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Hello! I am an Author who just published my first novel My Life With The Movie Star. I also write a weekly blog for patch.com and have blogged for CNN iReports.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Girl Was on Fire! The Hunger Games Review

After months of anticipations, teaser trailers, and online posts, The Hunger Games finally opened last night at midnight! The Hunger games has been one of the most anticipated movies of 2012 and early reviews indicate director (Gary Ross)is giving audiences exactly what they were hoping for!

Lines for the movie started early on Thursday night. The crowds were all on the edge of their picnic blankets waiting for the doors to finally open and be allowed into the theater. I was surprised to see how many teenage boys were dressed up like their favorite male tribute. Excitement was in the air as people discussed what to expect. What would the capital city look like? Would it be as outrageous as portrayed in the novel by Suzanne Collins? What will the arena be like? Will Katniss still have similar traps, and struggles as in the novel? The teaser trailers did seem to show a few differences from the novel and most people I spoke in line hoped that the screenplay would follow the story line closely.

After seeing the film, I can say I was truly amazed. I only regret that I have to wait until November 2013 to see the next film in the series, Catching Fire, to be released. With (Suzanne Collins) as one of the primary screenplay writers along with director (Gary Ross), the integrity of The Hunger Games was kept intact and was one of the best book to screen adaptations I have seen.

If you’re unfamiliar with the story, The Hunger Games is set in a post-apocalyptic North American continent now named Panem. The continent has been divided into 12 districts and is ruled by an unforgiving government. Most of the districts are extremely poor and are forced to depend on the Capital for enough food and supplies needed for basic survival. Each year two tributes from each district one boy and one girl ages 12-18 are forced compete in yearly a fight -to –the-death competition/ reality show called The Hunger Games. This reality show has been going on for 74 years as a form of punishment for a district rebellion which almost over through the capital government. The heroine of the series is Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), volunteers to be tribute after her 12 year old sister’s name was drawn in the tribute lottery. Katniss must use her hunting abilities (taught to her by her father before his death in a district mining accident) as her edge to fight on in the games.

As previously stated, the movie went far beyond my expectations and was followed the novel with close accuracy. The District 12 set was as depressing and left you with a true sense of despair, the capital was both fantastic and deadly as portrayed in the book, and was where most of the movies’ best special affects occurred, taking the audience to the edge of their seats. A good portion of the cinematography was hand held and left you with a feeling of uneasiness and while a few of the shots towards the end looked more like green screens, the strong story line did not allow for much distraction.
Each cast member was perfectly selected to play their role. The three primary actors Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen, Liam Hemsworth as Gale Hawthorne, Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Mellark are sure to catapult to superstar status after the success of The Hunger Games.

It was especially enjoyable to watch seasoned actors lend their talents to the film including Elizabeth Banks as Effie Trinket Katniss and Peeta’s chaperone and etiquette coach, Stanly Tucci as Caesar Flickerman the charismatic host of The Hunger Games, and Woody Harrelson as Katniss and Peeta’s mentor, Haymitch Abernathy. Lenny Kravitz also plays a short but memorable role of Cinna the Stylist assigned to Katniss and Peeta, preparing them for appearances prior to the games.

Whether you are fan of the novels or enjoying the story for the first time, The Hunger Games is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat in anticipation, hoping that Katniss and Peeta can get out of the arena alive with each other.

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