Panem et circenses

I’m going to see The Hunger Games (imdb | rotten tomatoes) tomorrow. Yeah, that’s right. Those Hunger Games. I read the books (hey, a fella’s gotta kill the 15-hour flight to Sydney somehow) and I want to see the movie. Let’s be clear: I don’t want to see it even one-tenth as much as Nellie, who bought her tickets last weekend. But if a movie looks entertaining, and stars Jennifer Lawrence, and rates an 86% on Rotten Tomatoes, then I’m going whether or not I’ve read the books.

While the media seems intent on comparing it to Twilight (all the squealing teens don’t help) anyone who’s so much as glanced at the books knows they’re nothing alike. Granted, I didn’t read Twilight, but the brief snippets I’ve caught on TMN suggest that I’d hate the movies (and would probably therefore hate the books) because the characters seemed spectacularly annoying. I was hopeful The Hunger Games screenwriters wouldn’t do that to their central characters and, judging by early reports, they did not. I think Matt Brown summed it up nicely:

“Katniss never swoons for a boy or falls into suicidal fantasies in an effort to annihilate her self for the good of the establishment. I could do with five or ten minutes of her punching Bella Swan in the face.”

Right, then. Let the odds be ever in our favour of not being stuck next to too many spastic teenagers tomorrow.

*** UPDATE ***

So we saw it on Saturday. I thought it was pretty good. Didn’t melt my brain or anything, but I knew what I was going in to, and they did what they were set up to do: make an interesting, entertaining movie without ballsing it up as I’m sure the studio tried to make them do. The actors did very well and made us care. They made me want to see the next…I dunno, seven movies, or whatever they split the final two books into.

Side note: the theatre was the new AVX at the Scotiabank, which had comfier seats which you could reserve online so there was no standing in a queue to fight for a not-shit vantage point. Well worth the extra 3 quid. Oh, and the crowd wasn’t annoying at all…no squealing, no talking, and only one teenage girl on her phone during the movie, which I’ll take as a win.

Side technical note: they did a good job of portraying the violence without making it overly graphic; I still wouldn’t recommend bringing your nine year old (as some people in that theatre did) but if a kid read the book and has played a FPS or too then I don’t think the movie will freak them out.

Side asshole note: apparently some people are upset that they made the black characters, you know, black.

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