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Generally favorable reviews- based on 1474 Ratings

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  1. Oct 7, 2014
    I don't understand what got this movie so hyped and successful...I haven't read the books and yet I can't help but think this has totally been done before. Maybe you remember the 1980s film The Running Man? Arnold...anyone? When you make a movie with a plot that has already been done, you better have some extra fire power to back it up. Of which this movie had little to none. The characters had very little and/or significant development. I didn't feel bad when they died, enough said. Wasn't that the girl from the movie Orphan? That movie was sick! (the good kind of sick) You monsters diminished her talent! And Jennifer Lawrence, just didn't have the edge I feel like a girl in her situation would need, sure she can shoot, but what good is that when there's no fire? Where's the animal kill or be killed instinct? No believable feeling. And there's no one else better than her to eventually be the one who takes down the bad guys? Her performance makes that tough to believe. Terrible. And there's more of the series to come. Wow. I don't think they can salvage this. But how cute, they're going to try. Expand
  2. Jul 27, 2014
    stupid book adaption...again. copying divergent (the best movie of all time). woo hoo, crossbow wielding katniss everdeen is copying terrel dickson from that one vampire show. katniss is a douche bag. she doesnt help her family get food and steals the spotlight for her soon to be famous sister prinrows. heck, her sister told her she had dreams about getting picked, dont interfere woman. president snowball is so white. the hunger games is a bland book about a protagonist named cato who SPOILER ALERT dies at the end. you couldve killed rue. thanks a lot jennifer lawrence. Expand
  3. Apr 12, 2014
    I give this rating 4/10 because i watched it to many times they make dumb choices in the movie .
    Grade for hunger games B
    Grade for catching fire D.
  4. Apr 4, 2014
    Seriously, **** this film. It is awful. I'm not going into detail because it would take hours for me to go over everything that makes this thing unwatchable. Suffice to say it's just a senseless story driven by insufferably irritating characters and a string of convenient plot devices that sporadically fade in and out of relevance. If you want a film about a brutal death match, watch battle royale. If you want a film about ridiculous angst ridden teenage romance, watch twilight. If you want a film that tries to include a death match and a convoluted teenage romance and fails at both, watch the hunger games. Expand
  5. Mar 12, 2014
    honestly for the longest time after I saw this on netflix, I thought it was a slower, duller american remake of "battle royale", without any of the fun black humor. now that I know that's apparently not true, I now think of this movie as just slow, dull and without any sense of humor.
  6. Mar 8, 2014
    This was an unwatchable, tedious, ass-numbing, bore of a movie; not worthy of even “made for TV” status. The acting was stilted and wooden; Jennifer Lawrence is creepy looking and unattractive. Honestly the whole thing was a mess from start to finish. Save your money and opt out of the remaining movies now; doubtful they will get any better.
  7. Jan 22, 2014
    This film is just a copy of Battle Royale, it's plagiarism. There's nothing new here, there's nothing stunning or amazing it's just a film to take your money and is a big hollywood fail.
  8. Dec 21, 2013
    I have found the movie has bad acting, the animations are not realistic and the plot was very bad. The scenes looked very 'bright and happy', so did the soldiers uniforms, also, is it just me or does everyone have clothes always look good as new and the characters have minimal amounts of dirt on them too?

    In the movie story things that are extremely unlikely happened then something else
    extremely unlikely happened to make it follow the book.

    All that said, I am definitely not going to watch the sequels.
  9. Dec 11, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Hunger Games was written by American novelist, Suzanne Collins and was published and released in autumn 2008. The breathtaking book is about a girl in a poor District with The Hunger Games in the capitol once a year to fight until death. When her sister is taken out to do this challenge, what will Katniss do to save her sister?
    Gary Ross, 56, an American director, writer and author who wrote and directed this appalling version of an amazing book. He took the feeling out of the words Collins wrote and should be ashamed of himself.
    It was released in the UK in March 2012 and the total box office amount was £457,295,652. Many people, including myself, were clearly disappointed as we wanted to get the feeling we got with Collins’ books but instead I sat through a poor version with terrible acting.
    A man coming out of the cinema said “They couldn’t act. Stone faced, that’s what they were”. If I were Suzanne Collins I would feel utterly embarrassed to say that was based on a book I wrote.
    Jennifer Lawrence, 22, is a beautiful and talented actress but i felt her part was extremely flat but, of course, i put the blame on Gary Ross as he was responsible.
    The script was forced, terrible and completely horrendous! It made me cringe! Some of the memorable lines from the movie were taken from the book but having them being read aloud instead of reading them in your head ruined the experience. As well as the terrible script, there were also technical difficulties like when the camera would jerk and everyone in the screening room would feel suspense but Ross was building up to nothing. I am not an expert in special effects but to me, it looked like a student in primary school doing it for the first time and hoping for the best! It was an attempt to be serious but they failed miserably.
    With a budget of £51.6m, they should’ve hired a decent camera-man as to not make the whole film look like a school play!
    Overall, I give this despicable mess of a movie 0.5 of a star because they based it on an excellent book and I recommend you reading the book!
  10. Dec 11, 2013
    The Hunger Games can be summed up like this: the good is heavily outweighed by the bad. Only fans of the books should view it to see if they can get an ounce of satisfaction from the film adaptation. For everyone else, don't waste your time.
  11. Dec 1, 2013
    this movie was okay at most it was boring for really long and the hype was over a book and book fans will give it a good review that it will not deserve dont let your loyalism make people think a whack movie is good so they go buy it or something
  12. Nov 29, 2013
    Just an okay at best movie. The main thing I had a problem with this movie is that you don't have any emotional investment in the characters. Even at moments where you are clearly supposed to feel sad or happy, you jut don't. The characters just aren't all that dimensional. Also, there is too much use of shaky camera and its hard to tell what is going on. I think the filmmaker decided to do this so that you don't see all the violence which would make this movie rated R, because hey if the movies PG-13 its going to make a lot more money. Hunger Games isn't that great of a movie but there are some enjoyable elements to it. Expand
  13. Nov 21, 2013
    A cliché, predictable, boring, eventless and poorly presented movie. It borrows age-old tricks from video games and does them poorly. Absolutely nothing to see here.
  14. Nov 19, 2013
    Poor movie. It should have been more than one part per book. There was no character development at all and bad casting. There were numerous mistakes in the movie aswell as taking one idea from the book and basing the entire population of the capitol on it. Not only that, but it's being completely marketed for the 8-12 crowd, with action figures and card games. The cast was horrible. The 17 year old gale was played by 22 year old Liam Hemsworth, and 16 year old Katniss by 22 year old Jennifer Lawrence. You know a high hyped movie was bad when it's already on netflix. Hopefully they don't screw up Catching fire, and the casting looks not that bad. Expand
  15. Oct 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 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
  16. Oct 9, 2013
    I really do not get all of the appeal behind The Hunger Games. This is similar to The Twilight Saga, not that both franchises are the exact same, but they're both highly overrated franchises that are geared mostly towards teenagers. The only difference is that The Hunger Games tries to appeal to all demographics, but just ends up being REALLY obnoxious--- once you see the poster for this movie 1000 times. The one with Katniss on it. This is one of the most ANNOYING movie posters, if not THE most annoying movie poster I have ever seen. It's everywhere, even when the second movie is about to be released. Sorry, but The Hunger Games will not be as memorable as Star Wars or Lord of the Rings. It's just another adult-novel-turned-to-movie-aimed-for-teenagers. Expand
  17. Oct 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
  18. Sep 18, 2013
    The hungry games are bad and i think its bad becos there was no hungrany and there was none games so i dont get way it was calld hte hugnry games and all off the charenters wasnt hungry adn they dint want to kill echother because they aer winmps so thay shud kill thamsalfs with a 360noscope
  19. Jul 16, 2013
    First off, I neither liked this film nor the books. The entire concept was taken directly from Battle Royale and has just interjected elements from The Lord of The Flies. There are several ways that the character of Katniss is just a bland, sociopathic male-stand-in who does everything wrong and seems to get out alive. Peeta is creepy. No question. How he tries to make Katniss act like she's in love with him for the better of the viewers and how he admitted to nearly stalking her in both the film and book. Gale and Prim are useless characters who, if they were removed, the story would still be the same. Haymich isn't alcoholic at all, he's an occasional drunk, and I'm ready to stand up to that point with anyone who wants to protest. I don't want this review to run long with everything that's wrong with this, because there aren't enough characters here to rightly explain. But what I hate the most is the sheer fact that such a large bandwagon has been made for this film/book. There are other alternatives out there that do it so much better than this. Just because millions of people like something doesn't make it as good as everyone praises it to be. Expand
  20. Jul 5, 2013
    I'll start off by making the point that I'm acutely aware that I'm not the target audience of this picture, but would also add that this shouldn't prevent any appreciation I might have when it's done right. Sadly, The Hunger Games struggles on too many occasions for this to be a consideration. I will say that my own biases may also play a part, as general irritation with certain aspects of the movie may relate to me specifically.

