The Hunger Games- reactions?

bwayrose7
Featured Actor
joined:3/18/11
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/23/12 at 09:21pm
Just got back from seeing it and thought I'd share my thoughts. MAJOR SPOILERS ahead if you haven't read the books.
LIke most book-to-film adaptations, I thought the book was better and some of the subtleties were lost on film, but it was overall well done and true to the story and spirit of the book. Jennifer Lawrence absolutely deserves the good reviews- she isn't an over-the-top action-figure but a strong and very human heroine who really made me feel for Katniss. Other standouts, like the critical reviews thread mentioned, were Stanley Tucci as Caesar- who seems more prominent in the movie than the book- and Woody Harrelson as disheveled but decent Haymitch. As far as the two young male leads go, there really isn't enough of Gale to judge Liam Hemsworth by; what little there was seems fine, but the next movies will be the true test. I know some people though Peeta was too soft, but I though Josh Hutcherson played him as a charming and peaceful guy who still can be manipulative and deceptive.
In general, the story didn't have to change too much. There were cuts to the Capitol control room, which was an interesting perspective and really emphasized the cruel manipulations of the Games. I felt the Peeta-Katniss semi-faked relationship wasn't as clear; in the books, she is using it for most of the time while he thinks it may be real, but on film I wasn't quite sure who knew what and when and how much. I did mist up once, when Katniss covered Rue in flowers. Overall, of course the book was better but the movie is sturdy, respectable, and enjoyable.
yodamarie78
Broadway Legend
joined:3/15/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 12:00am
On the whole I liked it. I thought that the way they staged the Reaping was fantastic, they really managed to capture how sick the whole thing is. District 12 in general looked great, as did the Capitol. As everyone has said, Jennifer Lawrence is fantastic as are Stanley Tucci and Woody Harrelson, although Harrelson's Haymitch is definitely not book Haymitch. I also really liked the girl who played Clove.

I was less impressed with the scenes in the arena. I'm torn about the bloodbath at the cornucopia. It moved so fast it was hard to get a sense of what was happening, but it did a good job of conveying how it might feel to be there. The entire part in the arena moved so quickly it lacked to terror and violence that is a constant presence in that part of the book. Katniss gets a small burn on her leg and a scratch on her head from Clove's knife, both of which are quickly fixed with the medicine from Haymitch. Still I was on the edge of my seat multiple times and I shed more than a few tears.

I'm not a big fan of Gale and was really annoyed by the cuts to him when Peeta and Katniss were together, it was unnecessary and took me right out of the scene. The riot in District 11 felt completely out of place and again stopped the arena action short. I did like the scenes with Seneca Crane and getting a look into the control room and loved his last scene with the berries. The bits with Stanley Tucci and Toby Jones hosting and giving bits of exposition worked really well too.

Like with most adaptations it didn't manage to capture the book, but it was an admirable attempt.

Edited to add: The cornucopia looked ridiculous!
Updated On: 3/24/12 at 12:00 AM
Taryn
Broadway Legend
joined:1/24/04
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 12:43am
I will come out and say I think it's better than the book. The story of the book is slick and tight and engrossing, but it's often bogged down by Collins' tendency to hit the reader over the head with every plot twist, which just makes her protagonist come across pretty dumb a lot of the time. I knew when I read them that they had the potential to be better movies, because they're spare and quick and /visual/, and I think the film really capitalized on that.
clever name
Broadway Legend
joined:3/12/08
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 01:39am
I loved it. I thought Jennifer Lawrence was fantastic and Josh Hutcherson was a sweet, charming Peeta.

I'm happily surprised at how much I liked this movie.
AwesomeDanny
Broadway Legend
joined:7/30/09
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 02:16pm
I hadn't read the books, but I really enjoyed this. For a while, I didn't really like how things seemed to be weird for the sake of being weird with little explanation, but once the games started, I was invested in the characters. My friends who had read the book complained from the day the film was announced that it wouldn't be violent enough, but I thought the movie showed just enough to suggest what might have happened. I think there is a fine line between scary and gross, and this movie stayed on the right side. There were definitely things I didn't care for, but I thought it was a really good movie, even though I had low expectations.
CarlosAlberto
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/10
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 02:19pm
I absolutely LOVED this film...and I hadn't read any of the books prior to seeing it. Although many of my friends were urging me to do so. I now am going to go and get the books and read them.

