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3/10
Poor Adaptation
emptygravity23 March 2012
Warning: Spoilers
What a bitter disappointment! In order to explain what is missing from the film, please allow me to describe what I love about the books.

Suzanne Collins creates a moving portrayal of a girl living under a cruel dictatorship. Set against a background of extreme poverty, these books show how the unequal distribution of wealth affects Panem's society. Those living in the wealthy Capitol have so little in common with the destitute people from the Districts that they regard the deaths of District children as entertainment. The violence in The Hunger Games is shocking because it is brutal and unnecessary, yet wholly embraced- even celebrated- by Capitol residents. As for the District tributes, they are not enemies but they kill each other all the same, some reluctantly and others with enthusiasm. As the trilogy progresses, it becomes a compelling commentary on the madness of war and the sad futility of violence. However, these themes are woven into the books in such a way that you may not even notice they're being discussed. You become so immersed in Katniss's world that poverty is a given, and violence a sad but expected part of life.

The film follows the basic storyline but lacks emotional depth. The character development is almost nonexistent and the deaths in the arena are bloodless in every sense of the word. The tributes are little more than walking stereotypes so their deaths have no impact. Even Rue's death- heart-wrenching in the book- is little more than a side note in the movie. If I hadn't read the books, I don't think I would have understood the dynamic between the tributes at all, including the conflicted relationship between Katniss and Peeta. Their romance comes across as cheesy and unconvincing. There is no hint of the bond that grows between them as the story progresses.

Perhaps my biggest criticism of this movie is that no one seems to be going hungry! I cannot believe the filmmakers overlooked this important point. The Capitol's exploitation of the Districts is supposed to be the backdrop for the entire story. When Katniss arrives in the Capitol and observes how food appears at a touch of a button, she cannot understand how Capitol residents fill their time. The majority of her days are consumed with feeding her family. It defines her. Most of the tributes have never had enough to eat and this is a major factor in the Games.

The beginning of the movie seemed promising. The ominous mood in District 12 was just right. It is apparent that the people who live there are exhausted and resigned to their fate. When residents appear for the reaping, they look like cattle being rounded up for slaughter. The Capitol, in contrast, is frightening in it's frenetic artificiality. This juxtaposition was well-done. However, the filmmakers lost me when the tributes entered the arena.

There was no sense of tension. The tributes make all kinds of noise as they move through the woods, seemingly oblivious to the fact that they are being hunted. Katniss stands about ten feet away from Cato as he snaps a boys neck and we are supposed to believe he doesn't see her? The scenes from the control room are pointless and add nothing to the movie. They should have spent that time on character development! Unfortunately, this lack of character development causes the emotional scenes to fall flat. I am astounded this was even possible, given the subject matter, but the overall result lacks intensity and depth.

I will credit Elizabeth Banks with an excellent portrayal of Effie Trinket. She adds humor and a sense of the absurdity of Capitol life. Donald Sutherland also does well as President Snow. Jennifer Lawrence is an adequate Katniss but Josh Hutcherson is terrible as Peeta. He's just not very likable. We see none of his inner strength. Instead, he comes across and whiny and weak. And Wes Bentley seems to be included just to showcase his ability to grow an amazing beard.

One more thing. What happened to Haymitch?! He's supposed to be a self-destructive drunk! His cunning is all the more unexpected because he seems incapable of taking care of himself. I was thrilled when they cast Woody Harrelson and he does well in some parts but it seemed like they had to water down his character to market it to young adults.

This movie had a lot of potential but it fell short in many important ways. A score of 3/10 is pretty harsh but I felt as though the filmmakers kept all of the plot points and none of the meaning. Read the books instead.
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7/10
Not quite the Battle Royale
hani_786968 October 2012
Thrilling,Engaging and entertaining dystopian action sci-fiction flick. Really liked the visuals and all the action scenes. This is the real deal of Drama and action. Screenplay,costumes and make up all are decent. Especially the make up and movie sets are very beautiful and elegant which make the people from novel come to life. Now,considering the novel,this movie adaption misses a few things i wanted to see on screen. One is I expected it to be more violent on screen with a R Rating but they made PG-13 Stuff, i don't know why,to make more money i guess. That shaky cinematography too. some of the important messages had been cut down. These things really disappoint me because i loved the novel and wanted it to be more precise. other than that it is good popcorn entertainer. Loved Jennifer Lawrence though. Acting is far far better than that Kristen-NO-Expression-Stewart. Not only Jennifer but all the actors did their job very good. Now looking forward to sequels.Hope they will be better.
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1/10
Spoilers! But don't worry, it's already predictable and weak.
groovieknave-177-7423427 March 2012
Warning: Spoilers
The start of the movie is so obvious, with a tiny little girl scared out of her wits who has no business being in the Hunger Games, most predictably the lead actresses little sister it was obvious she was going to take her place. Even more less surprising we find out that the boy going with her has a crush on her.

