The besties and I have had our calendar marked with a Big, Fat HG on today’s date for months (I thought a mockingjay would have been more appropriate but we are lacking an artist among our group. H.G. was the best we could do!). I mean months. I was excited but fearful. The books were so stinking good! ( I know what you are thinking. Yes, I am adult who sometimes indulges her inner 16 -year- old, self with juvenile fiction. Yes, I am one of those people and yes, I enjoyed the twilight novels as well, thank you very much!) But, are movies ever as good as their books. Sometimes, but not often! Let’s face it the odds are not forever in the movies favor, but it didn’t keep me from being hopeful.
I saw the “official” trailer and some that we’re not very “official”, and my hope began to grow. I would get goosebumps when Effie would announce Primrose Everdeen as tribute and Katniss would become hysterical and volunteer. I just knew Jennifer Lawrence had nailed the role of Katniss. After all, not every girl can rock a long braid, or shoot a bow, or skin a squirrel. She seemed absolutely perfect for the part. So, I was ready! Ready to tour the capital and watch the games (even though I knew there would be parts where I would have to cover my eyes, Yikes!).
I imagine those who know me can picture me sitting in my seat in the theater biting my nails and twisting my hair waiting for the movie to begin. I couldn’t set still until the lights dimmed and The Hunger Games began. Then I was transfixed. I remembered Katniss’s need to protect her sister regardless of the cost. I remembered why I fell in love with Gale. He’s smoking hot! I remembered Peeta and the bread and his heart the size of the awful Cornucopia! Sweet, Precious, Rue! Wonderful, beautiful Cinna! The bloodthirsty tributes and the disgusting Muts! The Dreadful President Snow and his beautiful white roses. They where all there in the movie exactly as written for the most part, but for me there was a lot missing.
In the book, you understood why Gale meant so much to Katniss. They understood each other. They shared a common goal; survival for their families. They shared a common loss; their fathers. In the movie, it just seemed like they were just hunting buddies. He seemed so happy, go lucky, smiling all the time. He wasn’t exactly like that in the book! He was bitter and HATED the Capitol. He had Fire just like Katniss, but he wasn’t more than a sizzle in the movie.
I also don’t think you get a good idea of the oppression that goes on in the districts by the Capital. In the movie, you don’t get why Gale and Katniss’ name is in the drawing forty + times and Primose’s name is only in there once. Other than President Snow’s little clip before the reaping you have no idea why The Hunger Games is taking place or how it originated. Did he even mention District 13 in his clip? They totally change the story behind the Mockingjay pin. She did not buy it, it was a gift. The girl who Gale and Katniss see in the woods that gets captured by the Capitol, she does not exist in the movie. You never know that the Capitol cuts her tongue off and she ends up waiting on Katniss when she arrives at the Capitol. You would not know in the movie that Katniss and Peeta were served glorious meals during their prep before the games like fattening pigs before the slaughter, and that for the most part, they consumed them ravenously. Remember they went hungry a lot in District 12. You also never see Haymitch drunkenly fall off any stages, not one.
Okay! I know what you’re thinking again. You can not fit everything in a book into a 90+ minute movie. I know there are something’s you have to subtract and something’s you have to add due to time constraints and appeasing the masses. I get that, I do, but I just feel like they didn’t capture the essence of the movie. I think it came up flat. To me, The Hunger Games was about knowing something is so broken and so wrong but having hope that someday it will be different. It’s about staying true to yourself when everyone else tells you that you need to be false. It’s about standing up for everything you believe in with the chance you will lose everything. I am sorry I just didn’t get that vibe from the movie and I know I am not completely alone, because a Couple of mothers in the lady’s room informed us that they would not be letting their teenagers see it. They couldn’t get past the whole “games” part of it. They hadn’t read the books…
So, I didn’t LOVE it, but I did LIKE it. There is one thing I loved about the movie,though, Jennifer Lawrence, who plays Katniss. She was sensationally stellar! She owned the part. If I had an Academy Award, I would have given it too her. She was just simply amazing. I think I would watch any movie she’s in from now on just because she’s that good! I loved her, in a total non-lesbian way! Great things to come from that Kentucky girl! I just wish I could say I loved the movie. It just left me hungry for all the little, important, details that went missing in the movie. Oh well, Maybe the odds will be in my favor next time.
Ironic Qoute from Jennifer Lawrence:
[on not wanting to be famous] I look at Kristen Stewart now and I think, ‘I’d never want to be that famous.’ I can’t imagine how I’d feel if all of a sudden my life was pandemonium.
Sorry, it made me smile. I am afraid she is about to find out!