Lionsgate | Release Date: March 23, 2012
7.0
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Generally favorable reviews based on 1810 Ratings
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10
MovieMan12Jun 13, 2013
Katniss forever!!! Favorite books, favorite movie. I was just oozing with excitement from watching this movie. So good and it delivered exactly what the book was.
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8
TheBadgerJun 25, 2013
I was formerly skeptical about watching this film. I first heard about it when a family member told me about the plot of the book and they made it out to be some dumb children's story. Regardless, I decided to watch this film and I wasI was formerly skeptical about watching this film. I first heard about it when a family member told me about the plot of the book and they made it out to be some dumb children's story. Regardless, I decided to watch this film and I was pleasantly surprised. Technically, this film is flawless from my recollection and the acting is superb. The only reason I can't give this film a 9 or a 10 is because it didn't really feel special and I felt they could have made this film a lot better by changing some minor plot points (which would take it away from the direction of the book but...whatever). The film also never really stuck. Despite this film being a great technical feat, when you think of great movies, you don't necessarily think of the hunger games. Expand
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4
LivingDead9812Oct 6, 2013
I really bored in this movie action scenes were boring but acting was good i cant deny that especially jennifer lawrence did an awesome job for me if you planning to enter the franchise just read the books
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10
ssnow2Dec 4, 2013
It is no wonder actress Jennifer Lawrence has won multiple awards for her performance in The Hunger Games. Based on the book written by Suzanne Collins, this film stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth. The story takesIt is no wonder actress Jennifer Lawrence has won multiple awards for her performance in The Hunger Games. Based on the book written by Suzanne Collins, this film stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth. The story takes place in a future setting in a nation known as Panem, which is divided into 12 districts and the capitol. This science fiction, adventure-filled film is bound to have the viewer on the edge of their seats.

Each year, in the nation of Panem, two young adults are selected by lottery to represent their district in "The Hunger Games", a televised fight-to-death that the rest of the citizens are required to watch. When Katniss' younger sister's name is called to represent District 12, Katniss volunteers herself in order for her sister to remain safe. The male drawn as Katniss' partner for The Hunger Games is Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson), whom she has dramatic history with. Immediately after being selected, the two are sent away to training where they must gain the proper skills to survive The Hunger Games. Given only a small amount of supplies, Katniss and Peeta are sent into the woods where they compete against the remaining 22 opponents. Katniss finds herself a nice tree, where she is able to make a small platform for her to sleep on for the night with the hopes that no one will spot her. Day after day, Katniss and Peeta must remain a team to protect each other for survival. Obstacles appear, and suddenly the game is unpredictable. Throughout the film, the audience gets an intense look as The Hunger Games play out, leaving them on edge and unsure of the end results.

The director of this film, Gary Ross, did a fabulous job of directing this film. The angles used within the film helped the audience to get a better understanding of emotion within the film. Despite the fast-paced, extreme situations that each opponent faces throughout The Hunger Games, the audience is able to feel the connections between the characters. Furthermore, the audience gets a chance to feel as if they are part of the film, finding themselves cheering on the main characters as they fight for their lives.

The set design and costumes were also done really well in this movie, as it allowed the viewer to believe this actually took place in the future. The set design was a perfect fit for this film, as a majority of the film took place outside in the woods. The set design allowed the film to bring to life the world that Suzanne Collins had created in her novels. Additionally, it was very easy for the audience to see the difference between life in District 12 and the capitol, where life in the District was poor and rural with washed out buildings, and the capitol was futuristic with modern decorations and bright colors.

This film was strategically put together, allowing for the audience to feel a sense of belonging, as though they were involved. From the very beginning to the very end, the audience is hooked, and more often than not, begging for the sequel. From the cast, to the set design, to the directing, The Hunger Games is a high quality film that is strongly recommended for any teenagers, as well as any one interested in adventure films.
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10
MissDraeMar 3, 2014
Katniss everdeen is a beacon of courage. When I first read the novel I fell in love with this series. The movie was great and so was the sequel. Amazing!
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5
ydnar4Feb 7, 2015
Extremely overrated! There was a lot of hype for this film and I can't believe that so many people were drawn in by this movie. Now we have another mediocre film series based on a novel for teenagers. The best thing about this film is that itExtremely overrated! There was a lot of hype for this film and I can't believe that so many people were drawn in by this movie. Now we have another mediocre film series based on a novel for teenagers. The best thing about this film is that it spawned the career of Jennifer Lawrence, who has shown off her chops in a lot of better films. I won't be watching another one of these films. Expand
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10
GentM2015Jun 10, 2015
The best novel based movie ever.The Hunger Games has astonishing acting and directing that makes for an unforgettable movie with an unforgettable heroin that's not what everybody would expect her to be.Amazing movie.
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8
Jk9785Feb 27, 2017
Aside from headache-inducing shaky camera techniques, The Hunger Games is a good film. Good story, good acting, decent acting, and a good setup for its far superior sequel.
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8
DMEMar 25, 2012
The Hunger Games was a great movie that never left me bored or disappointed. The story makes sense without reading the book (which I can't say for most book-to-film adaptions). There was only one weak point in this film: Lousy camera work.The Hunger Games was a great movie that never left me bored or disappointed. The story makes sense without reading the book (which I can't say for most book-to-film adaptions). There was only one weak point in this film: Lousy camera work. There were far too many face closeups and a lot of camera jerking. But, it's still watchable. And I still recommend it. Expand
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7
smijatovJul 22, 2013
While I am no fan of "The Hunger Games" books nor did I really hear about them until the film came out and I took a whole year to actually get to watch the film, I must admit it is quite good. As a matter of fact, I am quite shocked at howWhile I am no fan of "The Hunger Games" books nor did I really hear about them until the film came out and I took a whole year to actually get to watch the film, I must admit it is quite good. As a matter of fact, I am quite shocked at how good it is. In my head it was somewhat of a "Twilight" phenomenon, so I discarded it immediately. However, it was misguided. "The Hunger Games" has an interesting premise, and a rather well thought out idea. The screenplay is well written and it achieves to keep one fully immersed into the film, and provides necessary thrills throughout the entirety of the film. I was so absorbed and intensely connecting with the characters, I got acid reflux from all the tension. Oh, no, I am not joking.

Anyhow, the technicalities of the film need no discussion, really. A film with such a huge budget will make sure to clean up nicely and "The Hunger Games" is no different. The performances were, surprisingly, quite convincing and were not forced. Jennifer Lawrence is pitch-perfect as the leading lady, and all the supporting cast does a good job. I was especially stricken by the emotional connection with, and performance by the young Amandla Stenberg. It is sad we will not be seeing her in the second instalment of the series, but what can one do.