    Disclaimers aside, the early stages of the film were reasonable. It was much grittier than I was expecting in introducing the hardships of life in the district. However, it didn't take long for the first source of annoyance to rear its teen heartthrob of a head...

    I'm far more familiar with Liam Hemsworth's brother Chris than I am with him, and on this evidence, Liam should be taking more than a few pointers from his older brother. Why he chose to earnestly squint his way through the mercifully brief screen time he is afforded is beyond me, and quite honestly, it drove me nuts. It smacks of pandering to the tweenie audience (as do the ridiculously transparent character names) and it really aggravated me. Saving grace then that he was not, as I was expecting, the male counterpart to Lawrence's Katniss. I found Josh Hutcherson infinitely less infuriating and was able to move on with my life without putting a hole in my TV.

    On a mildly positive note, the scenes of children being herded to the 'reaping', the name given to the event at which the contestants are chosen, was suitably dark in tone. There is a decent sense of foreboding about the whole thing and I was fairly engaged for a few minutes, the tearful goodbyes and desperation adding to the spectre of things to come. It was reminiscent of a few wartime movies, but the fact that it was even in there was pleasing. Unfortunately, this is not where the beg, borrow and steal mentality ended.

    I'm not so sure that there is anything completely original left in the popular view of a science fiction future, but when it becomes so distracting that you can't stop pointing out aspects derived from other films, there's a problem. I won't bore anyone with a complete list here, suffice it to say that I noticed everything from Gattaca to Demolition Man and many others in between being misappropriated in the set design and it really got to me. On top of this, The Fifth Element provides more or less the entirety of the cues for the costumes of the population of the city. I was relieved once the action moved to the event itself and this is where the film was at its strongest.

    A good proportion of the action sequences are executed quite well and undeniably raise the film as a whole. The soundtrack is all a bit 'by the numbers', but bearable and apt at the very least. There's a lot of contrived plot silliness that takes place during the games sequences, but at least this section didn't exhaust me like much of the rest of the film did.

    Ultimately, it's not much worse than average, but there was far too much about this that had me gritting my teeth in despair to get anything out of the experience.
  21. Jul 3, 2013
    Read the book last year; saw the movie tonight. Completely disappointed with the overall adaptation. There was virtually no backstory, the characters felt very empty, and plenty of crucial plot points were glossed over.

    Why was Katniss so protective of Rue and emotional upon her death? Why did the riots start in District 12 so suddenly? Where was Katniss's gradual realization that
    cozying up to Peeta would lead to more sponsored parachutes? Where was the scene of the girl in the forest being captured (who eventually turned into an Avox)? Why were Katniss and Peeta acting so normal when they were presented with so much delicious food on the train (assuming they were on the brink of starvation back in District 12)? Where were the scenes where Panem's citizens were hinging on every move between Peeta/Katniss? Who the heck was Gale and what does he even have to do with this movie? All of these questions and MORE were left unanswered, and if it wasn't for me having read the book, I would have been sorely confused by the movie's shallow delivery.

