I absolutely adore when Katniss and Haymitch see each other for the first time after the Hunger

The cameras are all watching their reaction, forcing him to whisper in her ear to explain that the
Capitol is upset and she must play up her love for Peeta.

In the movie, Katniss and Haymitch find some empty rooftop where they can talk openly.  I just
don’t believe that with all the commotion surrounding her return to the Capitol, they would find
a time and a place to have a private conversation.

On top of that, they cut out anything to do with Peeta after the games are over.

You see him, but you never learn about his artificial leg or see him discovering Katniss’s true

With all of those cuts, the writers better have a plan to connect Peeta’s storyline to the second
Ril's Official Two Cents
1. Mockingjay Pin
My Loathe List
2. Avox
3. District 13?
4. The Last Five Minutes
1. Surprisingly Enough...Seneca Crane
My Love List
2. Caesar Flickerman's Commentary
3. Eyelashes
4. The Riot in District 11
5. Peeta
The Verdict
The Cast
Total Fan
The Hunger Games Movie Review
by the REAL Ginny Weasley
I think over the years the word nerd has gotten a negative connotation.  Let me remind everyone
of the correct definition.

Nerd.  Noun.  An extremely wonderful, awesome person.

Peeta Mellark is a nerd.  Therefore I am in love with him.  I loved his character in the book, I
love the actor they cast to play him, and Peeta rules all...

...next to Snape of course!!

This was so well-made (and because of Peeta's presence) my faith in movies has been
temporarily restored.

*RGW is biased in her love of Peeta.  If she could steal Josh Hutcherson and keep him in a jar in her house,
she would.

**No one is as awesome as Snape and Alan Rickman.  Sorry Peeta.  Sorry RGW.

***People should not be kept in jars.
"Lightning Over New York City" photography by Christopher Imperato.
All book series, movies, and images are owned by their authors, creators, publishers & production companies.
No copyright infringement intended of any and all source material.
No profits were made from this site.
Copyright © 2007 | www.booksandwands.com | All Rights Reserved
Harry Potter
Character Arcs
Muggle Studies
Under the Influence
Other Projects
Hunger Games
Book Notes
Movie Review
The Hobbit
Book Notes
Movie Review
Percy Jackson
Book Notes
Movie Review
Book Notes
Movie Stills
Book Notes
Movie Review
To Hunger Games Menu
Books and Wands
The Hobbit
The Hunger Games
Harry Potter
Percy Jackson
Like Us on Facebook
Follow us @booksandwands
For Nerds. By Nerds.
ScreenCap Gallery
Book Series Menu
Granger's Army
Rejoice — our series is safe. As much as I enjoyed the first book and movie in The Hunger Games,
it pales in comparison to the epic
Harry Potter.

Honestly, I never really felt like
The Hunger Games was in any competition with Harry Potter.  For
me, I feel like this series is an answer to
Twilight, the anti-Twilight if you will, and that makes it
all the more enjoyable.

Despite the love, I have my issues, complaints, and mumblings about this first movie.  It
wouldn’t be a review from the Real Ginny Weasley without a little loave, am I right?

Sorry...did someone just ask what the word loave means?  Here is a definition to remind our
previous readers (and for our new Facebook friends!)

To Loave: Verb.  A combination of the words Love and Loathe, two feelings that are often
combined when discussing epic book series or movies.
Overall, the movie certainly stayed true to the book.

Any cuts and changes were pretty forgivable since Suzanne Collins was one of the screenwriters
and is certainly allowed to mess around with her own work.  (Nothing beats an author whose
previous credits include
The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo AND the phenomenal Clarissa Explains It

That doesn’t really change the fact that the cuts and changes exist.
Madge doesn’t exist.  Katniss receives the mockingjay pin while trading in the hob from a
character who I think was supposed to be Greasy Sae, though I can’t say that for sure.  

Katniss gives the pin to Prim, claiming that it offers protection.  Prim gives Katniss the pin back
after she is picked for the Hunger Games.  