On to 1 hour and 15 minutes of Woody Harrelson being not nearly believable enough as a crude alcoholic become soft hearted, a lot of senseless dinners, a lot of hype for the contestants we know nothing about, absolutely no politics or explanation of what the Hunger Games actually are or how it came about, and an awful underlying message sent out to viewers. "Just be yourself, but do what everyone expects!" Katniss went from being tough, to a weak and sleepy survivor.

Are you bored yet? So, they get thrown out into the Hunger Games, there is absolutely no build up whatsoever. The only person you know is out there is Katniss and the boy who came with her. The rest of the contestants you don't know, hardly have a clue as to what they're capable of, most of them die at the start anyway. Katniss runs away from the initial slaughter, to take a nap. Then she takes more naps. At one point out of the blue she finds herself in the middle of fiery doom, with fireballs launching at her, she barely survives. Well, lucky for her, though we were never told. she has some sponsors save her, with the help of a silent montage of Woody Harrelson laughing with a bunch of poorly dressed somebodies. She gets saved with super healing medicine! She takes more naps.

Later, we find out the boy who has a crush on her is teamed up with the last of the jerks, for some reason, in a game where only one survives, there are people who travel in groups. Okay? Why??? They make some pathetic attempts to kill her, then give up and sleep. Kat makes a new friend who seems to be the most resourceful, herbal expert. She tells her to dump a bunch of insects on them. Then while it takes forever for her to saw a tree limb off, we're told these are evil, dangerous insects that will kill you. How convenient! She gets stung a few times, and conveniently kills a girl with the bow and arrows, which just so happens she's an expert with. How lucky! Too bad she was stung by these insects, now she's going to take more naps and be saved somehow... by a tiny girl who knows herbal remedies. Wish we would have known that! They turn out to be good pals, what a surprise that is. Well, after a lot more boring stuff of not getting to know anything about what is going on, they randomly decide to go find out what the meanies are up to.

Turns out, they gathered all the supplies and somehow found a bunch of land mines to surround the pile. Okay? What's that supposed to do? Apparently, some girl isn't part of their group, she expertly dodges every land mine and gets away with something. So, instead of gathering some supplies, Katniss blows it all up. Then... runs away! Katniss and her little pal find each other, but get attacked, Kat swiftly dodges a spear throw, and sticks the attacker with an arrow. The attacker dies instantly. But finds out poor little girl was stuck by the big spear. Except it takes FOREVER for her to die, we don't know anything about this character, so we don't care, so the long drawn out death is stupid.

Well, Kat runs off alone and finds her boy who has a crush on her. For some reason untold he's not with the group anymore and he's badly injured somehow. Okay, they hobble off after way too long, and then find a cave where it takes way too long for them to get things going. She decides to go off on her own for some supplies, and gets attacked by a girl who takes too long to kill her, but some other guy out of the blue SAVES Katniss... for absolutely NO reason, and then... just leaves her alone! In a game where only one survives, with the perfect opportunity to turn the odds in his favor... just leaves her alone! She goes back, takes a lot more time, and finds out there is only one person left? Really? Thanks for showing us some of the action... but anyway they leave the cave, and the Hunger Game... techs, or IT people or whatever they are, unleash a bunch of dogs that are really big and full of muscle. Kat and her boyfriend OUTRUN all of them to a huge metal platform where they're surrounded by blood thirsty animals... who could easily make the jump to the top of the platform... don't. Instead the last guy, whoever he is, is bloody and looks like he can barely move, beats the crap out of both of them. How he got by the dogs is beyond me... but whoever can do that must be amazing, until, Kat shoots him in the hand with an arrow. This causes him to fall off and get eaten by dogs. But Kat feels sorry for him, and puts him out of his misery.

After this, there is nothing really to note. Nobody says anything important and nobody cares, they just wish it would end, because they don't really know what happened at all. They don't really know anybody but Kat, Donald Sutherland gives some meaningless scornful look, and walks off and the credits roll.
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3/10
Battle Royale minus humor plus cheese
JWJanneck5 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I do not know the book this movie is based on, but I sincerely hope that it is much better (and have been told that it is) than its adaptation. As it stands, the movie is a PG13 version of Battle Royale, with a hint of Running Man, a touch of Truman Show, minus any irony or humor, with a lot less gore (to keep it PG13 no doubt), and a lot more cheese.

The one thing that might have set it apart from its many predecessors would have been the political and social background story which is hinted at in the brilliant but short performances of Tucci and Banks, but gets drowned out by the tedious, incoherent, and unconvincing attempts at action and cheesy teenage romance of the Twilight variety.