Overall, it was a real pleasure to watch this film. Not only did it deliver unexpected thrills (at least unexpected to me), but it also managed to take the audience into that dystopian world of the future. How dystopic it really is is another question to be asked, especially in light of reality television and its ever-brutal entrance into the real lives of people. Quite often with dubious ethical, moral and taste breaches that leave one baffled.
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7
ShiiraJul 2, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Rae Dolly lives in the Ozarks with an incapacitated mother and two younger siblings, a boy and a girl. Since mom is a cipher, and dad, gone missing, going on three weeks, Rae becomes the de facto head of the household; the surrogate parent, who at 17, has no time for games. It's hillbilly against hillbilly. Nobody claims to know the whereabouts of Rae's father, quote unquote. Also on her plate, Rae fights foreclosure on the family abode. The bail bondsman has come to collect. Her neighbors, former moonshiners-turned-crystal meth producers, don't know who the real enemy is. They kill their own kind; they'll even kill Rae, if she gets too close. In the interim, the army dreamer is the family's sole provider, the only one man enough to put food on the table. Hardly the squeamish type, Rae takes dead aim on a squirrel, but only because it's too late in the day for deer. That's where a certain girl of the future acquires her way with the bow and arrow. The gravitas, the grit; it's in the blood. Rae skins the critter, and with the boy's help. removes its innards. Flinching isn't permitted. But Rae has her limits, though. She cracks, finally, when it's time to saw off her daddy's hands. Somebody else wields the chainsaw, while Rae holds the body over water, in the lake where his killers dumped him. By proving that her father is dead, she gets to keep the house. The family stays intact. As a result, Rae cancels her military plans, and never leaves the Ozarks. As a result, future generations are doomed. Since the Missouri outback, the setting for Winter's Bone, could double as Panem's District 12, a coal mining outpost, and because the same actress occupies the cross-generational diegeses of the present and the future, it's not hard to imagine that somewhere down the line, somewhere in the family tree, a Dolly got together with an Everdeen, thereby making Rae an ancestor of Katniss', and correspondingly, the Debra Granik film, a Hunger Games prequel, hypothetically speaking. Viewed in a vacuum, the harsh post-apocalyptical conditions that afflicts District 12, the most impoverished of the Capitol's outlying districts, plays like a travesty, this gross disparity between the haves and have-nots. But by using Winter's Bone as an extrapolative tool, a bigger picture emerges, the narrative alters, where the Panemians are partly to blame for the state they're in. It's no wonder that the insurrection against the Capitol failed. The districts don't respect each other. Class warfare persists still among the tributes, despite the grisly outcome inherent in the yearly televised spectacle, whose death toll, by sheer numbers alone, should unite and align the districts against the Capitol. But that's just not the case. During the testing period, the academy-trained tributes from District 1 give off an aura of superiority over their competition, especially Peeta, whose poor archery skills, Katniss warns, makes him look weak, and an easy target for the alpha kids. It's only when the boy throws a metal ball into an arrow rack does he gain a measure of respect from his opponents. Already emasculated by his mother, who back home, lets Peeta know that she's rooting for Katniss, perhaps, leads to the ultimate betrayal, when he forms a coalition on the playing field with the District 1 tributes against his partner, which nearly results in death by arrow, as the girl's combatants fire at will towards the tree which tenuously harbors her. Earlier in the film, in a pre-game interview, Peeta announces his love for Katniss to the entire Panemic world, but he sure has a strange way of showing it. Worse than a supposed suitor, Rae is left alone to face the small community's wrath due to the traitorous actions of her father, the snitch who tells the authorities about the meth labs that dot the Ozark landscape. By turning informant, the father should have known that he was putting not just himself, but his daughter in harm's way, also. The local women nearly beat Rae to death. In a sense, like Katniss, who outscores Peeta 11-8 on the assessment tests, Rae gets punished for being better a man, which in her case, is having the nerve of doing something better than cooking crank like the old man. In both films, wars are waged amonst people of the same social class against each other. Knowing that Rae has mouths to feed, the people next door play a little hunger games of their own, waiting until dark to share their carcass, a newly slaughtered deer. Both the hillbillies and the disenfranchised youths fail to realize that they're on the same side. The Japanese are smarter. In Battle Royale, there are real alliances; they work together in earnest, without intrigue. They understand who the real enemy is. In another precursing film, The Running Man, we can gauge audience reaction throughout the bloody spectacle. No doubt, viewers across the Capitol want Katniss and Peeta to fight. Alas, they're unseen. Just like us. Expand
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7
MusiclyMadeAug 18, 2012
Having not read the books, I sat down to watch this film with an element of caution - would the film be any good? Would I feel like I knew the story by the end? Rather than compare the film to the book, I'll just look at the story of theHaving not read the books, I sat down to watch this film with an element of caution - would the film be any good? Would I feel like I knew the story by the end? Rather than compare the film to the book, I'll just look at the story of the film. It doesn't seem to introduce the brutality or the importance of the Hunger Games itself. However, when the "Hunger Games" do start the immediacy and harshness of just how violent this film is shocks to the core. The pace of the film changes like a stab to the side. However, I didn't feel a connection with Lawrence's character and I didn't feel like I was willing her to win the competition either. It wasn't a bad performance from Lawrence, but not much empathy was allowed to be developed as the pace of the film quickened towards an abrupt end. Expand
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7
JacobNov 20, 2013
Overall, I enjoyed the Hunger Games. It was interesting and didn’t mess up the story. However, the story itself is not really interesting but hopefully the second one will be better. While the Hunger Games is a great film adaptation of aOverall, I enjoyed the Hunger Games. It was interesting and didn’t mess up the story. However, the story itself is not really interesting but hopefully the second one will be better. While the Hunger Games is a great film adaptation of a book, it is by no means a great film. Expand
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8
StevieGJDMay 2, 2012
They did a pretty effective job of taking a book based entirely on internal dialogue and make it a 3d person movie. The movie also was judicious in what it left out or minimized. Unfortunately though, that led to a number of undevelopedThey did a pretty effective job of taking a book based entirely on internal dialogue and make it a 3d person movie. The movie also was judicious in what it left out or minimized. Unfortunately though, that led to a number of undeveloped characters (except Katniss of course). I really enjoyed the movie and can't wait to see what they do with the next one. This movie blew Twilight away, but I understand that the intended audience is slightly different. A very good dystopian science fiction film, albeit for the masses. Expand
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5
RaygirlApr 13, 2012
BORING! I'll say right off the bat that I didn't read any the "Books" (I am a 40-something female whose favorite genre is action sci-fi, i.e. Aliens, Terminator, Matrix, etc.) and was hoping for a good movie. Unfortunately, this movie wasBORING! I'll say right off the bat that I didn't read any the "Books" (I am a 40-something female whose favorite genre is action sci-fi, i.e. Aliens, Terminator, Matrix, etc.) and was hoping for a good movie. Unfortunately, this movie was TOTALLY over-hyped and didn't deliver. If you like the kind of action that has lots of shots of the main character sleeping in a tree and her BIG strategic moves involving a hornet's nest and some berries, you will think this is great entertainment. I would have given it less than 5 stars, but because of the costumes/hair/makeup in the middle section of the movie (which were very well done), I bumped it up a couple. I think it is only for people who read the "Books" since they can fill in mentally what the movie lacked (which was A LOT). Expand
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9
muzzikloverMay 19, 2012
A really good film. The Hunger Games is probably one of the best films I have seen this year. The atmosphere is intense, the premise and story is emotional and thought provoking and the acting is top notch. Jennifer Lawrence is amazing asA really good film. The Hunger Games is probably one of the best films I have seen this year. The atmosphere is intense, the premise and story is emotional and thought provoking and the acting is top notch. Jennifer Lawrence is amazing as Katniss and I consider her one of the best new actresses today and the rest of the cast is great too. The only complain that I have with the whole film is that the action scenes are riddled with shaky camera shots, which is very disorientating and it did get annoying at parts but it wasn't enough to ruin the film. I've read the first book of the Hunger Games trilogy and I have to say this is a very well made adaptation. It stayed with the main plot and kept the maturity and serious treatment of its demographic, which are mostly teenagers, that the book conveys. Expand
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5
nutterjrMay 23, 2012
I feel such a victim of advertising! Twighlight fans rejoice. Yet another superficial hollywood megaproduction polylogy. If the objective is to feel shocked by youngsters thrown into a survival of the fittest contest, then a much superiorI feel such a victim of advertising! Twighlight fans rejoice. Yet another superficial hollywood megaproduction polylogy. If the objective is to feel shocked by youngsters thrown into a survival of the fittest contest, then a much superior film is Battle Royale. Expand
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5
JamesLApr 8, 2012
I have never read the books but I can tell you the movie is so flawed that I could write a book about it. At first, it seems like they could not decide on whether they wanted to make a serious film or a campy film to show to people reallyI have never read the books but I can tell you the movie is so flawed that I could write a book about it. At first, it seems like they could not decide on whether they wanted to make a serious film or a campy film to show to people really stoned for midnight weekend films. The futuristic utopia image was a joke as the film projected a country that was half Star Trek and half the Dark Ages. I thought the sets looked cheap and Woody Harrellson looked liked Tom Petty. Once they got around to the games, the film really lost any sense of reality as the one focused on 4 or 5 of the participants and we never saw anything about the others. The film has zero character development, plot development, and the history behind the games was never really explained. Lawrence spent most of her time sleeping in a tree while my film going partner spent her time looking at her watch. Hunger Games is close to being a movie you would see on Mystery Science Fiction Theather. It made Avatar look a classic . You can see the sequels coming but I will not go. Expand
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8
BikerjamesMar 27, 2012
"The Hunger Games" was one of my favorite books of recent years, and I thought the movie was very faithful to the book. Jennifer Lawrence in particular was perfect as Katniss. It is true, as some reviewers state, that the movie leaves a lot"The Hunger Games" was one of my favorite books of recent years, and I thought the movie was very faithful to the book. Jennifer Lawrence in particular was perfect as Katniss. It is true, as some reviewers state, that the movie leaves a lot of the back story of Katniss and Peeta out, but there is enough in the flashbacks so viewers get the idea. At first I thought Josh Hutcherson was wrong for the Peeta role, but he won me over with his performance. Overall a very good adaptation of a very good book. Anytime you make a movie of a beloved book it can never live up to some people's expectations. I thought they did a great job. My only major criticism would be the ever moving motion of the camera. I really hate this stupid technique that directors are using these days. You can get motion sick at the movies and it's annoying. Expand
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8
iamtrent424Sep 2, 2012
I think this movie is very good, but the book, gives much more detail then then the movie. Some people didn't like the movie because it didn't have enough action. I think it had enough action in it. The movie plot is good enough to keep youI think this movie is very good, but the book, gives much more detail then then the movie. Some people didn't like the movie because it didn't have enough action. I think it had enough action in it. The movie plot is good enough to keep you into the movie fro start to finish. The movie has a very good cast which could get this movie an oscar nom. This is not an oscar movie but the cast in the movie could bump it up and get it a nom. If it does get a nom it will be a just barely. Good movie and great book. Expand
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8
VidsRuleNov 25, 2012
An eccentric future. People wear wierd makeup and have blue hair. I'm listening. Children killing each other. I'm listening. A fully developed world that truly makes me believe that this place could exist 300 years from now. I'm sold. ThisAn eccentric future. People wear wierd makeup and have blue hair. I'm listening. Children killing each other. I'm listening. A fully developed world that truly makes me believe that this place could exist 300 years from now. I'm sold. This movie creates a place in time, and I feel like I'm there. Check. Expand
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6
TokyochuchuJan 30, 2013
The Hunger Games is a decent movie taken from a book... A book which in turn takes it's elements from films like Battle Royale and The Running Man. Talk about cyclical! The Hunger Games shines when viewed as a character piece (JenniferThe Hunger Games is a decent movie taken from a book... A book which in turn takes it's elements from films like Battle Royale and The Running Man. Talk about cyclical! The Hunger Games shines when viewed as a character piece (Jennifer Lawrence's performance is excellent) or as a slight meditation on social greed and the notion of celebrity. That said, the movie has it's faults. The primary one being the lack of stirring action sequences. The editing and pacing of these scenes when they do arrive are simply unexciting. One thing I will say though is that the violence is tastefully neutered. I have no desire to see young children graphically killed and was mercifully spared from doing so. Ultimately, The Hunger Games was an entertaining movie that I enjoyed. Not nearly as much as Battle Royale, however. Expand
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8
allystewMar 26, 2012
I really liked this movie as both an adventure movie and a study of celebrity and how society is so obsessed with it and corruption in Government. Jennifer Lawrence is brilliant and holds the movie together so well as she is in more or lessI really liked this movie as both an adventure movie and a study of celebrity and how society is so obsessed with it and corruption in Government. Jennifer Lawrence is brilliant and holds the movie together so well as she is in more or less every scene. After her role in the brilliant Winters Bone and Xmen First Class she is definitely an actress on the rise and rise. I loved the cinematography with the "wasp sting" scene really standing out for me. The future setting is also very interesting in both the glitzy Capitol and rundown slum districts. My Girlfriend liked the love story element so it was a win win movie for me. Expand
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9
AlnORTIZMay 20, 2012
I saw this film back on its first opening weekend and I had high expectations seeing how I have read and enjoyed the whole book series. For that, I absolutely enjoyed this movie and it is entertaining as all hell! The only problems are thatI saw this film back on its first opening weekend and I had high expectations seeing how I have read and enjoyed the whole book series. For that, I absolutely enjoyed this movie and it is entertaining as all hell! The only problems are that some parts from the book were left out and you have to be patient to be satisfied with the actual Hunger Games tournament. Other than that, the acting, the visuals, the story are all great! Expand
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8
asthobaskoroApr 3, 2012
The Hunger Games is not like Harry Potter or Twilight Saga, let's say we must trust the hype. It's thrilling and touching. Gary Ross put this movie-based-on-book more exciting with his hand. Thanks to solid acting from Lawrence.
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8
nonnikchiefApr 10, 2012
The Hunger Games is a good movie. Not fanboy amazing, not hater terrible. It's good. As it is in most movies, there are a lot of little details that were taken out, but the details weren't necessary to the story. That said, the movie isThe Hunger Games is a good movie. Not fanboy amazing, not hater terrible. It's good. As it is in most movies, there are a lot of little details that were taken out, but the details weren't necessary to the story. That said, the movie is definitely better if you've read the book. Is the book the difference between a 3 and an 8? No. It's the difference between an 8 and a 6. The movie has action, great acting, good looking actors and an actual plot. The movie stands well on it's own, but it is best enjoyed if you've read the book first. If you've read the book, you automatically fill in all the missing pieces, and that creates a wholesome, spectacular visual representation of the book. The movie shouldn't be criticized for leaving details out, the books should be criticized for having too much detail. That said, I definitely urge you to read the book and THEN go see the movie, but the movie is great on it's own, and worth seeing either way. (JENNIFER LAWRENCE!!! Expand
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6
drlowdonJul 31, 2014
Based on the bestselling books for young adults the Hunger Games is a set in a world where, in order to keep the population under control, two children from each of the twelve districts are chosen to compete a two week trial in which only oneBased on the bestselling books for young adults the Hunger Games is a set in a world where, in order to keep the population under control, two children from each of the twelve districts are chosen to compete a two week trial in which only one can survive.

I haven't read the books but throughout the movie I got the sense that certain elements have been left underdeveloped and toned down in order to maintain a reasonable running time and ensure a rating that would allow fans of the books to see it. In large part thanks to the central performance by, the always excellent, Jennifer Lawrence however The Hunger Games still makes for a relatively entertaining watch. It is well shot and moves along at a good pace with just enough tension to keep things from become too predictable.