Cinna is still the one to put the pin on her uniform, but he makes it seem like it is some big

That’s interesting that he knows to keep it a secret when it doesn’t become a symbol of the
rebellion until the second book.
I was aware that there would be no mention of Avoxes in this movie, but why not?

They were able Katniss’s memory of Peeta throwing her the loaf of bread through a series of

I feel like they could have used the same system of flashbacks to show us that Katniss knew the
Avox girl.
While they did mention “thirteen districts” in the video shown at the reaping, they never
explain that it is the thirteenth district that rebelled and was then obliterated.

This isn’t really an issue for people who read the book, but there is definitely a movie crowd
who is learning this story for the first time.

You need to learn about District 13 from the very first book so it has more meaning when you
get to the third book.
Newcomers won't believe it, but that was actually the shortest list of complaints about a movie
adaptation of a book that I have ever compiled.

On to what I loved...
There was a lot more of Seneca Crane that I originally imagined.

For most of this movie, Seneca Crane is in a control room of sorts with a bounty of Capitol
workers and intense technology connected to the arena.

Seneca is shown following the tributes through maps and cameras and controlling the next
scenes. It was very reminiscent of
The Truman Show (an underrate movie, in my opinion).

Seneca’s execution is only suggested in the book, but his final scene in the movie hints at his
downfall. He is sent into a room with a bowl full of the poisonous berries from the Hunger
Games arena.
It is always difficult to include things in a movie that was only explained as narration from a
character’s thoughts in the book.

The Hunger Games explained a lot of that information using the adult characters.  Haymitch tells
us a lot — how he watches Katniss throughout the games, sweet-talks sponsors into helping her,
and even manipulating Seneca Crane.

Most of the information, however, is taught to the audience using footage of Caesar’s newscasts.

  • He explains that the sound of the cannon means a Tribute has died.
  • He explains the origin of a Tracker Jacker and the effects they could have.
  • He also explains that the Career Tributes surrounding their campsite with land mines, so
    the audience has a better idea why Foxface is jumping over the hills to steal their food.

Secretly, I hoped they would use Caesar Flickerman for more than just Tribute interviews
(especially after I found out they casted Stanley Tucci!).
To be honest, I’m still bitter at the lack of Academy Awards, or any recognition for that matter,
for the crew of the
Harry Potter series.  However, they may have just been given the opportunity
to redeem themselves.

I will forgive them if they recognize the makeup and/or costumes for this movie.

The Eyelashes alone deserve an award, a round of applause, and a standing ovation.

I don’t even think there were two sets of eyelashes that were the same.  My favorite, however,
were Jennifer Lawrence’s after she returns from the Hunger Games.

I’m still trying to figure out if they were tiny butterflies or peacock feathers on each last.  If
anyone knows, please pass it along!
At first, I was a little confused when the people of District 11 began rebelling against the guards
after Rue’s death.

Then, I realized the importance of showing this riot for the audience who did NOT read the

It gives them a glimpse into the remainder of the series, which focuses more on a complete
rebellion than just one Hunger Games.
After having seen the movie for the second time, I can honestly say – though this shouldn’t go to
anyone’s head – that I haven’t enjoyed a book-to-movie adaptation this much since the very first
Harry Potter.

What? you ask.
Shocking! you say.
Ril's gone nuts! you insist.

You may be right. But there it is, in black and white.  I didn’t get to see it opening day, so initial
lackluster reviews frightened me.  I started to get depressed that this would be another Potter
disaster.  They would take something I loved and butcher it beyond recognition.

It was with trepidation that I went to see it, I even suckered my parents into seeing it – so now
add guilt over the worry that it may stink.  
I wouldn’t say that my faith in movies has been temporarily restored because, honestly I’ve seen
too many crap movies, but I was pleasantly surprised by this film. I really thought it was great.

