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The Milton Measure

The Hunger Games: Mixed Reviews

by Olivia Atwood on Friday, April 20th, 2012

Johanna Ebers (II) and Adam Basri (II) check out the Hunger Games (Grace Li/TMM)

The Hunger Games has exploded. The movie version made $152.5 million in it’s first week in theaters, which completely destroys Twilight, standing at a mere $70.6 million in its first week.

I myself am completely enamored by everything Hunger Games. I loved the books, and I like to claim that I discovered author Suzanne Collin’s first, way back when I pored over the vastly underappreciated Gregor the Overlander books.

I thought the movie was fantastic. It set the perfect tone from the first minute, without being too gratuitous or overwrought. The hushed children in the streets; the vibrant, haunting Capitol; the careful limitation on dialog; and the balance between the heart-wrenching drama and the love triangle made the movie easily one of my favorites.

However, many across America disagree. Whether it is because the movie skated over Katniss’ deep musings or because director Gary Ross skimped on the back-stories of the other tributes, film reviewers and parents of fans have been critical. Richard Corliss, of Time magazine, said pointedly in his review, “If they made books out of movies, this Hunger Games would never see print” (entertainment.time.com).
Views are conflicted. Some parents desperately shield their children from watching the deaths of young tributes in the film, while other fans complain that the film shys away from the murders, withholding details (the film does in fact cut away at the last second for the particularly gory deaths).

I can understand the reservations of some parents: I myself almost needed to be removed from the theater when a certain little one died. It was waterworks and loud, body shaking sobs that I didn’t even know I was capable of producing. But I take issue if those overly critical parents allow their children to battle Nazi Zombies in a video game or cart around Air soft guns like sippy cups.

Yet, regardless of opinion, one cannot deny that the Hunger Games is worth watching. Don’t get too caught up in the political side of it or exclaim like one shall-remain-nameless-student that Katniss and Peeta’s garments should have been more “on fire.” Those fed-up-with-the-Hunger-Games folks can cross their fingers for more dramatic fire when the sequel Catching Fire takes the big screen November of next year. I’ll be counting the days to the sequel, hungry for more.

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Posted by Olivia Atwood on Apr 20 2012. Filed under Arts & Entertainment. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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