Arts Review: “The Hunger Games”

08 Apr

As one of the most anticipated movies of the year, The Hunger Games has received more hype than some of its counterparts in the young adult book-to-movie genre—movies like the Twilight saga and the Harry Potter series; You may have heard of them.

But, there’s always that question when a book is adapted for the big screen: “Will the movie be as good as the book?”

Usually, the answer is no. For books as well-written and intricate as The Hunger Games trilogy, it’s difficult to include every minute detail while still doing the story justice. Something almost always gets left out and someone almost always leaves the theater upset.

Not this time; At least, not for this moviegoer.

While reading The Hunger Games a year ago, I found myself having to constantly be reminded that it was, in fact, a young adult novel. Some scenes were so graphic and vivid that I couldn’t believe a young teenager would be able to get through the first book let alone a series. I might be overly sensitive sometimes, but I’ve read my fare share of young adult novels and almost none of them could even come close to producing that kind of imagery.

But that’s what made the story so brilliant. Images so clear that you thought closing your eyes during the intense parts might help because it seemed like you were watching the story take place, not reading about it.

So, imagine my apprehension when I learned the books would be adapted to movies. As much as I felt uncomfortable reading about children fighting to the death, I knew that taking away from those scenes would be to take away from the integrity of the story.

Luckily myself and other fans of the trilogy, the translation from print to film was seamless.

The graphic nature of the story, however stomach-churning, was not dulled by any means which allowed the story to come to life. It was as if those of us in the theater had to remind ourselves that we were watching a movie about a post-apocalyptic world and not watching our friends fighting in our backyard.

The casting was spot on. I don’t know if anyone could have picked out a better Katniss, Peeta, Haymitch, Rue or Cinna.

Other than some slight plot discrepancies between the print version and the film version which is to be expected, I wouldn’t change a thing about the movie.

Those of you looking to get the full experience of the story, well, I’d advise you to read the book, of course. I’m a firm believer that the book is always better than the movie, no matter how good the movie turns out to be.

Those of you upset by the few discrepancies in the movie, well, that’s why the books are always better. I’d say, take it for what it is and enjoy it as the wonderful film that it turned out to be.

As for me, I’m seriously looking forward to the next movie in the trilogy.

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Posted by on April 8, 2012 in JRNL 305


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