The Hunger Games
Happy Hunger Games and May the Odds be ever in your Favour!
In my perfect world of movies, I want character development and I want some "soul" in the storyline. What I got was a whole lot of action, hand to hand combat, body count, gore, romance, intrigue and some girlish moments. There's also some MTV like shaky-cam cinematography but I can live with all that.
By now everyone is familiar with the premise of this film which reminded me of the "Running Man" (except with teens) and those TV reality shows. The nation of Panem, formed from a post-apocalyptic North America, consists of a wealthy Capitol and twelve poorer surrounding districts. As a punishment for a previous rebellion against the Capitol by the districts, one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 from each district are selected by an annual lottery to participate in the Hunger Games, an event in which the "tributes" must fight in an arena controlled by the Capitol until there is only one victor.
16-year-old Katniss from District 12 is your typical diamond in the rough, volunteering to save her sister from the barbarian spectacle that is the Hunger Games. She is swept away to the "Capitol" to participate in these Hunger Games where she is given every bit of assistance to becoming the most successful candidate. They get to go on TV and get treated like celebrities until the games begin and now must face survival and death. Woody Harrelson makes an appearance as an aged veteran of the games who relays what wisdom he can to the selected champions of his district (including how to attract sponsors and win over the audience.)
Although I am not sure what part of the world actually condones these Roman gladiator-type spectacle I placate myself by saying this is just another movie meant for entertainment purposes. The "games" were created to punish the citizens of this society, yet they are honored and glorified as some form of entertainment. Are they a punishment or a form of entertainment? They can't be both, yet they are portrayed as such. And don't get me started on the awful CGI of the "killer dogs" at the end. All in all, I'll have to be fair and say I don't quite get the hype.