Friday, 23 March 2012

Film Review: "The Hunger Games" (2012)

"May the odds be ever in your favor." This famous quote finally comes to the big screen in The Hunger Games. This science fiction action-drama film directed by Gary Ross and based on the novel of the same name by Suzanne Collins. The film focuses on sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives in a post-apocalyptic world in the country of Panem where the countries of North America once existed. The Capitol, a highly advanced metropolis, holds absolute power over the rest of the nation. The Hunger Games are an annual event in which one boy and one girl aged 12 to 18 from each of the 12 districts surrounding the Capitol are selected by lottery to compete in a televised battle in which only one person can survive.

Development of The Hunger Games began in March 2009 when Lions Gate Entertainment entered into a co-production agreement with Color Force, which had acquired the rights a few weeks earlier. Collins collaborated with Ray and Ross to write the screenplay. The screenplay expanded the character of Seneca Crane to allow several developments to be shown directly to the audience and Ross added several scenes between Crane and Coriolanus Snow. The main characters were cast between March and May 2011. Principal photography began in May 2011 and ended in September 2011, and filming took place in North Carolina.

It stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Elizabeth Banks, Liam Hemsworth, and Woody Harrelson. The cast gave superb performances, especially Lawrence. Lawrence's performance was superb, it is most certainly better than Kirsten Stewart's performance in the Twilight series. Lawrence was perfect as Katniss, there is very little softness about her, more a melancholy determination that good must be done even if that requires bad things. She has finally become a major box office star! She first officially became an actress with the film The Winter's Bone (2010), which earned her an Academy Award nomination. Not bad for a now rising artist. For Hutcherson also gave a superb performance as Peeta Mellark. He gave a atypical action-hero approach to the role and brought vulnerability to his character, which is a nice for a change. Usually it has always been the male heros saving the damsel in distress. But in this, it’s the other way round. Everybody in this film were perfectly cast, just like the cast of the Harry Potter films.

The Hunger Games isn't perfect, but, I’m sure, for fans of the books, it's a nice supplement to a book series that everybody loves. Being so faithful to the book is both the movie's strength and weakness. The movie unfolds exactly as written in the book, so there is little room for surprises or discoveries. For fans, what more can you ask for? To conclude, it’ll enthrall even the most cynical of moviegoers. The script is faithful, the actors are just right, the sets, costumes, makeup and effects match and sometimes exceed anything one could imagine. It’s off to a good start!

Simon says The Hunger Games receives:

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