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Finally saw The Hunger Games

Discussion in 'Film & Television' started by Steerpike, May 23, 2013.

  1. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    It was one of the worst adaptations I've seen in recent memory.

    As preposterous as the story is on some level, at least the book was written in an engaging manner. The movie accentuated the implausible elements of the story, and the acting was so flat I wouldn't have cared if all the tributes had died in the arena and taken the rest of the cast with them.

    Just sayin.
     
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  2. Jess A

    Jess A Archmage

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    I saw it on a plane last year. I will be honest - the book storyline didn't appeal so I didn't read them. So I can't compare the two.

    But I didn't much fancy the movie either. I suppose I had been stuck in Hong Kong airport for 24 hours, unable to leave, unable to fly. I was tired, and the plane we finally got was old so the TV was barely visible. Grumpiness really does ruin a film experience...

    It was an -ok- film. It dragged on in parts. I am surprised I didn't fall asleep (or if I did, I don't think I missed anything important). I doubt I'd bother watching it again. I enjoyed Sheilawisz's version much more :)
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2013
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  3. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    The story didn't interest me because the premise is, as far as I know, that a bunch of kids kill each other for entertainment. It made the story seem like Death Race 2000, only meant to be serious. To have a society or character that cruel is something I'd take as a bad joke.

    It would be like if I had a villain in my story who throws a puppy off a cliff every time he gets angry, and yeah, he keeps puppies with him just so he doesn't have to go out of his way to get a puppy when he needs to kill one. They're stress balls to him. I think at one step better than my best writing, maybe the reader--if s/he's a dog-lover and happens to be sad about something else while reading--empathizes the first time. The second dead puppy makes it obvious it's satire. The third dead one is a running gag. The fourth, an unfunny joke that should just stop. After that, the reader hates me for subjecting him/her to this crap.

    Don't get me wrong... there were Hitlers throughout history, so yes, a certain level of cruelty can be believable. But I heard of the book and saw the preview, and that was enough of either for me. I'm happy for the author, though. Like Harry Potter and Twilight, deserving of success, but not my cup of tea.
     
  4. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    The story didn't bother me too much as presented in the book. It is a ridiculous story line on a few levels, but the author does a decent enough job in writing it that you're willing to go with it (or at least I was, though I never read the second or third books). The movie fails in every aspect in which the book succeeded, so it's just left with a ridiculous story line and a bunch of characters you don't care about while watching the movie.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2013
  5. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    Yeah, I did hear it was well-written. That it was written in present tense made me that much more likely to read it. Still... that dead puppies thing popped into my mind before my hand could even touch the physical copy. I don't remember if I bothered to read the back cover.

    I suppose if you're reading, you're not necessarily picturing adorable teens with perfect teeth killing each other in front of spectators wearing clown make-up. That's the impression I got from the preview, which turned me off from a story that already had strikes against it with me.



    EDIT - Maybe I saw the preview during the summer. As a high school teacher, I should be for teens killing each other.

    I'm kidding!!!!!
     
  6. danr62

    danr62 Sage

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    Parts two and three are even more ridiculous. And a huge disappointment. The protaganist has basically no agency.
     
  7. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    I have read the three books of The Hunger Games and watched the movie more than ten times already, and now I cannot wait for November when Catching Fire will hit the theaters...

    I know that many people (my sister, for example) believe that the story is simply about kids and teenagers fighting to the death, but the truth is that The Hunger Games is so much more than that: As I see it, The Hunger Games is a story about life, courage, the value of family and friends, love and a lesson of pacifism.

    As a person with many challenges and troubles in my life, I find life inspiration in Katniss. I think that she has taught me that even if terrible things happen to you, you can find ways to recover from it and be happy again. Life is worth living, it's worth to continue even if you have to face great challenges and pain.

    You should read the three books before criticizing this beautiful story, I really recommend it =)
     
  8. T.Allen.Smith

    T.Allen.Smith Staff Moderator

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    My sister is a big fan of the series. She got me to read the first. It was easy reading and took only a few days to finish. I thought it was okay but certainly didn't captivate me enough to devote anymore time to #2 or #3.

    Many people adore the story though, so there's no doubt in my mind, Suzanne Collins did something right. It's just not for me. If my attitude towards the book is so blasé, I don't see much point in seeing the films.
     
  9. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    I enjoyed the first book well enough, I just didn't think the movie was any good.
     
  10. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    I watched the movie before reading the book, it kept me on the edge of my seat, I cried a lot and that's why I decided to start reading the series.

    In cases of movies inspired by books, I believe that it's better if you watch the movie first and read the book later, because fans of a book usually have very high expectations for the movie.

    Many things are different in the movie, but that always happens with adaptations. The Capitol people are crazier and scarier in the books (I prefer their movie version) but the movie followed the story with little changes... It's quite accurate really, if compared to other book/movies out there =)

    I cannot wait to watch Catching Fire!!
     