    The only reason this movie deserves a 3 from me (instead of a 0), is because Jennifer Lawrence is a great actress. But not even she could save this lame duck of an adaptation.
  22. Jun 12, 2013
    Very little character development, weak storyline. This movie did have the potential to be great, but with weak character development, mediocre action scenes, and what felt like a weak storyline it was utterly dissappointing. If more time was spent on getting the viewers to know and identify with the characters it might have been a great movie.
  23. Apr 28, 2013
    Shameful ripoff of "Battle Royale," and much lower in quality. It's Battle Royale for "the Twilight crowd." The acting was stale, the action was bland, and there wasn't any reason given to me to really care about anything going on. The author of the books claims to have never heard of Battle Royale, and that's a laugh!
  24. Apr 15, 2013
    The Hunger Games tells a story that is either told too fast or too stretched. The actors do either a great job or a horrible one (like the actor playing Peeta who always looks like he shat his pants). It could have been good, but it's dragged down by flaws that could have easily been prevented.
  25. Apr 14, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It's hard for me to understand why so many people thought this movie was well done. I read the first book (mainly because my girlfriend really wanted me to, especially before the movie) and I have to say I'm really glad I did. Although, even if I didn't read the book, the movie is horrible regardless. My favorite character Haymitch never did any of the things that I liked him for in the book. I never cared for Rue as I did in the book, quite frankly I did not care when she died in the movie. When the familiars (the name escapes me) came on screen of the dead tributes, they were awkward dog creatures that did not resemble their former selves. Thresh never did anything. The casting was off as certain characters did not look like how they were portrayed in the book (I know it cannot be perfect but you can make it close). The chariot scene with the fire dress was uninspired. Cinna had no emotion and seemed to really not care for Katniss. The shotty camera work that just shook every time an action scene happened. The fact that Pita didn't lose a leg. This movie is just wrong. It's just bad. Aside from completely ruining the book, the movie alone just is not good. Nothing about it was entertaining especially since I've read the book and know that everything was done so horribly wrong. My girlfriend who is a huge fan of the series (collects everything she can) also hated the movie. We were both sitting in the theater, dumbstruck as people clapped and cheered for a movie that destroyed what the books created. In retrospect I'm sure more than half the people in the movie hadn't read the books but the fact that the author stood behind this, I'll be sure to skip out on anything she does again. Not to mention the fact that I saw Battle Royale which came out before the Hunger Games books and movie and watching that you realize how much is ripped off. Right down to where they have two winners. I'm rambling now but geez, looking up at 831 positive reviews, really? Gah! Expand
  26. Mar 19, 2013
    Not worth it. Please, I read the book for school and decided to check out the movie. My God that was terrible almost as terrible as Avatar. I fell asleep 3 times. The book was filled with action but this movie wasn't. Acting was good that's why I gave it a three. If you want to be entertained you would have a better chance watching the book cover then this. The book cover was more interesting then the movie. Avoid movies like this and you will be happy. You want my advice, watch Spring Breakers. Expand
  27. Feb 15, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. "It all makes sense if you read the book". Well, I guess it's time to put a warning label on the DVD cover about that, because this movie makes no sense. At all. I really hope the books are better thought and better written than this movie, that can be described only as garbage on garbage on garbage that the viewer is forced to swallow. Plot holes, unanswered questions, non-sense, "The Hunger Games" has them all. During the movie you'll find yourself simply asking two kind of questions: "Are they really that stupid?" and "What the hell?". Some examples? Here we go, but I doubt I'll have enough typing space. --The participants make teams. Yes, you read that correctly: they make TEAMS. For like an hour you're told only one of them can survive but, yeah, they make teams. You could understand that behaviour from the kind-hearted Katniss, but, wait, it gets better: the BAD GUYS make teams. And they sleep together. Of course, no one of them thinks about slaughtering all of his teammates during the night to win the games, because, yes, they are that stupid. --You managed to get all the food supplies? It would be a good idea to surround them with two dozens land mines, just in case the good girl wants to blow them and starve you to death. Yes, they are that stupid. --The good girl climbs a tree while chased by a bunch of bad guys? No problem, since no one of that uber-skilled teen assassins is able to climb a tree aswell. Again, it gets better: she kills one by throwing an hive full of killer bees on them while they're sleeping (somehow the bees can tell the good guys from the bad ones). --At one point she's about to be killed, but the bad guy is kind enough to wait, go close and confess all of his murders, so the not-so-good-but-not-that-bad girl can get revenge. Oh, it gets even better: she kills only the bad guy and spares Katniss, since she somehow forgot (again) only one of them can win.--On the "What the hell?" category: when short on participants, they "summon" two giant rabid dogs through a computer. No explanation whatsoever, they just click a couple of times, make a 3D drawing we go, giant dogs. Also, these dogs are like 6 feet high, but can't jump over a 4 1/2 feet high roof, otherwise the good girl would've died. --The baker-guy manages to disguise himself as a rock. And he's damn good at it, but...wait. What tools did he use? And when? No explanation. --The end would have been a great comedy moment if I hadn't payed real money to see it. It goes like this: "We changed the rules of the game, you both win. No, wait, it was a joke, the rules stay the same, one of you have to die. Wait... What? Are you killing yourselves? For real? Nononono! Wait! Wait! We change the rules, ok, we change the rules. You both win, long life to the Hunger Games!". I mean, are you serious? Are you f***ing serious? These games go on for like a century and no one, never ever thought you can simply cheat by threatening to kill yourselves as the last survivors? Again: are they really *that stupid*? And these overpowered, totalitarian organizers never ever thought about this *little flaw*? They have to be tricked by a couple of teenagers to realize their idiocy? --These are just some of the pearls you'll find in this movie, let alone the poor acting of everyone, including Woody Harrelson that was probably *really* drunk during all the shoots. If "The Hunger Games" was a movie from Mel Brooks, it would've been a round 10 in comedy. Don't waste your money on this rubbish. Expand
  28. Nov 26, 2012
    Admittedly, I was already tired to begin with when I started watching this movie (which resulted in me falling asleep halfway and missing around 60% of the awful movie). Either way, I don't understand the hype about this movie. It wasn't good at all, it was terrible. Terrible actors, terrible everything. I don't recommend this for anyone to watch. The only reason I'm rating it 3, is to be fair. But seriously though, it was awful. Expand
  29. Nov 5, 2012
    Feels kind of like a giant game of paintball. The setting is convoluted and the characters go undeveloped. I want to call it a missed opportunity, but I couldn't tell you what I think that opportunity is.
  30. Sep 1, 2012
    So this is it? This movie is very disappointing as it brings zero excitement. The authors vision of the world is really naive. I expected the main character to "crush the system" in some interesting way, while she just bowed down to it. There is nothing thrilling in action scenes, neither nothing touching in the plot. My final reaction was a big question mark when I saw the "heroes" smiling to the cameras and just returning home. I can only think of recommending this movie to young kids but there's this overall violence that makes it questionable. Expand
  31. Sep 1, 2012
    The Book was much more exiting and detailed than the movie
    The hunger games [The movie] was very undetailed and the acting was terrible too
    If you havent read the book you cannot understand ANYTHING! I read the book after the movie
    Im giving a 4 because it wasent a waste of my time either and its more surprising when its on a film than in a book
  32. Aug 24, 2012
    So my previous review was about why this movie was bad as a film, like poor/very bad(characterization, setting or general surreal atmosphere was just not serious/believable at all and this was put forth with no explanation, costumes of people especially soldiers, storyline and I want to say game play but this isn't a video game; I guess the closest thing would be the way the story worked itself out was pathetic).
    However this was based on the idea that this was a genuine story, which it is not. This book and film are both completely based on Battle Royal and this film brings absolutely nothing new to this type of storyline. Also, Battle Royal actually had gore while simultaneously making a good film in every way this movie failed it succeeded. If Battle Royal was in English, I bet he could sue on copy right in this day and age but that's another story....
  33. Aug 22, 2012
    A poor rip-off of Battle Royale. I'm pretty sure the book is interesting, but this movie was a gross disaster. A bunch of unexplained cut-scene, poorly constructed story, illogical actions. Very disapointed and I really don't see why people like this?
  34. Aug 21, 2012
    Lame Movie... not worth watching and disappointing :(

    The main story is not believable or not justified in the movie (I did not read the book , but I'm sure it's better), the whole movie is slow paced (specially the beginning) and it had almost no action at all .