I want to go see it again...I felt it was that good and I'm extremely picky when it comes to movies.
wickedrentq
Broadway Legend
joined:11/6/04
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 02:38pm
SPOILERS FOR BOOKS AS WELL AS MOVIE
Though the film was overall pretty good, I hated that near the end, the most egregious error was made...the mutts at the end did NOT have the eyes of the dead kids? The single most disturbing scene in the story, you need that level of disturbing. I would be able to forgive the lack of violence and such because I knew the scariest image was yet to come, but then it didn't. ARGH. I'll hafta see it again when I've gotten over that.

Otherwise, it didn't really make the audience complicit like I feared it would, everything was horrifying, even with the lack of violence.

Of course you miss out not being in Katniss' head, and I think they made Haymitch too...well, nice. I understand why they had him write notes, b/c we're not in Katniss' head and don't have the time for her to figure out his messages, but that's such an important part of their relationship. And that moment where Haymitch realizes they have spunk and he might try to mentor them.

And I knew the time with Rue was less, and the bread was left out, but it was still sweet enough to be moving.

I warmed up to Peeta as soon as he echoed the stance of Caesar--very part of his character, how psychologically smart he is. The one bread toss would have been fine -IF IT WAS PROPERLY EXPLAINED. No details about how Katniss was on the verge of starving, and how it reminded her to see the flowers that she could hunt and save her family.

And while seeing the gamemakers was cool, for a limited amount of time, I would have rather spent more time with Haymitch watching. (Seems like others disagree, totally cool and respect that). You remember the part in the book where she's about to kiss Peeta and she hears Haymitch saying "go go do it?" I couldn't wait to see him watching and shouting that at her -- missed opportunity, plus they didn't even have that one good kiss.

Taking out Madge was acceptable, I thought it was sweeter that the mockingjay went from Katniss to Prim back to Katniss.

And they rushed the ending, aside from the removal of the mutts, I like the explanation of the wedding dress etc. There could have been a better cliffhanger, but they better keep the end of the 2nd book in tact.

And I missed the "Don't step on me sweetheart" line, which is me being totally nit picky, but through the silence I was waiting for it...but liked that they still had Haymitch say "sweetheart" all the time.

In general, the larger picture and politics outside of the Hunger Games, weren't emphasized, but I'm okay with that b/c I think that's gonna be the main aspect of the 2nd film -- so it's not just a repeat Hunger Games. Though I don't think Katniss' hatred of the capitol was clear enough. In talking to Cinna, she says I don't like any of them, and he says well you like me, and that's why she talks at him. And I know the waste of food is more common in the next one, but I would have preferred an equal emphasis on that and bad fashion. But that probably goes along with the whole politics come to the fore next movie.

But Jennifer Lawrence was fantastic. And most of the cast, though good as Stanley Tucci was as Caesar, I still would have preferred him as Cinna. I can't judge Woody b/c I don't love what they did with Haymitch...Donald Sutherland was great, really hope they emphasize the blood and roses...the music was wonderful, the film by itself, without relating to the book, was pretty good, but I'm still not sure how those who haven't read the books felt.

So overall, very good, did it's job, I could understand everything missed except the biggest nightmare of the book. Ulgh. I can't imagine how they can take out the horror of Mockingjay. Oh well. I'll probably go again, anyone see it in IMAX who can say if it's worth it? Unfortunately, would have to see it again this week so between money and that, would prob hafta be really worth it...

And from prior comments, it seemed like at least here, those who didn't read the books enjoyed it. That pretty much measures the movie's overall success, and I'm glad for it.
"If there was a Mount Rushmore for Broadway scores, "West Side Story" would be front and center. It snaps, it crackles it pops! It surges with a roar, its energy and sheer life undiminished by the years" - NYPost reviewer Elisabeth Vincentelli
EricMontreal22
Broadway Legend
joined:10/31/11
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 04:24pm
The only part I truly objected to and it was partly due to seeing it with a friend who had not read the books and didn't understand my love for the character--was with Peeta. I thought he was really well cast (have loved the actor since The Kids are Allright), but you never got a real sense, or at least as real as you did in the book, of why she became s attached to him, Obviously they couldn't spend an hour on how sick he was, but....
Taryn
Broadway Legend
joined:1/24/04
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 04:48pm
Of course you miss out not being in Katniss' head

Which is, in my book, a benefit of the film. A lot of the details that you list as missing I feel were just quieter. I thought that Katniss being on the verge of starving, for instance, for the bread toss scene was really clear in her acting. And other details -- like how she figured out she could start hunting -- don't strike me as particularly important for the film's narrative.
eatlasagna
Broadway Legend
joined:10/6/04
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 06:47pm
i loved the movie