Not a classic but certainly worth a watch.
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8
shanecavaliereMar 26, 2012
Definitely better than the book. Most of my gripes about the movie actually come from the source material: the plot holes, unexplained scenarios, certain shallow characters (Peeta) are all things that bothered me when reading the book.Definitely better than the book. Most of my gripes about the movie actually come from the source material: the plot holes, unexplained scenarios, certain shallow characters (Peeta) are all things that bothered me when reading the book. Granted, it's written for young adults, so there's a fair amount of simplicity and cliche to be expected, but the hype around this book made me especially critical. Another gripe I have is the names of the weird animals in the book... Tracker Jackers? Muttants? ...I think she could have done better than that... Overall, the book isn't poorly written, it's just adequate. Even while reading the book, I was thinking that it would make a really fun movie, and the movie would likely be better than the book if it had quality art direction, pacing, and acting. Luckily, it has all of those things. The art style, effects, and camera work are all surprisingly good. The pacing is much better than the book, and kept me interested throughout (the book, on the other hand, had some incredibly dull stretches, i.e. in the cave with Peeta for days...). When I read reviews that say this "didn't do the book justice", I wonder if the reviewer is 12 years old (which I probably shouldn't complain about since I'm talking about a young adult movie), or if they've just never read a good book. There is truly not much depth to be found in the novel - it's entertaining and quick, and if it gets kids reading, then great - but it's not really something that leaves you thinking. If you're an adult, and a friend tells you to read the book, do yourself a favor and grab Game of Thrones instead. This movie doesn't have much depth either, but that's ok, because it's basically an action blockbuster. I promise you, you're not missing much by skipping the book and watching this - and you're gaining hours of time. As for acting, Jennifer Lawrence is fantastic, as you'd expect. She was amazing in Winters Bone, and is great in this as well. Woody Harrelson is one of my favorite actors, and tends to steal the show in all his movies, even as a supporting character. Without those two, this movie would likely have been pretty forgettable. Other supporting characters were good too, but didn't stand out. As for the Twilight comparisons, I think they're inaccurate. They're both young adult books with a female lead and a love triangle. Other than that, I don't see how they're similar; Bella broods and cries, while Katniss shoots people with arrows blows things up. The Hunger Games is far better than the Twilight movies (which isn't saying much - in fact I've never been able to sit through one). I say this as a 20-something man though, so I understand I'm not the target audience for either. But enough about Twilight. All in all, I give The Hunger Games a generous 8 for fantastic acting, nice art direction, and pure entertainment value. Expand
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7
HalfwelshmanJul 4, 2012
I'll make it clear from the start, I regrettably haven't read Suzanne Collins' book series this film (and its inevitable sequels) are based on. I'm still quite able to judge it in cinematic terms, and besides, I would rather not become one ofI'll make it clear from the start, I regrettably haven't read Suzanne Collins' book series this film (and its inevitable sequels) are based on. I'm still quite able to judge it in cinematic terms, and besides, I would rather not become one of those over-protective readers who take it as a personal insult whenever the slightest change is made to the story for the sake of on-screen narrative flow. As all good sci-fi does, the film comments on an issue hugely relevant to contemporary society, in this case it's the rapidly increasing extremity and dominance of reality TV. The world of The Hunger Games is a dystopian future ruled by an oppressive, authoritarian government, where every district of Panem (formally North America) are annually forced to submit a teenage boy and girl to compete in a brutal blood sport for the dual purpose of keeping the formally rebellious lower-classes downtrodden, and to keep the rich citizens of the Capitol entertained as the ultimate form of twisted reality TV. The cast of the film are quite superb. Jennifer Lawrence is utterly captivating as the film's heroine Katniss Everdeen, District 12's female competitor, and Josh Hartnett continues to prove himself a fast-rising star as the District's male competitor Peeta Mellark, though both are acted off the screen by newcomer Amandla Stenberg playing an intelligent but younger-than-average games competitor, Rue. The veteran actors playing the adult characters all seem to be having a great deal of fun, from Woody Harrelson's cynical and alcoholic, but good-natured Hunger Games survivor Haymitch, the porcelain-doll-like games promoter Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks), eccentric stylist Cinna (Lenny Kravitz) and especially Stanly Tucci's batty blue-haired TV host Caesar Flickerman. The only one who doesn't appear to be having a good time is Donald Sutherland, playing President Snow, though to be fair he's only a very minor character in this installment. and the filmmakers probably just wanted to get a big name in early to play a character who becomes (so I'm told) far more essential in the sequels. The games themselves are extremely well-realised - after the back-story to this particularly pessimistic vision of the future is established and the characters introduced, we are plunged into a something that is a cross between Battle Royale and Deliverance. When I first heard about the film and its teen-friendly certificate, I thought it would be limiting to the film tackling its exceptionally dark subject matter. Quite the contrary - a lower certification forces director Gary Ross and cinematographer Tom Stern to get creative. The action is thrilling, and what happens to the young competitors is in many ways more horrifying and visceral when it is slightly obscured by clever editing or if it happens just off-screen - your own imagination fills in the gaps and these fights don't lose any impact. I do however question why you're not allowed to show blood on weapons in a 12A certificated film, yet you can show a young boy's neck being broken and the two lead characters covered in blood at the film's finale. The story sucks you in and keeps you engaged throughout, though the run-time is a little gruelling, and the final act is pretty generic. The film cleverly addresses powerful and timeless themes of freedom and morality, coming of age and loss of innocence, and serves as a warning against technological dependence. While all these themes are all effectively discussed in the film, I still see potential to expand on them in the sequels, where these thematic seeds will really have the opportunity to bloom. I really was pleasantly surprised by The Hunger Games - I expected little more than a sub-par Battle Royale, but through a combination of stunning visuals, great performances, and mature discussion of complex thematic material, it stands on its own terms, and can be enjoyed by the teen audience it was marketed at and adults alike. I look forward to seeing the uncut version of the film, that is yet to be released in the UK, once it is released on DVD, and see just how much the film is changed. Whether the next instalment of the series has the same impact without the artistic talent and energy of director Gary Ross, who has now dropped out, remains to be seen... Expand
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4
poily45Jul 3, 2012
I personally didn't read the books but after watching the movie there is probably a good reason why. this movie is.... Mediocre. The story is bland, the build up things with little payoff and the editing is how you say GOD AWFUL. ExtremeI personally didn't read the books but after watching the movie there is probably a good reason why. this movie is.... Mediocre. The story is bland, the build up things with little payoff and the editing is how you say GOD AWFUL. Extreme shaky cam and extreme close ups really hurt this movies potential. I also utterly despise the setting. A post apocalyptic future where the rich control the poor. DONE TO DEATH! You really have to work hard when your movie is worse than New Moon and that's me being nice. AVOID THIS MOVIE!!! Expand
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10
thetootApr 8, 2012
I haven't read the book but it made perfect sense to me. As far as blockbusters go it was pretty darn good. It's a difficult thing to do a film like this well but they managed it, and in the process created something of a classic for our times.
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10
Knicksfan7Apr 5, 2012
What an excellent film. Having read the books, i love the way Gary Ross brought the highly acclaimed book to the big screen. Yes it had its differences from the book, but wow he did an amazing job. The parts that were missing from the booksWhat an excellent film. Having read the books, i love the way Gary Ross brought the highly acclaimed book to the big screen. Yes it had its differences from the book, but wow he did an amazing job. The parts that were missing from the books were understandable because he had to appeal to the audience that didn't read the book and help them understand the development of the story and the plot. The character development was the biggest flaw i saw in the film. It seemed very weak. I read the books yet i didn't feel anything for Gale and his relationship with Katniss in the movie, and the actor for Peeta was very weak, but you can't expect picture perfect acting from a newcomer like him. Same with Katniss and Rue's relationship, it wasn't built up nearly as much as it was in the book, yet the movie was already 2 and a half hours so its understandable. Overall though this film was just beautiful. The development to the games was perfect, the games themself were perfect and the way they brought the capitol and district 12 to life was perfect, exactly as i pictured it in the book. The action was very well done as well. This movie was almost perfect with just a few minor flaws. I'd give it a 9.5/10 but ill round it up to 10/10. Whether you have or have not read the books, you will love this movie for sure. Thank you Gary Ross (director) for bringing one of our favorite books to life in a beautiful way. Expand
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9
LeewayApr 9, 2012
THE HUNGER GAMES
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6
corkyberlinMar 24, 2012
It's tough rating this movie, because there is a lot to like - but it seems so intent on being the first in a series that it just barely stands on its own two feet. Really, I'm afraid that people who haven't read the books aren't going toIt's tough rating this movie, because there is a lot to like - but it seems so intent on being the first in a series that it just barely stands on its own two feet. Really, I'm afraid that people who haven't read the books aren't going to have the first clue about how good this story actually is and I wonder what this movie could have been if they'd allowed it to be it's own story as opposed to just a set up for the profit monster they expect the second and third parts to be. Not to mention, for a story called "The Hunger Games" you'd figure food would be a larger part of the story (as in the book), but there is surprisingly little of anything related to poverty, hunger, or food that contribute so much to who Peeta and Katniss (not to mention district 11's Rue) are as characters.

