Based on the first of a trilogy of young adult novels by American author Suzanne Collins who also co-wrote the screenplay. You can judge the pace of the movie on the notion that it was based on a 374 pages book. Directed by Gary Ross (Seabiscuit) and co-written with him, Collins and Billy Ray. Not surprised the film grossed majorly in the US as the novels are very popular with teenagers there. This is the only factor that is leading to the Twilight movies' financial successes. The sci-fi film did have enough resourcefulness to double its production cost but I'm surprised it made so much.
Sure, it has its pros. The story is OK and reminds me of common low-budget action movies. The story takes place in a dystopian post-apocalyptic future in the fictional nation of Panem. Here, 12 girls and 12 boys must participate in an annual televised event which is a fight to the death with only one survivor remaining.
Major critisism has been based on the plot where it has been closely linked to the Japanese novel Battle Royale and its film adaption. Nevertheless, Collins novel and film has also been granted the right of being based on other worldly and original aspects with survival of the fittest reigning supreme. Hunger Games, although seemingly unrealistic, is based on human politics and how emotions react to them in the whole of the country. Discrimination between the rich and poor is widely discussed. Characters were strongly developed and the lead played by Jennifer Lawrence (X-Men: First Class) was the best performance of all. She could be America's next Jessica Alba (with talent). The ending is also unpredictable given the predictable nature of the storyline.
Cast also includes Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Josh Hutcherson, Woody Harrelson, Lenny Kravitz and Donald Sutherland. Below is writer Suzanne Collins:
However, there are many cons. First of all the plot pace is too slow. This has been a common negative of most official critics and an unofficial critic - that is me. This flick could've easily been 1 hour and 50 minutes long. But its 2h: 22m duration does push away viewers. The starting is very dull and it really kicks off after the first half-hour. Instead of focusing on the tedious and obvious themes of the games, it would of been better if dramatic areas were showcased more effectively.
Overall, The Hunger Games is a great movie but not an awesome one. Maybe not the best of all time but a must-watch of the year. Teenagers who loved Harry Potter might not like this as it has a more grittier tone. Violent scenes involving children does more than justify its PG - 13 rating. My fingers are crossed for the sequel.
Rotten Tomatoes: 85%.