it into twelve districts. The richest and the most political is District One. Each successive district after is somewhat poorer and less influential. District Twelve is the poorest and the people live in desperation.

A seventy-four years earlier there was a revolt squashed by the government. As punishment, they created the Hunger Games. Each district must send two tributes to the games for sacrifice.

What is evil in this film is the government, and its totalitarian leader. The President believes he must show that he and his government are so strong they can impose their will upon the people. Henceforth, he commands each District to send Tributes to the games. The Tributes are payment for the revolt that occurred seventy-four years ago.

Last week, I posted about Hunger Games the book. Today, I am posting about the movie. It is great! Although I hate the concept of savagery being promoted, the story is nonetheless great. It is a great depiction of what happens when the government breaks the will of the people. The actors are totally believable, and the story follows the book almost exactly. I had difficulty picking up changes introduced by the director to keep all the critical elements of the story in place, and  I only noticed two incidents that were out-of-sequence. Otherwise the movie tells the story accurately. There is so little difference between the two, one could skip one or the other. I happen to like to do both; read the book and see the film.

The film is long because it does pay so much attention to the story, yet time flies by quickly. Before we knew it the end came and we felt it was too soon. The last chapters of the book dealing with the victory celebrations, and revelations of unrest in the Districts were omitted.

As adults we saw elements of our own government creeping into this scenario, and felt the incremental losses of our personal liberty pointing us toward Panem. That may also be what the youngsters see. God love them if that is it, because then there is hope for the USA.

¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ Stars for story, acting, setting, costumes, direction

No Stars for moral content or promotion of the image of a corrupt evil savage government.

Hooked

A map of the fictional nation of Panem from Su...

A map of the fictional nation of Panem from Suzanne Collins' "The Hunger Games." (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

That’s it, now I have to read book three. Suzanne Collins has ensnared me with the Hunger Games Trilogy. The first was absolutely spell binding. The second a little less so but the plot kept evolving with hints of the future secreting themselves into the fray throughout.

I thought Catching Fire was bit less exciting than Hunger Games, but that is because Catching Fire involves the same characters repeating their participation in a new set of games. The winners from previous games were supposedly exempt from being chosen for new games, but the dictatorial President of Panem decided to show his government  has the power, and control to do anything they want to the citizenry.

The arena games are more contrived and mechanical. The characters are less savage and the gamekeepers are the villains this time. They invented some horrendous ways to kill off the characters who formed alliances and spent a good part of their time avoiding gamekeeper traps.

The hook comes in the final few pages of the story. A surprise occurs and the story reveals a new trap. The trap is set for the reader who now must go to book three to learn the outcome.

Dana Did It To Me Again

A Must ReadMy grand-daughter did it to me again. I often ask what she is reading, and that is where I go wrong, I read what she reads. The latest is “Hunger Games.” I hadn’t heard of this story until the movie came out and splashed the headlines with the ginormous money it took in at the box office. How can that be? Am I so out of touch with reality as to miss such a popular book until a movie comes out about it? I guess I am because quite frankly, I didn’t even know there was a book until the movie.

I watched a trailer on Hunger Games which did not tell me anything about the plot. Another fantasy story, I told myself. That explains why Dana is so excited about it.

I downloaded the book to the Kindle and started the read. Ten hours later I put the damn thing away. I was in total awe. The story line is a natural for a movie. The setting reminded me of the Planet of the Apes. North America has been re-invented by horrible events, and the country does not resemble the USA in any way. Instead it is now a primitive totalitarian state called Panem divided into eleven Districts. The government instituted games to make life more interesting. The premise of the games is definitely savage, and the winner is the last man standing.

The number of characters in the story are all necessary to tell the story. Author Suzanne Collins makes a bunch of unbelievable characters very believable, but she must have sipped some hallucinogenic tea to come up with story. Now, I must go to the movie just to see how Hollywood uses modern technology to convey the far out advanced concepts used in the narrative.

Hunger Games is the first of three books needed to tell the entire story. I have already loaded the second one “Catching the Fire,” to the Kindle for more reading pleasure.

Thanks Dana for another great read.

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