Even though the "action" is clearly intended to carry the movie, given the amount of time devoted to it, it is largely vapid PG13-type stuff, where the heroine MacGyvers her way out of a tight corner by dropping a hive of waspy insects onto her assailants --- who, in spite of being in a fight for their lives, guard her, and themselves, by collectively taking a nap at the foot of the tree their opponent is trapped in. Common sense isn't the strength of any of the contestants, which gallivant unguardedly and noisily through woods they know to be full of people out to kill them, and spend quite a bit of time publicly (and noisily) emoting when disagreeable stuff happens. Gimmicks abound, many of which easily predictable as they are introduced hamfistedly one by one during the preparation and training phase.

Movie making is a business, and much of the revenue comes from young people, and there is every reason to believe that this movie is successfully catering to their tastes and preferences. Unfortunately for the rest of us, this means that all the interesting commentary on our own lives and societies that the source material might have contained is only a small subtext to a teenage drama that has been done before, better, sharper, and more convincing. The scenes with Tucci (equipped with dental enhancements that accentuate everything he does) and Banks (also in magnificent costume) are the highlights of this film, degrading the main action to mere filler for the teens. Unfortunately, for more than two hours, that's just not enough.
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3/10
How can this be a cult movie?
aryassen23 March 2012
Warning: Spoilers
OK, first let me admit that I haven't read the books, and I didn't even know they existed: I was taken to the cinema by my girlfriend, who saw something in the trailers I didn't which made her all excited. So, I sat there with a clear mindset, no expectations, no prejudice, no background info whatsoever. First things first: whoever invented the the "let's shake the camera all around because it makes the movie so much more lifelike" and convinced others to follow him or her, should be shot. Twice, in fact, just to be sure...It is really annoying, and so unnecessary: it is not making anything more real. For me, in many cases the hectic and jerky camera movement seemed to be only a poor attempt to mask fact that there is nothing (or not much) happening, but it tries to make it look intense and action packed regardless. So cheap...and apart from pissing me off, it didn't work at all, but I admit I well may be a minority... The story feels like it is hanging in the air. Again, I didn't read the books so the scenes may have been adequately set there, but in the movie you get 10 lines, and off you go...and it doesn't add much depth later on either. The most fundamental question remained: what's the point? Sending 2 dozens of younglings to slaughter won't hold aggression at bay in itself, actually it is more likely that the infuriated parents driven mad from the grieving over the unnecessary and pointless death of their children will cry for revenge and go into resistance, or even spark a brutal bloodbath (especially that it is an annual event, so sooner or later everyone will be affected by friends or family). Also, the scale is hanging in the air too, you don't know how the 2 opposing populations (the "citizens" of the shiny new world and the habitants of the 12 district) relate to each other, which would be rather pivotal. I won't go on with the many potholes, the bottom line for me is that the scene was set simply poorly. The story, well, is very simple and straight, once you stepped over the inadequate surroundings. Feels painfully unfinished, and though I din't know there is a series behind, I told to the (rather disappointed) missus in the end that it must be so because they already have a sequel in mind. Knowing that gives a little excuse, but still left a hollow "is this really it?" kind of feeling in the both of us. The striking similarities with Battle Royal I'll leave alone... Acting was OK, considering the absurdity of some of the characters and the whole context (background and story). I'm sorry, I'm not a big fan of the lead actress (Jennifer Lawrence), as I didn't even know her before this movie (althogh I saw and really liked First Class, but somehow couldn't connect). Regardless, she does a good job of portraying and transferring the tension, fear and uncertainty of the situation she is pulled into, at least a good number of scenes, in fact her efforts were one of the few "ups" for me among the many "downs" during that long 2,5 hours. Kudos to Elizabeth Banks as well for creating a "sugar-monster" character, and also for the fact that though I know her face well enough (just seen in Man on the ledge), here I simply couldn't recognise :) Based on the movie itself, I really don't know how this can be so popular, but I admit I'm probably not the target audience, and also the books may be much better (well, it wouldn't be difficult as the bar is set really low). Donald Sutherland was brilliant saying "only hope is stronger than fear", but that and Ms Lawrence's occasional shine doesn't make this worth to sacrifice and evening for. I have a frequent visitor card so it didn't cost me anything, but if I've paid almost 10 quids for this, I would be rather upset...
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5/10
Truman Show meets Battle royal
tjrmmm-17 April 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I would say the only thing that saves this movie is the acting.Jennifer Lawrence and surprisingly a great performance by Woody Harrelson .Story is predictable .It is like watching bits of ripped off story lines from other movies.From the opening scene from the coal miners daughter ,parts from The Running Man .Robin Hood ,Truman show .This story is just a bunch of other better movies compressed into on Disney like Battle royal.It might be a good thing that Gary Ross will not direct the next movie .This movie had a lot of potential but it fell short of what it could have been.There is no connections with the characters .You do not care about who lives and who dies .
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1/10
Unoriginal
tendobear1 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Blame Twilight! Ever since Twilight came out, all these teen flicks have been a variation of Twilight. Hunger Games is no different, it's just Twilight with teenagers trying to kill each other, oh wait, it IS Twilight, minus werewolves and vampires. The cheesy predictability associated with these teen flicks is in check; in a dystopian future, annually a bunch of teens are pitted against each other in the titular event until only one of them is left standing, all in the name of entertainment. Hunger Games thinks it's smart and different, but I couldn't help thinking I've seen it all before, with young Japanese actors and actresses. Oh yes, I have! 2000's Battle Royale starring Takeshi 'Beat' Kitano. Royale did it way better though: the concept is more credible and in a way, more scary - the youth of Japan are out of control, so a program is introduced to discipline/punish (delete as appropriate) them; the youths are selected by high school class, they are sent to an undisclosed island where they are to kill each other until one is left. The catch? They're wearing explosive collars, any tampering with them will blow their heads off. Now, that's a much more effective concept! For Hunger Games the final nail in the coffin is when Woody Harrelson's Haymitch convinces Wes Bentley's character to give the rioting public something to root for - "young love"! I literally cringed and almost gagged when I saw that scene! Avoid, avoid, avoid! Watch Battle Royale instead, you'll be grateful that you did.
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10/10
I loved Battle Royale
angedemo161 June 2012
Warning: Spoilers
To be honest, I was hesitant about this movie, mostly because it seemed like a new, toned-down version of Battle Royale. I had never read the books, but I feel that if a movie is good enough to inspire someone, then the book will be good enough to be read.