What's the like? Jennifer Lawrence, Stanley Tucci, and seeing how the games are run.
What's to hate? Really underdeveloped characters, poor pacing really hampers emotionally significant moments, and the camera work is at times amateurish.
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10
filmtrashreviewApr 14, 2012
The Hunger Games - 10/10 - The Hunger Games is inventive, inspirational and at times mind-blowing. It's not the greatest adaptation of the novel but this film stands alone. The shaky camera might be a little must but it's a brilliant way forThe Hunger Games - 10/10 - The Hunger Games is inventive, inspirational and at times mind-blowing. It's not the greatest adaptation of the novel but this film stands alone. The shaky camera might be a little must but it's a brilliant way for this film that's about kids killing kids to bypass the MPAA and a R rating. Also a blockbuster of this nature made for under a hundred million and not being a total disaster is a feat within itself. Hunger Games is a must watch blockbuster in a randomly placed March! Expand
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7
JonathanMorganMar 24, 2012
Before I saw this movie, I decided I wanted to walk into it with no knowledge of anyone's opinion. I didn't check Facebook, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic, IMDB, or watch TV for a week. After my brother and I discussed our opinions of the movie,Before I saw this movie, I decided I wanted to walk into it with no knowledge of anyone's opinion. I didn't check Facebook, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic, IMDB, or watch TV for a week. After my brother and I discussed our opinions of the movie, I checked out Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic and was somewhat surprised by the positive reaction to this film. To me, this film was a little better than okay. At the beginning of the film, It had some very effective dramatic scenes in it (especially the reaping). The cinematography was pretty decent, though I could have used a little less shaky cam. As the film went on, I was introduced to the film's vision of the capital, which was a little too over-the-top in my opinion. I understand it's supposed to be that way, but it does take away what makes the capital so ominous in the first place. As the games begin, we get our first action scene, which like every other action scene in this movie, was badly shot, poorly edited, was mostly bloodless, and extremely hard to follow (all because they needed their PG-13 rating). Imagine the fighting scenes in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, but with a bunch of kids in a field killing each other rather than giant robots. While I was still enjoying the film alright, the action scenes really made the film not as good as it should have been. Also, it seemed that whenever something dramatic would happen in the games, it would cut back to a goofy newscaster. And while I see the satire the film was trying to pull, it really did take away from the tone of the film. The ending was better concluded than it was in the book, so I give the film some props for that. As for the performances, almost all of them were engaging and well done. Overall, the pros slightly outweighed the cons, but just barely. Expand
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6
EastonReviewsApr 11, 2012
The Hunger Games is, a decent movie, I could say. It starts with Katniss, you fanboys know her, right? Well she is a dull character that has no reason for the audience to want her to win. As that continues, the plot expands, and the plot isThe Hunger Games is, a decent movie, I could say. It starts with Katniss, you fanboys know her, right? Well she is a dull character that has no reason for the audience to want her to win. As that continues, the plot expands, and the plot is great. Should keep viewers interested in this clever, expanding plot; despite it's simularities to "Most Dangerous Game". Anyways, Peeta, is another dull character. In fact, all the characters are. I can name a list of films that had begter characters. But then, I feel how the film was overall. In the end, it's an okay film, perhaps for the better than for the worse. I recommend this film, overall. Expand
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10
slsoccer7Apr 2, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I read the books and was dying to see it the day it came out and I have to say, I was not disappointed. The CGI and acting were both a lot better than I thought they would be. The movie was not at all brought down a notch violence wise for kids. Many people who saw the movie actually think it should have been rated R. One of my favorite things with this movie is that it stayed almost exactly with the book. Many big blockbuster films based off of books are so drastically changed that it completely ruins the story for all of those who read the book originally. all in all, i would rate this a solid 9.5 out of 10. It doesn't deserve a 10 in my opinion because I feel like the beginning part when Katniss is in District 12 before the Reaping was way too short and you didn't really get to know Gale and how Katniss feels for him. Expand
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5
EddyMacApr 15, 2012
success does not imply quality. while you can't argue the fact that The Hunger Games is a box office success, the film itself is quite a let down. as with many teen novels that are adapted to film, the film displays a fundamentally poorlysuccess does not imply quality. while you can't argue the fact that The Hunger Games is a box office success, the film itself is quite a let down. as with many teen novels that are adapted to film, the film displays a fundamentally poorly thought out execution. The plot is under developed, almost implying knowledge that can only be know from reading the book, an example of which is the relationship of the primary character (Katniss) with her Mother. The characters are underdeveloped and the plot lacks appeal. If you don't enjoy picking apart films, then you should enjoy it regardless of what anyone has to say. Expand
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7
DiraffeApr 8, 2012
Movie, great. Actors, great. Plot, special effects, sounds, great, great, great.

SUPER SHAKY CAMERA: I got a headache about half of the way through this movie and had to close my eyes so I didn't throw up. The camera ruined the whole movie
Movie, great. Actors, great. Plot, special effects, sounds, great, great, great.

SUPER SHAKY CAMERA: I got a headache about half of the way through this movie and had to close my eyes so I didn't throw up. The camera ruined the whole movie for me, which is unfortunate because after reading the book, I was incredibly psyched.
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5
OverrwatcherApr 6, 2012
NOTE: IF YOU HAVE READ THE BOOK: MAKE THIS A 7/10. TL;DR THE MOVIE WOULD'VE BEEN POTENTIAL FOR BEST PICTURE BUT IT IS RUINED BY ABSOLUTELY TERRIBLE PACING AND CHARACTER/WORLD DEVELOPMENT. The acting is superb (Especially Woody Harrelson asNOTE: IF YOU HAVE READ THE BOOK: MAKE THIS A 7/10. TL;DR THE MOVIE WOULD'VE BEEN POTENTIAL FOR BEST PICTURE BUT IT IS RUINED BY ABSOLUTELY TERRIBLE PACING AND CHARACTER/WORLD DEVELOPMENT. The acting is superb (Especially Woody Harrelson as Haymitch) the visuals/audio stunning, and it follows rather well with the book. It paints an excellent image from the book. So why does it have a 5/10? Two reasons: Pacing and Character/World Development. The pacing was absolute crap. So crap it brings the score down by 2 points. With the 2 1/2 hours of the film, some scenes were uselessly prolonged (ESPECIALLY THE BEGINNING. The book had a long beginning, but it used it to explain the story), and could've been used to develop and explain the story. Character/World Development? For those who haven't read the book, this movie will be very confusing. It doesn't explain the purpose of the Districts, who most of the people are, the reasons behind the actions done, and generally what's going on. Who was that old guy with the big white beard? President Snow. Who was that guy with the strange stubble beard? Seneca Crane, the Head Gamemaker. Who was that cat at the beginning? Buttercup, one of Prim's pets, who only tolerates Katniss. Why is it called the "Hunger" games? Because most of the districts are in poverty, and many people starve to death. The winner of the Hunger Games get out of that poverty, and the district gets some extra food. What happened to District 13? It was destroyed by the Capitol during the Dark Days of the rebellion (No, this isn't a spoiler. This is backstory known by all the characters), as a demonstration of the Capitol's power and because it's possible to live without graphite. If you just watched the film without reading the book, you wouldn't know any of that stuff. So much potential ruined. sigh Expand
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5
magnianhkApr 8, 2012
The movie is just as shallow as the book. There's little depth, zero character development, and the technology that The Capitol exudes is entirely unbelievable. 1. Shaking-camera approach was the wrong choice. The director was going forThe movie is just as shallow as the book. There's little depth, zero character development, and the technology that The Capitol exudes is entirely unbelievable. 1. Shaking-camera approach was the wrong choice. The director was going for that voyeuristic, narrow-perspective, suspenseful feeling but it just ends up giving the viewer a headache. I found myself squinting at the screen for the first half of the movie (shakiness seems to absolve once the tributes arrive in the arena), and I found myself rubbing my eyes more than paying attention.

2. If The Capitol has the technology to spawn biological entities out of thin air (the dogs), then why would they need coal mining production, which was the entire purpose of District 12? The flamboyance of The Capitol suggests that technology has evolved far beyond coal burning. Nanotechnology, anti-gravity propulsion systems? Whew man, that's a big hole.

3. Just to have a third item... all of those tributes sure are GOOD LOOKING for being so poor. And why weren't there any fat tributes? One last thing: If these Hunger Games have been going on for close to 75 years, wouldn't every district by now train their tributes?
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9
AD421Apr 3, 2012
Fantastic movie. Very friendly towards all audiences above 10. Action packed, emotional and entertaining. One of the only criticisms I can say is that there was some sloppy scenes and direction. Im sure the next one will be much moreFantastic movie. Very friendly towards all audiences above 10. Action packed, emotional and entertaining. One of the only criticisms I can say is that there was some sloppy scenes and direction. Im sure the next one will be much more professional looking. Expand
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9
AaronActionMar 27, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I saw the movie opening day with my girlfriend and her family and we all really liked it.
The extravagant clothes and styles were amazing and I can promise you that you'll be seeing costume design nominations at the academy awards for this movie .
Jennifer Lawrence's acting is superb along with just about every single character I can think of from their alcoholic coach, to Rou, to the co-star Josh Hutcherson who will more than likely be nominated for his awesome performances.
The movie also follows the book to tee. The only complaint was that Rou was black, but whatever, Overall this is a really great movie and everyone should see it, I'm not saying to join the bandwagon like twilight fans do cause who knows if the Hunger Games squeal Catching Fire will be any good seeing how it was defiantly the weakest book of the trilogy.
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7
kitsoonMar 24, 2012
Didn't read the books before seeing the movie, I'm thinking of reading them after seeing it. The movie was a pretty decent work of fiction as itself but I felt like the movie left a lot of things unexplained that were probably explained inDidn't read the books before seeing the movie, I'm thinking of reading them after seeing it. The movie was a pretty decent work of fiction as itself but I felt like the movie left a lot of things unexplained that were probably explained in the books. I think films made from books should exist as separate entities telling the same story in a different medium. Expand
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9
jos95Oct 2, 2012
After all the dreadful Twilight movies that have come our way, we finally get a teen-targeted movie worth watching! The movie's biggest strong point is Jennifer Lawrence's gripping portrayal of Katniss, she played the role just as one wouldAfter all the dreadful Twilight movies that have come our way, we finally get a teen-targeted movie worth watching! The movie's biggest strong point is Jennifer Lawrence's gripping portrayal of Katniss, she played the role just as one would picture her in the book. I also don't think they could've got a better Peeta if they tried, Josh Hucterson IS Peeta. The violence pushes the boundaries for PG-13 films and it makes for some very powerful and tense moments. The Disctrict 12 scenes have a haunting conviction over them and the Capitol scenes display a perfect satire of our society. My only problems with the movie were that it needed a director more experienced with action films, the action and CGI were fairly poor, and the changes they made the climax stopped it from tugging my emotional strings like it did in the book. Apart from that it was brill and I'm looking forward to seeing the rest of the series take shape. Expand
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8
rafael14Aug 12, 2012
this films is good, but there is a problem the movie dont mentions her friendship with Rue, but out of this the film is very good and i cried a lot when Rue died
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3
EssenceOfSugarOct 23, 2013
Flat characterisation and story development with juvenile depictions of the brutal subject it was approaching. Such was this, that the costume and set design were very much bloated. The romance is too focused and seems less keen on exploringFlat characterisation and story development with juvenile depictions of the brutal subject it was approaching. Such was this, that the costume and set design were very much bloated. The romance is too focused and seems less keen on exploring the themes of creating a society based on the treatment of competition between young people by killing each other. First and foremost, you didn't have to see the film to know how it ended. A feeling that that was how it was going to end was illustrated under the unconvincing panic of its main protagonists who would miraculously appear in the sequel. Seeing as how I had never read the books, I felt as if was some kind of condescending response to those who genuinely wanted to see the film but had never read the books. Expand
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8
williamobrienApr 14, 2012
Although it's runtime may seem a little too lengthy for some, The Hunger Games is an audacious drama/action with moments of pure, majestic thrill as Jennifer Lawrence gives an almost perfect portrayal as the outspoken Katniss Everdeen.Although it's runtime may seem a little too lengthy for some, The Hunger Games is an audacious drama/action with moments of pure, majestic thrill as Jennifer Lawrence gives an almost perfect portrayal as the outspoken Katniss Everdeen. Overall, it stands out from the action genre as a whole by providing solid acting, careful writing and intense fighting sequences that are certain to please the trilogy faithful. Expand
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6
ShadowBlazer400Apr 5, 2012
A lot of hype and little substance to back up what should be a very intelligent thriller. While hardly mindless fun, the film misses a number of opportunities to really build the world leaving non readers confused and uninterested. It's notA lot of hype and little substance to back up what should be a very intelligent thriller. While hardly mindless fun, the film misses a number of opportunities to really build the world leaving non readers confused and uninterested. It's not really until the battles that you might become remotely engaged in what's going on but even that's a stretch. The first half of the movie flies by with little background about why the Hunger Games are done the way they are, why there was an uprising to begin with and who these people in the Capitol are and their motivations for watching children slaughter each other on live TV.