    You'll not really care about the main character , and I was not convinced by the stupid connections between main
    characters (where the love came from all of a sudden).
    Also little kids just jump into killing other human beings that easily?? and be good at it and even enjoy it ...!!!
  35. Aug 21, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After all the hype I finally saw it, and, well, don't beleive the hype. First of all it absolutely drags on, scene after scene, developing very slowly. To it's credit, it is spending time on character development, which can sometimes be rare in movies today. But, there's so many un-necessarry shots and long cuts that one can easily see how the films 2 and a half hour length could be shortened. All this build up finally leads to the actual "games" and then the film starts to pick up a bit. The main problem I had with the film though, is that it seems to always be hinting at a deeper, more devious plot-line, that simply never manifests. For example, there are 3 or 4 bizarrely out of place "flashbacks" to previous scenes. This devices suggests that "hey, that scene was important, remember it, because you will need to when we tie in the sub-plot." But, finally, in the end, you come to discover that there is no sub plot. It's all just meat and potatoes action move schlock, dumbed down and amped up for the American movie viewing masses. Those flashbacks? It's like the director is saying "Hey, stay with us, Stay awake! I know this film is long and boring, but try to remember what's happening!" It's a slap in the face and an insult to intelligence. Finally, in the end, you succumb to the fact that the film is mostly a love story, but, you may be holding out hope for a big "stick it to the man" moment where the tyrants of the film get their come-uppance, (And also delivering a sub-text on the American government and politics), but nope, we are robbed of that as well. They just go home. This is a film engineered for the teenage Twilight crowd, not adults, and definitely not lovers of intellectual fiction or science fiction. The hype these days... Expand
  36. Aug 16, 2012
    I,as a 27 year old person am very disappointed about the film,but glad not to read the book.I respect who watched and liked the film but in my opinion,the script was so much ordinary.There were only tiny little bit action and drama in this film.This film is like the ''first'' film of an ordinary(not good,just ordinary) director. Last words,unless you are between 6-16,and like to take a nap while watching movies,don not ever think about seeing this film... Expand
  37. Aug 16, 2012
    Lets mix "the running man" with the tv show "Survivor" target the audience for "teenagers" but lets make it as violent as possible. Thats the end result for this movie. The movie is not orginal, boring, NOT real, the characters act as if they were on a tv show and their lives werent not in danger. They formed "Alliances" when the whole idea was the strongest person survives? give me a break! AVOID this movie at all costs! Expand
  38. Aug 14, 2012
    Dumbest and senseless movie ever! Some people, dressed like a gay freak show, taking some lowlifes's children for a gladiator's fights to make them (lowlifes) calm?! Only a tiny example of stupidity.
  39. Aug 9, 2012
    totally overrated and just flat out boring. during the action scenes the camera moved back and forth so much that i swear to God the cameraman was drunk off his ass
  40. b3_
    Jul 15, 2012
    I hated this movie. I had no expectations when going to see it having not read the book or barley having seen the trailer. This film was just far too long and It is rare that I get so bored in the cinema that I either want to sleep or leave.. I did not care for the characters at all as they were unbelievable and annoying. The acting was mediocre to bad and again gave an emphasis to this fake vibe I was getting. The film was just one big lame cliche for me. Time and time again out of the all the odds things would work out for the main character. I know this is typical for movies, but I was actually thinking 'are they serious?'. Without going into any more detail or spoilers I wouldn't recommend this movie to anyone over 18, or anyone who likes music because background music in this movie was almost nonexistent. Collapse
  41. Jul 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. 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
  42. Jun 30, 2012
    What could have been a series of exhilarating death-matches is, instead, a tedious melodrama. I REALLY don't appreciate the pointless shaky-cam thing. No review of THG would be complete without a comparison to 2000's "Battle Royale"; taking the respective budgets into account and hence disregarding THG's higher production values, I declare BR to be a far superior film, in terms of both entertainment as well as social commentary. Expand
  43. Jun 20, 2012
    Disappointing. Had a good start but ultimately failed to live up to the series. Arena done well but not so accurately to the book. Captured gore but failed to give a sense of emotion to the viewers.
  44. Jun 9, 2012
    The entire plot is based on the illogical premise that the games will keep the masses cowered and docile. But forcing two citizens from each region into lethal combat for public display and entertainment is a sure way to stir the populace into revolt and to make martyrs out of the participants. The random selection of contestants makes the slaughter of children inevitable, which would further inflame the populace. But this is just the beginning of a whole string of illogical plot developments that overwhelmed my ability to suspend disbelief. The film's robotic acting and dialogue make the moronic plot even more unbearable. I suspect that the producers knew they could profit by showing attractive young
    actors running around in futuristic costumes trying to kill each other and not have to bother with meaningful content or story. Hunger games left me starving for an engaging story or characters.
  45. Jun 9, 2012
    The book Hunger Games was published in 2008 and the film released in 2012. It shows a sophisticated society. Although it is impossible not to notice all the similarities with the japanese film Battle Royale, released in 2000, eight years before. In this film, students are kidnapped in a excursion trip and wake up with a head-explosive-collar. They were selected to a life and death game with only one survivor or none at all. Each one receive a backpack with food, drink, lantern and one weapon or survival device. Each six hours they are informed about the dead and the danger zones to be avoided in order not to explode their necks. Alliances are made and death follows the smallest suspicion. Previous infatuations and enmities are explicited. Enfasis centers in the animal inside all of us and how thick is the civil layer of our personalities and our survival willingness. Hunger Games is much more complex, however it is impossible to deny so many similarities Expand
  46. May 30, 2012
    Have I missed something, or is 'Hunger Games' in essence the same film as 'Battle Royale'.

    The Battle Royale. metacritic summary says 'Summary: Battle Royale is a violent epic about an innocent group of Junior High students forced by the government to hunt and kill their classmates for sport.'. And for 'Hunger Games' summary 'the evil Capitol of the nation of Panem forces each of its
    twelve districts to send a teenage boy and girl to compete'.

