Movie Seventy Six
Chances are you have already heard/read/seen an obscene amount of things about The Hunger Games at this point, so my review will likely not sway you one way or the other. However, for a film based on a young adult book, it makes for quite an effective showing.
I read entire Hunger Games trilogy after they announced this first film but casting wasn’t announced until I was midway through the second book. This allowed me to form an undisturbed blueprint of the world of Panem and the characters. The film scores highly based on the casting. Jennifer Lawrence, while not exactly how I imagined Katniss is simply divine. The supporting cast all does a good job as well, with my personal favorite being Stanley Tucci.
If I had one gripe about The Hunger Games, and it’s a big gripe, it’s the cinematography. Tom Stern has worked with Clint Eastwood on pretty much all of his movies since Blood Work but for some reason on this film, he decided to employ a shakycam footage that is more distracting than most found-footage movies. While I could defend such a decision for the second half of the film during the actual Hunger Games, but it is the entire damn thing. Constantly. There were some action sequences where the use of shakycam and fast cuts completely disorients.
The cinematography was so annoying I came out of the theater practically hating The Hunger Games, but after a few days to mull it over, the rest of the film supersedes this. The second book, Catching Fire, was my personal favorite of the three, so I’m quite looking forward to more of the series. In a world where there will be no more Harry Potter films (at least until they decide to reboot them) The Hunger Games fills a place that few films can.
I give it 4 ridiculous Peeta camouflaged as a rocks out of 5.
PS – Seriously, when Peeta camouflages himself as a rock it’s the most hilariously out of place thing I’ve seen in quite some time.