My Review: The Hunger Games

Photo: Chris White
The Hunger Games, based on the first book in Suzanne Collins' hit series, was a highly anticipated movie way before it was released. Let me say that it didn't disappoint! The film grossed over $68 million in its first day and a total of $155 million domestically ($214 million worldwide) for its opening weekend.

I probably don't have to say too much about this film because many of you have probably either read the book or seen the movie already but here's my review.

What To Know

Stars: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Stanley Tucci, Woody Harrelson, Lenny Kravitz

Director: Gary Ross

Writers: Gary Ross and Billy Ray (Screenplay), Suzanne Collins (Screenplay/Novel)

Rating: PG-13 for intense violent thematic material and disturbing images. Parents Guide

Plot: Drought, fire, famine, and war have all contributed to the collapse of what we all knew as North America. In its place is a nation called Panem, divided into the Capitol and 12 districts. Each year, one boy and one girl representative ("tribute") are selected from each district to compete in the Hunger Games, which are broadcasted throughout the nation. The Games are a literal fight to the death as, one by one, tributes kill each other with the lone victor winning fame and fortune for his or her district.

When 16-year-old Katniss Everdeen's young sister, Prim, is selected as the mining district's female tribute, Katniss volunteers to take her place. She and her male counterpart, Peeta Mellark, will be pitted against bigger, stronger tributes who have trained for this their whole lives. The plot takes us through a journey to find out if both Katniss and Peeta survive or fall victim to these brutal games.

Family Friendly?  Not exactly. The main thing is there are multiple scenes of intense action and violence, all directed toward kids and teens. There's also some scary scenes for younger kids as well as alcohol references and a few curse words intermingled throughout. I would say kids who are at least 8 or 9 could see this movie but no younger than that.

Should You See It? Definitely! The film keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout and doesn't stray away from the foundations of the book, which many book adaption films seem to do. On the technical side, the way the movie is filmed is pure genius. The camera angles (especially those showing a first person viewpoint) put you right in the middle of the action.

Plus, it's very unique how Collins uses violence to teach us about the dangers of violence. The book and film make us think about the violence we see on television as well as challenges us to look closer into reality television and how core values tend to get lost in those shows. I've already started on the next book and I can't wait for the next The Hunger Games film to be released!

I Give It An: A

Check Out The Trailer Here