    Is it a remake, or just a rip off?
  47. May 29, 2012
    Having read the books, I was dissappointed by this one. Storyline was too bogged down by bad acting and souless characters. It seems unfair to compare the movie to the book. But the movie is just not good. The drama aspect was terribly done, but what do expect from the same director of a movie about a mentally retarded horse. Gary Ross, stop while you're ahead.
  48. May 18, 2012
    This movie is horrible compared to the book.
    This movie is so overrated and liked by all the teen-twilight fans.
    So stupid, but whatever....
    The movie is horrible
  49. May 17, 2012
    The Hunger Games is unoriginal and uninspiring, one of the strangest hyped movies I have seen in years. I was completely underwhelmed when I saw it. The story itself is cliche, the same futurist group of unfortunate souls forced to fight for the entertainment of the masses because of an oppressive regime. It wanted to be like the original Roller Ball, or Battle Royale, but ended up being more like the remake of Roller Ball, or Gamer. Jennifer Lawrence is good enough, but she seemed like the main character in a video game. She appeared very wooden (maybe that was the written character in the book) and I struggled to have any emotional connection whatsoever to her. The Hunger Games themselves lack the intensity that the long buildup implied. Maybe the PG-13 rating doomed the movie from the start and they weren't able to go where they wanted. The ending was inexcusable and a complete cop out, I won't spoil it but it made me lose faith in the source material to begin with. Bottom line, this is bad Science Fiction, and makes me wonder how low our standards have gotten that this was so highly regarded. Expand
  50. May 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 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.
  51. May 11, 2012
    Bad character development. Weak/unmemorable action sequences. Boring characters. Uninteresting world. Shaky cam that won't let you focus in on anything. Some of the worst dialogue I've ever seen. & it doesn't even follow the book all that how is this a good movie?
  52. May 8, 2012
    Hot garbage. Thought this movie was gonna be the PG-13 version of "Battle Royale". Instead it's just another dumb twilight esc movie. No thanks Hollywood, you can keep your tweenie movies to yourself.
  53. May 2, 2012
    I should talk about other series prior to talking about "The Hunger Game". I kept thinking about "Battle Royal", manga (Japanese comic book). "Battle Royal" came out as a manga first, then movie version of it came out. Manga version was the best, and the movie version sucked so bad. If you know both version of "Battle Royal", then you already got my point of this review.
    Honestly I did
    not read novel version of "The Hunger Game", but it was easy to feel something is missing on the story plot. Design and background of the movie (or the story) is awesome, but what is the point of nice looking movie without a nice story plot? Every boy and girl in the survival is not really attractive except the girl in the movie poster because story does not support characters well individually. There are 24 kids in the survival, and I only remember 5 or 6 of them......
    Now back to "Battle Royal", the main goal of the base storyline is a copy of "Battle Royal". This sounds like the main reason of this review. I gave low user score because "Battle Royal" is still better by comparing just movie versions. Don't blame my review with comparison on both unless you watched or read "Battle Royal".
  54. Apr 25, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Outdated special effects, unwatchable shaky camera style in the action scenes, strange choice of actress for the lead role (an almost too pretty well... developed woman to play the role of a malnourished - more like starved to death in the book- sixteen year old slum-girl. Terrible dialogue and character development, unrealistic depiction of the future with people wearing outdated 18th century costumes while possessing incredible, almost magical technology that could create something out of nothing. One of the biggest rip offs I have ever seen in my life. They have taken the story of the Battle Royale and abused it in the worst possible manner, throwing all the violence out the window or with the above mentioned shaky camera technique toned down to an absolute blur. For many actual minutes I couldn't see anything on the big screen and many of my friends had made similar complaints. A colossal waste of my money but I suppose at the same time a great cash in for the clever people behind this whole charade. This is definitely not a kids movie and it barely qualifies as adult one also. Expand
  55. Apr 21, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A lot of hype for a very lazy Hollywood movie. It falls especially flat once the Hunger Games begin. It seems that the director and all the actors didn't take the premise very seriously: that these are young children being forced to fight to the death with only one victor allowed. At times it felt more like revenge of the nerds where the dumb jocks band together to pick on the weaker kids. The stronger, Aryan-looking kids, go around seeking out Katniss with a joyous, kind of partying attitude. Have these teenagers somehow forgotten that only one person can survive? That at any moment the people they are next to have every reason to murder them in order to save themselves? One of them has no problems taking a nap while the others wait for Katniss to come down off the tree. And they laugh and flirt and play like school just got let out. And time after time the kids let others escape, sometimes for no reason at all. One large Black teen kills a young girl, as she is fighting with Katniss, then looks at Katniss and says something to the effect of "I'll let you go this time", for no reason. Has he forgotten that one way or another he will have to kill her to survive? Why wait to kill her too? Especially in the midst of bloodlust after killing someone else? This is his own life which is at stake, but you'd never guess from how he behaves. They just didn't take the premise seriously enough for me to take it seriously as an audience member. For a movie with this kind of budget and marketing machine, there is no excuse for such laziness. This made me want to watch Blade Runner, a Sci-Fi movie in which the director took care of the details. Expand
  56. Apr 16, 2012
    This is a movie about a brutal gladator like event for people who don't like violence and like sparkly vampires. This is book i simply a short story called "the lottery" merged with a far supiorior Movie called battle royale. The lead actor "whos a hunter" does inane things like sit in a sunny clearing and run around in a blue blazer in the forest while shes supposed to be in a life and death game. Totally unrealistic and the combat was poor. Expand
  57. Apr 15, 2012
    Not worth seeing at all. I only saw it because while planning to see 21 Jump Street (which is rated R) and having already been standing at the ticket booth, I found out my friend was still 16, and The Hunger Games was the only other interesting looking movie playing. I was with 2 friends, and none of us enjoyed it, mostly because it was painfully long, the plot was dull and slow-paced, and the character development was horrible, with useless characters and unnatural character relationships, that would have only made sense if you've read the book. On top of that, the cinematography was awful. The camera was constantly shaking, which made it look very unprofessional as a film. And the fight scenes were painful to watch because they were so poorly done. Bad camera work + bad fight scene choreography = severe motion sickness. And to add to that, the music never fit, especially during the fight scenes. In fact, the music was lazily written, with more focus on ridiculous audio effects rather than the actual musical aspect of it. And one more thing: Editors have no reason to tone the color down throughout the entire movie just to give it a slightly darker feeling. Be more creative. In conclusion, we would have had a much better experience had we seen 21 Jump Street instead of this over-hyped, lazily put together piece of crap. Expand
  58. Apr 10, 2012
    I'm wondering: how original is the premise? An post-apocalyptic world where live televised fights-to-the-death keep the populous' blood lust satisfied? Eh. Series 7: The Contenders did it way before, but not with Hunger Games' budget. Plus there's Running Man, the Road Warrior, and earlier, 1984. If the world ever becomes a world like the Hunger Games, I'd protest in the streets and risk dying in a Tiananmen square movement. Orwell wrote a better satire on society's need for bloodlust and authoritarianism, because he details a lot of what happened in the world before it got fragmented into superstates. There's no such luck with Suzanne Collins. I don't think Suzanne Collins or the film-makers have enough imagination or storytelling skills to give us the big picture of Panem or the characters should have. They're just waving their fingers at us tsk-tsking us for watching too much reality TV, that one day will lead to televised murder. Does Collins give her characters enough depth that they rebel against an insane society that has degraded to televised murder? Why do they go along with it? Like I said, I'd stand my ground and risk my life for freedom and autonomy before I'd let what happened in Pan Em happen to us. Expand
  59. Apr 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 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
  60. Apr 10, 2012
    i was so looking forward to watching this movie. I seen all of the amazing reviews and i hoped for the best... but i was so wrong... the book was soo much better the movie its scary.... i really dont know how people think the movie was so good.... i sat there wathing and thinking, wheres the part where haymitch fell of the stage... or where haymitch sent katniss the sleeping medicine so she could go to the cornucopia... and the red head avox girl and thats just a few parts they were missing... the book has soo much detail... in the book... you get to read how katniss is feeling about everything and how the events that just happened... decide her next decision.... im not a personal lover of romance in films... but in the book the "romance" between katniss and petta makes the plot soo much better... but in the film its all broken up and i cant make sence of what has happened.... i hate the fact that the directors have made this into a movie for kids... the book is for adults...there is a lot of viloence and scenes that are for older viewers but the DIRECTOR wants everyone to love this movie... but in my opinion he got it soo wrong... i just hope they dont make the same mistakes if they are ALLOWED to make the second book... which is also a great read
    i recommened to everyone who thinks that this movie is the best thing since slice bread... to read the book and you will instantly see the flaws and how bad the the movie truely is
  61. Apr 9, 2012
    I expected a ripoff of Battle Royale to at least be almost slightly 1% as interesting as Battle Royale, but instead I got into the theater and watched this boring piece of crap garbage for two hours. What a waste of time. People who liked this movie are either stupid or lying. Transformers 2 was a better movie because, in spite of horrible writing (which The Hunger Games is 100% full of), there was still a lot of action (which The Hunger Games has 0% of). With a bad plot and bad dialogue and bad everything story-wise and then two hours of boring non-action on top of that, what is even the point of this movie? Do not watch this. Obviously you will anyway and you will pretend you liked it because everyone told you to. Expand
  62. Apr 9, 2012
    Its a bit **** just some girl crying for about 6 hours. I would say its a cross between Battle Royale and Twilight. It bigs these two people up like there these amazing people with awesome powers, and they hardly get used. The main guy in it supposed to have this amazing throw and he doesnt even throw anything throughout the film.
  63. Apr 5, 2012
    This movie was absolutely horrible. No story, plot, character depth or development. Most of the actors looked as though they already knew the movie was bad and just phoned in their performances. Gary Ross should never be allowed to direct anything ever again. The camera work was so horrible I suffered dizziness and nausea through the entire film. Barely anything was explained in the movie, so if you never read the book, you were kept completely in the dark about what was supposed to be going on. Gary Ross only knows how to do 2 shots. Extreme unfocused closeup, and extreme focused closeup. All of the backdrops and costumes were completely wasted since you could never see a whole person. You were only allowed to see someone's eye here, or mouth there. The most baffling thing about this movie are all of the good reviews I see from the critics. But that just goes to show you that they are never right when it comes to judging a movie. This was the second movie I have ever walked out on (the first being Battlefield Earth) and demanded my money back. As long as teenage girls dominate the box office, we will be forced to see shallow, superficial, emotionless drivel. Expand
  64. Apr 4, 2012
    Severely over rated. Acting was horrible, the heart of the book was not there, emotional aspects were not emotional because they were rushed and forced, and full of really bad acting. They emphasized the people fighting against the government part of the story, but they gave us a sappy ending that had nothing to do with the people or the oppressive government. This film simply had no soul, despite having more than enough inspiration from the book they some how destroyed it for the typical short attention span of American viewers. And for people saying the lead actress did a good job of acting, just ask your self how many facial expressions she actually used. She did them well, but she only had like 4. Just like that actress in the twilight series, once you watch another movie from the series you will see how incredible low her range is. The same 4 expressions over and over again will get pretty boring. Expand
  65. Apr 2, 2012
    It's not a bad film.... It really isn't... Sure the beginning to me felt like a an average flick that you see on SciFi, just changing the channel when you're board and have nothing to watch. One thing I liked though was a really charismatic was Woody Harrelson playing the drunk. The only winner from district 12. The poor district. And the environment of the setting, 12 districts that separate the classes of rich and poor. How well the story could give to sympathize others and root for the underdog. The ever so awesome characters like Rue or how we could fall in love with Katniss's bad ass audition into the Hunger Games. Seems interesting, but not really realistic. Main characters look well groomed despite being poor, the plot had huge holes in order to create the story, a Twilight-esque romance, an one dimensional enemies, cliches here and there.