The characters are strikingly bland and undeveloped and the relationship is just thrown in there to appeal to Twilight Fans. We don't know much about our main character other than she comes from a Coal Mining town and her father died somehow. (presumably in an accident or something). Her mother is a zoned out space cadet leaving Kat to care for her sister or something. The constant shaking of the camera is distracting and downright obnoxious, the first half of the movie I kept saying "hold the camera still." It's so tiring seeing shaking camera under the BS reason of "causing confusion" especially in a film that's supposed to be about the gravity of this sick and twisted game. I can't tell who's killed and I can't find my self caring. I don't know who anyone is or why they matter. The saving grass is an impressive score by James Newton Howard who actually managed to make an interesting music score this time. The film gives enough substance to make it interesting and worth checking out the future sequels but still leaves a lot to be desired. The characters are boring, the story is rushed, there's no exposition or reason for anyone to care. Bring a motion sickness bag if you are prone to an upset stomach.
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5
joehezziApr 3, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The start of the film was very promising, setting up the film well. It showed the relationships between characters brilliantly for the short amount of time there was to do that in. The relationship between Catniss and her sister,Prim, was particularly well done, and you could at least see that there was some sort of history between Catniss and her mother. The only thing that could of been explained much better in the introduction was the absence of the father. The other thing that was done well was the history of the country Panem. Although many readers of the book might have felt disappointed with it, I felt that it showed us just enough so that we weren't clueless about it's history and it didn't drag on too much.

After the start, the plot started to run around like a headless chicken. Haymitch, played by Woody Harrelson, drifted around cluelessly. Although he did make me laugh at points, his attitude towards the tributes changes so dramatically from careless to caring for no reason at all except from the fact that Catniss stabbed a butter knife between his fingers. This made it hard for me to think of him as a meaningful character for the rest of the film. Although Cinna wasn't badly played I struggled to find where his sudden "obssesion" (couldn't think of a better word) with Catniss comes from. And finally the relationship between Peeta and Catniss. I thought there would be a proper explanation from the director about there history because there were flashbacks throughout the film leading up to it but really all that it revealed is that once Peeta threw Catniss a bit of bread and now they are having a big love, hate relationship because of it. Couldn't they of just told us that at the start of the film and saved the big flashback thing for Catniss's dad dieing (which you only get a hint of once in Tracker Jacker scene. I think the training leading up to the games was the worst done bit of the film.

However the bit of the film during the games wasn't much better. Although they made the best of what is probably the hardest bit to adapt of the film it still fell short on a number of things like character development but most of all the acting itself! Catniss and Peeta were both very good obviously. But the acting of some of Cato's gang like Glimmer is just appaling. Come on. This is a major Hollywood blockbuster. The scene when Catniss has climbed up a tree and they're chasing after her wanted to make me laugh, cry and puke at the same time. The way she squeals in delight and bagsies killing Catniss is laughable at how cheesy it is. It reminded me of a cackling witch in a crap local village pantomime. The other terribly acted scene is the on where a girl (can't remember who) is being stung by tracker jackers and is calling for help. It reminded me of the witch in the Wizard of Oz crying "I'm melting, MELTING!" It's cringable. The other terrible thing is the way that the love between Peeta and Catniss comes out of nowhere. It doesn't explain it like it does in the book that for Catniss it's a tactic to win and get sponsors but for Peeta it's real.

But one thing that I do give The Hunger Games credit for is it's ability not to bore you. It could very easily be one of the most boring films of all time as although the book is very good it has parts where there is not so much action. The director managed to not cut these parts out put curve round them. Another thing I credit this film with is it's 50/50 chesiness. They've done it perfectly. While not making it to dark and unhollywoody they've also made it not too "Disney". The bit that really proved my point is the bit where there about to eat the berry (Yes it would of been better if they had eaten the berry but come on that's not going to happen) and instead of making it all dramatic and and making the gamemaker say in slow motion with crappy music, "Nooooooooo...wait. You win. We are the bad guys and we have lost", the gamemaker splutters as though really panicked and with no cheesy music, "Wait, wait, ur... both of you can win" which made the whole cinema laugh and really redeemed the film for me. All I can say about this film to sum it up is that it's better than Twilight, go and see it if you want and that I'm not eagerly awaiting the sequel at all.
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5
cwbradyApr 6, 2012
I was expecting more. Also kids killing kids did not sit well with me. I guess I'm okay with that. The day I am okay with that I need to see a psychiatrist.
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9
VerticityMar 24, 2012
If you're looking for a direct copy and paste of the book, you may be left disappointed. As expected, some non-important filler parts were left out for time constraints (the movie was already two hours and thirty minutes). At first, I didn'tIf you're looking for a direct copy and paste of the book, you may be left disappointed. As expected, some non-important filler parts were left out for time constraints (the movie was already two hours and thirty minutes). At first, I didn't really think about it. This movie, as promising as the book, may leave you a bit empty if you're looking for something overly 'epic'. The amount of action suits the book perfectly, therefore does justice to the series. I think the director did well, however, if you've not read the book you will most likely not fully enjoy the movie. After thinking about it, this movie has some really deep points that are so true within our everyday world, which can only be reflected in film. THIS is the best thing that the movie did, tying with the action thus making the flow better. Expand
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7
glestAug 18, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'm honestly very surprised about how many people are stating about how faithful the movie is to the book. While I did enjoy how we learned more to Seneca Crane's backstory (even though that does subtract from the surprise of learning of his death in the second book/movie), it seemed to me that the screenplay took the crucial aspects of the book, then rewrote all the dialogue. I understand the need to keep things trimmed down, and the book is massive in scope, but there were countless moments where I was waiting for a particular line that I liked from the book, only to find it was changed, seemingly for no reason, to a weaker line ("Did I actually get a pair of fighters this year?").

Now, massive dialogue changes aside, I couldn't help but find the major tweak to the origins of the mockingjay pin being a bit upsetting. The mockingjay pin is probably the best known symbol for Katniss and becomes very important in the later books/movies, yet, the source becomes some random vendor from the Hobb (whom I'd like to imagine was Greasy Sae, although that's never explained).

Trying to look at this movie from the perspective of someone who's never read the book, I felt that everything from the start of the games on was just rushed. The part I was probably looking forward to the most was Cinna's costumes. Yet, I found myself completely disappointed. My imagination certainly did a better job than the special effects folks, as the costumes were honestly rather mundane. After Katniss was stung by the trackerjackers, Rue applied the leaves which improved her wounds, yet, the movie never explained what those leaves were for.

The romance between Katniss and Peeta? I felt it in the book, but in the movie, the chemistry just wasn't there. It wasn't the actors, but rather how rushed the story had become at that point. I understand that a first person book is extremely hard to transform into a movie, but I still can't help but think we should have seen more from Katniss's perspective. Hearing some of her thoughts and explanations would have been far better than the occasional scene swap to some announcers trying to fill in the clueless audience.

Significant changes from the book to movie adaptation that I thought were particularly unneeded included:
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9
RoyMoyMar 26, 2012
wow im in love with that girl. such an impressive personality, so real. what a great movie! the only downside is that some parts of the movie look nonsense, but other than that its amazing
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6
mugslangleyMar 25, 2012
I haven't read any of the books, but had heard good things about them and the film, so decided to take the plunge and watch it. I don't think it did a good job of setting up a back story for new comers, as all there really was, was the shortI haven't read any of the books, but had heard good things about them and the film, so decided to take the plunge and watch it. I don't think it did a good job of setting up a back story for new comers, as all there really was, was the short film during the initial tribute selection and the occasional flashback, which didn't go into much detail.

Once in the Capital, and the build up to and in the arena is where it got a lot more enjoyable. The action/ survival sequences were really well done, and made you feel more for the individual characters, but I couldn't help but want for more of a Battle Royale type 'only one survivor' story.

Overall it was a fun film to watch and I'll probably end up watching the trilogy as they come out, and read the books at some point too.
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5
GygaaApr 6, 2012
It had a few interesting ideas, unfortunately it was let down by a confused, forced love-story seemingly aimed at the Twilight audience. The action scenes had potential yet because the film was a 12a it was barely allowed to explore them,It had a few interesting ideas, unfortunately it was let down by a confused, forced love-story seemingly aimed at the Twilight audience. The action scenes had potential yet because the film was a 12a it was barely allowed to explore them, resorting to jumpy cuts from certain fights to give the impression of brutality. Before the Hunger Games themselves, the film was heading in the right direction, however once we arrive at the big event, what takes place is at times nonsensical.
At the end of the day, the film falls prey to the same issue that most book to film adaptations face, there's simply not enough screen time to explore the story in-depth.
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3
skedarMay 14, 2012
I didn't read the book, the trailer was quite promising anyway. But the movie turned out to be disappointing anyway.

The universe is completely unbelievable. Maybe the point of the movie is not to be credible, I can live with it, maybe the
I didn't read the book, the trailer was quite promising anyway. But the movie turned out to be disappointing anyway.

The universe is completely unbelievable. Maybe the point of the movie is not to be credible, I can live with it, maybe the universe is just deliberately filled with stupidity, incoherences, reflects an extremely naive and childish view of politics and such other things, and is overall poorly developed.

Then maybe it is a movie about action? After all, having watched the trailer, action is what I hoped to see. The second half of the movie has a bit of action scenes, not that much however. A small part of less than half of the movie is dedicated to action (the other half of the movie being pointless because of the universe being uninteresting). All these action scenes are filmed in a shaky style, but an unmastered style (as opposed to a mastered shaky style, like in the Bourne trilogy, or Man on Fire). So the only part of the movie that could have been somehow entertaining fails as well.

