MOVIE REVIEW: ‘The Hunger Games’ leaves viewers unsatisfied

Sara Kozlowski

The moment all Hunger Games fans have been waiting for has finally arrived… only to be slightly disappointed. The first book of the trilogy had a lot of potential to be turned into an incredible movie. Yet this potential seemed to go to waste. The film tended to be slow-moving at parts that should not have been lengthy and at the same time, the movie rushed other aspects of the story that should have been allotted more concentration. Despite this, the movie was well-acted, and remained true to the story, but true “Hunger Games” fans may be left with mixed feelings.

“The Hunger Games” was mostly mediocre. However, the director should get a lot of credit for sticking to the plotline and personalities of the characters. The depiction of the Capitol and the little details of a character’s physical appearance and personality definitely made the story come to life. I found it surprising how much detail of the books was included in the film. Few parts of the book were left out, but these parts were not crucial to the story. For example, the origin of the Mockingjay pin is altered in the movie, but the director still maintained the symbolism and the importance of the pin.

The movie also did a good job showing the mother’s emotional detachment from the family, but fails to succeed in getting the viewers to understand why she was like that. Katniss briefly mentions the father dying, but the cause of his death is never mentioned. Although the death of Katniss’s father is not crucially important to the actual Games itself, it is, however, very important for character development of not only Katniss, but her mother, sister and Gale.

Later on in the film, the romance between Katniss and Peeta was incredibly downplayed and seemingly non-existent. The viewer would not have gotten the sense that Peeta was madly in love with Katniss at all. The romantic aspect of the book was almost entirely left out of the movie. For any casual viewer who had not read the series, it would not have been clear that Peeta loved Katniss and always did. Their relationship was played off as purely a tactic to acquire more sponsors to excel in the games. This is a majorly inaccurate portrayal since, by the end of the first book, it is pretty much confirmed that Peeta had always loved Katniss and it was never an act.

Quite possibly the greatest issue with this movie was that it would have been difficult to follow if the books were not read beforehand. A lot of very crucial explanations were often only briefly explained. These short explanations could have been easily missed and would have left the audience extremely confused. However, the movie did do an excellent job setting up for the on-screen version of the following two books. Even though I was slightly disappointed with the first movie of the trilogy, the film is still worthy to see in theatres.