By Elizabeth Nailling
All of the hype surrounding The Hunger Games, Gary Ross’ film based on Suzanne Collins’ immensely popular book series, intrigued me. The fact that it has already racked in a stunning $251 million in theaters in just ten days—a profit reached by only two of the eight Harry Potter films—was more than enough publicity to snatch up my $8.50 at Bow Tie Cinemas this weekend.
Between my dad’s vague synopsis of the novel and virtually nonstop ads aired on television, I had some inkling as to what to expect as I settled into my cushioned seat, but ended up sitting on the edge of it during the entire movie.
Having this basic background information was critical in fully comprehending the beginning of the movie. Although it opens with a written description of the vicious Games themselves, it is hard to fully process this before the action begins.
I recommend consulting a Hunger Games expert – or reading the books – before seeing the movie in order to fully enjoy it without having to spend time processing basic elements of the complicated plot and setting.
Overall, I was stunned by the movie’s ability to make such an outrageous plot seem plausible. I could easily put myself in Katniss’ (Jennifer Lawrence) shoes without scoffing at the ridiculousness of the idea. Empathetic viewers are likely to be quite emotional throughout the course of the film.
Action junkies will not be disappointed either. I felt as if I had just ridden a roller coaster by the film’s end. The movie is filled with lethal weapons, heart-stopping twists, brutal murders, and exhilarating chases through the woods.
The themes of The Hunger Games will appeal to those looking for a philosophical flick that requires some contemplation. The film sheds light on the flaws of humanity, such as our inability to evenly distribute wealth (in this case, food), our loss of morality when faced with a life or death situation, the superficiality of the entertainment industry, and the cruel way in which we make someone else’s struggles and hardships our own entertainment.