Uninteresting context and universe, amateurish action, not much is left to see in that movie.
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8
dh3rshApr 4, 2012
I read the book before I saw the movie and I've got to say that it really does stay true to the book most of the time. The Hunger Games really had me on an emotional roller coaster for a while. I thought the casting was well done and JenniferI read the book before I saw the movie and I've got to say that it really does stay true to the book most of the time. The Hunger Games really had me on an emotional roller coaster for a while. I thought the casting was well done and Jennifer really stole the show. There were some scenes in the end that I thought should have been fleshed out more. Those scenes were really emotional in the book but in the movie they were a bit abbreviated. All in all, The Hunger Games is a very enjoyable movie that does not disappoint. Expand
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7
StevenFAug 15, 2013
It took a second viewing, well over a year after its initial release, to appreciate The Hunger Games a little more than my original thoughts, I didn't hate it, but I was certainly mountains away from liking it. My ongoing problem with book toIt took a second viewing, well over a year after its initial release, to appreciate The Hunger Games a little more than my original thoughts, I didn't hate it, but I was certainly mountains away from liking it. My ongoing problem with book to film adaptations is the unevenness of it all, it boils down to two simple scenarios, either make a carbon copy of the book, page for page, or simply adapt the story and make it a standalone piece, but the film tries to do both and sacrifices things that could have made it a much better film. A riveting and spellbinding first half hour sets us up in a post-apocalyptic universe where we have 12 districts full of those suffering the consequences of a war years before, and then we have the Capitol, full of the rich and powerful, who hold an annual televised games where the contestants, or "tributes" fight to the death and consist of a male and female from each district.
We are introduced to Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) who reluctantly but lovingly takes the place of her little sister who was originally picked to compete, Jennifer Lawrence brings a distinguished yet hardened approach to the role, her character knows what must be done and will do anything to see it happen, and she also carries quite a skill set as well. She meets Peeta (Josh Hutcherson), the male tribute, and they subsequently form an uneasy alliance in an attempt to survive, because once the games start, only one person shall arise victorious. My biggest problem with the film is how much violence needs to be pushed, but isn't, its subdued and completely backtracking on the point of the film, reaching to a bigger audience, ok, but when a sacrifice like this is made its hard not to feel cheated. There is definitely a severe lack of character development, particularly a young girl who we are really supposed to connect with, but her role in the film is that small we barely have time to blink before she is gone again.
Redeeming qualities of the film are the performances from the main cast, with a very emotional approach from Lawrence while we also have star talent like Woody Harrelson and Stanley Tucci. There is also excellent cinematography to enjoy, with a shaky technique used so as we are with Katniss throughout her harrowing journey. Its an enjoyable flick for a commanding first half but a second half that simply doesn't deliver, throwing to many big characters at us who ultimately don't get enough screen time, plus the lack of actual violence is truly frustrating, but decent performances and a worthwhile premise should be enough to see it.
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9
SmileylivvieNov 29, 2013
I thought the Hunger Games was amazing. I didn't like it the first time I watched it but now I love it and I've watched it about 3-5 times! The only problem about the movie is that I think they spend too long before they are actually in theI thought the Hunger Games was amazing. I didn't like it the first time I watched it but now I love it and I've watched it about 3-5 times! The only problem about the movie is that I think they spend too long before they are actually in the Hunger Games. I personally think they should of spent more of the movie with the fighting and things, because i had to skip it because I got a bit bored. Expand
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7
BigFatFattyMar 24, 2012
I didn't read the books at all but ya I guess this was alright. A lot like Battle Royale but in some sort of weird American/Ancient Roman future. The pacing was a little slow and the action was poorly shot but the story was alright and II didn't read the books at all but ya I guess this was alright. A lot like Battle Royale but in some sort of weird American/Ancient Roman future. The pacing was a little slow and the action was poorly shot but the story was alright and I liked how the style of the Capital. I wish the movie was R rated so I can see those kids really tear each other apart. Expand
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10
dryyoshi7May 10, 2012
What a film this was. Every second, something was going on, the structure of how this film was made is incredible. I was gripping my chair in the cinema as you never know what was going to be flung at you at any second. The traps wereWhat a film this was. Every second, something was going on, the structure of how this film was made is incredible. I was gripping my chair in the cinema as you never know what was going to be flung at you at any second. The traps were especially good, like the tracker jackers and those wild beast things near the end of the movie ( including one jump scene that sent my popcorn flying!!!). 10 OUT A 10!! Expand
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9
brunogabrieleDec 29, 2012
The movie is great. What I like about this movie is that every time u watch it, you find different interesting things. I think the story is great and the movie is very well-done.
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8
quincytheodoreMar 26, 2012
In the spirit of Last-Man-Standing contest, Hunger Games surprisingly succeeds in mixing teen love story with bloody combat. Usually movies with romantic trait tend to stroll back and forth boringly which leads to slumber inducing moments orIn the spirit of Last-Man-Standing contest, Hunger Games surprisingly succeeds in mixing teen love story with bloody combat. Usually movies with romantic trait tend to stroll back and forth boringly which leads to slumber inducing moments or late regret of purchasing the ticket, and usually survivor type movies tend to abuse gore in your face which leaves the tension specifically only to scare tactic, leaving you without a damn to give about the characters aside from how and when they will die. Hunger Games balances them both and creates a well paced movie with great storytelling and adequate visceral display to boot. It's an action movie that takes its time as the battle doesn't start halfway into the movie and fortunately doesn't repeat the old mistake, giving outrageous death in early minutes then leaves you hanging for the rest. The pace builds up nicely with large ambitious world to introduce, this pays off when the plot becomes more intense in the later half. In the world of Hunger Games, each year they will commemorate a festival in which 24 Tributes, young boys and girls from twelve districts, will take part in a battle royal until one victor remains standing. The lead Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) are likeable as the representatives from District 12, one of the most rural there is. People like underdog, to quote one of the characters. Katniss is an older sister who volunteers herself after her sister was originally picked by a sort of eerie lottery called the Reaping. She is courageous, realistically appealing and very easy to root for. Peeta has more character development as he's not initially oozing with confident compared to Katniss, audience might be unsympathetic towards him but he matures during the story. Haymitch (Woody Harrelson) is quite whimsical as their secretly caring yet partially sober mentor. He has an awkward parental figure, much like in Zombieland. Effie (Elizabeth Banks) is a curios character, she views the life and problems with undermining perspective, perhaps a commentary of its dystopian world which has overly indulged itself to the point of apathy. Regardless of that, she is enigmatically appealing, although mostly for a bit irony. Cinna (Lenny Kravitz) is a delightful addition, he portrays a rather metrosexual image consultant which provides more mature support and shows more affection than the other two. Too bad he doesnâ Expand
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6
ernis_vApr 21, 2012
I expected more graphical violence - it plainly seems that they made the movie less violent, so kids could come to see it, and they would make more money. I really enjoyed the performance by the cast and the production value - you could feelI expected more graphical violence - it plainly seems that they made the movie less violent, so kids could come to see it, and they would make more money. I really enjoyed the performance by the cast and the production value - you could feel the fear in the air for the first hour and a half of the movie. Expand
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8
MagnificentMMay 25, 2012
I was honestly expecting this to be a terrible movie, as I've read all the books, and they are all poorly written. Even though the premise is interesting, they create zero emotional connections with any of the characters, they have terribleI was honestly expecting this to be a terrible movie, as I've read all the books, and they are all poorly written. Even though the premise is interesting, they create zero emotional connections with any of the characters, they have terrible dialogue, and the plots are often sporadic. But the movie amazingly fixed just about everything that is wrong with the books. Jennifer Lawrence is amazing as Katniss, and she proves that her Oscar Nominated role in Winter's Bone was not just a freak accident. This girl can act, and she's quickly becoming one of my favorites. The rest of the cast was pretty good, especially Woody Harrelson, as always, and the action scenes were spot on. More importantly, the scenes connecting the action were really good as well. But my personal favorite part of the movie was the music, with a score by James Newton Howard (plus the Panem Anthem that was written by Arcade Fire). Overall, this was a really good movie and it definitely lives up to the hype. Expand
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9
Tss5078Feb 22, 2013
The Hunger Games was everything I expected, but not more than that. I am a huge fan of the series, having read all the books months ago, but I've avoided the movie until all the hype died down, so that I could give an honest opinion, and hereThe Hunger Games was everything I expected, but not more than that. I am a huge fan of the series, having read all the books months ago, but I've avoided the movie until all the hype died down, so that I could give an honest opinion, and here it is. The film was terrific, one of the best adaptation of a book I've read. Jennifer Lawrence was absolutely perfect as Katniss and if she doesn't get a ton of awards for the role, there is no justice in Hollywood. That's the good news, however the movie was far from perfect. Friends who went with me and had never read the books, found it to be slow, and didn't understand certain things. At times, I could see their point. Several major things were rushed or just left out of the film. This led to some confusion, and then there's Peeta. I love Josh Hutcherson and thought he was terrific, but the portrayal of Peeta wasn't accurate. He was nowhere near as likeable as he is in the books and he comes off looking like kind of a The end of the games was also problematic, as they changed a key point that I thought was pivotal going into Catching Fire. It will be interesting to see what they do to fix that before the next film. Overall I loved the movie and thought it was awesome, but if you didn't read the books, you might be a little confused by parts of it and see it as slow. Parts of the film that dragged on were explained through thoughts in Katniss's head during the book. Without knowing what was going on at those points, I could see how some audience members may have been bored with it. The movie and especially the books live up to all the hype and are well worth your time, The Hunger Games is something you are not going to want to miss. Expand
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10
KuseAug 18, 2012
I would say 70 percent of the people gave bad reviews didn't actually see the movie. The move overall was well done, story was there albeit its not the same as the book but that is expected. Actor performances were top notch and this is justI would say 70 percent of the people gave bad reviews didn't actually see the movie. The move overall was well done, story was there albeit its not the same as the book but that is expected. Actor performances were top notch and this is just a really nice treat for a movie. Expand
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8
krammerlockApr 11, 2012
My wife and I like science fiction, and I particularly like this kind, where a social phenomenon that we think could not happen serves to reveal humanity and challenge our perceptions. I think this movie does both. I do not know how itMy wife and I like science fiction, and I particularly like this kind, where a social phenomenon that we think could not happen serves to reveal humanity and challenge our perceptions. I think this movie does both. I do not know how it compares to the book, but I will read it eventually. The movie version of the story is very well made. It does not have any slow moments and the photography is very well done. I really found nothing to complain about. The story is very interesting. When I think back on it I ponder on her choices. She never initiates the attack on a human. Her sole attack is on the supplies. She is defensive and conserving. This contrasts with the gang, which is narcissistic, arrogant and a killing machine. You have to wonder what holds the group together. They all know that at some point the gang will turn on each member till only one is left. At some point it would have made sense if two members of the gang tried to take out the alpha. Wouldn't that, if successful, have increased their chances of winning? It would have illustrated the nature of that gang. That mused, I think the nature was amply illustrated. Definitely go see it. Expand
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9
AquophisJun 22, 2012
One of the few novel adaptations that actually comes close to approaching the quality of its source material. The only blunder was not expanding much on Rue's character the way they did in the book. Otherwise, this is a useful companion toOne of the few novel adaptations that actually comes close to approaching the quality of its source material. The only blunder was not expanding much on Rue's character the way they did in the book. Otherwise, this is a useful companion to the book that even expands on the book's social commentary (mostly by being more unsubtle, but that's beside the point). You don't need to read the book to understand it, either - my dad saw it and liked it. Anyway, I loved the shaky camera and the way they would take out all the sound in the fighting scenes and replace it with white noise. It made it more horrifying. After all, this is NOT an epic popcorn roller-coaster ride, this is a disturbing, upsetting vision of the direction in which our shallow, sheltered, desensitized, gossipy, flamboyant, privileged first-world western society could very well head. We ARE the Capitol audience, and something very much like the Hunger Games could insinuate in the near future. The movie did an excellent job illustrating this (loved Cato's monologue - that actually should have been in the book). Along with that, the cast was superb. Jennifer Lawrence, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Isabelle Fuhrman and Liam Hemsworth are all terrific actors. And the soundtrack (especially the credits song) was great. Expand
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9
bgreenMar 24, 2012
Had a blast. Lots of fun. Almost wish it was longer to explain some parts the book more thoroughly. As usual the books are better but they tried hard to make a movie true to the book, and they did a good job. Will see it again
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8
oxanaAug 24, 2014
Let's kick off this review by stating that I haven't read the book(s) this movie is based on. Hence it's all about the movie and not book-to-film translation (before I read the books, anyway).

The idea behind the story is compelling,
Let's kick off this review by stating that I haven't read the book(s) this movie is based on. Hence it's all about the movie and not book-to-film translation (before I read the books, anyway).

The idea behind the story is compelling, gruesome and quite horrible. To choose 24 children to fight each other to the death until only one remains, in order to choke 12 Districts under the Capitol's control is something I haven't seen done before.

