Saturday, October 6, 2012

Movie Review - The Hunger Games

A very interesting look at the future, yet frustrating to watch at moments.  I wish they had talked more about the revolution and why it happened.  I guess that's why you go out and buy the book after watching the movie, to learn more of the back story.  The movie is The Hunger Games IMDB - Post

The Hunger Games is set in the future.  They talk of a revolt against the federal government which failed.  As a way to remember the revolt and perhaps to control the population of the 12 sectors that staged the revolt the government sets up The Hunger Games.  Everyone is entered into a lottery once a year, if you win you are chosen to participate in the games.

They pick two people from each village to participate.  The games are essentially a winner takes all death match in the woods.  The woods however are filled with traps and the other competitors armed with weapons of all kinds.  The winner gets to go home to their sector to live out a happy life.

We start the movie following Katniss Everdeen, her mother and sister Primrose.  Katniss played by Jennifer Lawrence, sneaks outside the boundaries of the sector to hunt.  This is when she runs into her best friend Gale Hawthorne.  Gale is following her into the woods to keep an eye on her, and spend some alone time with her.

We cut away to people gathering in an assembly space.  They are getting ready to choose the names of the people that will participate in the 74th annual Hunger Games.  We see perhaps the first bit of color in the movie in Effie Trinket's purple dress.  Effie played by Elizabeth Banks is Sector 12's assigned cultivator.  She is the one who picks the names of the participants from the bowl.  When Primrose's name is pulled out of the bowl Katniss quickly volunteers to take her place.  The other person chosen to participate is Peeta Mellark, played by Josh Hutcherson.  We soon find out that he has a crush on Katniss.  We then follow the two of them as they travel to the capital so they can begin the ceremonies surrounding the Hunger Games.

On the train ride we meet Haymitch Abernathy who acts as their mentor for surviving the games.  Haymitch is played by Woody Harrelson actually survived a previous Hunger Games to be in the position that he is in now.  They are also accompanied by Effie, the two of them try to explain what will be expected of them and how best they can represent Sector 12.  Once they reach the capital we then meet Cinna who is in charge of their public image.  Part Stylist and part fashion coach Cinna as played by Lenny Kravitz certainly helps them make a statement on their first public appearance.

As the movie progresses you start to feel how callous and shallow the people in the capitol are.  They could care less about the participants of The Hunger Games and are only interested in the show of it all.  It reminds me much of the spectators of the Roman Gladiators of ancient times.  You really start to feel bad for Katniss who has no interest in being a play thing for these people.  She just wanted to save her sister from being killed in the games.

The costumes were great, the acting was excellent, the sets were fantastic.  The capital is very futuristic and fun to explore.  The special effects were very well done as well.

It is an interesting view of a possible future for humanity.  Some things in this movie were hard to watch, but were always believable.  The ending was a far cry short of what I was hoping for.  I didn't realize going into this movie that this was based on a series of books.  Knowing that now it makes the ending feel a little less disappointing.  I can say I look forward to any future movies that may come out since they did a great job of creating an interesting universe of characters.

I rate this movie four out of five smiley Mike heads.  The ending left me feeling melancholy and felt unfinished.


  1. Well written, but it felt almost more like a synopsis than a review.

    And yes, it is based on a trilogy. The ending to the first movie was quite a bit different than the book, and it honestly threw me off.

    Also, there (were) thirteen districts, not including the capitol. I'm not sure if that was actually mentioned in the film or not, though.

    Anyway, the review was a good review for the sake of refreshing what happened. And as I said, it was well written. Try to include acting as well as scenery and directing at some point. A large part of a movie isn't just the story, it's how believable the actors make it feel.


  2. Thanks for the feedback, I have been struggling with how much plot to write about and how much reaction/review to add.

    At some point I thought I needed to talk more about the plot. I will try to focus more on my reaction and the acting in the future.

    Thanks for pointing out the my mistake about the 13 districts not 12.

  3. Have you seen the newest film?? I'd like to hear a review about that one too! :) I read all the books and LOVED them! Only a couple of things I wish they would have added more in both though. Wish they would have dragged out more (Peeta n' Katniss in the cave & the relationship b/t Rue and Katniss) but other than that, it was a good movie for the book.

    1. It was an interesting film indeed. The pace was perfect, and the story was compelling.


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