Yes, obviously, there were cuts and some changes to abridge things, but these are the types of
cuts and changes that should be made to adapt a book into a screenplay – not the hack job that
was most of Potter.

I guess we can thank the fact that it was, in essence, the author herself that had the final say of
what would and would not make it into the film.  Suzanne Collins, graduate of NYU’s Tisch
School of the Arts (a fellow alum – not that I ever met her), knew what she was doing when she
took a stab at adapting her hit series.

It makes me sad that Rowling never took a stab at writing Potter.  Perhaps she didn’t care what
became of her creation, but I am so grateful that not only did Collins care enough, she was also
up to the challenge and that
Lion’s Gate had the sense to let her do her thing.

I guess I’m being boring with all this love.  Frankly, it’s not something I’m used to...

There were some things, like since most of the story is told through Katniss’ thoughts I was
concerned they wouldn’t be able to convey things in the movie.

I still think there’s a slight disconnect from her.  There’s a lot of stony expressions and silence – I
almost wanted her to mutter to herself sometimes, just to get a little more of her personality, a
little more of her working things for herself.

However, even with that criticism I still loved it.  I liked it even better the second time I saw it.  I
guess I anticipated the silence the second go around.

I even thought they handled the violence really well.  I was afraid it would be a gruesome blood-
bath, but they used a light touch - which is rare nowadays.  It was violent, it's in the nature of the
Games, but it wasn't gory or stomach-turning.
I was initially concerned by some casting choices but they were proved baseless. The cast was
great. I would have preferred Peeta a wee bit taller and slightly more muscular, but Josh does a
great job capturing the personality.

Jennifer Lawrence, whom I didn’t like until I saw her as Katniss, was fantastic.

And Stanley Tucci should be given every award known to actors.  He’s frickin’ great!

And little baby Prim...made me cry, both times! She’s adorable...tucking in that duck tail as she
goes up to the stage at the reaping. So cute.

I think I have to give the stand out award to Elizabeth Banks though. I don’t really think I got
Effie – her personality or her role, until I saw Banks play her. She's got to have some of the best
one-liners in the film. “
That’s mahogany!

I would have liked to have seen more characterization for the other tributes. I know even in the
book we don’t really get a sense of most of them, it’s just a blur of faces and deaths, but making
the main baddies more than just a pack of big, scary mean kids would have been a nice touch.

Even just giving Cato more to do since he seems to have a soul at the end with that little speech
he gives on the cornucopia. Like a hint of that, before we get to the actual speech. Maybe it will
be in the deleted scenes on the DVD. Who knows?
I’m sort of at a loss of what to say.  I really am so shocked that I like it this much I almost don’t
know what to do with myself.  I had to wrack my brain for even these slight criticisms.  And in
the end it’s all the same: I wanted more.

More Katniss.  More friction between Peeta and Katniss.  More of Haymitch being a drunken
moron and then coming around for them.  More Stanley Tucci.  More Gale.  More of Katniss
being a super bad-ass!  More Cato.  More Rue.  More with Prim and Momma Everdeen.  Just

All I can really say is:  “Well done, HG cast and crew!  Well done, Suzanne Collins!”

The most major complaint and correction
demand I have for the next one?  No More Shaky Cam!!!

No More Shaky Cam!  Or I will find you...and vomit on you.

That being said – I’m up for round three!

**And I'm sorry, RGW, but any comparison of Josh Hutcherson to Alan Rickman or Peeta to
Snape is just plain blasphemy! He's good, but not Snape-good. ;)
In an extremely rare occurrence, almost all of the love's are additions.

In general, we view additions the same way as cuts and changes.  

Usually because they have a tendency to cut scenes and then add other garbage  (i.e.,
eliminating Sir Cadogan from the third Potter film in exchange for a little blue bird flying all
over the place).  But these actually complimented the story and brought to life different aspects
of the narration.

Faith in movies restored or not, we find ourselves unable to stop thinking about this movie.  It
was great.