The new Twilight? And by new I mean good.
(This was written by Galvin but he got me to post it for him.)
In a not so far off future, America has been divided into 13 sections, districts 1-12 and The Capitol. Over 7 decades ago the districts rebelled against their master, the Capitol, and sought freedom through revolution. They failed. Now every year a boy and a girl between 12-18 are chosen from each of the districts to compete in a competition in which one child will walk away and live the rest of their life in luxury and the other 23 will die. A fight to death. Let the hunger games begin and may the odds be ever in your favor.
So begins our story of Katniss Everdeen. A sixteen year old girl living in the slum that is District 12. On Reaping day, when the tributes are selected, Katniss' 12 year old sister is chosen and, fearing for her sister's life, Katniss steps up and volunteers to take her place. Now Katniss must face not only the other contestants but those who run the games as well.
I've read The Hunger Games. I will tell you to read the books, however, they are not necessary. Reading the books will give you backstory and context that the movie at times lacks. For instance, the mockingjay. The mockingjay was a bird that the Resistance created to relay messages during the war and has come to be a symbol of the rebellion. The movie doesn't tell you this, but it's not really something you need to know.
So did I enjoy the movie? Yes. However, The Hunger Games is just that. A movie. What do I mean by this? I mean that The Hunger Games doesn't have enough to fit into a separate category. There's not enough action to call it an action movie. It's not a love story and the character isn't actually after something, so it's not an adventure. THG is simply a story driven Epic. And I love that. Hunger Games is about a single girl trying her hardest to survive against other teenagers trying to kill her before she can kill them. There's no great quest, no twist ending, no big "I'm your father" kind of trick contained in this movie. It is simply a powerful story that demands to be told.
Characters are the driving force behind The Hunger Games. Each district gives 2 tributes, so despite having a main character, we're forced to get to know her fellow tributes who Katniss knows will have to die if she is to survive. An even bigger wrench is thrown into it as Peeta professes his love to Katniss in front of the whole world. Of course, we don't know if the whole love thing is real or a way of winning the audience, just another thing I love about The Hunger Games.
We meet several characters as the story moves on. Characters we love, ones we hate, ones we fear. That's what I loved about the Hunger Games. It feels populated with memorable characters played by great actors that really drive the story.
One thing I have to mention is THG's soundtrack, or rather the lack of it. At times the entire theater went quiet. When Katniss' sister was called up, I expected crying tears, wailing, and music to fit, but no. I was given a quiet, solemn nothingness. Until Katniss runs up screaming to take her place, the only sounds are the footsteps of her sister walking forward to certain doom. I recall one moment as I watched Katniss scream and flail in hatred and sorrow at the loss of a friend she had made. But there was no sound, only soft music that made the moment all the more memorable and powerful.
Admittedly, there are times when things happen too quickly and don't seem to build enough. One instant is when one tribute gets mad with another and breaks his neck. I remember in the book this was a powerful scene. It revealed that this tribute was powerful and angry and a force to be feared. He lashed out at the other tribute, going into an absolute rage. In the move, he says about two lines and just pops him right there. It just flew out at you, but was soon forgotten and didn't really have the impact it could have.
The Hunger Games stands as a powerful character driven story, OC survival, and what humans will do to survive, or stay entertained. It is a moving and emotional powerhouse that really does some justice for the female character.
No need to stay after the credits.
(Okay, Dusty here, I also saw this movie and, well, my opinion is a little different. I never read the books, and I bet a lot of people are liking this movie more because they want to like it, because they liked the books. I personally thought the first half was slow, too much build up with nothing really happening. Then when the "action" started happening, it just wasn't all that amazing. Personally, my favorite part of the movie was hearing the cannon boom in the background. I'd give it a 7, okay movie, but not as good as all the hype.)