I want to read the books.

I didn't care for the shaky cam, especially in the beginning, but that's a personal preference of mine. I was highly disturbed that there was a world where children would be allowed to kill each other for sport. I kept wondering "Who would let this happen? Why are their people cheering for these children's deaths and not mourning them?" Rue's death satisfied that question. That was the most beautiful scene in the entire movie. Her death struck a chord with Katniss, an entire district and me. It was wonderful to finally see someone raging at the death of one of these kids, and she was the perfect vessel for it.

The lovey dovey stuff was to be expected, but this movie didn't try to shove it down your throat like a certain sparkling vampire movie did. It was subtle, and not even something of assurance, but sweet.

Just watch the movie. That's all I can say. I'm gonna go read the first book of the series. That's how good this movie is. It inspires the viewer to read and I'm ready for the next installment
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2/10
(Battle) Royale with cheese...and a side order of over exaggeration.
ArT_of_InSaNiTy25 November 2013
So as a movie enthusiast and a Cineworld unlimited card holder i do my fair share of visits to the cinema. Of course when a film garners interest the trailers become more and more prominent; this could be said for the newly released "Hunger Games:Catching Fire". Constant trailers and advertisements on TV....which led me to think...well i haven't even seen the first one yet. This led me to take up the opportunity that CineWorld had put before me, in seeing the first film in the Cinema in a one day special showing of the 2012 blockbuster.......

....but oh how i wish i didn't. Fast Forward to the end of the film and i walk out wondering what all the fuss is about and ahead of me i see an ever growing queue outside of anxious teens awaiting the midnight showing of the sequel. And it hit me like a bullet. This is why there is so much hype. I mean there could be no better an example of teen power than the Twilight saga. And this is very similar. Has any of these nutters seen "Battle Royale"? That is how you do a film focused on individual survival. That is a film that shows you the depths people will go to survive. It doesn't hide from the violence and it doesn't over complicate it. It is live or die. Simple.

Now this farce of a film is more focused on creating a love triangle between Katnis, (Lawrence) Gale (Hemsworth) and Peeta (Hutcherson). All this district nonsense, all this sacrifice, all the deaths...just for a love triangle. That is what the underlying story and forthcoming films are going to be all about; twilight anyone? It is one of the cheesiest films ever; made me cringe so much i was almost sure my spine would snap at any moment. That my head would go all exorcist and just keep going when i constantly turned away in dismay. This film is successful because of the vast amount of teens who are vacuumed into love stories and won't let go until a shirt is taken off. And anyone over the age of 18 who still enjoys this needs to grow up and go watch Battle Royale and that'll show you what would really happen in a circumstance like this.

The film takes almost an hour to start and when it does start, it actually doesn't. It's slow, uneventful and the characters they try so hard for you to feel sympathy towards are so incredibly unimportant that you simply don't care.