    You'd must be teenager in order to get you're mind blown for this bland-fest, otherwise it will leave you asking more questions or not fully satisfied. For those who would give this a perfect rating, would feel satisfied. But for serious film fans, it could leave you craving more better tasting grub.
  66. Apr 2, 2012
    It's like watching an episode of Buffy. Just corny, predictable and constant wtfs. I just found myself in awe of how often I was laughing and wondering why they didn't opt to use realism over Twilightish teenism.
  67. Apr 1, 2012
    Honestly, this movie didn't reflect how good of a book this was. It didn't show much character for anyone, including Katniss. When you saw kids from other districts die, it was hard to feel bad because you knew nothing about their history (excluding Rue). Katniss and Peeta's relationship was very confusing if you hadn't read the books, and Haymitch's actor wasn't as sharp as he should have. Also, there were not very many cave scenes, Gale wasn't a very big part, and what about Flavius, Octavia, Venia, Portia? This was an utter let down to what was one of my favorite books. Expand
  68. Mar 31, 2012
    In The Hunger Games, it's the theatre-goers who lose their lunch. I only really watched the first third of this movie, the rest of it I had motion sickness so bad I could only really listen. I've never gotten sick from a movie before, and it is an experience I hope never to repeat.

    Stanley Tucci and Woody Harrelson gave very entertaining performances as always. Elizabeth Banks should
    have given this movie a pass as she is unrecognizable and adds nothing to the story.

