The Hunger Games
Disclaimer – If you have not read the book or seen the film you might not want to read this blog post. There WILL be spoilers.
(edit after writing – not too many actually!)
Okay, first, the book. I LOVED this book. I didn’t really know what to expect going in. I basically read it to see what the fuss was about. The book is perfectly paced and doesn’t use any of the cookie-cutter characters as I am used to seeing them. I found Katniss to be a really interesting character.
I loved the style of writing. There is very little dialogue, we are shown the story, not told it and I loved that. When I occasionally write, I hate writing dialogue, I am weak in that area, so I usually write as little as possible. The Hunger Games for me was a lesson in how to do that the right way.
I cried, more than once. I don’t often cry reading books even though I cry at the drop of a hat for anything else. I also laughed out loud at a couple of the one liners. It was suspenseful but always with a payout. In short I loved it.
With such a visual style of writing, and being entirely written from the point of view of Katniss I was curious to see how the film makers would transpose it for screen.
The film I also loved but it is not without fault. I am glad I read the book first because if I hadn’t I might be confused by some of the more important plot points. A few extra sentences thrown in would have made all the difference. A shot held a little longer here and there would have made it sit just a little easier. Seriously, 5 minutes or less would have made all the difference.
I was talking to a friend tonight about it and she said something that struck me. I said I felt something was missing. Her reply was “tension, the book had more tension”. She was right. It was missing the sense of danger. Although you know Katniss will survive the games (It is written from her point of view after all), you don’t know quite how, or what state she’ll be in at the end. That is missing from the film.
I did really enjoy the film, I am aware that it might not sound that way through the criticisms. I’ve done a bit of a “compare and contrast” rather than any kind of review I think. my main criticism is that the film has been edited to fit a particular rating, and not edited to its truth. That difference would have meant a bit more danger and a lot more tension and in my opinion that difference would have taken a great film to an amazing one.
ps. One last time – May the odds be ever in your favour!
pps. If you are also a Twilight fan, and even if you’re a Twilight hater, I found this really interesting piece comparing Twilight and The Hunger Games. It is mainly discussing the difference between the two heroines (and why Katniss is a better lead character). http://www.filmschoolrejects.com/opinions/why-the-hunger-games-isnt-twilight-kerbl.php