Thoughts: The Hunger Games Movie
Monday March 26, 2012 at 12:36 am |

I was able to see The Hunger Games Friday afternoon, much sooner than I thought, and I have to say overall I LOVED it and I thought they did a great job.  Book to movie adaptations can be tricky, but I was relieved that I didn’t leave the venue shouting that they fudged it up.  Now while I enjoyed the movie immensely, there were some things I wish had been different, or book aspects I wish they had done a better job incorporating.  Below are my thoughts.

*SPOILERS TO FOLLOW*

  If you have not read the books or seen the movie and you plan to and do not want to be spoiled DO NOT CONTINUE READING!

1. The Mockingjay Pin: I understand editing and changing bits for time’s sake, but I think they could have worked in the original origin of the pin without taking too much time.  There wasn’t too much focus on the people and the conditions they lived in.  I think the contrast of Katniss and her family and the Mayor’s daughter would have helped to distinguish the differences between the “classes” and how some have preferential treatment while most don’t.

2. Haymitch:  Ummm…what happened to my slovenly inebriated Haymitch?  In the film he was very much sober and had a good grasp on all of his faculties.  He was dressed well and really didn’t have to be prodded or cajoled into his mentoring.  This was not the Haymitch I grew to love from the books.  I think they absolutely could have gotten this right, so why they didn’t is beyond me.

3. The Bread Flashbacks: I think they should have spent more time on this flashback.  The way it was done, I don’t think those who haven’t read the books, will understand the magnitude of that scene.  Also, I really wish they had used younger actors for the scene.  Unless I read something wrong, they were younger when that scene happened and in the movie they look to be the same age as they are now.  I think it takes away from the scene, and viewers won’t know that this significant event connects them and has done so years before the reaping.

4. Gale: He is a major part of Katniss’ life and he really didn’t get much shine.  I wish they had shown how they came to be friends hunting in the woods.

5. The Hob: Gosh this place was a cornerstone in the first book.  They hardly showed it or how Katniss and Gale did business there.

6. Peeta: I do wish they had developed the relationship better between Peeta and Katniss.  Her slow awakening was nice to see for a girl who is stoic, calculating and a bit frigid towards anyone besides her sister and Gale.  But many times her budding feelings for Peeta seemed awkward and a little cringe-worthy.  Even though she’s not a very feely or emotional kind of girl, I remember this going much smoother in the books.  It was more sincere in the book.

7.  District 11 Parachute: As I recall District 11 sent Katniss a parachute of bread after what she did for Rue.  I don’t recall her ever getting this parachute.  I think it would have shown the stirrings of the uniting districts.

8. The Cornucopia Fight: Why was it so blurry?  I couldn’t see a thing until they widened the angle of the lens.

That seems like a lot, but honestly, it was all a little trivial considering the grand scheme of things.  I have to admit that the majority of the visuals matched up to all that I had pictured in my head while reading the book.  And that made me a happy camper.  Cinna was gorgeous and sweet and the gold eyeshadow was everything.  I caught a thrill when I saw Peeta toss that big weight and shock the careers, and the whole scene with Rue broke my heart.  She was so cute and kind and clever.  Katniss did not disappoint and I think Jennifer Lawrence did a good job with the character.

Overall I thought it was brilliant and really one of the better YA book to movie adaptations out there.  I will be going to see this one again once my little sister gets back into town.

If you’ve seen it what were your thoughts?  What would you have changed, included, or left out?

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Jade

Written by Jade

Jade is a book blogger from NC. In her spare time she loves to read and build and maintain websites. She has been reading since she was four and building websites since she was 16. SortofBeautiful.com was born on March 8, 2011 and is a fantastic merging of her two favorite hobbies. Enjoy your stay!

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15 Responses to “Thoughts: The Hunger Games Movie”

  1. I’m glad that you enjoyed the movie. I thought it was really well done, and many of the points you mentioned, I noticed as well. I really want to reread the series.

  2. I agree with you on every point, especially on the way Katniss got the pin. I was disappointed it was so different from the book. And the significance of District 11 sending Katniss the bread. I remember in the book, she said something like, “what is must have cost them to send me this” and it totally emphasized the dire situation they were all in. In the book it moved me so much.

    I agree, for those that haven’t read the book they would be totally lost. Having Katniss and Peeta look the same age as the bread thing, it just didn’t make sense because by this point Katniss looks like she can hunt for her own food!!! The movie Katniss just didn’t work for me. Yes, JL is beautiful and a great actress, but she’s too curvy and and she doesn’t really look like a teen. *sighs*

    And yes, Cinna was gorgeous! Overall, I still enjoyed it, but I just wish things were a little different.

    • Jade Jade says:

      Me too Missie! I think what bother me most about it is that they were such easy things to incorporate. I don’t think it would have taken too much more effort to make sure these important aspects made it into the movie.

      I still wonder at the reasons why they changed Haymitch so much.

