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[movies] The Hunger Games - Lakeshore
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Jay Lake
Date: 2012-03-26 04:03
Subject: [movies] The Hunger Games
Security: Public
Tags:child, movies, reviews
Last night, I took [info]the_child to see The Hunger Gamesimdb ]. Though I was up too late, I was being a good Dad — she recently read the book, and so was primed for the film. And now she'll be part of the conversation this morning at school, where all the girls in the eighth grade class will have seen it over the weekend, as well as most of the boys.

I liked this film a lot. It was tough and brutal, appropriate to the story concept. Emotionally well wrought. The herky jerky camera style bothered me at first, but then I settled in to the look of the film and stopped noticing it. The writer in me really wanted to understand the backstory &mndash; how did society get herez? — but those questions were never answered in the film. Taking the story as it was on the surface worked very well for me. And [info]the_child loved it.

So did a lot of other people. The movie's opening weekend grossed $214 million worldwide. Nearly record-breaking, as I understand things. Contrast to the lackluster performance of John Carterimdb ], which I liked as much for different reasons. The Hunger Games had a much better script and far more realized characters, but they were both a lot of fun.

And boy was my daughter pleased.

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madrobins
User: madrobins
Date: 2012-03-26 13:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Avocado and I had read the books when they first came out (and she re-read THE HUNGER GAMES last week). It's a really good adaptation; one of those where at the end you can say "wait, but they left that bit out!" but not "god, what a mess they made of a book I liked." And the bits they left out, while fine in the book, were okay to miss.

I thought the look of the film worked very well, too.

My office is going to see it on Friday afternoon, and I'll be happy to see it again.
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Gabrielle
User: gabrielle_h
Date: 2012-03-26 15:21 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I was very pleased by what they left in and what they abridged, and the mechanisms they used to convey the backstory they conveyed. It matched what was in my head very well.

The backstory is really just backdrop in the first book, but comes into play much more strongly in the sequels. It's complicated and therefore a lot to introduce, so I liked that the first book focused on one human story in the world, almost as an orientation, and the rest of the series zooms out a little to show more of the world.

I had read the first book, but not the rest. After seeing the movie on Friday, I devoured the other books this weekend. It changed how I paid attention to the books in an interesting (for a writer) technical way. For example, there's one minor character who was written out of the movie entirely, so while I was reading the rest of the books, I found myself keeping an editor's eye on whether that character really needed to be there.
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frabjouslinz
User: frabjouslinz
Date: 2012-03-26 18:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I really enjoyed it, too. I thought that using the visual components of the spectacle, and letting the audience see some of it the way the audience inside the fiction would see it, made a pointed ... point, I guess. I'd be more eloquent but after this weekend that's all I got.

The shaky cam bothered me the whole time, because my eyes couldn't focus and it would throw me out of the story. But other than that, I thought it was fantastic.
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