    The subject matter is simply awful: a society that thinks it's entertaining to watch children murder each other. I won't be seeing the sequels.
  69. Mar 30, 2012
    Ok seriously this movie is a drama. It reminded me of twilight. Mostly talking and almost no fight scenes. At least on TV when they advertise they make it look more like an action moive , WRONG! This movie tries to make you sad and that's it.
  70. Mar 30, 2012
    I don't blame the books. I haven't read them but just looking at wikipedia the overarching story as a lot of rich material to draw from. This movie just will have none of it. It was poorly written. Poorly acted (the lead girl was good but that was pretty much it). None of the backstory was explored. Just a bad movie plane and simple. The movie is really about a 3/10 but I'm giving it a 0 because of others voting it up. Basically the movie is totally overhyped. It really isn't good at all. Characters have no back story besides the 2 leads and they expect us to connect to other characters when something happens to them? Literally characters are introduced for 5 minutes and we are supposed to feel sad when they die? Ha. If the point of the games is to kill everyone else then why would these people form teams? Why would they sleep all at the same time? Why did one not wake up to betray the others silently. Just far far too many plot holes. Expand
  71. Mar 30, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The story: brutal story about teens killing each other. This was not the problem I had with the movie. The problem I had with the movie was the cinematography, or lack of it. I could not stand the very poor camera work. The director was constantly zooming in, panning up, zooming out, it became annoying. The "fight" scenes were a blur. You could not tell who was fighting what. They even had to resort to a cannon sounding to make sense of who died and who lived. Then there is the whole problem with the arena itself. The way the movie ended involved a Deus Ex Machina that ruined the entire premise. I will not go into detail beyond saying that if the cities had this technology available to them, why are they resorting to killing kids to keep the peace. I would avoid this movie, the plot is predictable, and the cinemtography is terrible. While I sat watching the film, I wondered how the director, or maybe its the author, would handle "good" kids killing "bad" kids, and it ended up turning out how I thought it would. As far as racist viewers worried about casting, I do not know why people complain about that crap. The issue I had is that the author, or director, chose the black community to be the ones rioting. That seems very racist to me, but I guess people are somehow comforted over that. Expand
  72. Mar 30, 2012
    Disappointed. I hope they do better in Catching Fire and Mockingjay. I love the books, i love the actors. I just can't imagine someone else playing the roles of Katniss, Peeta, Gale, Effie, Prim and Haymitch. But please, I beg whoever is concerned with this franchise. Do better with the next installment.
  73. Mar 29, 2012
    The Hunger Games books were a emotional amazing thrill ride. However, the movie was quite a disappointment. My favorite character in the books was Haymitch because of his character development. I was expecting him to fall off the stage at the beginning or something but nope. not there. Speaking of character development. There is a huge lacking in character development between the influential characters like Haymitch, Cinna, and especially Peeta. If I was part of the audience at the Capitol watching the "star-crossed lovers" I would NOT have been convinced they were in love. Anyway, besides from the overly-used shaky cam at the beginning the presentation of the scenes was good. The audio experience was not what I expected but it works.

    In summary:
    The Hunger Games was presented in a unexpected way that works to the feel of the setting(Panem); however, there is a extreme lack of character development especially between the "star-crossed lovers" which is essential to the story in books 1 and 2. With all the hype, the odds were not in this movie's favor.
  74. Mar 29, 2012
    In the least surprising cash-in in the history of anything ever, The Hunger Games took its already film-ready premise which had already borrowed from Battle Royale, glossed it up pretty, removed any and all significance from the original novels to satisfy the teen crowd, deconstructed every single character and made new ones to fit a film that was supposed to be horrifying more than anything else, naturally made Katniss attractive instead of being the poverty-stricken malnourished slum-girl she was in the novel, made all the guys beefcakes, gave everyone unspeakable combat skills when they should have next-to-none, when the entire point was to throw random kids into an arena and told to kill each other, and basically turned it into exactly what it was supposed to be: A cash-in, without exception. All significance is gone, and respecting the origins of the novel isn't even considered here. Disappointing beyond words? Definitely. But an obvious way to market it as an arena battle to the death involving children? Checkmate. Anyone who read the first novel knew quickly that this was going to be turned into a film, and it was going to be a sure-fire cashflow frenzy with the right style and marketing. Done and done. For anyone who doesn't care for anything the book stood for or even knows to begin with, here you go: A generic action flick with a few twists that are comically predictable, all done in perfect PG-13 format--ironically still being about desperate kids picked out of a raffle murdering each other with sharp objects. But if you've read the novels, you knew exactly what they were doing the instant you saw the official movie poster, and you can at least avoid some of the despair because you knew it had been coming all along. Expand
  75. Mar 29, 2012
    The movie was not as expected.Too Long Too Boring Too Predictable.The character or Peeta is not clear as for the feeling of Gale and Katniss.It's far too long and much inferior to the ferocious Japanese Battle Royale.The books were aimed at young women, I think the filmmakers have been terrified at making anything too violent.
  76. Mar 28, 2012
    As a stand alone movie it's fine, as a copy of the book it's terrible- as a loosely based off the book video it's... decent at best. Take the wonderful story from the book, shred it down to the barest parts and turn it into a copy of Twilight- you now have 'The hunger games' "movie"

    There's nothing, no survival in the woods, no horrible mental wrestling of survival vs. humanity no
    insight, the barest of character development, a incredibly shortened timeline and complete disregard for the book's story about half way through the movie.

    I'm glad to see The Hunger Games put into a visual medium, I'm dissapointed to see it so gutted, I consider this a failure for the first movie.
  77. Mar 26, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The movie is a very hasty and premature summary of the book. It lags a lot of the memorable highlights of the book, and adding to it, is the stupid re-writing of the scene where Katniss gets the Mockinjay-pendant. The acting was very sleazy too, and amateurish. As a movie on it's own, it was shot beautifully. But as a interpretation of the book, it just doesn't cut it. Expand
  78. Mar 26, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. tl:dr If you like Twilight you'll probably like this, otherwise...meh. I haven't read the book so I don't know how well it has translated into film. Hopefully it hasn't done the book justice because it is not a great movie. The pacing is awful, with some parts mind numbingly boring, and then other scenes rushed and compressed. Camera work is terrible, shaky and nausea inducing. There are numerous immersion breaking plot holes. A movie doesn't have to have every little piece fit together perfectly, but when plot holes break your suspension of disbelief it is bad writing. For example wtf would the 'bad guys' have set up a booby trap so that the only way it can work involves destroying their own food supply...major facepalm. Also, I realise that these are meant to be kids, but for people locked into a life and death struggle they sure spend a lot of time crashing through the bush yelling at the tops of their voices, without making the slightest attempt at stealthiness, even the supposedly 'trained' ones from Districts 1 and 2. And how the hell did Rue's District buddy know what Catniss had done for Rue. Very little that the characters do makes any sense...there doesn't seem to be any motivation for much of it. I'm guessing that's one of the losses from the translation from the book? Finally, there is zero explanation of why this supposedly ultra advanced society (eg the almost magical healing ointments) keeps such a large portion of itself in virtual servitude. I'm not saying that it can't be that way, lots of today's real life societies are dystopian, but there should be some reason. Is it a religious thing, is there a critical shortage of resources or land. Who knows? It just seems that we're supposed to accept that all of the rich people are evil bastards who like to make children fight to the death. Seems legit... Expand
  79. Mar 25, 2012
    This movie sucked. Most overrated film of the year. it is du;; and boring, there is no back story. The games it self its repetitive and dull and the shaky hand filming made me vomit. What a waste of 2.3 hours. I only gave it a one because Stanley Tucci was good in it.
  80. Mar 25, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This movie is just awful. There are many terrible aspects and you SHOULD NOT waste your time if you have or have not read the books.

