Monday, March 26, 2012

My Favorite Moments in The Hunger Games- A Mini Movie Review

Suffice to say I loved The Hunger Games movie. Really, everyone I’ve spoken to has loved it. I thought the casting was dead on, it didn’t stray too far from the book, the writing was perfect, the cinematography was great and it was just as brutal as it needed to be without overdosing on the violence.

I was thinking of writing up an in-depth review—we’re talking parts here, people—but decided to share my top ten moments and my very few complaints instead.

Top Ten Moments in The Hunger Games

1) Effie Trinket’s outraged and scandalized exclamation of “manners!” to Katniss after she attacked Peeta following the Flickerman interview. I could actually put “Any seen with Effie Trinket” here and it’d be true. Elizabeth Banks did an amazing job bringing those favoring odds to District 12

2) The first glimpse of the capitol. Like Peeta, I couldn’t wait to see where the people of the capitol call home. It looks like utopia amplified after seeing what Katniss and Peeta call home. Watching at they explore it further, peeling back layers of their gluttony is incredible.

3) Haymitch’s reaction to the capitol child getting a sword. It’s not the most powerful scene you’ll see but it’s one of them. It bastardizes everything the Districts are forced to go through and puts it into the eyes of the clueless capitol people. As the boy chases the girl around with the sword and Haymitch watches while probably re-living the horrors his hand has committed is so emotional. It also shows the viewer how the games have been reduced to child’s play in the capitol’s eyes even though it is children brutally murdering children.

4) The premiere of The Girl on Fire. As Katniss and Peeta rode out on their gold chariot behind the 22 teens they were going to end up killing, it was one of the most glorious things I’d ever seen. The fire effects were amazing and it made my jaw drop. I was especially happy because I wasn’t too impressed with the pictures of their outfits released.

5) The memory of The Boy with the Bread. I have to admit that it wasn’t how I imagined it but that wasn’t a problem. I loved how this memory was flashed at different times. It worked so well when Peeta was first introduced and I like how the director used it to show us how Katniss felt about Peeta. Even when she was angry at him, that scene would flash.

6) The gamekeeper’s room and equipment. This was an addition I could really get into. Seeing the behind the scenes of the games, how each control person could, with the touch of a finger, inflict a fresh new terror on the tributes was awesome.

7) The tracker jackers introduction and attack. I love how the movie introduced tracker jackers to the audience for those movie goers who haven’t read the book yet. Caesar explaining their side effects while the wasp is on screen in the back was amazing. Even better was watching those effects take place on Katniss and the unsuspecting Glimmer.

8) The cave scenes. We didn’t get to see too much of Peeta and Katniss together so these scenes were really vital. I thought Hutcherson did an awesome job of showing how much his character cared for Katniss and Lawrence did an equally good job of showing that the love was mostly one-sided. Plus, the scene with them lying side by side will be important in the next novel and Hutcherson gave me goose bumps as he tried to confess how he regrets throwing her the bread instead of handing it over.

9) Katniss shooting the apple. This is the first scene where we got to see the fire raging through her. Equal parts funny and fierce, it definitely left an impression on me!

10) The District 11 Riots. I didn’t tear up when Rue died and Katniss adorned her with flowers. But what got me was her districts reaction to her death. As Katniss saluted them and they saluted her back, it was absolutely the most powerful scene in the movie. Seeing the district rebel was horrifying and liberating in equal parts and I couldn’t turn my face away. It still gives me goose bumps thinking about it.

Those are some of my favorite things though there were countless other moments to love. This really was a well made movie and I have very few complaints. In fact, I can only think of two:

President Snow- I thought that Donald Sutherland understood what Snow was about. I read an interview with him talking about his preparation for the role and I really liked what he had to say. But I just wasn’t scared of him and I desperately wanted to be. Especially since I consider Snow as one of the scariest villains of all time. I just felt that Sutherland looked like Santa Claus which made him not very scary.

Katniss and Rue- I really liked their relationship, the short time it was on screen. I just wish they’d had a few more minutes with each other. Their time together was too brief and I wanted just a bit more to feel a connection to them. It made Rue’s death a little numb to me since I didn’t have enough to them to latch on to.

So overall, I’m very much a fan of this movie and plan on seeing it again soon. I’ve heard some complaints with the camera shakiness which I can understand. When I go back, I’ll be looking to see if it bothers me. As of now, I’m under the opinion that it dulled some of the violence and therefore was necessary but I’ll leave my final judgment for the second viewing.

What did you think? What were some of your favorite parts? Did you have any major complaints?


  1. I thought Snow looked like Santa Claus, too! :D Not scary at all.
    And Peeta did a little too much 'staring with gaping mouth'
    But otherwise it was a good movie.

  2. Great movie review Amber, I loved the capitol scenes and Effie as well. I also loved Peeta's interview, I thought that was really good. I wasn't a huuuge fan of Haymitch, I think they toned him down a bit too much, and Peeta and Katniss' relationship was a bit too simplistic and the ending a bit toooo quick...but all in all I really enjoyed it.

    The Cait Files

  3. I loved the addition of Haymitch watching the kid's play, it was a nice touch. Also loved the gamemakers scenes. I agree, Katniss and Rue needed more screen time together! But it was a great adaptation.

  4. I've seen it twice now and the District 11 rioting bit got me both times. That was such a good glimpse at what's to come in Catching Fire.

    I also agree about Snow looking like Santa. Although I think that last shot of him when he was walking out of the Gamemakers room at the end sort of gave me the impression that he was pissed off.

    I can't wait to see it again haha. And I'm already super pumped for Catching Fire to be done. Hurry up 2013!!

  5. Peeta was so amazed by the Capitol. he was such an amazing character and so innocent!

    I was practically crying of pride when they came out on fire :)

    I loved the part when Katniss gave her sign and then district 11 rioted.

    My most fave part though is when Katniss told Peeta the berries were Nightlock and she was so glad he's not dead.
    here's my review:

    I will see this again and corrupt my friends into loving it!

  6. My absolute favorite part of this movie had to be them coming out in the parade on fire. This was one scene I was worried about I hoped that it would turn out well and wow did it.

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