The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

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The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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‘Hunger Games’ franchise starts strong

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Photo Courtesy of Lionsgate Publicity

(Photo Courtesy of Lionsgate Publicity)

Transitioning from a book to big screen is perhaps the hardest thing a filmmaker can try to do. We’ve seen hits (“Harry Potter”) and misses (“Water for Elephants”) and embarrassments (“Cat in the Hat”). However, when done right, a literary adapted movie is the perfect recipe for box office success.

In the case of this spring’s biggest potential blockbuster, Suzanne Collin’s “The Hunger Games,” director Gary Ross takes the post apocalyptic young adult thriller and turns it into a compelling on-screen adaptation that will leave the book’s rabid fans more than happy.

The story revolves around Katniss Everdeen. Everdeen is a citizen of Panem, a totalitarian society that rose from the ashes of a fictional nuclear holocaust.

Each year Panem picks two adolescents (one boy, one girl) from each of its 12 districts to compete in the Hunger Games, a battle royale that only leaves one sole survivor.

The Capital (Panem’s supreme authority) claims the Hunger Games is a reminder to Panem’s citizens of the past it has overcame.

When Evergreen’s sister, Prim, gets picked to be district 12’s female representative, the heroine boldly volunteers for the blood bath. Joining Katniss in the arena is Peetah Malark, a baker’s son.

The remainder of “The Hunger Games” follows Peeta and Katniss as they fights to survive in the arena.

Essentially, there are two factors that make “The Hunger Games” the outstanding film it is: 1) Gary Ross’ direction and 2) Jennifer Lawrence’s role as Katniss Everdeen.

Even though Gary Ross was working with young adult fiction, the director treats his audience more mature than expected.

Ross lets the grit and grime of Collins’ world come alive on screen.

While some debated that Ross’ direction was too harsh, its refreshing to see a young adult film that has some guts.

Ross is particularly talented when he directs “The Hunger Games'” most gruesome scenes.

While Ross may have directed the film, Jennifer Lawrence, the on screen lead carries it on her shoulders.

Ever since her rise to stardom in “Winter’s Bone,” Lawrence has been a force to be reckon with when it comes to playing the token tough girl.

However, as Katniss Everdeen, Lawrence takes her abilities to new heights.

Simply put, a star is born.

Perhaps the only flaw within “The Hunger Games” is the casting as Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Malark. Hutcheron comes off as dry and almost aloof.

Expect for Hutcherson to improve as the franchise moves forwards.

With shocking scenes of kid-on-kid violence and a strong political message, “The Hunger Games” is without a doubt the must see movie of 2012.

With analyst calling “The Hunger Games” the biggest movie of the year, good luck getting a seat, or as Panem PR guru Effie Trinket would say, “may the odds be ever in your favor. 

 

Hunger Games in Numbers

  • More than 26 million copies of the series sold.
  • The film has sold out more than 2,000 showtimes
  • FanDango sales accounted for 92 percent of the total sales.
  • The film is expexted to gross more than $100 million over the weekend.

 

 

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