Yet another film, that is over exaggerated, over hyped, over advertised and over the top with cheese.

2/10 (and that's me being nice)
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6/10
A Twilight take on Battle Royale
TheRainsOfCastamere6 April 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Well, it seems that everything has been said already. The film and the book it was based on adapted the premise of a great Japanese film/book called Battle Royale, without ever giving it credit for the original idea.

Despite knowing this beforehand, I still went to see the film expecting something decent. I was quite disappointed when I walked out. For a film that was supposed to be all about teen violence, there seemed to be very little violence in the film. The few scenes depicting violence were toned down and lacked gore.

Perhaps good character development could save this, but, sadly, there was hardly any. All the dialogues seemed forced and monotonous. I was hoping to see the characters converse with each other, but all I saw was actors reading their lines. I like feeling emotions during films, but short of sadness of knowing I just spent $20 and wasted 2.5 hours of my life, I can't remember feeling any.

The only memorable scene for me was the return of the film's heroine to her district, however it was for all the wrong reasons. It struck me as odd that the boy who liked her was all smiles, despite seeing his love interest make out with some nerf herder on the big screen.

My advice is to wait until you can rent this for $2, and even then, only if you really want to see it for yourself. Otherwise, buy a nice Blu-Ray of Battle Royale and see how The Hunger Games should have been made.

6/10 (1 point added out of my respect for Woody Harrelson)
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6/10
A bad copy of Battle Royale
asdhfhsjdkfs23 April 2014
Warning: Spoilers
A highly americanized version of Battle Royale, with essentially the same impossible happy ending. Capitol's aesthetics, which I find close to Alice in Wonderland's Red Queen (especially that pathetic Effie Trinket), contribute to the childish ambiance of the film. A contrast that, rather than increasing the dramatic power of the film, gives off a typical American smell.

The use of Holocaust films aesthetics in the Districts scenarios is, for my taste, another proof of lack of imagination, of narrative consistency.

However, the great work of Jennifer Lawrence (in contrast with other characters) and the resources of Hollywood can make this film an acceptable piece of entertainment.
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3/10
Stealing from Japan. Again.
clement-959-54291727 March 2014
Battle Royal, the Japanese wonder from which "author" Suzanne Collins stole the plot to "write" 'The Hunger Games', was nothing short of a unique piece of art in a sometime dull cinema industry. It was refreshing, brilliantly played, and even had Takeshi Kitano in it.

And then came the cash cow makers, yearning for fast-money franchise. Makes sense though, you wouldn't work for the lesser salary either. Their job is to make huge profits, and this usually comes with a total absence of feeling. Fair enough!

But 'Hunger Games', really... It is the diet version of entertainment. A terrible actress to begin with. And if you have seen American Hustle or the recent X-Men movies, you know it is not ready to change. Jennifer Lawrence has no acting, no understanding of her roles, and to be true, millions out there are still trying to make sense with her Oscar...

Then come the Art Direction... Again, no creativity, everything being taken from more glorious creators from the past. Make-up just looks like Ziggy Stardust had more offspring than we thought. Costumes look like 'The Shindler List' VERY unfortunately met 'Zoolander' with a failed attempt to "Jean-Paul Gaultier" the overall look. And let's not talk about the boring settings... Even if creativity rides along with inspiration, there is a huge step between referencing and raiding. This is clearly the latter.

And yet, there is ONE beacon of hop amidst all this terribly annoying waste of time: the next 'Hunger Game' movie. Stanley Tucci alone gives more credit to the franchise than any other previous actors. Then of course Philip Seymour Hoffman and Julianne Moore. Obviously. Let us just hope that the mediocrity that transpired through the first movies will be washed away by this brilliant cast.
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3/10
Dumbed down, Watered down....
jenjen84764 April 2012
Warning: Spoilers
-Contains Spoilers!!!!-