I loved the books too... once again any person who read the book is going to think the book is better then the movie... and i guess you just have to not have that mindset going into it... books and movies are so different... they each have to stand on their own... and this movie stood on its own while still staying true to the book... if i were someone who never read the book then i would have LOVED this movie still... because it's so strongly made...

and I was worried how they would deal with how violent the hunger games should be... the first few minutes right when the games started i thought was just brilliantly filmed.... you knew how brutal the game would be and they showed with the editing and sound...
sabrelady
Broadway Legend
joined:5/16/03
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 07:02pm
**SPOILERS**

Agree with a lot of what has been said. I knew the violence would have to be sanitized or it would never get the PG rating neccessary for the fan base. So while I loved the creepy image of the mutts in the book it would have been too difficult to shoot and get that effect.( ie the one w Rue's eyes) But the Cornacopia- WTF? Did the budget run out? I know in the book I could never quite figure out the size and dimmensions but really- It just looked like fricken steel boxes. seriously THAT they coulda built a frame and CGI'd the thing.
I really liked what the did w Haymitch -esp as it explained the rule "change" and showed how much effect the mentor DOES have- not as clearly deliniated in the books. I like Donald Sutherland as Snow and how his character was used and developed ( and when I read the books I always saw Billy Bob Thorton in my head as Snow so I have really come around)
Another issue- The other tributes come to the "feast" for something they all desperately need. If Cato gets no armour- WHAT is he coming for?? ( the others are not explained either in the book)
Wes Bently was great- really liked how they enlarged his character just -OK ALL the other gamemakers looked about 90- seriously he was the only one who looked like a video game player/designer and I was looking closely to see if I could spot a potential Plutarch in that scene wonder who they'll cast for that.
Gale was fine not enough to complain of or rave. Prim was a bit too hysterical, a slight toning done would not have hurt.
LOVED The Hob- pretty much as I'd imaginged it.
Stanley Tucci- he was PERFECT as Caesar and the banter w Peeta was played wondefully.
Jennifer really WAS Katness- the scenes at Rue's death and after were heatbreaking ( as they are supposed to be) she really carries the film. Josh Hutcherson is also good as Peeta-he has his strengths but he is quiet- and he is in the book too- neccessary that that be seen and well noted when we see what happens to him in the 3rd film and what draws Katness to make the choice she does.
Yeah the bread scene was a bit underwritten esp the dandelions being ommited- kinda an image for me of how ( to borrow another quote) learning to look at things in adifferent way.
Imma gonna give it an A- almost an A.

Words that confuse censors:Fecund,penal,taint, titmouse, cockatoo,coccyx, ballcock, cockeye, prickly,kumquat, titter,cunning linguist, insertion, gobble, guzzle, swallow, manhole, rimshot,ramrod,come, fallacious, lugubrious,rectify,Uranus, angina, paradiddle,spotted dick,dictum, frock,cunctation, engorge,turgid,stiff, bush, uvula, crapulence, masticate, Dick Butkus, gherkin and of course the always bewildering lickety split. As you can see, context is every thing. Chuck Lorre Addendum: 555 382 5968 "Sexarama, Hexarama, Queeriosis, Feariosis!" Alec Baldwin "Happiness is up to you. You just have to understand what it is before you get it." -Elaine Stritch
Updated On: 3/24/12 at 07:02 PM
eatlasagna
Broadway Legend
joined:10/6/04
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 07:09pm
oh yeah... i agree about the cornucopia... i was like.. wtf?! definitely NOT what i pictured when reading the book... i was picturing something a lot taller and more shell shaped or something.. like a mollusk with ridges and ledges... not the walt disney concert hall
wickedrentq
Broadway Legend
joined:11/6/04
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 08:41pm
Maybe I'm too biased in my love of the mutts, but I thought as that is just an image, it could easily get by on a PG-13 rating, and we have the technology to make it look awesome. My friend said there's too much running going on to get a good enough close-up, but I figured if they just get on the cornucopia and look down, that's when you can see them...at least Rue. But a lot of people have said otherwise, so maybe shooting was too hard, too scary, too R-rated...too bad though. One critic just felt due to reality TV and violence in fiction, he wasn't properly horrified, and while I certainly disagree, I was plenty horrified and I knew what happened, I thought had he seen the mutts, he would have been horrified.

Taryn, I agree that Jennifer's acting conveyed a lot of what she was feeling, a major strength. I disagree about the dandelion/hunting though, especially the dandelion, as that's a major image in the third book, but maybe it will come into play then. I just thought since they flash backed to it 3 times anyway, in the same time, they could have explained the whole thing is all.

