Well, like so many people this weekend, I got to see The Hunger Games movie. When I first found out about the upcoming movie, I watched the trailer, and I was pretty intrigued.
I had won the book during Banned Book Week in the fall of last year, and I was not sold on reading it. I had read some Christian reviews as well as others, but I just wasn’t sure I would like it. I decided that if I wanted to be able to see the movie, I needed to read the book first. So I decided to pick it up and give it a try. If I didn’t like it, I could just stop reading it and that would be that.
I was so engrossed in the book that I could not put it down! It is one of my favorite books, and I don’t mind telling people that. I could hardly wait to see the movie. And discovering that Taylor Swift did some of the music only made it better.
I went with a group today to see it. I was the only one who had read the book! I was mesmerized from the beginning. I had heard so many good things about it, and after all, the author did the screenplay, so what could be better? I did have to explain a few items to the person next to me, but I truly didn’t mind. I was the authority, after all.
So what were my thoughts? Every character in the movie with the exception of Haymitch looked exactly as they should. Except that for some reason, I didn’t think of blacks being in it. I don’t know why, but I am glad they were. Rue was too cute for words, and that scene made me cry. The book’s scene nearly brought me to tears, but it was definitely tears during the film. I had pictured Haymitch as old and feeble. I’m not sure why. But no problem. Haymitch’s character was a little different than I imagined but was acted brilliantly. I had to look up where I had seen that actor before–Cheers. I never saw the show, but I had certainly seen the actor around.
I enjoyed the parts of the story that were not in the book. I liked seeing “behind the scenes” during the Games. It made things interesting. And the love triangle was more pronounced. I have just begun the second book, and there were parts that were alluded to in the movie that do not appear in the first book. I found that interesting as well.
While it is true that you can enjoy the movie without having read the book, there are things that will not make sense. You may wonder why some kids have their names in the lottery so many times. You may wonder about the creatures–I wish they had focused on that a little more because I think it would have been much more chilling. You may wonder about Catniss’s family. And what happened to the mayor and his daughter?
(See, I honestly gave no spoilers. Those who have read the book fully understand!)
As to the rating, PG-13 is entirely appropriate. There was a family there who brought a girl my daughter’s age–8–but I do not feel that was appropriate. There is no sex, and the language is very mild. While the violence is not overly graphic, it is intense. And I seriously doubt that a child who is not at least 12 would honestly not understand it. My daughter would have nightmares if she saw it, I am sure. This is a teenager/adult film.
As to the moral message of the film, it is outstanding. Be willing to stand up for who you really are–do not compromise. Good will triumph over evil. Family is a top priority. Don’t let people change you. Money does not buy happiness.
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