23 March 2012

23 Mar- "Whatever you do don't let them starve"

The Hunger Games (2012)
dir. Gary Ross - Pleasantville (1998)

Stanley Tucci - Easy A (2010)
Wes Bentley - American Beauty (1999)
Jennifer Lawrence - The Burning Plain (2008)
Elizabeth Banks - Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008)
Sandra Ellis Lafferty - Walk the Line (2005)
Paula Malcomson - The Green Mile (1999)
Rhoda Griffis - Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (1997)
Josh Hutcherson - Howl's Moving Castle, voice (2004)
Anthony Reynolds - Down in the Valley (2005)
Woody Harrelson - Zombieland (2009)
Toby Jones - Les Miserables (1998)
Lenny Kravitz - Precious (2009)
Donald Sutherland - Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992)

Of course, everyone who's anyone who gives a shit has already seen The Hunger Games, but I was there on opening night, in the fifth row, craning my neck upwards to watch the story unfold. I liked it, I enjoyed it. I thought it was visually appealing, but I also think it could have been better. Here's why:

1) Adaption of a book based on a first person perspective
The book is told from Katniss's perspective, and the readers are limited in our understanding of her world by her physical limitations. For this reason, we can't really understand what goes on in the minds of the other tributes, for example, and we can't see the reactions of the audience in Panem. The medium of film is almost always in third person perspective (with the exception of found-footage based movies). That means we lose Katniss's inner dialogue, which is tough because she isn't a very verbal character, but it also means we are able to see a lot of the world than Katniss is. I don't think the filmmakers took advantage of that strength. The other tributes were irritatingly flat characters. In the book five out of the twelve were portrayed largely as mindless killers, but that doesn't mean the filmmakers couldn't show them as being more rounded out. Which brings me to the next point.

2) Uncreative storyboarding
The point of the Hunger Games is that they are televised for the people of Panem. Since the book was from Katniss's perspective, we didn't get to see how she was portrayed on film. But this time it's in a movie and we are the audience. I would have liked to see some more creative changes in perspective that could drawn the audience into the story-world and potentially make the movie a lot more meaningful. After all, it's supposed to be a critique of the brutality of watching other people suffer. Let's make the audience feel a little less safe and a little more culpable.

3) Josh Hutcherson
How about we just get one of those big Easter Island heads to play Peeta?

1 comment:

  1. Haha, didn't like Peeta? I thought he was ok if a bit annoying at times. I have never read the books but I thought the movie was interesting. I kind of wish they had delved more into the background of the world and the politics behind it. But that's just personal preference I think...