And though it's a hard choice, I give them credit for not taking the easy out of a voice-over. Puts a lot more pressure on Jennifer to convey things, which she does brilliantly. And I guess in an attempt to be open-minded, I miss the fact that we don't know in her mind everything she does with Peeta is an act, b/c of course we wonder if that's really true, and watching the film, you're not sure...which is maybe the same effect. Maybe it's more effective in the film, I'm too biased to say so, but it still is interesting.

And I agree it was to cool to see how Haymitch influenced the decision to change the rules. Again, would have loved to see more behind the scenes with him, and his reactions to Katniss with Peeta.

But I knew I was gonna nitpick and miss this and that from the book, but I really did think it was good overall, and I think the reaping, the countdown and very beginning of the games, and the death of Glimmer was done amazingly. Perfect tone, suspense for the first 2, and horror for the 3rd.
"If there was a Mount Rushmore for Broadway scores, "West Side Story" would be front and center. It snaps, it crackles it pops! It surges with a roar, its energy and sheer life undiminished by the years" - NYPost reviewer Elisabeth Vincentelli
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 08:51pm
I just got back and thoroughly enjoyed it. I've never read the books and am extremely curious what could possibly happen next and even though this first one is a total ripoff of the 2001 film SERIES 7, I was still entirely entertained.
ChenoKahn
Broadway Star
joined:6/12/11
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 09:54pm
You should read the series Jordan it is very good.
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 10:07pm
Im very interested to read the second book now. I think I have a vague idea of where the story might be headed and want to see if I'm even close.
ChenoKahn
Broadway Star
joined:6/12/11
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 10:25pm
It is very easy to see coming but then becomes very creative in the way it's executed. Also, there are some great twists.
adamgreer
Broadway Legend
joined:3/18/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 11:39pm
Just back from seeing it. Overall, I liked it, but I'm not as wild about it as a lot of other people. Four quick things:

-I HATED Woody Harrelson as Haymitch. He never once came across to me as a heavy-drinker, just someone a little tipsy. I also never found him the least bit threatening.

-Is Donald Sutherland capable of playing any other character beyond a smarmy, evil dictator type?

-The missing children in the mutts' eyes was a HUGE disappointment for me. I felt that was kind of essential.

-Finally, I guess I'm one of the few who didn't like the Truman Show-esque control room scenes.

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them"
~Walt Disney

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible."
~Walt Disney

My name is neither "adam" nor "greer."
AwesomeDanny
Broadway Legend
joined:7/30/09
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/24/12 at 11:51pm
I didn't read the books, but I did understand that Katniss basically faked her relationship with Peeta. I felt that she had some companionship for him, but the kiss and the whole lovers thing was just for show. At times, I felt a step ahead of the plot, but other parts (including Rue's death) were complete shocks. My friends who read the book didn't really like the movie as much as I did, but they are all purists who were mad when casting was announced because the actors didn't look exactly like the characters (to which I said "who cares?") and would be unsatisfied with anything other than a literal translation.

I don't understand how it would be possible to show the dogs' eyes as those of the dead people. If they had tried, I'm not sure it would come across very well. The dogs were scary enough as it was.

What was the Cornucopia like in the book? Was it bigger? I liked that it wasn't very tall--the dogs could almost get up there, so even when they were all "safe" at the top, they were still in great danger.
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:00am
Has there ever in the history of film been one based on a book where fans of the book didn't throw a shlt fit with the films release and nit picked it to death because it's not EXACTLY what they had wanted or had imagined?

I felt from the entire thing she was faking her care for Peeta (stupid name, by the way) in order for people to like her. I think she would have *SPOILER* let him eat those berries in a heartbeat and not eaten hers if they hadn't stopped them. Again, I haven't read the books so I don't know if that's the case but with Jennifer Lawrence's Katniss (another stupid name and I'll be calling her catnip from now on).
ChenoKahn
Broadway Star
joined:6/12/11
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:02am
I haven't seen the film but in books that is exactly how she feels.
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:05am
Well than Jennifer Lawrence did a great job with that character.
adamgreer
Broadway Legend
joined:3/18/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:05am
Katniss is much less of a heroine in the books. She's very much a pragmatist there.

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them"
~Walt Disney

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible."
~Walt Disney

My name is neither "adam" nor "greer."
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:08am
Well I just downloaded the other books so I'll start reading up on the further adventures of Pita and Catnip tomorrow.
ChenoKahn
Broadway Star
joined:6/12/11
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:09am
Are you not reading the first? If not I strongly recommend you do.
Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Hunger Games- reactions?
Posted: 3/25/12 at 12:11am
But I sawded the movie. Do I really need to read the first book?

1
Page: