The Best Games In the History of Panem
It's no secret that The Hunger Games is one of the most anticipated movies to come out since we parted ways with the Harry Potter franchise, which raked in $169,189,427 in box office sales its opening weekend. Lionsgate Films are predicting that The Hunger Games will bring in at least $125 million this weekend.
Based off of the best selling trilogy by Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games takes place in the ruins of North America and is now the standing country of Panem. Split into thirteen districts, the country is ruled by the Capitol, who has complete control. In the dark days when the rebels decided they had enough and fought back, District 13 was destroyed and the Hunger Games were born. It was decreed that each district would offer one young man and woman between the ages of twelve and eighteen to fight to the death. Out of twenty-four tributes, only one would survive.
Personally, I have been a fan of the books since I discovered the first one in early 2009. I had heard a few friends mention the title and how good it was, and while passing the magazine and book stand in my local grocery store, bought it on impulse. After submerging myself in the book and reading it till the binding fell off, I eagerly awaited the next two books, Catching Fire and Mockingjay.
The day the tickets went on sale for the movie, I bought them. Like so many others I counted down the days until the midnight showing, arrived several hours early, and screamed when the lights dimmed.
Not once, did I lean back in my chair. The movie kicked things off with Katniss soothing Prim as she wakes from a nightmare and sings her to sleep. I loved that the first thing you see is Katniss protecting her sister from a bad dream, after all it is because she is protecting her that she ends up in the Hunger Games anyway. You really get a good feel about how close they are.
The producers did a great job with sticking to the characters' personalities. Like Katniss' anger with her mother, Gale's rants about the Games, and Effie's obsession with manners. They kept a lot of the little details and stuck pretty close to the book as far as important events go.
However, changes had to be made as well, such as how Katniss comes to find the Mockingjay pin. I was a little disappointed that Madge wasn't in the movie, but she never really played a vital role or did anything to impact the plot of the story. Changes similar to that are understandable, and even expected since it can't be 100% like the book. But there are changes that were made that weren't understandable. One change that I didn't really like were the 'Mutts' for the Games' finale. Instead of being wolf-ish with the tributes eyes, they were dog like. Leaving the movie theater I heard a few people mention it.
One of the scenes I, as well as everyone else, was most looking forward to was the scene of Rue's murder. I must have read that scene a few hundred times, in the book it was so sad. You come to like Rue, how she's similar to Prim and understand that's why Katniss teamed up with her. In the movie you don't really get the sense that Katniss is protecting her because she's reminded of her sister, which is clearly stated in the first book as well as the second. Honestly, I found her whole death scene lacking in emotion. But only because they didn't really develop their relationship or display how close Katniss felt to her. Of course it was still sad, my heart wretched when she passed, how could it not? It's just one of those scenes that could have been improved on.
As for the romance, I don't think it was lacking in emotion. A few things were changed, of course to keep the time under three hours, but you could really see Peeta's sincerity when he talks about their memories and when he looks at her. If I hadn't read the books and knew Katniss was just pretending for the Games, I would have thought it was real. However, they don't really mention anything about the romance being a strategy in her eyes.
They added several scenes, showing how the Games are actually run. I think it really feels like a game and a television show with the added scenes. They display a room full of Game Makers surrounded by screens, deciding what to do and where they want the tributes to go. It really gives you the sense that they are in control and that these are their games.
As for the ending, I won't reveal anything, not even my opinion. However, I would like to know yours.