The Hunger Games
Director: Gary Ross
Writer: Gary Ross, Suzanne Collins, Billy Ray
Based on: Suzanne Collins’ novel
Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Stanley Tucci, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Donald Sutherland, Wes Bentley, Toby Jones, Lenny Kravitz, Amandla Stenberg
[Here's my first review.]
The USA don’t exist anymore. In its place are 12 districts and the Capitol that has the districts under its thumb. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) lives in district 12, where at 16 she’s basically taking care of her mother (Paula Malcomson) and sister Prim (Willow Shields). Which means that she breaks the laws daily to go hunting with her best friend Gale (Liam Hemsworth). But Katniss’ life changes radically when the kids for the Hunger Games of that year are reaped. In the Hunger Games every year 24 kids, 2 more or less randomly chosen from each districts, are pitted against each other in a battle to the death until only one remains standing. And in this year 12-year-old Prim is chosen. In desperation Katniss volunteers to take Prim’s place. And so Katniss travels to the Capitol together with Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) the baker’s son – to certain death for at least one of them.
Despite actually getting the story for the third time, I was completely into it again and it made me cry. Again.
The second time around I definitely liked the movie even more than the first time. Probably because my having read the book is further away so I didn’t compare them that much. That meant that I didn’t mind the rather more subdued Capitol as much anymore (though I was still let down by the mutts).
Instead of comparing, I was completely busy with the characters. If possible, I like Peeta and Katniss even more this time and I even have some newfound respect for Effie. And I absolutely cried my eyes out during most of the film. Especially Rue’s subplot hit me harder this time.
The camera work didn’t get any better, but somehow I didn’t mind so much anymore. Probably because I didn’t see it in the cinema. On a smaller scale, shaky cam is much more bearable, even if it still isn’t great.
But I’ll gladly watch this film again and again. Maybe when part 3 comes out, I’ll catch it in the cinema again. It’s just a wonderfully engaging piece of cinema.