I was beyond excited to see this movie...and completely disappointed when I left the theater. In my minds eye, I felt the job capturing the Capitol and the people there, visually, was well done. It looked very much as I imagined, as did District 12. However, so much from there fell short. I even re-read the books after watching the movie, to make sure I wasn't making too much of it...only to come away more frustrated. I do realize they only have a certain amount of time to devote to the movie, but I felt it could have been 2 parts to help that. I have nothing against the casting, for the most part. Personally, Katniss was a tall and buxom for how I pictured her....Peeta a little short....Haymitch, a little too Woody Harrelson. haha. I feel the darkness, desperation and depth of the story are lost. The person I went with hadn't read the books and even felt much was glazed over. Gale for instance, you get no real sense of how deeply his and Katniss' connection runs, or why. You really have no clue other than a flashback as to why Katniss' mother is a shell of a being when you see her or why that relationship is strained. Prim is an un-lovable version of what she is in the books....Rue is simply a sidenote, you're sad when she dies because a young girl dies...not because you've come to know her. What of the whole premise of the movie - HUNGER games. All of the shock over how easily food comes to them in the Capitol and why it's such a huge deal to the characters is non exsistant. Why cut out something like Peeta losing his leg? Why no Madge character, to give Kat the Mockingjay pin? So so so many small details and character builds that aren't there. It falls flat, emotionless and empty. A meaningful, exciting, heart wrenching story....turned into something to bring in a teenage crowd, I can only imagine.
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1/10
Horrible Ripoff
MrAbinader11 March 2013
Although this movie wasn't particularly bad, it's unfortunate that its a complete copy and ripoff of the Japanese movie Battle Royale, which is unfortunate as it was rumored that Battle Royale was going to be remade into an American Film. However, that can't happen anymore as all these little girls will think its copying the Hunger Games when in fact BR came out in 2001. The author of the books should be ashamed of herself and BR should seriously sue the production company for lost potential profit. Hunger Games is a watered down mainstream version of BR and horror fans everywhere will be disappointed that it will never get the chance to be remade, it had true potential to be an extremely disturbing film. Suzanne Collins should be sued, and this issue should be brought to light.
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1/10
Just another foreign movie ripoff- Spoiler Alert
johnny-40719 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
This awful movie is nothing more than an extremely poor ripoff of Battle Royale. Pretty much a Twilight version of the original Japanese movie.

The characters- especially Peeta- are insipid and the acting- if it can be referred to as such- is awful. Peeta should have been dispensed with at the beginning of the Games. For most of the movie he follows The Twilight character Katniss around like a lost puppy doing little to defend himself or his true love. At almost three hours, there is so much pure fluff that the movie- or is it a "film"?- just drags on. An hour of garbage unnecessary to what little story there is could have been easily cut.

And the Games- what a joke. Battle Royale so far outshines this piece of Hollywood garbage. This movie is yet another in a long line of Hollywood ripoffs of really great foreign movies- Contraband and Dragon Tattoo being just two other examples.

The last 20 minutes of the movie is just plain dumb.

I don't doubt that this movie appeals to the typical American audience. No need to go into that statement.

A "1" rating is way too high for this trash. I'm sure, just as with Twilight, there will be countless sequels. Hollywood has long since lost any creative talent it once had and is now reduced to comic book movies, third remakes of movies and television series not that good to begin with and really awful ripoffs of very good foreign movies.
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2/10
So... was this supposed to be better than BR?
the_wolf_imdb14 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I have read a TON of reviews that told us this is THE THRILLER, the revolution, the super amazing thing. Basically it is only huge victory of marketing over the common sense. To say that the Hunger Games is better than Battle Royale is the same as to say that Coca Cola is better than the best French Champagne, because the Coca Cola sells more bottles and it is better known around the world. Oh, this power of marketing that sells water with sugar and forces the masses think that it is mana directly from the heavens!

To say it simply and honestly: The Hunger Games is huge failure. It is super boring nonsense that tries to play emotional, sad or whatever. It is thriller written by the worst author of the love books you can ever imagine. It is movie where the only real thrill is a bunch of silly costumes of the Capitol People. But even they do look as a collection of weirdos from very cheap music video from 80ties.

I loved Battle Royale for its roughness, political message and pure shock value. There is nothing like that, when there is the first combat scene, it fails miserably. You can basically see only shaking camera. Then there is another long boring part, then again some super short combat messed again by another shaky camera. Then some hallucinations, then some memories, then some other boring sequence. There is a lot of similar movies (TV show that will be survived only by the sole victor) and every single of them is more thrilling. The only thing that would make the movie even more unbearable would be Sandra Bullock in the leading role.

The Hunger Games is a joke, it is less thrilling that any Harry Potter movie. It is basically movie for kids dressed as a thriller. It is definitely not recommended for anyone ho seeks real thriller or really powerful movie. But again: If you are twelve it might be fine for you. The leading actress is pretty so you may be happy just to observe her in various dresses and enjoy when she runs around the woods. There is a bit of tears, flower gathering and shallow morale for these teenage girls who may like this Hunting Barbie kind of stuff. As a male I have suffered horribly however.

One extra point for silly costumes and crazy haircuts. This is probably the only shocking thing in the whole movie.
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8/10
An American Battle Royale!
Redcitykev26 March 2012
Warning: Spoilers
In the future all wars have ended, but famine and poverty still remain in a new North Amercia, which has been split into 12 Districts. To appease the people, and pay tribute to the fallen, Capitol City have devised The Hunger Games, in which 2 children from each District are chosen to fight to the death live on TV.