The Hunger Games, and the way they were presented, was thrilling. The comparison of two different worlds, from far-away Districts to the Capitol, and the way the Games are perceived between the two was brilliant. The preparation of the Tributes for the Games was almost more interesting than the final feat itself, although they balanced it quite nicely.

Most of the Tributes never got all that much time on screen - perhaps to make their deaths seem less important. They had to die, so better not make the audience feel too much for them. The actor performances and characters were well balanced, although the scheming behind the theatrics could have been given more depth. Also, it felt like the creators of the game cheated every now and then, but that's live TV for you; they must make it appealing - in this case by finding ways to control the game.

The visual look of the movie was stunning, between very different worlds, one corporeal and one quite futuristic, all the way to make-up and clothing which finalized the impact of how removed the Capitol truly is from the "real world". It was appalling, in a sense, and you wanted to shake each and every one of those pretentious, naïve, spoiled people. (This is the setting where you can find the social rifts and values of the modern world in a nutshell.)

This film is definitely worth the watch - and I'm eagerly waiting for the sequels and what turns of events they will provide in the already established setting.
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8
mrniceSep 2, 2013
Has elements of mediocrity, but is saved by two feats. Firstly, Jennifer Lawrence makes her character almost iconic, finally giving young women a quality movie heroine. Secondly, the more formulaic parts of the last half remain immersiveHas elements of mediocrity, but is saved by two feats. Firstly, Jennifer Lawrence makes her character almost iconic, finally giving young women a quality movie heroine. Secondly, the more formulaic parts of the last half remain immersive because they're supposed to be staged within the movie. It doesn't matter that it all has a bit too much Hollywood gloss to be truly gritty, because within the games show, everything is supposed to be tv-friendly. Finally, the ending is satisfactory, which is impressive considering all the intrigue in the build-up. It's like a crime movie where you try to guess who the last bunch of people will be, and it ends up both believable and quite clever. Then there's the social commentary and the parallels to the 20th century western history. I think it lifts the movie from being melodramatic to a work that can touch something greater within most people. A greater sense of justice, humility, humanism, truthfulness. Not sublimely intelligent, but much more involving than the average american movie. Expand
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10
lasttimeisawApr 4, 2012
A cinema viewing of this soft Sci-Fi phenomenon, Jennifer Lawrence is the only impetus for me and the aftermath is unexpectedly satisfactory, with several inevitable grudges, among which is the shakily giddying cinematography, it may intendA cinema viewing of this soft Sci-Fi phenomenon, Jennifer Lawrence is the only impetus for me and the aftermath is unexpectedly satisfactory, with several inevitable grudges, among which is the shakily giddying cinematography, it may intend to be stylish, however one should not stay too much nearer the screen and it is not well-manipulated.

The film is nerve-absorbing in its narrative particularly before the game time, the stunning sets and inhabitants tableaux of the rich capitol is better-than-expectedly glistening, but when the children-slaughtering begins, there is deficit in imagination and the SFX mainly falls flat.

The film has already whisked away a TWILIGHT-sega triumph in the North American market, of which the worldwide popularity may fall short, but the sensational trend is irreversible, and as myself has completely sidelined TWILIGHT-sega, THE HUNGER GAMS is on a long run to be conquering an even wider demography (a more maturer one for sure). The performances are pleasantly orchestrated, an Oscar-nominated Jennifer Lawrence does strike a memorable and convincing embodiment of our heroin, imbues her a role-model paradigm for the young generation around her age, she is invincible in nearly all her scenes, grabbing all the attention and only a polychromatic talk-show host spoofer Stanley Tucci could steal some meager thunder from her. Among others, Josh Hutcherson is controversially add some juice to the flavor, I havenâ
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8
ZalDec 20, 2012
When I heard The Hunger Games was going to be turned into a movie, I was worried about how it would translate to film. I'm not a die hard fan of the series nor do I think the series is perfect, but I do respect it and its intentions.When I heard The Hunger Games was going to be turned into a movie, I was worried about how it would translate to film. I'm not a die hard fan of the series nor do I think the series is perfect, but I do respect it and its intentions.

Overall, I think this movie was good. As I suspected, there were some problems translating the material to film and I don't blame this on the director, writers, actors, or anyone else. I knew the violence would be toned down because PG-13 movies have strict guidelines. I also knew that we wouldn't get much of Katniss's inner struggle since cinema is a "show me" medium where as literature is not.

The acting is spectacular, especially from Jennifer Lawrence. Banks and Harrelson were having the time of their life filming this.

The world of Panem has a very Star Wars-y feel which you may or may not like. Personally, I liked it.

I think what would have helped this movie is if they made it longer. Yes, it's already 2 hrs and 30 min, but THG deserves the Lord of the Rings treatment. It's a big story that should be told in full detail. Like those who read the books, I wish it could have been more violent but I think we all knew that that could never happen without this movie being a hard R.

While there are many, many flaws, THG was well made. They didn't do the best they could have done with this movie, but it's still a solid movie.
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9
WarrionApr 5, 2012
Now, this film isn't incredible, but it fulfilled everything I had hopes for when I went into the cinema. I think a lot of the scenes were done done very well, and it made me feel very tense, which is good. The only bad thing I could sayNow, this film isn't incredible, but it fulfilled everything I had hopes for when I went into the cinema. I think a lot of the scenes were done done very well, and it made me feel very tense, which is good. The only bad thing I could say about it was there were a few cliches that they used, but all in all it was a good film, at least, I enjoyed it, and that's why I gave it the score that I did. Expand
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9
ahriikMar 24, 2012
I've never read the books, and knew next-to-nothing about the movie when I walked into the theater, and this movie knocked my socks off. I loved the tense atmosphere that is present throughout most of the film; it keeps you on the edge ofI've never read the books, and knew next-to-nothing about the movie when I walked into the theater, and this movie knocked my socks off. I loved the tense atmosphere that is present throughout most of the film; it keeps you on the edge of your seat. Great, believable acting, especially from Ms. Lawrence. And a wonderful story and setting that was both engaging and awe-inspiring. Definitely the best movie I've seen so far in 2012. Not sure how it holds up to the book, but I personally think this movie is fantastic. Expand
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8
imthenoobNov 7, 2012
Never read the books and never will. Only watched this because my dad bought it for my sister. That being said, It was actually pretty good. Plenty of action, well acted, and it was entertaining. I wouldn't mind sitting through the sequel.
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7
KurisumasuMay 8, 2012
A pretty good movie overall. I haven't read the book, so I'll judge this film as original work. The setting, although interesting and thought-provoking, wasn't really explained, which is a shame because a dystopic government is usually a goodA pretty good movie overall. I haven't read the book, so I'll judge this film as original work. The setting, although interesting and thought-provoking, wasn't really explained, which is a shame because a dystopic government is usually a good author's/director's choice. The acting was mostly well done, especially Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss, but some of the characters weren't fully fleshed out - Katniss' parents and sister, in particular. This wouldn't really be a problem but there are recurring flashbacks to these figures at some points in the film and all they end up doing is making you wonder why they were there in the first place. Overall, this film is definitely worth seeing but don't expect not to see some "filler" in such a long movie. Expand
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8
jack977Nov 27, 2013
Good acting, interesting production design, commendable themes and a racy screenplay makes Hunger Games the big budget fantasy precedent for this decade. The one and only thing that mars this otherwise engagingly well made blockbuster is itsGood acting, interesting production design, commendable themes and a racy screenplay makes Hunger Games the big budget fantasy precedent for this decade. The one and only thing that mars this otherwise engagingly well made blockbuster is its cinematography with its unnecessary and excessive use of the shaky/handheld cam effect which more than anything robs the fine production design of its value. Expand
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6
MossyCDLApr 1, 2012
Coming from the perspective of someone who hasn't read the books yet (although I really should get to doing that), The Hunger Games raises a lot of questions that end up unanswered by the end of the film. How did a dystopian society likeComing from the perspective of someone who hasn't read the books yet (although I really should get to doing that), The Hunger Games raises a lot of questions that end up unanswered by the end of the film. How did a dystopian society like Penam get founded and take hold in the first place? What world order would let a nation that forces children to fight and kill each other to exist? What were the justifications and causes of the war? Why are the citizens of Penam who live outside the districts so ostentatious? It would have been nice if this background history was clarified. Instead, the film treats you as if you already know why, which puts those who have read the books at a great advantage over those who haven't. The overall pacing of the film felt rushed and the transitions from scene to scene felt slightly abrupt. And then there is a complete lack of focus on practically all the characters except Katniss. I mean just look at Gale. For a character who I've read is supposed to be the third most important character after Katniss and Peeta, his role in this film was all but shafted to a few inconsequential chit-chats with Katniss and staring at the screen watching the games at various points in the film. This lack of development continues on to Haymitch, Effie, and Cinna, who are so underdeveloped that it leaves their characters ambiguous as to whether they are truly good or evil. Acting wise, Jennifer Lawrence clearly out-acts everyone else in the film. Her ability to convey a broad-spectrum of emotions is superb. Stanley Tucci is at the bottom of the acting list. I don't really know if he was having problems getting suited to his role, but his whole performance came off as forced and uncomfortable. Technically, the film was great at conveying psychological intensity, which is a major plus for an action film like this. Other pluses include great visual effects, great costume, set and makeup design, a great soundtrack made possible by the collaboration of various musicians, and most of all, not embellishing the violence of the kids killing each other (thank you). There is still room for development in the next two films, but overall, the movie is a whole heck of a lot better than most other action films (especially ones adapted from books). Expand
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8
boxster98Apr 1, 2012
Overrall great book to movie. It did a great job showing dramatizing the games and making the audience feel what a tribute would feel. I thought all of the actors(ress) were great picks for the movie, except Peeta. I pictured him to beOverrall great book to movie. It did a great job showing dramatizing the games and making the audience feel what a tribute would feel. I thought all of the actors(ress) were great picks for the movie, except Peeta. I pictured him to be tougher and stronger. My only complaint is the shaky camera (along with everyone else) covering up the violent action during the hunger games. I feel they cheaped out. They could have showed more. I mean look at Dark Knight. Spoiler: The only other complaint is the dogs at the end. I feel they could have kept it true to the book and added an even darker aspect to the games. But overrall a great book to movie adaptation. Expand
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9
skyminsterNov 3, 2012
This review contains fairly major spoilers about half way through (you have been warned)!

The Hunger Games is an amazing movie filled with suspense. The action scenes are incredibly tense and quick, as you watch the film, you become
This review contains fairly major spoilers about half way through (you have been warned)!

