March 26, 2012

Review Monday - The Hunger Games

The day I had been counting down too had arrived. I had my I-max ticket purchased (weeks in advance) and impatiently waited all day. From previous experiences at opening night movies, I knew we would have to get there early to get decent seats. I called to find out what time seating would begin and was told at 10:15pm, so my idea was to show up around 9:30pm to get in line. The theater does a fantastic job of keeping people in line and not letting people rush the doors, etc., so I figured we’d be ok. We arrived at 9:30pm on the dot and when we walked in, they had just opened the doors to our theater. My heart sank. I envisioned walking in and only getting front row seats, which would kill me. Luckily, we got the exact row we had talked about, and at this point there were about 100 people in the theater. I’m guessing it holds about 400.

Settling in for the next 2-1/2 hours, I of course played games on my phone, but also enjoyed people watching. There were quite a few people dressed as characters, with Effie being the most popular choice. There was a dad there dressed as Haymitch and his daughter was dressed as Prim. First I thought this was wacky, but then I figured, if my kids wanted me to dress up with them, then heck yeah I do it. It was awesome.

I quickly ordered my large Diet Coke and Large Popcorn (larges because you get free refills). The theater really filled up, however, being told it was “sold out” I expected it to be full – it wasn’t. The theater had 7 screens open! It was super busy in the lobby, concessions, bathrooms, etc., but the excitement just filled the air. I loved every minute of it.

Me with my Popcorn and Sno Caps!!!
 At 11:45pm I got my Frozen Coke and made one last bathroom stop.  The  crew came in at midnight to make announcements about taping it, pictures, blah, blah, blah. Then the previews started – I swear there must have been 7 different previews to sit through! Everyone was going crazy and groaning every time a new trailer started. It was comical.

FINALLY, the movie started. For the next 2 hours and 22 minutes I was mesmerized.

Did it meet my expectations? Yes

Did it deviate from the book? Yes, but not too much that it ruined the premise.

Did I LOVE it? Yes, although there were differences, the main element I was hoping for is that it would capture the feelings of the characters (fear, terror, hopelessness, etc.), and I believe it did. I cried, I laughed, I was anxious, I was shocked and finally I was relieved.

Were there things I didn’t like? Yeah

- Some of the acting (Gayle, kids from other Districts) was really bad

- How Katniss gets the Mocking Jay pin bothers me too.

- I don’t think they gave enough information to the Katniss and Gayle relationship. Maybe they will in the next movie – which is tentatively scheduled for release in November 2013.

- Really, I could pick apart small things that might bother me, however, the movie is not the book. The book lets you use your imagination to picture people, places and events using the descriptions the author uses. A movie doesn’t let you do that – it’s ONE interpretation of it.

Things I loved the most?

- Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss) Woody Harrelson (Haymitch), Stanley Tucci (Caeser) and Lenny Kravitz (Cinna) were all amazing in their roles.

- The opening scene of the Game was exactly like I pictured it. The cornucopia was a different color, but still very much like I imagined. I anticipated a graphic scene and it was. PERFECTION

I want to point out that I had a 7-hour road trip immediately after watching the movie (2:30am) with GTuck and Chrissy, and we discussed this movie for a LONG time. Maybe too long. The more we talked about it and compared it to the book, we were all finding little things that differed or things we thought should be different. But in the end, we all agreed that we really enjoyed it.

I plan on seeing it again. I think it will be more enjoyable not looking for things to disappoint me or critique. I just want to sit back and enjoy it. My daughter wants to see it (10 years old), and although I’m not sure if she’ll like it, I think it’s an age-appropriate film for her to see.

 Overall, my rating is Loved It. It’s a definite must see. Whether you’ve read the books or not, the movie will not disappoint.

Did you see it? If you did, did you like it? If you haven't, do you plan on seeing it?


Samantha said...

I saw it on Saturday and LOVED it! You are so right abuot Gayle's acting - Not impressed. Plus they should have played up their relationship a little more in the first movie!

The part where she blew up the food, and the screen went "deaf", they never really talked about how she went deaf in her left ear! Which I felt was important because it could potentially hurt her hunting skills!

Books are always better. :)

GTuck said...

The book was definitely better, but this was a really good adaptation. I really want to see it again.

Faith said...

I loved it too and you know what I was upset about how she got the pin too ... Not sure why they had to change that part. I plan on seeing it again with my little sister this wknd!! Can you believe I am so excited to see it again?! Haha.

Cindy said...

Sounds so fun! My daughter and friends liked it but said something about leaving parts out from the book. Shockingly, I downloaded the book late last night...I'm only on Chapter 3 but am liking it! gave promo codes for Kobo yesterday. I got all 3 books on my iPad for $3.06!!! Better late than never!?

Crystal Seed said...

I just started the book. I won't see it until I'm finished. We might just wait until we can get it on our Blockbuster queue. But, so far, I love the book! I can't put it down!!