The film follows the fortunes of the two chosen from District 12, and we see them whisked off to Capitol City - a pastel coloured "Willy Wonka" style place in which the people wear outlandish costumes, have bizarre haircuts and live seemingly empty and decedent lives. Here they are treated like royalty, and trained in readiness for the games.

Eventually the children are pitted against each other and the game begin. It is here that the film begins to remind one of the Japanese classic of a few years back 'Battle Royale' - but without as much blood or violence. As the game progresses the rules begin to change to attain an ending which is pleasing to the masses, rather than those "playing" the game, and new elements are thrown in to ensure excitement and "fun" for the viewers.

The film takes a long time to really hit its stride - the opening sequences seemingly go on forever - and there is no doubt that this film owes a big debt to 'Battle Royale', as well as nods to the original 'Rollerball' (in as much as war has been outlawed and violence has become controlled and organised for the entertainment of the masses) and even 'Logans Run', but it has enough in it to make it a stand-up, worthwhile film in its own right. Not the least of these is the way in which TV is shown to become cynical and exploitative, where - in much the same way as the Ancient Romans had their "Blood and Circuses" - love and death are merely elements in mass entertainment.

The production is very good - the future Capitol City looks amazing - whilst the acting ranges from excellent (the young actress playing the lead role is very good), to screen chewing (Woody Harrleson eats his heart out!!). The other thing about the film is its length - at almost 2hours 30minutes there is no doubt that it is just too long! A good half hour could have been lost without losing any of the tension or drama. Worth seeing definitely, but make sure you watch it in a comfortable cinema (or else take a cushion!)
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5/10
Plagerised crap
AdidasLoyalty30 July 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is such a complete and utter rip-off of Battle Royale, a real cult classic from Japan. The author of the Hunger Games should be stripped of every cent they made from this movie and the books. Poor acting, BORING story and the costumes are horrible! They actually make the beautiful Elizabeth Banks revolting to the point that it takes away from what movie there is actually to watch. Only reason I didn't give it a 1/10 was because Jennifer Lawrence is pretty good. I'd rather watch Battle Royale and Battle Royale II a hundred times that watch this again. Even the following books/movies are ripped from Battle Royale II, where the kids revolt against the system.
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1/10
Ripp Off Of Battle Royale !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Neos_back13 May 2013
CAPS LOCK FOR ADDED EMPHASIS! THIS IS A TOTAL RIP OFF OF BATTLE ROYALE! And before any of you smart alecks decide to say "how can it be a rip off when its based off a book", the answer is simple:

Battle Royale came out in 2000, Hunger Games was published in 2008.

Not only that, this isn't even a decent rip off. It has a stupid one sided love story and its just generally a kid friendly Disney-esk Hollywood piece of poop. No seriously, if you think this is even remotely good, then just go watch Battle Royale... seriously. Exactly the same plot, with the exception, Battle Royale is bloodier, has a better story and is based in a real world country (japan) rather than some made up magical land of pixies and clothes that catch fire but don't burn people.

I've seen both, Battle Royale is epic, this is just lame.
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1/10
Not an Original Movie
missrenee8211 June 2012
I already saw this movie when it was called The Running Man. The only difference is it's starring a female with a bow and arrow as opposed to Arnold Schwarzenegger and his pure brawn. Of course you could also pull out your Disney library and see this movie from there as well. Remember Mulan? What about Dragonslayer? Both two Disney films that involve "sacrificing" younger individuals for the greater good. Of course the switch-a-roo of the heroin clearly was taken from Mulan. Let's not forget that even the "kids killing kids" situation was clearly taken from the much better, original work, Lord of the Flies. This story was not original which definitely showed throughout the simplistic production. The action was missing with a terrible attempt to hide that fact. The story itself was plastic and belonged on a toy store shelf next to the Barbie dolls.
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6/10
Well, it's no Battle Royale...
wandereramor23 May 2012
There's almost nothing to say about a movie like The Hunger Games -- it's been so worked to death to be a successful blockbuster that all of its edges, the things that make a film good or bad, have disappeared. It just exists as a spectacle, a finished product that defies any critical lens.

I could go on about the particulars of the adaptation -- the ridiculousness of the entire Capital setting, or the sometimes disorienting shakycam work, or the great cast of adults patiently playing supporting characters -- or the source material -- the gestures at social commentary, the way that the story protects Katniss from ever having to morally sully herself -- but they all seem to be beside the point. Look. The movie has the things that happened in the book, but in a movie, competently shot and acted, with absolutely no risks taken. If you liked the book, or want to learn what this whole Hunger Games thing is about without having to read the book, you'll probably like this. It's a digestible film, even an enjoyable one, but in the end it's not really interesting or memorable. But to be fair, it wasn't meant to be.
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7/10
Nice story, 'Battle Royale' the sequel.
Photoluck6 May 2012
Reading a lot of crying people that the movies isn't at par with the fabulous book. Didn't read the book. The movie however, the story line is similar from the Japanese movie 'Battle Royale'. So this was an remake with an twist? There is one similarity of these two movies, both have the same cheap feel and looks. Although i liked this setting much more, it was more appealing.

