Tuesday, April 03, 2012

The Hunger Games - Possible Spoilers

Saw the movie, didn't read the book. Downloaded it, though. Does that count? In any event, to the movie - never came out of a theater with a greater desire to chase down the weak in the parking lot and end them...

Of course, I didn't act on that. For one thing, I'm slow of foot. For another, I'm pretty weak myself. (All the more reason to strike first, I suppose...) Finally, I'm too lazy to chase anyone unless it's my daughter heading for the street. Didn't take her to the movie.

Overall, I liked the film. The central character (Katniss?) is appealing (fights on behalf of others, wants to do what's right, etc.) but if there is a flaw in the story (and I've no idea if this carries over from the book) it is the villains. There aren't any. Plenty of killing, but no one is bad. There's Donald Sutherland, but he's a bit more smarmy than outright evil, no? A touch of Machivelli, but no more than I'd expect from anyone in politics. There was a guy in a funny beard - couldn't figure out what his role was at all.

And there was a blond kid from District One - Thor? Vlad? I don't remember. Anyway, he was nasty, but I've seen much worse when I was in high school. In the end, he seemed to have gone nuts anyway, so clearly he's an object of pity.

In any event, this version of "The Lottery" was... wait. Sorry. The Hunger Games. Right, this version was strange because there didn't seem to be a backstory either. Why, exactly, were people willing to sacrifice their children? (And who thought sending 12 year olds to fight against 18 year olds would be a good idea?) I mean, I couldn't figure out why Katniss didn't take Prim and her mom and head out into the wilderness. I sure as Hell would. And I don't have a bow. Heck, I don't even have a string. No survival skills whatsoever. When lost in the wilderness, my first instinct is to check my pockets for change for the candy machine whenever I stumble across it.

Not to say something like this couldn't happen - the Romans and the Greeks (and plenty of other cultures) have enjoyed death matches with victims culled from the provinces. I just wish there had been more of an explanation of how the USA got to that point - there was a rebellion and a treaty and this is what they came up with? Wow. I'm thinking there were about a dozen negotiators who fell asleep at the wheel.


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