  11. Penpilot

    Penpilot Staff Article Team

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    When I was watching the movie, there were parts where I could feel the "Hand of God" poking in and moving the pieces as needed instead of letting things progress more naturally. BUT, despite the obvious flaws there's something that plucked the right strings for me. Maybe because I haven't read the books yet--though I intend too--I came in with low expectations and experienced something palatable.

    I'm throwing this on my guilty pleasures pile next to the Resident Evil movies. :p
     
  12. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    In the book, I cared what happened to the characters. The movie glossed over everything and was stripped of emotion. Even with Rue, which I thought was touching and sad in the book. I couldn't have cared less about Katniss in the movie and if all the tributes had died some horrible death in the film I would have had the same non-reaction as I did at the end of the film. I also thought the actress picked to played Katniss was terrible and made the guy who played Anakin look like Lawrence Olivier.
     
  13. KRHolbrook

    KRHolbrook Scribe

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    I thoroughly enjoyed the movie as well as the book, and I'll admit it makes me roll my eyes when I hear people who watch a movie from a book they've read say it was horrible and strayed from the story of the book, because the book is usually going to be the winner. It adds more information than a movie ever will. Maybe it's my morbid mind, but I like watching things like this. An event where people have to kill one another and there should only be one winner. I also love the Gone series, and man if they ever make those into movies I'll be watching the crap out of them, too.
     
  14. tlbodine

    tlbodine Troubadour

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    I actually liked the movie, for what it was. It's a tricky adaptation to make (due to the rating restriction, for one, and the book's pacing) and while it had some flaws (like, as you mention, the wooden acting), it succeeded in a few other places. I think above all, Hunger Games is really a story about reality TV and the gladiatorial spectacle of other people's pain contrasted with bourgeois indifference. So they made some interesting choices in the film to play up the spectacle aspect of it, and I liked that. It's not a movie I particularly loved, but it was decent and I'll watch the second one.

    All in all, I thought the books were consistently mediocre. The first one was pretty good but failed to live up to its promise. The conversation Peeta and Katniss have on the roof before the games -- where he brings up the discussion of loss of life vs loss of humanity -- is fascinating and clearly could/should have been the through-line of the story. But it gets muddier and muddier as things go on, and some of the plot twists are completely unbelievable. By the third book, I had lost all patience with Katniss as narrator and didn't care about anything that happened.
     
  15. teacup

    teacup Auror

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    I've only watched and read the first one, and for both the book and movie I say: "Meh."
    It was extremely predictable at most parts and I never found myself caring who dies and who doesn't. I usually feel like reading the sequel to books right away, just so I can carry on with the story, but though I have the trilogy I don't feel interested in continuing really. I probably will carry on at some point, just to see what happens at the least.
    It was okay, but nothing amazing like it was made out to be.
     
  16. Zero Angel

    Zero Angel Auror

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    I'm so pleased others had a hard time with the Hunger Games movie. A couple of friends made me and my fiancee watch it last year telling us how much we would like it; we sat down to 2 hours and 22 minutes of some of the most boring crap we've ever been subjected to. Our friends were enthralled in the film (which they had seen several times before) and we were stuck sitting there.

    It was really rubbish. It was so bad that it made me take the Hunger Games books off my to-read list. I've had people say I should give them a chance, but I've also had people tell me that the Hunger Games movie is amazing. I was so beyond being underwhelmed with that film.

    It was just so boring, and I second Steerpike's apathy towards any of the characters. I enjoyed the actress as Mystique in X-Men: First Class and I've heard good things about Silver Linings, but I'm glad Hunger Games wasn't the first performance I saw her in.
     
  17. Penpilot

    Penpilot Staff Article Team

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    If you want to see her in a good movie, check out Winter's Bone.

    Winter's Bone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
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  18. kayd_mon

    kayd_mon Sage

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    I've read all three books, and I saw the movie.

    The movie was a good adaptation, I thought. The thing it failed at was it didn't portray all the urgency in the arena that it needed to. The characters wweren't really hugry. That was a big part of the book. It was ok, and I was happy to see it.

    As for the next two films, I have extremely low expectations. The second and third books were progressively disappointing. On screen, their flaws will be amplified, unless they take some liberties with the adaptations. Especially the third book. I will see Catching Fire, but I'll admit that I go to the movies with my wife every other week at least.
     
  19. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    First, I posted about this a long time ago when I saw the movie in theaters, and I'm responding now having no idea what I said back then. It'll be interesting to look in a moment.

    I think, once you get over the shock value of the concept, the story falls apart. I think too much of the fighting was hedged because it was children fighting children, and hedged in a way that made it feel forced. Much of the casting, and the worldbuilding, and the science fiction, just seemed a bit goofy to me. And I didn't think the lead character was well written.

    Still, I enjoyed the movie going experience and don't regret seeing it in theaters. That's not always true. But I think I would have a lot more trouble trying to watch it at home.
     
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