For most the world, March 23, 2012 had been highlighted in the calendar for several weeks: the first film of The Hunger Games trilogy hit cinemas. Given the worldwide success these novels have had, it’s unsurprising that fans are so hungry for the movie’s release. In fact, box-office forecasters had predicted that the movie has a strong shot at shattering the record March debut of $116.1 million debut for 2010’s Alice in Wonderland. However for the small minority who haven’t read Suzanne Collins’ novels and is wondering what all the hype surrounding this film is about and whether it’s worth the trip to the theater, we’ve compiled 5 things you should know to help you better make your decision about whether or not the film is worth a watch:
1) There is action and violence
Without giving away the story, Hunger Games is based on the “fight till death”. Be prepared to witness various dangers including mutated beasts, video game-style traps, and of course 20+ young combatants looking to murder one another. If you’re worried that the movie’s duration of 142 minutes will put you to sleep, there are plenty of thrills and chills to be had.
2) There’s no soapy “Twilight” romantic stuff
Although the trailers may suggest that main characters Gale & Peeta would emulate the love triangle in The Twilight Saga, such an assumption is erroneous. There is no space for time or energy to be wasted on sappy love stories: once the games begin, the characters’ only concern is keeping him/herself alive.
3) It’s not just a clone of that film you saw before
Sure there are obvious shades of influence all over Suzanne Collins’ work, but the fact is that Collins succeeded in creating her own unique characters, narrative and thematic angles. While The Hunger Games does intersect with other, similar stories at certain points, it is also more modern and topical than any previously made movies.
4) Director Gary Ross has skills
Although his name isn’t one you’re immediately familiar with, critics can confirm that the man has definite skill. The Hunger Games is only the 3rd feature film which he’s directed but his other 2 entries on the list (Pleasantville & Seabiscuit) both received multiple Oscan nominations. While most movies which are based on books are said to undermine the novel, such is the opposite with The Hunger Games: more than just translate the book to screen intact, he’s said to have improved upon it in some ways.
5) The cast has skills too
Even though The Hunger Games is filled with fresh faces, don’t assume they aren’t seasoned enough to deliver a compelling movie. In terms of acting talent, The Hunger Games is far from amateur hour.
Will you be catching The Hunger Games on screen?