Directed by Gary Ross

Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson,StanleyTucci, Woody Harrelson

The Hunger Games whisks Katniss (Lawrence) and Peta (Hutcherson) from the undeveloped District 12 to the Capitol where they are two of twenty four “tributes” in a fight to the death, last one standing, televised event. With her mother and sister reliant on her back home, Katniss must to survive gangs of trained killers and an unforgiving environment while being forced to provide entertainment for the entire country in order to return.

Before I start, I need to explain. This film has given me the worst cinema-going experience I have ever had. Starting 3 seats to my right, a group of young women were so drunk one of them threw up on herself four times. This spanned around 45 minutes and was somewhat frustrating, disgusting and distracting. I feel this may influence what I write next.

I’ve read The Hunger Games and I enjoyed it so much that I swiftly read the two sequels, so heading in to the film I knew the plot and I was looking forward to seeing it realised on-screen. Unfortunately somewhere, somehow, the story was lost in translation. The film is a muddle, overlong and slow while skimming through the story without many details. Many of the characters suffer through this poor use of story editing – Gale, integral to Katniss, is left floundering; Cinna appears more interested in flirting with Katniss rather than subliminally undermining the Capitol and Toby Jones as Claudius Templesmith has at most two lines on screen – all of this I feel was a waste. On the plus side, Jennifer Lawrence embodies Katniss’ strength and resilience alongside Josh Hutcherson’s Peta, but ultimately it’s not enough to cover the flaws in the story.

If you like this then maybe try:

 

Battle Royale (class of school children left on an island with the last survivor winning freedom. Bloody and brutal), The Running Man (The Hunger Games with Arnie in full one-liner mode)