The Hunger Games is an amazing movie filled with suspense. The action scenes are incredibly tense and quick, as you watch the film, you become nervous, it is very engaging, questions will pop up in your head: What's gonna happen to everyone, who will die next, what will the actual hunger games be like, who will be picked to compete, what the heck is going on (only if you didn't read the writing at the start, if you don't read it, you'll have no idea what's going on!)?! The plot is interesting and makes you anxious, it has much depth, but it is a little confusing, and the character building is slightly off, you don't get to know the characters incredibly well, but saying that, you do get a big idea of what they are like, and when a character dies and/or something bad to them happens, you do get emotional, either on the verge of crying or mildly weeping, one particular character, from district 11, when she dies, you cry, and you fill really sorry for her (presumably) dad. It is amazingly gripping, the whole thing is. Another thing: the people who made this must of worked insanely hard to make it an amazing experience to watch, because the whole thing is incredibly tense and exciting; the compelling and not too complex plot, the impressive special effects, the great acting, the suspense, the exiting action sequences, the extremely well-fitted music, the well done dialogue and the perfectly done camera angles are the things that make it so amazing to watch! The only things stopping this brilliant movie from getting a 10 are: the character building thing, the fact that the actor of the main character is definitely not a teenager, and the slightly over the top makeup. So I give this film a 9.5/10.
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8
7dogguyApr 13, 2012
this movie was very good i have not read the books yet but i love the storyline and the idea of the hunger games the whole setting is very unique and i will remember the characters for a while with there weird clothing and hair styles andthis movie was very good i have not read the books yet but i love the storyline and the idea of the hunger games the whole setting is very unique and i will remember the characters for a while with there weird clothing and hair styles and colors and no this nothing like twilight this is actually good it takes place in the future and the was a war and people have to fight to the death, 20 of them from the 12 districts of the united states as punishment for the people of the districts rebelling for the poor conditions of the districts i would give this a 10 if they would have described the characters relationships with each other better Expand
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7
a7xfanMar 24, 2012
I thought this film was good. The fact that I assumed the movie would be the next "Twilight" series made me very skeptical and worried that the film wouldn't be good, but now I stand corrected because this film wasn't bad. The premise wasI thought this film was good. The fact that I assumed the movie would be the next "Twilight" series made me very skeptical and worried that the film wouldn't be good, but now I stand corrected because this film wasn't bad. The premise was genius and the leads of the movie had an okay chemistry between each other the entire film. The one thing I must point out is the fact that they really only concentrated on the two leads and really no one else. The main lead: Jennifer Lawrence, who was in X-Men: First Class got her first really big lead role and played her part really well and kept the film going throughout. This for me is a film you can watch once and never again because it just wasn't a super great film. Expand
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7
jack2059Aug 4, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The premise of hunger games is great, a battle to the death between selected "tributes" from each district. And for a 144minute film, it is paced really well and does not get boring, especially when the Games dont actualy start till after the first hour. Unfortunately the film does feel a little gappy, the games take place over an unknown amount of time, many people die without you knowing or seeing anything, this means the ending just appears without warning. The film would of definately benefited from using the TV coverage to let us know just whats going on. Expand
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8
darogers89Apr 13, 2012
Just the plot alone gets an A from me for originality. I get sick to my stomach when I see so many cliche movies that are just carbon copies of some other unoriginal idea. This movie is of course suspenseful which is one of my fav thingsJust the plot alone gets an A from me for originality. I get sick to my stomach when I see so many cliche movies that are just carbon copies of some other unoriginal idea. This movie is of course suspenseful which is one of my fav things about seeing a movie edge of your seat moments. I always say movies coulda been better but thats cuz its always true no matter what. It was like 2 n a half hours I woulda liked more dialogue to get a better feel of the times they live in and what not. I recommend it though definitely. I will probably be borrowing my girlfriends hunger games books now to compare to the film. Expand
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7
PTampApr 18, 2012
Went to see this movie to see what all the teenaged fans were buzzing about, seeing as it has done very well at the box-office. I had only known the premise from a brief synopsis of the book series but had not had any interest. I did enjoyWent to see this movie to see what all the teenaged fans were buzzing about, seeing as it has done very well at the box-office. I had only known the premise from a brief synopsis of the book series but had not had any interest. I did enjoy the movie, though as a dystopian future, its not that unusual. I'm sure the young readers to which this genre is new would be impressed by the premise of the story but for veteran consumers of speculative fiction, a lot of this will seem to be old hat. I liked the supporting cast, in particular Caitness' fashion stylist portrayed by Lenny Kravitz was a hoot. I also enjoyed the brief yet menacing presence of Donald Sutherland as the President. The young actors did a good job and played their roles in a nice restrained manner which didn't annoy me like actors in many movies aimed at teenaged audiences tend to do as I've gotten older. Jennifer Lawrence seems to have a bright future in front of her. Expand
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8
Csquared1Mar 27, 2012
Good solid film. Most of my issues with it have more to do with the way it was marketed. It looked as if they were trying to bill it as some sort of action film, when in fact it really isn't. If you are looking for the lead character to beGood solid film. Most of my issues with it have more to do with the way it was marketed. It looked as if they were trying to bill it as some sort of action film, when in fact it really isn't. If you are looking for the lead character to be some sort of badass, you will be sorely dissapointed. Instead, what you get is a pretty well considered scenerio for what would be more likely to happen to random teens placed in an unreasonably butal situation. If you view this violent drama for what it really is it, it doesn't disappoint. Expand
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8
Tyrannis1964May 2, 2012
great movie it handled the teen violence really well and was true enough to the book would have gotten a 9 or 10 from me if it had been a bit closer to the books story and it could have had more of its little details
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7
MovieFan123Sep 21, 2015
When I originally saw The Hunger Games, I was wowed. Beautiful effects and strong acting. However, after recently re watching it I realized there were more problems than meet the eye. The Hunger Games is directed by Gary Ross and staresWhen I originally saw The Hunger Games, I was wowed. Beautiful effects and strong acting. However, after recently re watching it I realized there were more problems than meet the eye. The Hunger Games is directed by Gary Ross and stares Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Woody Harrelson. Let's start with the bad. After watching the sequels I realize (and don't hate me for this) Jennifer Lawrence is just not giving as strong a performance as in later films. It's perfectly fine but I wish she gave us a more layered performance in general. Also, there is little development of the supporting characters. We get there name, a general backstory but that's it. Also the main problem in this film is: Shaky Cam. This film's battle scenes have so much shaky cam at some points it's extremely hard to see what's going on. But of course there are good parts. The story is obviously excellent. Woody Harrelson gives a great performance, a mentor who seems crazy but is actually a man who has just lost his way. The visuals are spectacular and there are some true moments of emotion throughout this film. The capitol is beautifully designed with each building going beyond your wildest imaginations. Every possibly cheesy moment in the book is done right for the most part. Overall despite some problems with character development and shaky cam The Hunger Games is well- written well done adaption that opens the series up properly despite not being as good as Catching Fire. This is why I give it a 7/10. Expand
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4
jzmeApr 10, 2012
Honestly, the movie was just averagely good in terms of story line. It was really strange how subtle they touch on the story of the girl's family & friends back home. For example the role of the guy back at her hometown who likes her was notHonestly, the movie was just averagely good in terms of story line. It was really strange how subtle they touch on the story of the girl's family & friends back home. For example the role of the guy back at her hometown who likes her was not told much. Personally, there were many incomplete and insignificant scenes in the movie which makes it too long. However, the survival part was a bit interesting. The graphic was a bit poor, not up to my expectation, especially when the 12 districts march across the stadium. It was too fake for me. A so-so movie. Expand
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7
beingryanjudeSep 2, 2014
The constant comparisons to the novel from which it came are destined to tear down this film--but that's just not fair, it's really quite remarkable. Jennifer Lawrence and her fellow cast members bring this extraordinary tale to life on-screen.
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8
skinny_mean_manMay 3, 2012
as someone who has not read the books. i enjoyed this film quite a bit. it had a suprising dose of humor in it that i did not expect. the only major complaint i have is that they should have just went for broke and made this a Rated R film.as someone who has not read the books. i enjoyed this film quite a bit. it had a suprising dose of humor in it that i did not expect. the only major complaint i have is that they should have just went for broke and made this a Rated R film. its still violent enough in tone and in visuals that children still may not be ready to view this. Also, there is a lot of heavy dialogue that most children are not going to understand or be interested in. in short they should have made it for the 17 and up crowd but all in all a good film. Expand
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7
Johng4Oct 2, 2012
If you didnt know what this movie is based off of its based off the book The Hunger Games. I think the directors did a pretty poor job on this movie because they cut out pretty important parts from the book. I just got done reading the book,If you didnt know what this movie is based off of its based off the book The Hunger Games. I think the directors did a pretty poor job on this movie because they cut out pretty important parts from the book. I just got done reading the book, a few days ago and it is a really good book,the movie,eh. One thing i didnt like is the casting because the girl who played Katniss doesnt really fit the character and Peeta's actor is ugly,just saying. If you havent read the book dont watch this movie because you will have no idea what the hell is going on at all. Expand
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9
BGYetiMar 24, 2012
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It was lacking in many aspects compared to the book, but it is understandable since movie length is something constantly hanging over a directors head since you have to keep the movie short enough to keep people interested, but long enough to get what you can into the movie. My personal opinion is that the director and the movie in general could have really turned out better if there was more emotion put into some of the scene's. I understand you can't show in a PG-13 movie a 12 year old getting impaled by a spear, but Rue's death in the movie lacked alot of the emotion that the book was able to portray. What should have been a revenge killing fueld by anger and sadness was merely Katniss defending herself and unfortunately Rue got in the cross fire after the spear missed Katniss. Not only did it lack emotion with Katniss by Rue's side as she died the aftermath was completely left out, Katniss was supposed to decorate Rue's body in flowers but instead simply got a bouquet of flowers and laid them on her. And a major symbol from district 11 in the form of the bread they send her is missed out. While tension is rising in district 11 showing them already in the process of a riot is going to be something they will have to skirt around in the 2nd film when Katniss is trying to stop rebellion, well that's a little late seeing that it started before you even used the berries to defy the capitol, guess Rue's death is the spark, not the berries. All and all except for a few gripes about lack of emotion the film did a good job sticking true to the books, while they slightly shot themselves in the foot, and will have to do some cosmetic work with the 2nd movie to fix some blunders of the 1st movie and then stick true to the 2nd book I have faith in the team. Actors did a great job portraying their characters, I wasn't sold on Peeta's actor but after seeing him in the movie i saw the great choice they made in him, and Katniss's actress did a great job as well. Expand
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8
juniorkickstartMar 26, 2012
I've never read the books so i don't know if this movie is a great adaption but i really enjoyed the movie. The acting was good, story was quite compelling and the action was good throughout. Reminded me of Battle Royale which i also enjoyed.
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7
kkrulecMar 24, 2012
I have not read the books, so I'm evaluating this strictly as movie, not as adaptation of book. Generally I was satisfied with the movie. It's not brilliant but it's worth considering. However it felt shallow on parts. Especially characterI have not read the books, so I'm evaluating this strictly as movie, not as adaptation of book. Generally I was satisfied with the movie. It's not brilliant but it's worth considering. However it felt shallow on parts. Especially character development. Also some segments were not explained enough. I don't know anything about this post-apocalyptic world. So for public like me, non readers, there should be some segments that more obviously explain stuff.
Nevertheless I'm happy with cast. Mostly. Also visually movie is rich. Contrast between capitol and districts is well made. And killing scenes are well handled for the target group. At the end of the day it teen movie.
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8
csw12Mar 31, 2012
The Hunger Games is a pretty good film but I think if it took more risks and didn't stick to a safe script it could have been excellent. Jennifer Lawrence put on a really good performance and the movie seem to shine around her. I am lookingThe Hunger Games is a pretty good film but I think if it took more risks and didn't stick to a safe script it could have been excellent. Jennifer Lawrence put on a really good performance and the movie seem to shine around her. I am looking forward to the next chapter of The Hunger Games Expand
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