  3. Alysia says:

    I agree 100% on every single point you mentioned and a few more. Why are the people in District 12 so healthy and well feed. Starvation is suppose to be the number one killer in that District. That is important because when they get on the train and she the food they eat all the time. What about the stew? I loved the movie only because I loved the book. Three books and you are committed to the characters in all form. Great post!

    • Jade Jade says:

      Yeah. I don’t know why they chose to overlook aspects of the book that could have easily been fitted into the film. But you’re right, after three books, you’re dedicated. And I know I am because the last books was kind of a disappointment for me.

  4. Jess says:

    Wow, I think I was bothered by all of the things you were ! I really wish they had explained the pin, or else you don’t understand what it represents. I was also really bothered by the lack of depth to the complex relationship between Katniss and Peeta.

    I also think they could have given Cinna a little more screen time and explained who he was.

    Overall I thought the movie was pretty good, it was filled with so much tension.

    Jess
    Books and Sensibility

    • Jade Jade says:

      I agree on all of your points. I wanted Cinna to have more screen time as well. he was really an anchor and a symbol of hope for Katniss and that wasn’t expressed as thoroughly as it could have been.

  5. YES!! Like you did, I LOVED this movie so much overall even though I wished that some parts that had been excluded weren’t excluded. Like Haymitch’s drunkenness — my cousin and I were waiting for him to fall off that stage in the beginning LOL so we were so disappointed when he didn’t! x) And I’m pretty sure that if I hadn’t read the books, I wouldn’t have understood the depth and awesomeness of Katniss and Peeta’s relationship too!

    Jennifer Lawrence was definitely a fantastic Katniss though — much more than I thought she would be! Effie had to be one of my favourite characters to watch though because she was so hilariously funny! x)

    But even though that DOES seem like a lot, I completely agree that this was still one of the best book to movie adaptations out there! 😉 Although I have to admit that I probably wouldn’t have minded if the movie was a little longer if they included some of that stuff in there too!

    Amazing movie review, Jade! I’m really happy that you loved it as much as I did, even with those quirks! <3

    • Jade Jade says:

      Me too! I don’t understand why they didn’t portray Haymitch as he was. I want to think because they were trying to curtail his behavior for younger movie goers. But I also assume even the younger watchers have probably read the book and would therefore be prepared for it. I don’t know. He just wasn’t the Haymitch I loved in the books.

  6. I promised so many friends that I would see it with them so I will be returning to see it again for sure.

    I really didn’t care about most of the differences. But I did want to see and feel Peeta more. It was all about Katniss and that’s fine, but their complex relationship is integral to this trilogy and I am a bit concerned about how they will get this right.

    You know I’ve already commented on Haymitch’s sober behavior in the movie. I was a bit disappointed. Haymitch is a drunk….a big drunk…the ultimate drunk. I have no idea why they didn’t get that right.

    Honestly, my only problems have to do with my favorite parts of the books. For me the relationship between Katniss, Peeta, and Haymitch really did it for me. It was so complex but so sweet. I want to see that in the later movies but I fear they didn’t quite set it up for that relationship to be successful.

    • Jade Jade says:

      Me too Alexis. I’m due to go with my sister and another cousin. I tired to get my sis to read it but she’s not a reader.

      And you are dead right about the Peeta/Katniss relationship. They needed to focus on it a bit more so it will be easier to develop in the later movies and people will “Get” it.

  7. I kept waiting for the bread from Rue’s district too.

    I went to the movie with Mr. Whimsy (who hasn’t read the books) and he promises me he gets the importance and vibe between Gale and Katniss. So despite his lack of scenes, I think his role translated well.

    I’m so with you! We need more Peeta. Their relationship just isn’t translating over enough. *fingers crossed* for the next film or maybe some deleted scenes on the DVD version.

  8. okaaayyy, I have not read or seen the movie. Is that being a bad girl, (slap on hand) the first book i won in 2012 blog givaway was ‘the hunger games’. the movie: i can see any movie any time FREE. business deal, lol. and I havent went yet, why? me don’t know. I’m really not a dytopia reader although I will seek out the movies. lol. so I will go see the movie soon and I’m going to read the novel too. I’m thinking I will enjoy it. My sis gave the movie a 2.5. she hated the ending. I must find how what did she not like about it when we gather this weekend.
    glad you enjoy the novel and the movie despite the differences.

  9. I’m glad you liked it! I watched it on Saturday afternoon – trying to avoid the crowds – and I loved it. It’s not as good as the book of course, but it’s a faithful adaptation that I thoroughly enjoyed seeing on screen. I think that Katniss’ relationship with Peeta and Rue was lacking, but at the same time I feel like they did a great job translating the book and not wasting the time they had. Foxface wasn’t nearly as quick and quiet as she’s described in the book I expected her to be doing backflips or something, not slowly hopping around landmines. Even though I know how the scene unfolds in the book, I’m surprised the kid guarding the food didn’t catch her. Oh, and seeing Peeta painted into the ground was amazing! I was looking forward to seeing that and I wasn’t disappointed.

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