The odds may not be in ‘The Hunger Games’ favor

By on December 10, 2015

An era has come to an end for many people this fall. The final “Hunger Games” film has been released and the “Mockingjay” has flown its final day.

The novels written by Suzanne Collins and films directed by Gary Ross and Francis Lawrence have been admired by thousands of readers since the release of the first novel in 2008. The latest and final film made just over $102 million in its opening weekend, according to Box Office Mojo. The film was released in 4,175 theaters and ranked No. 1 in the box offices.

Any movie-goer can give his or her biased review of this box office phenomenon, but one aspect frequently neglected in reviews is the technical side of a film.

If you were to search the hashtag “HungerGames,” you will discover dozens of opinionated comments on the plot of the film. One tweet composed by
@Fame_vs__Famous poses a very serious inquiry; “RT for Katniss and Peeta. LIKE for Katniss and Gale,” it reads.

In a world so advanced in filmmaking technology, it is hard to believe that so many people neglect the craft behind these films they so critically judge. While films may often depict the contents of a novel in a different way than the reader envisioned, there is no denying that the outcome of a director’s vision and a filmmaker’s hard work produces a creative, effective outlet for the viewer to enjoy and experience a story.

Warning: spoilers ahead.

Many scenes in the newly released “Mockingjay: Part 2” differ slightly from Collins’ original depiction of them. For example, the scene where Katniss’ unit is faced with the Capitol’s mutts in the sewers was not entirely true to the text, yet still manages to build suspense, show great technical detail, portray emotion and action, and ultimately (SPOILER) kill off a beloved character. No matter what shape the filmmakers chose to format the mutts in, the film and the text both convey the same message and evoke the same emotions.

Despite the effectiveness of this filmmaking, not everyone is pleased. The filmmakers are ridiculed for their alterations to the beloved story, according to a review of the film by avclub.com.

“Monolithic in its moroseness, Mockingjay—Part 2 bleaches some of the color (literal and figurative) out of Collins’ world,” it states. While this may be considered a criticism, at least it isn’t another debate over which guy Katniss looks better with.

Sophomore Film, Television and Media major Matt Kravitsky feels the way the film was made will not affect a fan’s perception of the product.

“I don’t think it matters how well the movie comes out, people who read the Hunger Games books are going to like them no matter what,” Kravitsky said.

While Kravitsky’s faith in the “Hunger Games” fan base is admirable, it may not be valid. The long awaited conclusion of this beloved trilogy was less than satisfactory, according to The Atlantic.

“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay—Part 2 is the least enjoyable of the films by a considerable margin, a dull, grim, slow-moving slog,” it reads.

While many fans will continue to defend the films out of devotion to the brand, there will always be those who are quick to criticize and be more than eager to tell it how they see it.

The Atlantic also has no hesitation when criticizing the story’s plot.

“This storyline, lifted straight from the novel—the apparent idea having been that each volume of the trilogy must have its own Hunger Games of one sort or another—is decidedly ridiculous,” it says.

These criticisms prove the objectivity in mediums such as film and novels. While thousands of reviews are positive, there will inevitably be a slew of negative ones thrown in the mix. Clearly, you can’t please everyone, so why base your opinions off of anyone else’s? Read a book or see a movie and make your own review; you be the critic.

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About Madison Fraitag

Creative Director
Film, Television and Media Major
Class of 2019