    1. Camera work is awful. Everything is shaking so bad in every action scene and every partially moving scene (anything that is not a static conversation) you see random blurs of faces and quickly and poorly cut sections of the movie. 2. Music: Very often, there is no music when there really should be and it just ruins the whole atmosphere. The music at the beginning of the Cornucopia scene is nill and the atmosphere is wrong. You would expect fast paced drumbeats with screams and punches and such... Instead, you get a stupid buzzing noise as the camera shakes to death as you hear no screams and this goes for like 2 minutes... -_-

    3. Story: Extremely shallow character development and tons of things completely uncomprehendable by non-book readers.
  81. Mar 25, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Well I have read the book and I suppose that makes me the target audience. I was so bored towards the middle, I started picking on the scenes that seemed to me heavy handed and just sloppy. SPOILER: the wasps scene was VERY heavy handed in my opinion, as well as the land mines. Every time the presenters appeared on the screen, they only explained the stuff that the audience didn't know from the book. It could've been done in a more subtle way in the beginning of the movie. Why not show the boy laying down land mines during the training? If you want to use the presenters the make them appear frequently to mask the sloppy explanations.. I don't know.. Also baffling is the scene just before the start of the Games when the kids are on their starting positions. It's a horrible and at the same time mesmerising moment but the close-up camera and lack of musical score suck out the feeling from the scene. There's actually NO sound at all when the action begins. And yes I know it's supposed to be a tragic and a brutal situation, but this is exactly why the sound is so important.

    It's just my opinion but I wouldn't make this movie in such a realistic way, without a musical score (or at least any memorable musical theme), all based on close ups and grit. I didn't feel any emotional attachment to anything and anyone (we're supposed to root for the oppressed districts, remember?) But so little time is spent on developing that story line, and so much time wasted on the filler scenes before and during the actual games that the movie appears overly long and at the same time, nothing major is happening. District 11 is rebelling after the little girl, Rue dies, but her death is so muted, and so devoid of emotion that I personally felt little, and not just because I knew she was going to die.This is where a good musical score can underline the emotions in a character who is strong willed on the outside but very confused on the inside. By the way it's the 74th Games ( means it's been 74 years since the beginning of the regime) and NOW everyone is rebelling? Why nobody took a minute to explain why the situation is so tense nowadays?

    I could go on saying how Jennifer Lawrence and the rest of the kids don't look even remotely like they are 17. I could say that there are scenes that I liked with Haymitch and the lady from the Capitol stealing the scenes they're in and Cinna's presence being so muted it's almost a disgrace to an important character of the book. And here lies the problem. The book is about Catniss and not just kids killing each other and the horror that it represents. It's about emotions, her emotions, emotions of the people who surround her. The movie is about actions, and horror and realism. Cinna was important to Catniss because of how he inspired and awed her, in the movie there's nothing to it. Instead we have the void. No music, barely any emotion. The color palette is somehow muted, and the contrast between the capitol and the districts is conveyed only through the ridiculous makeup. Scenes that are supposed to be big and awesome look "meh" (that goes for the parade, capitol reveal, arena reveal, final denouement).

    I can't say it was a bad movie, but it's a deeply flawed one. It's just not the movie I'd want to watch again. And that's below expectations.
  82. Mar 25, 2012
    One of the worst movies I have ever seen.. The only reason I watched it was because we got to the movie theater late and it was the only thing playing.. Out-dated special effects, a story that left a lot to be desired and a weak ending.. Don't waste your money on this garbage
  83. Mar 24, 2012
    If you are a teenage girl, you will love this movie. Everyone else over 25 you might as well wait for the 3rd installment to see if they make it better. The main actress is great but the plot is so thin and predictabile. I can't believe I was taken in by all the hype. A big disappointment.
  84. Mar 24, 2012
    I was quite disappointed by the Hunger games. There is nothing wrong with using such a heavily recycled idea, but the entire purpose of the idea of an inescapable death-match scenario is to have incredibly gripping psychological drama that leaves the viewer/reader (in the case of the better form of battle royale) anguished at the tragedy of the event. This did not occur in the slightest, and there are a few reasons why. The acting was bland, the main contenders felt more like human masks than the deep and complex beings that they need to be to make this idea actually work. Their individual deaths or suffering left absolutely no impact on the viewer. Linked to this is the fact that the actual character development was sorely lacking. The pacing of the movie was problematic, the idea seemed interesting at first but it wasn't until around 1hr 30mins that the goal it was building towards actually happened. On a different note, the action itself (an important component of the idea) was limited and confusing, with so much fancy camera work going on it was hard to tell what was actually happening. In saying that though the futuristic element, was a refreshing take and the cinematography re its futuristic nature was very impressive. For me the highlight of the film was Stanley Tucci, he was as fantastic as ever. Expand
  85. Mar 23, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Unfortunately, this movie didn't cut it for me. The characters were bland and two-dimensional, the cinematography left something to be desired, and the plot moved by so quickly that nothing was given adequate time. Like Katniss's relationships with Peeta and Gale. Or her time spent with Rue. Quite honestly, I needed these relationships to be formed and dwelt upon at length in the film in order to give the Games the meaning that they needed. Unless the characters (and the viewer) have something to lose, a movie can never achieve true emotional involvement and suspense. All in all, this was an unfortunate disappointment. Expand
  86. Mar 23, 2012
    The movie was very superficial. Glossed over the backstory and pretty much all of the relationships in a rush to get to the games. Then much of the tension of the games was missing, too. Not sure I would have been able to follow if I hadn't read the book. Add the "Blair Witch" camera work, and the whole experience was disappointing.
  87. Mar 23, 2012
    The movie left a lot to be desired and did not do the book justice. Character development in the movie was weak and if a viewer has not read the book, the characters and their relationships with each other is shallow and confusing. This confusion is clear when reading reviews by people who admit to not reading the books. In particular the relationship between Catniss and her family needs to be expanded upon and built upon so we can understand the relationship between Rue and Catniss and the tragedy of the circumstances they are put into. The relationship between Peeta and Catniss is also confusing and shallow, sanitizing the internal conflict felt by them. And finally we get to Haymitch, who is a shadow of the character he was in the book. Expand
  88. Mar 23, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Having read the books numerous times, the movie is lacking is so many ways. Scenes were redacted which I understand you have to keep the film lengthen under consideration but do not add scenes that have no mention or relevance into the movie. Also, the time lines are important in this film. You are building up to something. When you leave so much out how do you have that reference for later films. You do not get to connect with Katniss and Peeta in the film like you do in the books. I blame the SIGNIFICANT shortening of the cave scenes. The whole last 30 minutes of the film was horrible. Adding the extra fighting in the last scene did not add any value but took away from the film. Had the last Cornucopia scene been left as originally written, it would have made for a much more dramatic conclusion and wrap of the film. Expand

Generally favorable reviews - based on 44 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 44
  2. Negative: 2 out of 44
  1. Reviewed by: David Denby
    Mar 26, 2012
    The result is an evasive, baffling, unexciting production - anything but a classic.
  2. Reviewed by: Andy Klein
    Mar 23, 2012
    Ross manages to keep the pacing remarkably swift, given that the games themselves don't start until halfway through the 144-minute running time.
  3. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Mar 23, 2012
    Katniss is gritty, she's flinty, she's intimidating -- and she doesn't have to compromise one iota of her femininity for it. And Ross' movie tells her story wonderfully.