What i didn't liked is at some part i got the feeling i was watching Avatar with the shots in the Arena control room.

The movie is too short or the first half is to long and not much time left fro the second part. I got the feeling it was been rushed to much at the end. The fist part, everything was been buildup nicely, after-then all seems to be rushed and no time for better involving within the arena.

Anyway, it's a nice movie to watch, i give it a 6.5
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3/10
Watch Battle Royale instead
grantss4 March 2014
Vastly over-rated movie - I really don't know what all the fuss was about. Clearly meant for teenagers: trite romance; contrived, hole- filled plot; Disney-style happy ending. (Though at 2 1/2 hours it is way too long for teenagers' concentration spans). However, as far as teen- oriented movies go, it is still better than Twilight, though that doesn't say much.

Take out most of the first hour or so, as this was all just padding and didn't develop the characters or plot much; give it a more realistic, gritty feel and take out the Disney romance, sentimentality and ending and this could have been a decent movie. In its current form it is boring and crap.

If you want a good, gritty, Last Person Standing / Survival of the Fittest -type movie, watch Battle Royale instead.
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7/10
"Battle Royale" light!
Thrashman8825 December 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Last night I finally saw "The Hunger Games" and I must confess it's an entertaining movie. Shades of older movies such as "Rollerball", "Logan's Run" and more recently, "Battle Royale" are very present in "Hunger Games". In a distant future North America goes through a war that leaves the nation devastated. The war was caused by internal uprising, not a foreign attack. After a lengthy war the state prevails, but much of the nation is left in ruins. As means to remember this sad period, the state organizes a reality show called 'the hunger games', where each of the 12 districts that started the revolts years ago, must submit a young boy and girl to participate in a televised fight to the death, where only one can become the sole victor. This is where this movie veers closely to the Japanese masterpiece "Battle Royale", with a premise very much alike.

Our heroine comes from district 12, Katniss, played by Jennifer Lawrence. Despite casting a bombshell as a tough warrior, Jennifer pulls it off amazingly well, giving a serious performance.

I understand this movie is a book adaptation and, in my case, I haven't read the books or book so I can't really tell if it's a faithful adaptation. A strange feeling invaded me while watching "The Hunger Games"; it felt like something big was going to happen, a big revelation or the real truth behind such barbaric game. But this revelation never happened and by the time the film ends I'm left with more questions that answers. Unlike "Battle Royale", I developed little sympathy for the rest of the young kids involved in the game. Out of the 24 participants, the movie is designed for the audience to care for only 3 characters: Katniss, Peeta and Rua, that's it. Little or no background is given of the other participants, some of them seemed to really enjoy all the hunting and killing.

Little is said about the president of the nation, portrayed by Donald Sutherland, in what I thought was a waste of talent.

Again, reading the book would probably help me to understand the many plot holes this movie has. I think more could've been done with the movie's premise, a more social commentary, but director Gary Ross apparently chose not to. In the end, "The Hunger Games" is really a light version of "Battle Royale".
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6/10
Battle Royale mixed with Twilight
trashgang29 August 2012
This must be one of the most hyped films over here in Europe this summer and naturally I took precautions to watch it due the fact that hyped flicks mostly fail for me.

The Hunger Games are based on a book and here things already go wrong. It is loosely based on the book. I just will refer to the dogs at the end of this flick, here they are created by the masters of the game. In the book they are the dead that resurrect into dogs. A big difference and also one of the reasons that shows that it was made for the youngsters among us. While the books have a lot of blood and gore the flick doesn't show us anything of that.

But is it all that bad, no, there are a few good actions taking place and it never bored me but it failed by choosing for a flick that fits for whole the family. By saying that it brings me back to another trilogy I doesn't like, Twilight. The way the lover birds are talking does take you back to Twilight.

I was more into the brutal Immortals (2012) a flick that failed for others but worked out fine for me. If you like The hunger Games but would prefer it a bit rougher then I should recommend Battle Royale (2000) but let's wait for the remake of Battle Royale coming out in 2015 if it will be like the original one.

Effects and acting was okay but it's a trilogy I wont follow any more.

Gore 1/5 Nudity 0/5 Effects 3/5 Story 3/5 Comedy 0/5
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