|Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Lenny Kravitz, Elizabeth Banks, Donald Sutherland, Wes Bentley, Stanley Tucci, Toby Jones|
Director(s): Gary Ross
Genre: Science Fiction
This was good but not great - I'm not completely sold on it yet. I have not read the books yet, though I had intended to. What we basically have here is a mash-up of The Running Man/Survivor/Battle Royale/First Blood. I am told there will be sequels (there are three books), which would hopefully fill in the storyline gaps and abundant questions without answers that this film has. On the plus side, Jennifer Lawrence is good in the lead role (and very easy on the eyes), the story is intriguing (even if not very original), and the tension builds up nicely. The first half of the film is devoted to establishing the main characters and getting them ready for the Hunger Games, the second half consists of the Games themselves. On the downside, there's a lot of shaky-cam work that is NOT easy on the eyes (geez, buy that cinematographer a tripod, please!), some CGI that was surprisingly lame, and some tacked-on clichés that had me rolling my eyes - however I don't know if these were directly from the book or ideas that the filmmakers threw in. Friends say the books are better (naturally), with more detail and more graphic violence, so I'm gonna cut the movie some slack until I read the books.
As it was, I was entertained well enough and will check out the sequels when they eventually come out.
I actually agree spot on with Mitch.
Saw it today and although I did enjoy it I really didn't think it was all that great. I agree that it was a mash up of survivor, running man, first blood and I'd throw Lord of the Flies on that pile too.
I too found myself rooooooooollllling my eyes way too many times and much of the story is very predictable.
What I really enjoyed was the overall premise of the story and the general concept. It has been done before but this did have a more original spin to it. What I didn't like was the extreme LACK of any character developement. I liked the lead girl but really didn't give a crap about anyone else and really just wanted them all to die. The fact that they were all kids bothered me too but (in that they were obnoxious) and most young teens wouldn't act the way these characters did had this been a real event. I think in reality there would have been much more cryi9ng and freaking out. There was also SO much mention about needing to impress the viewers in order to gain "sponsorships" and that these sponsorships (in the form of matches, medicine, etc) could save them from the hash conditions. In the end I really didn't find the conditions harsh at all....it didn't even rain for Christ sakes. Even on Survivor they have really bad weather to deal with. Anyway, I'm sure the books add much more on these types of issues.
Just finished the first book - it's a lot more teen-lit than I thought it would be (à la Harry Potter - but I never read those), but sufficient enough of a page-turner that I will go on to the second book. The film stuck to the book fairly well, only some minor changes. The writing itself is very basic and to be honest, if I hadn't seen the film, there would've been a lot of detail that I wouldn't have been able to imagine, as much of the author's descriptive qualities are vague. And of course, the love-interest angle is played up more in the book, which induced tiresome groans from me, but I guess that's what you get. This is a rare case where I'd rather see the films before reading the books, but the sequels won't be out for a while, so I'll continue reading and see if it's worth it.
Ok, have finished reading all three books - LAME. Very disappointing (to me), and waaaaay too many cop-outs on the author's part. There were big build-ups to scenes that, instead of being played out, would be summed up to Katniss by another character in a paragraph. Lazy, mediocre writing all over the place. Many red shirts introduced and killed off with no real ties to any character development. I didn't care who lived or died, characters' motives flipped on a dime, depending on what the plot needed, and it just had this ongoing tone of pseudo-seriousness which I just couldn't take seriously (within the confines of the story's laws and universe). A big eye-rolling, messy dump.
Somehow, I will likely still see the inevitable film sequels, maybe just to compare and see how/if they alter the scripts. Philip Seymour Hoffman has been added to the cast in a crucial role, so that should at least be entertaining.
Just watched it with the Missus and the GIRL who are both big fans of the book (less of the movie) - took alot for them to shut-UP during the movie and not spoil many scenes...but this stuff basically writes itself. No real suspense to be had, no real surprises...cookie cutter stuff.
They were both ticked at me when I said this story had been written LONG LONG ago by Richard Bachman...
In any event (minor spoiler) - I was questioning her motives and survival skills at each turn...for example: why the HELL didn't she just eliminate them all when they were sitting around the pile of shit they just rigged with explosives? They were all prone (sitting) - it's been established she can "hit a squirrel in the eye" with an arrow. This isn't rocket science: take out the knife-throwing one, then the rest are melee fighters with swords - you can kill them all at range. If they run, pick them all off like....like squirrels. Frig, she shot a pheasant out of mid-air.
Maybe I play too many RPG games or D&D...maybe it's written better in the books. Both the missus and the GIRL want me to read the books now...we'll see.
Maybe I'll just re-read Running Man.
Hmmm....I can't honestly recommend the books (to you, anyways), but they ARE relatively fast reads and I'd be curious to see what you think of them, seeing as how you're prone to g-romping in the realm of Harry Potter, etc....
but be forewarned, I read them, but they continuously made me angrier as I read them....
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